On Day 5, we woke to the realization that at this point we had less days left in paradise than we had spent. We were over the midway point. Womp a domp. I feel like I am going through that all over again writing these posts. When I typically do a vacation series of posts, I do them from the trip so I sort of get all the sadness and harsh reality of facing…um, reality…out at once. But now, as I am writing all of these, it’s like reliving this amazing vacation all over again. Which means I also get to relive the whole ending part all over again.
Man, that was a real bummer way to start this post. Sorry about that. I must be in an emo mood. Hrm, how about a beach-related joke to get things back on track. I just asked Alexa for one and here is what she came up with –
Q: What do bakers and sunbathers have in common?
A: Neither want to burn their buns.
Heh, Alexa. Working blue tonight.
OK so Nickie and I woke up around 7ish on Day 5 and while she went for a nice beach walk, I decided to hit the gym as it had been a couple days and I was starting to worry about how my Weight Watchers app would judge me. But while I am sure a picture of me sweating like a pig watching the first episode of the second season of Jessica Jones could prove to be a serious contender for your new phone background, I am posting instead the lovely pic Nickie sent me from her walk:
Afterwards, we both met back in the room and woke the boys up so we could meet up with the Falzones for breakfast at Sky (Key West Village). I mentioned eating at Sky for breakfast already in my Day 2 post and as you might remember, that day I had a hard time deciding between the Key West Omelet and the Smoked Salmon Eggs Benedict. I went with the Key West Omelet back then but vowed as Arnold Schwarzenegger was my witness, I would be back. For that Benedict.
And now, here we were. And while I knew I wanted the Smoked Salmon Benedict, I also felt some unexplainable force pulling me. Pulling me towards the Chocolate Fondue pancakes. Thankfully, I no longer had those mainland “only one entrée for breakfast” hang-ups and went for both.
And this was a good choice for sure. The smoked salmon benedict was 100% yum and the chocolate fondue pancakes added a nice sweetness to round out the meal. Being that this was our last time eating at Sky for this trip, I can confidently say this was a solid breakfast choice. Not my absolute favorite, but the view plus the food make for a winning combination I would be sure to make a must-visit if I return to the resort in the future. Good stuff.
On our way back to our room, we ran into one of our other favorite staff members – Patrick. Patrick was great because, actually, we hardly had any service-based interactions with him (he works with the Epix photography team and while we had two photo shoots, he was never our photographer) but he always remembered us and the kids every time we saw him. Mainly because he is a Cavaliers fan that doesn’t like Boston sports and we traded trash talk back and forth as the Celtics-76ers and Cavs-Raptors series were playing out over the week we were there. There is good service and then there are staff members that seem to truly connect with guests. Patrick was this type of guy. We were sure he would be getting some chocolates from us before we left.
After visiting with Patrick for a bit, we went back to the room and got our suits on as the plan was to hit Pirate Island for a bit this morning. But before we did that, we HAD TO stop in the Caribbean Village lobby to meet with this garbage person.
No seriously…I don’t think that’s an insult in this case.
Dude, we met Oscar the Grouch. I am not gonna lie. I felt a little star struck.
We also unfortunately had to say our goodbyes to Nonnie and Papa as they were heading back to the States. It was really great being able to spend the time we had with them on the island and we were definitely going to miss them.
Then it was off to Pirate Island for some water slides, lazy river’ing and surf simulation.
First we went up on a couple of the bigger slides beyond the ship and then Myles, Owen, Larissa, and I wanted to try out the surf simulator.
Larissa did probably the best job up there. She was like a regular. Um. A regular. Erm. Famous surfer person.
And Nickie snapped a video of me trying it out as well. And I have really gone back and forth about whether I should post it. On account of no one has ever said, “I really need to look good in my match.com profile video. Let me throw on a helmet and stand on something that shakes all my least toned body areas.” Well, I mean, maybe some people have. There’s a market for everything I suppose.
But to be fully transparent, I decided to just post it. Here you go. Have your laugh, world.
We also jumped in the lazy river for a ride around. Man I love me some lazy river. However, pro tip – I saw many people in there with a drink in their hand. Which seemed AWESOME. Pirate Island does not have alcohol so pack smart. And by “smart” I mean “booze.”
The kids wanted to hang back and have lunch at Bobby Dee’s while we were really looking forward to introducing Tony and Larissa to the awesomeness that is the Jerk Shack. Being that Mia is 4, however, we grabbed her some pizza at Bobby Dee’s to enjoy while we drowned in all things jerk. That sentence would be both more insulting and scary if I added in a comma. Like – “…to enjoy while we drowned in all things, jerk.”
We walked through the Caribbean Village and made our way to the awesomely awesome Jerk Shack.
And once again, we pretty much ordered ALL THE FOOD. I didn’t get another picture of it, but it was pretty much the same as the picture I took the last time we ate there. So here you go.
This time, we ordered a couple of Painkillers to pair with the meal. These seem to be the specialty of the Jerk Shack. And they were GOOD. Pineapple. Coconut. Orange. Rum. All the food groups are covered.
Then, Mia wanted to play in the ocean so I walked down to the water with her. It was cool too…some pretty big fish came like right up to us and jumped out of the water. It was super cool. Everyone else came down to join us and soon Myles and Owen had made their way back as well.
I went back up to grab four more Painkillers and we just hung around in the water for a bit, soaking in all the awesome.
Then it was back to the pool. And after spending a little bit of time at the pool bar, we were miraculously hungry again. So Nickie and I walked over to Bella Napoli for some more pizza – we ordered some cheese, pepperoni, BBQ Chicken and Hawaiian. Bella Napoli told us it would be about 35 minutes so Nickie and I walked over to the Adults-only hot tub (which was right next door) to wait it out.
This thing was hot.
And so was the girl inside it. RAWR
And while in the hot tub, we met a really nice couple that had done some cross country road tripping like us so we traded stories while our internal organs boiled.
Soon enough, the pizza was ready so we picked it up at Bella Napoli and brought it back to our cabana at the Cascades Pool.
After pizza, Mia decided to take a little snooze in the cabana and I don’t think I have ever seen anyone look more comfortable.
We didn’t spend too much more time down at the pool though. Because tonight was the parade! So we all went up, got changed, had a little in-room cocktail hour and we were on our way. Right outside our room, a lot of the staff members were getting ready so we got a bit of a backstage look. We also stumbled on these guys…
We found a spot in the Italian Village driveway which turned out to be a great place to catch the parade as it wound around right in front of us.
And then we were off to dinner at Neptune’s in the Key West Village. On our way, we did the old switcheroo picture-taking thing where you take pictures of someone’s family and then they take pictures of yours. I love that. It’s like this whole exchange-of-goodwill thing going on. You know, you scratch my back, I scratch yours. Eye for an eye.
Wait, scratch that last one.
When we got to Neptune’s, there was a bit of a wait. So we walked to the other side of the restaurant to have a couple drinks in the outside lounge while we waited for our table.
Nickie grabbed me a Manhattan, which is usually a winter drink for me. But also it was free. So, hello Summer Manhattan.
And while they were serving some garlic chicken wings out there, I decided to walk into the buffet at Bayside next door, grab a to-go box and load it with chicken nuggets, French fries, and onion rings to tide us over until dinner. This felt like a pro move. I was finally getting it.
I didn’t take a picture of this box but just imagine loads of fried.
The guy that played the guitar at Schooner’s the other night was playing by the fire pit so the kids had a little dance party while we waited.
The table was soon ready and we walked into Neptune’s.
I didn’t get pics of everything but to start, we got the Mussels Crostini and Chip and Dip (Hummus and Pita pretty much. As for the entrees, Nickie’s vegetable skewers looked too good to not snap.
And I got the Pork Kafta. Larissa and I also split the swordfish.
The meal was…ok. I REALLLLY liked the breakfast at Neptune’s but I just wasn’t feeling the dinner as much. The mussels were not good and the swordfish was a little too much fish (not enough sword). The kafta was pretty tasty though. And I thought the hummus was good as well. Just definitely wasn’t the best meal we had on the trip.
After dinner, surprise surprise, the boys went to the XBOX Lounge, the Falzones headed back to their room, and Nickie and I roamed the resort for a bit. And of course, we ended up at Cricketer’s as we searched for the Celtics game. They weren’t playing it but we did meet this guy from England – Mike, I think? – that had been to Sandals and Beaches so much, they gave him a name tag and everything. He was in his first week of 2 weeks at Beaches. This guy was obviously my hero.
We watched a little bit of the Sox-Yankees game with him and talked about how we might do a European road trip, which we have been contemplating. He was very helpful.
It was still not quite time to pick the kids up, but we wanted to maybe head over closer to the XBOX lounge so we went to Turtles in the Caribbean lobby for a drink while we waited for our kids to finish up. And this was that moment. When things all of a sudden switched. And our kids were now keeping us up while we waited for them to finish having fun. We officially became old tonight.
We finally went to get them at around 10:45, walked back to our room, and went to bed.