Travels with the Meads

American English is a wonderful language. If I were to say, “Today’s post should give you reason to think about traveling with us,” it would leave a rather different impression than if I were to say, “Today’s post should give you reason to think twice about traveling with us.” So far no wild monkeys or zip lines.

We believe strongly that, when traveling, it is important to interact with people from different places and cultures. We put that into practice by having dinner last night with Dan (Ryan Construction) and Judy (Sun Country) of River Falls and Rick (mechanical engineer, Prairie Island)  and Jan (family therapist) of Maple Grove. We ate at an Italian ala carte restaurant at the Ocean Spa Resort, a sister to the Sunset Marina and Resort where we are staying. The food was good; the service superb. The menu listed the basic Italian courses of starters, ante pastas, pastas, main dishes,  and desserts (plus pizzas if you wanted light.) We learned on the cruise just because they list six or seven courses, you don’t have to order them all.

Clockwise from Doré: Dan, Judy, Jan, Ron, and Rick behind the camera

Doré’s noble plan was to skip the starter, soup, pasta, main course, and desert; just salad and a small pizza. It turned out the dessert was not optional; a platter with samples of everything appeared at the table. Doré is always remarkably restrained in these situations; Ron is addicted to any form of refined sugar, although other places don’t rely as heavily on it as we do. Before dessert, Doré was somewhat surprised when a plate with jumbo shrimp, rice pilaf, potatoes, and vegetables appeared in front of her. She struggled valiantly not to offend the chef. Jan, returning from the powder room, was also surprised. when a plate of jumbo shrimp, rice pilaf, potatoes, and vegetables did not to materialize in front of her. The waiters quickly provided Jan with meal she had ordered and Doré, with the best of intentions, had eaten.

Backing up a little, we haven’t done very well on our goal of finishing breakfast in time for lunch. Leisurely breakfasts are one of our favorite things about this place. Skipping lunch (not necessarily afternoon snacks) is our weight watchers program.

Looking left, from my chair at breakfast
And looking right

That was Thursday. Friday was the first time in three or four days that there was enough wind to even think about taking out the sail boat. There was in fact a queue. Here are the people who had the boat before me. Because the winds were variable, Ivan didn’t let them go out without him. Or so he explained to me.

Ivan at work. You’re required to wear a life vest.

And the wind was light and variable almost the entire time I was out. Almost but not quite all. One sudden gust caught me on the wrong side of the sail and I now know it is difficult but not impossible to capsize a Hobie cat. No photos are available. I hear it is difficult but not impossible to right one but that’s my next lesson.

And keeping with a theme of sorts, there is a stage show every night featuring foods, songs, and dances reflecting the culture of a particular region. We have had shows of Mexico, urban break dancing, Michael Jackson, and of course:

The Caribbean! Something to do with voodoo



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