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Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Babymoon Weekend Trip to Sanibel Island

My anniversary is July 13; my baby is due July 21st. Hubs decided to take me for an early anniversary trip considering the obvious.
Vacation also came one week after marathon month of business trips and I was really ready for a break.

Day 1
We didn’t actually plan it too well. In fact, we didn’t start looking for a hotel until the morning of the 1st day of vacation. Hubs got bagels and post breakfast dropped puppy off at the dog sitters while I researched hotels at islands in South Florida (yes we vacation in the state we live in – it’s convenient which equals no airports/schedules and we don’t happen to “live” on the beach so anything on an island is novel).
Sanibel Island was selected because it had the following: Mimi’s restaurant in 15 mile zone (favorite restaurant in the world), beach access from hotel room, kayaking and heated pool (hey it might be FL but it’s 70F/21C during the day and 50F/10C at night).
We arrived to the area around 3:30pm and promptly went to Mimi’s for late lunch. I had a lovely seafood pasta and Hubs had a hamburger. Upon check-in we find our 1 bedroom hotel room has been upgraded to a 2 bed/2 bath with full kitchen suite that is like equal to the size of our condo. Had I known, I would have packed food – I rarely like hotel restaurants. We arrive to room and I promptly start reading Sophie Kinsella’s “Remember Me” (with cool dust cover from UK). In an hour its pitch black outside and we realize we are still too full from lunch to even consider dinner. It suddenly dawns on me that being on a very small island might equal nothing to do at night. Upon further discussion with concierge, we learn there is a local movie theater but it’s only playing old crappy movies and everyone just ends up at local pub which isn’t much fun while pregnant. We wandered around the resort and stopped for dessert, a game of shuffle board (I lost) and pin ball (I won!!!) before retiring to our room for an evening of Harry Potter for Hubs and Sophie’s book for me.

Day 2
Breakfast at hotel restaurant – not bad/not great as expected but while eating we saw DOLPHINS – yes dolphins hoping along the coast. I’m surprised I didn’t scream and run out of the restaurant. It was really so cool!!! After breakfast we changed and rented a tandem kayak to search for more dolphins – didn’t find any but managed to have a fairly compatible ride until Hubs started commenting on my unusual ability to paddle severely harder on the left then the right therefore causing him to counter correct. Once I corrected that small error, he had more advice which I’ve promptly forgotten. We somehow returned 2 hours later without killing each other and I was so tired I was happy to lay by the pooh reading more of Sophie’s book (I have this small problem with a high energy level and if I don’t exhaust myself, I find it hard to lay around and relax). By 2:30 we are ready for lunch and discover Chee Burger where they offer 20+ toppings for burgers and chicken sandwiches along with onion rings and fries. It’s a wonderful gooie mess of a sandwich with a Vanilla Coke to top it off (I only drank ½ - doctor said I can have small amounts of caffeine). In the same complex we find a small toy shop called Needful Things (it was not my idea to go in here, Hubs is a huge toy fan and really should have my job – I swear I’m not working on my vacation – not working!!!). I did however find a collection of Smurfs from Schleich and promptly bought 2 figs to decorate my desk along with The Cube – an office cubical friend named Ann with cubicle playset.
Evening was spent leaving the island for a trip to the mainland to dine at Mimi’s – I had no desire to experiment with other restaurants, why mess with a good thing followed by a viewing of “The Other Boylen Sister” at local theater. The book by Phillipa Gregory was amazing (I harbor a secret hunch that I might be related to the author because my mother’s maiden name is the same) but the movie – well I was a little disappointed, I thought the costumes would be more elaborate and the last hour was really rushed. It’s got to be very hard to bring such a detailed book into theater so I respect the effort.

Day 3 – I negotiated late check out of 1pm and we got up early, had breakfast in our room with muffins from Mimi’s  and tea and rushed down to the dock for one last killer kayak ride that should be early enough to encounter dolphins. This time we rented single kayak’s to avoid killing each other on our last day and cruised in the direction of the wind, really fast for a ½ hour (no dolphins) – I went in a very straight line and kept tossing satisfied “told you I knew what I was doing” looks at Hubs. We decided to be conservative with our energy levels and return after a ½ hour – it suddenly turned into a grueling trip as we kayaked against the wind. Yeah I noticed it was windy but I swear it got much stronger on the return trip and stronger and stronger as we got weaker and weaker. It took 1 ½ hours to return. Here’s the part where I tell you we are not extremely experienced kayakers – in fact we just started a year ago and this is likely our 5th trip but still I’m strong, I lift weights on a regular basis – this is not rocket science – it was really windy!
The rest of the day went really slow, we showered, checked out on time, went for a drive to the 2nd island that is so close it might as well be attached just to explore and check out future hotel options. Found the 2nd island to be more civilized with an actual Starbucks and really fancy grocery store. Around 2:30pm we made our last stop at Mimi’s – I do not apologize for my repetitive preference and I had another lovely pasta dish with 4 muffins to go (for future breakfasts). Pooh Hubs had to drive the 2 hour drive home while I disappeared into the end of Sophie’s book. I’m happy to say it was a very good read. Oh yeah and the vacation was definitely relaxing and fun – but I failed to realize how many folks might be concerned at my level of activity while pregnant – the list includes Hubs co-workers quoted as saying “she did WHAT?” and Hub’s mother lecture on how maybe I should take it easy and my boss’s confused look followed by “but your pregnant”. I think I broke a rule book somewhere but hey at least I wasn’t drinking martini’s and smoking cigars!

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