Monday, April 06, 2009

Postcard from Punta Cana

Punta Cana was Punta-Fabulous.
I almost didn't come back.

The mamajuana conspired to keep me on my ass: red wine, honey, and of course lots of domestic rum fermenting in a jug with twigs and herbs and other mysterious whatnots to make a beverage that people call Dominican Viagra for reasons that quickly become obvious.

Bars in pools may be God's greatest invention. And floating drink menus? Pina colada, margarita, daiquiri, banana mama, dominican peach, blue hawaiian, sex on the beach...all just a wink away. Uno mas, por favor. That's Spanish! See how quickly we can learn new languages when we're motivated?

Ladies' Night has a different meaning in the Dominican. Yes, ladies get in free. Yes, ladies drink for free. Yes, the cute boys who brought you drinks in pineapples all day long are now removing their clothes for you in the disco.

Snorkeling is cool. Swimming with hundreds of tropical fish is an experience to be savoured. Rubbing your forehead with a banana beforehand so that the fish will be attracted is possibly a small bit of rum-induced madness. But swimming with sharks? Oh sure, it will be a cool story. If you survive. And of course you're brave about it when you're drunkenly signing up for it the day before. But once in the water with a whole bunch of sharks who probably have it in for you (this is purely conjecture, but they did give me a look), it's a whole different story. Nervous is one of those words that fails spectacularly at describing some situations. At one point, I swam over 4 or 5 of them who were all hanging out together, and I thought to myself: if one of them suddenly throws a fit, and they all storm off in a rage, I'm lunch. But it was the sting rays that really freaked me out. And whoever thought it would be a good idea to pose for a picture with one? They tell you that Cassandra is a friendly sting ray, so long as you don't poke her here, here, or here. Or swish her by the tail. But nobody tells you that Cassandra is enormous, and slimy, and heavy, and creepy. And that she has some sort of blow hole that she angrily directs at your face, and then does this floppy thing that is very disturbing. Do I regret throwing the sting ray? Yes. But I still maintain that it wasn't really my fault.

Getting into your scenery-sensational hammock is heaven. Getting out of it 3 banana mamas later is less so. Kinda makes you wish you'd brought panties, but it's not really a vacation unless it's a vacation from underwear. Am I right?

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