Have you ever had a terrible vacation?
A trip where everything goes wrong?
And, I mean everything.
Like it rains all week and the little Mexican village where you are staying doesn’t have paved roads, let alone a drainage system to handle unexpected water overflow.
Which is mostly apparent by the chickens stuck in the middle of the muddy streets who can’t pick their poor little chicken legs up out of the muddy goop that used to the be only form of village transportation.
What’s a little rain you say?
It won’t prevent me from having fun.
Or a vacation.
But, it doesn’t stop there.
You rented a totally quaint and cozy villa with friends and the one person who has the key to the place is M.I.A., and for some reason decides not to come back for the night (after the drunken wedding party you all attended).
You are now cold, in a foreign country, with only your cute sundress and strappy sandals (so very perfect for a tropical Mexican destination wedding if only it weren’t pouring rain and the streets weren’t mudslide washouts).
And, you are now officially locked out of your Villa Bonita.
But, then you think, (because you are good at thinking) you could just sleep on the beach — it is the perfect solution!
After all, you flew in from the cold Northeast and you can handle it.
Except that you can’t handle it, you can’t handle the fact that it feels like 40 degrees near the water and the sand feels like the princess and the pea on peyote, poking right through your silky sundress.
Finally, after walking the beach for hours, you eventually meet up with other wedding party attendees to mooch a side couch slot in their hotel room while your husband (now ex-husband) leaves you for a marijuana smoking all-nighter.
In that moment, shivering, alone, in your soaking sundress and lying on a twin mattress surrounded by someone else’s luggage, in someone else’s hotel room, squeezed between a bumpy adobe wall, you vow never, NEVER EVER TO RETURN, to this wretched little place on earth.
And, that’s before you found out half the wedding party was food poisoned with some strand of Ecoli.
Well, six years later, here’s what I have to say:
Never say never.
As I sit, writing this post, poolside in that same little Mexican village, I am thinking that this time around I am blessed with beautiful sunrises, sunsets and hot beach-y days in between.
And, of course, this time I have the keys to the villa and am sleeping on a comfy bed.
But, the difference between a terrible vacation and a cherished one easily comes down to this: the people you share it with.
Even though I vowed never to return, I am so thankful I said yes.
Adios from the pool.
My margarita and mi amor awaits.