My Vacation in Florida!

Hi, there!

As I’ve mentioned, I recently went on vacation. Didn’t tell you where exactly where I traveled to, but–surprise!– now I will!

I passed a week and a half in the lovely tropics of the Bahamas, the Caribbeans, and Florida. Well, not so lovely if you consider the humidity and occasional rain (when it rains in Florida, it POURS). Anyway, here’s the gist:

Took the plane to Ft. Lauderdale and promptly boarded the ship for a 7-day cruise. Stopped by four islands: Princess Cays, St. Martin/Sint Maarten, St. Thomas, and Grand Turk/Caicos. Before I left, I had no idea what these islands were, let alone existed. But after a brief vacationing on these territories, I got to learn a bit of history and trivia about them.

My favorite island would have to be St. Martin/Sint Maarten, because, if you know me well, I’m a huge sucker for French/European-related things. And this particular island is divided into French and Dutch territories, so I got the best of both worlds! Took a day-long tour there, visiting both sides of the island. The views were gorgeous, teeming with green–very green– vegetation, and blue, blue waters. Phillipsburg, the capital of the Dutch side, was shopping central, harboring plenty of stores, restaurants and bars, the works. Purchased Guavaberry liqueur, which I heard is a specialty of the island, used to make this crazy-sounding concoction called the “Guavaberry colada.” I swear, I’m going to make it… 😉

Also snorkeled for the first time: at Grand Turk, my sister and I donned our goggles and vests and dived into the salty, salty waters of the Carribeans. Bombs away! The saltiness of the water shocked me, ’cause I usually swim in fresh water that has been chlorinated (aka the swimming pool). But the view of the deep ocean floor was breathtakingly haunting: 7,000 feet of near darkness, full of yellow-striped fish so close that you could almost touch them. It was a notable experience.

On the ship, though, there was plenty of activities to do as well. When I wasn’t touring the islands, I was aboard, eating, drinking, and (most likely) gaining weight. Passed every day with a glass of wine or some sort of alcoholic beverage with a five-course dinner. Delicious, delicious, delicious. 😛

After the cruise was up, I disembarked back in Florida. But the trip wasn’t over yet; my family and I rented a car and headed up to Orlando for Universal Studios. It’s been over ten years since I’ve been to any sort of amusement park, and returning to my childhood was–shall I say it?– quite wonderful. Took roller coasters, and yes, I yelled my head off on those. Half from excitement, half from fear. It was crazy.

The theme park that I was interested in in checking out, though, was the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. While not a die-hard, hard-core fan, I have, in fact, read all of the books, seen all of the movies, and genuinely enjoy the series. Went to both parks: Hogsmeade and Diagon Alley. Drank butterbeer (delicious, by the way), rode the rides, and shopped. I desired a wand, but I did not have enough money to purchase one. I did, however, bought and repped a Ravenclaw T-shirt: if I were to be placed in any house, it would be Ravenclaw. I am a Ravenclaw for life. 😛

Alas, our stay was short, and so with a heavy heart, my family and I headed back home. Lots of traveling this summer, but a wonderful amount. And with school starting soon, I am refreshed, reinvigorated, and ready for anything! ‘Til next time!

– The Finicky Cynic

…and some pictures:

Fort Louis, St. Martin (French side).
Fort Louis, St. Martin (French side).
Sint Maarten (Dutch side).
Sint Maarten (Dutch side).
Phillipsburg, Sint Maarten.
Phillipsburg, Sint Maarten.
Hogsmeade.
Hogsmeade.
Guavaberry liqueur.
Guavaberry liqueur.
Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
Diagon Alley.
Diagon Alley.
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