Adam and I just returned from our first ever solo (no kids) vacay since having kids!! 

We went to the Melia Jardines Del Ray in Cayo-Coco, Cuba

We had wonderful time! It took a while to get used to only (mostly, we chatted with others a bit) having each other for company but once we got used to it we really enjoyed it. Of course we missed the kids but it was so nice to have a break from the stresses of daily life…including kids and their fighting!! 

The resort was huge and lovely…I think the salty wind and limits on materials available to Cuba make it hard for resorts to stay “fresh” but it was easy to see how hard they tried…painting and other repairs were a constant sight!

The Cuban people were so kind to us. Friendly and eager to please their guests. Service was excellent and problems (a inexplicably broken toilet seat we returned to one day) were quite promptly dealt with! 

Our 15 year anniversary was Friday and we had a lovely day…we visited an adult only resort for lunch, drinks and swimming and had a great dinner at the Chinese a la carte restaurant.

Everybody says the food in Cuba sucks but we thought it was perfectly fine, not 5 star but edible with some variety. That said it wasn’t the best place for a gluten intolerant vegan and I pretty well lived on rice, potatoes (hash brown, sautéed and French fries were all at nearly every meal), corn, chickpeas, and whatever fruit was decent on a given day. I ate a lot of fried food, sugar, and alcohol (and I think butter too, I’m pretty sure all the vegetables were sautéed in it!)…things I usually avoid or limit…so I will be doing a 30-day reset to get my usually healthier tastes back on track! However, there was a scale in the room and in spite of my poor eating, I left weighing what I did on arrival which was a relief. 

That may be because I was able to stay very active. I walked and swam a ton, and also participated in yoga, pilates, stretching and aquafit classes daily. The classes were pretty low exertion…but a fun way to stay fit and friendly. 

In badinage news, on the first day I went swimming in the ocean in my super tight fitting Maui Jim sunglasses…and lost them. Then I lost my contact lenses looking for them. Luckily I had a spare pair of contacts. As for the sunnies, a very kind woman I met on the beach who assured me she had several pair gave me hers. They are unbranded and probably from a drugstore…but it was so kind! 

I was able to read 3 books on our trip, here are some mini reviews: 

I’ll give you the sun by Jandy Nelson 
A bit difficult to get into due to excessive use of metaphor…so much that I barely knew what was happening. As the book progressed either the metaphors lessened or I got more accustomed, because it sucked me in and I ended up loving this YA novel about family, friendship, love and betrayal.

Beauty of humanity movement by Camila Gibb
A beautiful book weaving together Vietnam past and present as a young Vietnamese-American woman searched for her history with the help of an older man and and a young travel guide. Well developed (but not over-developed to tedium) characters in a very readable book.

Truly, madly, guilty by Liane Moriarty
Another unputdownable novel by Liane Moriarty. A story about an innocent barbecue among 3 families that ends in tragedy. The book is told from different perspectives and is a mystery to the end.  

Here are some collages I prepared: 


The Animals


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