Column: Getting away


Four moms, three nights, two rooms, one foreign country . . . read on for a tale of the best girls’ trip ever! Or at least a pretty good one.

I’ll take credit for getting the ball rolling. After plans with my own sisters failed to materialize, I presented the idea to my three local sisters-in-law. I needed a break from the cold and grey, and quite frankly, from motherhood and marriage. We debated between a high-end place in the Bahamas and a much-cheaper-but-decidedly-questionable resort in the Dominican Republic. The promise of warmer temperatures won out, and less than twenty-four hours later, I had us booked at an all-inclusive in Punta Cana.

Having never traveled to the DR, and because I’d been so busy with work, carpools and dead lizards, my preparation for international travel was limited to a spray tan and weather-check the night before. I  had my passport, a credit card, and a bikini, though; I figured I was set.

Turns out, a Spanish-English dictionary would have been extremely helpful, as we were the only Americans at the resort and our language skills were limited at best. (Dora can only get you so far!) Between the employees and the Russians and French Canadians, we were frequently in the dark as to what was happening or, as we soon discovered, what we were eating. The roughly-translated menu identified our meal one night as “Goat in Perfume”, “Rice with Best Meat,” and “Sweet Milk,” which by the way, was neither sweet nor milky.

Also lost in translation was my request for two adjacent rooms with double beds. At check-in, we learned we’d be staying three buildings apart and that SIL B and I would be sleeping together. We did have AC and hot water though, which unfortunately cannot be said of the other room. Sorry, ladies!

We ran short on cash because I was the only one who remembered to inform my bank that’d I be pulling pesos from an ATM, experienced extreme turbulence on our descents through both an ice and a tropical storm, and may or may not have landed ourselves on a fake Cuban cigar outfit’s hit list.

And yet, this was one of the funnest [sic]trips of my adult life. We enjoyed stellar people-watching (those tight European-style swim trunks are a hoot, especially on the elderly), hilarious conversations (How would Doo look in that thong Speedo?), and as many shots of what sounded like “Marijuana’s” as we could stomach, which sadly was only one. Nevertheless, the act of coming together in a strange place as women without spouses or kids did wonders for our damaged winter psyches, despite the lack of luxury. Best. Trip. EVER.

Peace out.