Some trips seem so much like a slam dunk that it’s hard to get excited for them. My last such adventure? A week in San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua. My friend Denise invited me, to leave the very next day after I got home from a week in NYC. I love Denise; I figured I’d like her friends. I love San Juan, and I love the beach; easy, peasy. Instead of thinking about it at ALL, I spent weeks getting pumped about NYC. Poor Nicaragua was an afterthought, an “Oh, I almost forgot that I have one night to unpack and re-pack my bags, even though I live in the tropics without a dryer and thus have no idea how I’m going to manage such a fast turnaround.”
But sometimes, a trip to a place that you already know is wonderful with a group of people who you already know you love gets smacked with an added dose of travel magic. For me, for us, San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua was a perfect storm of fun.
And this was a trip I almost cancelled.
I was so exhausted after TBEX, literally about to melt after having left for the airport at 3:30 am after a crazy week in Manhattan. Denise, her friend Megan, and I powwowed the night I got back. Internet was down in our Nicaraguan rental, and I hadn’t even told my business partner I was taking another trip. Maybe I needed a week off from globe-trotting? Thankfully, I gambled on the internet connection getting fixed and skipped home to pack my bags. Megan was left with a terrible first impression. I must’ve seemed about as fun as an old mop.
The next morning, bright and early, we headed for the Costa Rica/Nicaragua border. It was the first time I crossed on foot, and it had recently rained. Imagine three girls in their little dresses with a little Chihuahua named Chica, slipping and sliding as they walk in quicksand-worthy mud. When finally we arrived at our rental house, we immediately got the Tonas going, per tradition. It was about 10 am. Somewhere around beer number five and early afternoon, Megan’s friend Mike showed up. Our Nica A-team was complete.
What followed was a week of having “our” table reserved every night at the Iguanas beach bar, a magical day of private beaches at Rancho Santana, romantic $10 lobster dinners, and night after night of laughing so hard I was determined to never go home. We had our own dance (Denise will have to show you), a close group of local friends (Eli, we miss you; Pedro, get down to business!), and I even got to meet one of my Twitter friends(@ayngelina; she’s awesome).
On the way back to Costa Rica, Megan actually got teary for most of the trip. Me? Nah! I travel all the time; I’m made of steel. Yeah, right. I cracked many days later, when my three Canadians were back… in Canada. I’ve already got my next trip booked, plus a little one or two to keep me occupied before that. But man, it’s hard to get back in the saddle after a trip like that! That trip seemed almost too good to be true, another one of those trips where the place was truly special, but the actual adventure happened thanks to the people who were there.
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