And now, we plunge right back into the complex memories of Wes (That’s me).–My first trip out of Canada, I mean the first trip that I actually needed a passport for. (Back then you just need a driver’s licence to go into the U.S.A.) I had been to a few places in the U.S., New York State, Maine, Ohio, and Vermont, but I’m talking about somewhere warm, exotic and awesome. I’m talkin’ about a real trip. Dominican Republic. WOW!!
What can I say? Once again, I was conditioned to believe that I had no desire to go to one of these places. Why would I want to go there? When just the other year a friend of a friend’s friend (or a long lost relative‘s friend) went and almost got killed, or robbed, or food poisoned there, or it rained for their entire stay. This is what I always heard. This is what I believed. Man! Dumb, dumb, dumb. I mean, I guess it could happen. But I’m so glad that Karen talked me in to this trip. She opened my eyes to this kind of trip.
It was Christmas 2002. What a great trip, warm and sunny, excellent food and great entertainment. Dominican is mostly Catholic (OK folks, here’s another made up statistic for ya. Let’s say 90% Catholic. I didn’t totally make that up. That’s what the Interwebs told me.), so Christmas in the Dominican was great, even though I’m not Catholic. You haven’t heard or seen anything until you’ve experienced Jingle Bells, Silent Night and all your favourite Christmas tunes played on the steel drums while everyone dances around, dressed up and wearing Santa hats. In-freekin-credible! All the food was pretty much American type stuff. You want a cheese burger or some fried chicken and watermelon in the middle of the night, or any time for that matter, you could get it. And I like that. Yes, all inclusive … that’s the way to go, all you can eat and drink. That gets the Wes seal of approval.
I phoned the “rents” (parents) on X-mas Day. My mom said, “I bet your not having a big turkey dinner this year, are ya?” (Still a little bitter that we went south, and not to her for the holidays) I said, “No Ma, we haven’t had a big Christmas dinner. We’ve had two and we will be having another one tonight, along with lots of drinks and I will probably wash it all down with a cheeseburger or two and then go for a swim.” (waiting the necessary 20 – 30 minutes to avoid cramps, of course) Ha, ha, ha. That kind of put her in her place. What can I say? Me mum loves us, and wants us home for the holidays every year.
This was the first real vacation that Karen and I took together.A true test, no one else, just the two of us, and we can make it if we try. Oops, almost started singing. After two months of dating, our relationship became a long-distance one (with me travelling around for work). We would only see each other on the weekends, and even then, not every weekend. Don’t get me wrong … I wasn’t dating a stranger or a weekend ho,(that would have been nice) we’d talk on the phone every night. Got to know each other pretty well. But, could we survive each other’s company alone for a whole week? Yup, it was a true test and we passed it with flying colours.
Hola, dos cerveza, por favor. Or in Karen’s sake… dos “Banana Mama” por favour (who said, K doesn’t drink). No, no, you better make it quarto … All this heat, it’s making me dry. Gracias , senor.