5 Lessons I Learned From My Vacation in Mexico
I just came back from a 3-day vacation to Puerto Morelos in Cancun, Mexico. I went for my friend’s wedding and it turned out to be the funnest vacation I’ve ever been on. Plus, it came at the exact right time with all the terrible-ness happening in the world (especially in Ferguson). I was so ready to lay my burdens down and luxuriate.
On Thursday morning, I got on my flight, turned off my phone and took a nap to start what was 3 days of complete gluttony, relaxation and disconnect from everything.
I walked away with 5 lessons.
1. Black people really CAN sunburn.
Our resort had 2 pools: one for kids and one with a bar that you swim to and sit on stools. It was 95 degrees consistently and super sunny. We had no other choice but to get in the water so our skins don’t melt off. We were in the pool for hours at a time. Day 1 of doing that was ok fine because this melanin is good for that. We used sunscreen too, by the way. Day 2 of 5 hours in the pool wasn’t so kind to some of us. I was fine (and 3 shades darker. YESSSS CHOCOLATE ME)! But my girls Li and Summer didn’t fare so well. By Sunday morning when we left, they were both sunburned. Li goes “I’m pretty sure my skin is falling off and I just can’t see it.” She was all red too. Bless her heart.
So it is not a myth. Black folks can get sunburn. Melanin can only take you so far.
b. All-inclusive is the way and the light.
Going to an all-inclusive resort is the only way to do vacations right. This trip taught me that. All the food and ALL THE DRANKS you want for the free at all the hours you want it. The food is what mattered to me because I’m not a drinker but my goodness. We’d be at the pool and staff will come over with all types of food we asked for and some we didn’t. They were bringing over ceviche, nachos, burgers, fries, pasta, salad. It was like Willy Wonka and the Glutton Factory and I loved it so much. And the drinks. My friends indulged in ALL THE TEQUILA. The Vodka. The wine. The Rum. Anytime the staff would see the drinks were half full, they’d come with fresh drinks like alcohol genies.
I just kept ordering virgin strawberry daiquiris. They were slushies of deliciousness.
One day for breakfast, I asked for Frosted Flakes, eggs, hash browns, pancakes, fresh fruit and yogurt just because I could. I didn’t even eat half of it. I’m so wasteful. I just wanted to test it out.
One night, we were at the hotel bar late and around 1am, our girl D called room service and they delivered huge trays of chicken nuggets, quesadillas and fries to us right outside of it. Everyone smashed that and went to bed happy.
Pay the extra for all-inclusive because you will more than drink and eat your share. Everyone on the trip talked about how this week is about detoxing and drinking nothing but water. For good reason too. Some people shouldn’t even LOOK at alcohol for the next month. I’m pretty sure folks were sweating ethanol by the end of the trip. You know who you are. Shade. Love you! 😀 Also, I’ve had my share of cheese for the next month too.
iii. 20 Black people who love music will turn into the cast of GLEE.
You put 20 Black people who are into music together and we will sing like we were getting paid for it at that moment. We’d be hanging out (anywhere) and someone will say something that might maybe resemble a line to a song and all of a sudden, everyone would start singing a song. It happened at dinner, at the bar, at the pool, at the beach… we even had battles happen as one table of us would try to outsing the other. It turned to a live episode of GLEE: Black folks edition.
We sang everything from Luther Vandross to Beyonce to Bobby Womack to Journey. At one point, a white dude asked us “are you guys a theater group?” Nope. Just some singing ass Black folks. I can’t blame him because we were singing like we were one. It was awesome. This is also why some people have no voice right now. They left their vocal chords in Mexico.
4a. You’ve never gotten a massage unless it’s from a man named Roberto.
I got THE BEST MASSAGE OF MY LIFE and it was from a man named Roberto. There was a massage chair by the pool, where you can get a 10 minute rub down from one of the resort’s spa aestheticians. I got Roberto and after that 10 minutes, I was like sign me up for the full 50 because he laid magical hands on me and I needed more. These knots in my shoulders weren’t gon smooth themselves out.
Chile, when I got in the room and Roberto started working these shoulders and arms and back out? Son. My muscles sang a song. He did this thing where he took my arm and bent it back and stretched it out while he massaged my palms. Mannnnnn listen. LISTEN. I lived.
I’ve gotten many massages in my life. Many. But none were as good as the one Roberto gave me. When he was done, I almost felt drunk. He put me in a dark room afterwards, placed a hot bean bag thingie around my neck and gave me tea. I was like “Oh so he just wants to romance me so I can propose to him so he can have my babies. I see what he’s doing and it’s working.” At this point, I was sure we go together.
I will compare every massage I get to that one henceforth and I hope I’m not sorely disappointed. Me: “You’re no Roberto. Dambit.”
5. You should go on at least one vacay where you have no outside contact.
We are all so plugged in all the time. Some of us make our living through being in the loop all the gahtdamb tahm (like me). So when we go on vacation, we often post pics of what we’re up to, our amazing view, updates on what we just did. I’ve done that. But when I was headed on this vacay, I wanted so badly to fall out of the know so I could clear my head and get a reboot. That is what I did. I didn’t even call anybody.
I turned off my phone for most of the time I was there and just enjoyed the place, the company I was with and the sunlight. I don’t even have a lot of pictures from this trip and that is ok. I do have this one, doe.
Those of us who are in social media career-wise should especially challenge ourselves to take a DISCONNECTED FROM THE MATRIX vacation at least once a year. Our audience will still be here waiting for us, whether it’s 3 days or a week. We deserve to not document every moment of every day sometimes.
The older I get, the more selfish I am with my time and my space. When I went to Puerto Rico in December and May, I mostly disconnected too. It’s a beautiful thing to give yourself the attention you need.
Turning off my phone for 3 days and doing the wobble under the moonlight on the beach in Mexico around a bonfire as we ate marshmallows and apples dipped in white chocolate to celebrate my friend’s wedding with all these amazing, incredible and beautiful people is exactly what I needed.
Everything good was in abundance: food, drinks, laughter, people. I reconnected with old friends and made so many new ones.
This was the best getaway I’ve had yet. Ever. Shoutout to the Azul Beach Hotel for taking such good care of us. That service was unlike any I’ve ever experienced. Just superb from top down.
I didn’t take a vacay from Oct 2010-December 2013. But since then, I’ve taken four. I CAN STOP ANYTIME I WANT! >__>. It’s officially a problem. I’m actually planning my 30th birthday trip now and buying more bathing suits. My only requirements is that it needs to be somewhere that I’ve never been and somewhere tropical. IT IS ON.
Anywho, I’m back but jumping into everything is giving me pause. Like when you dip your toe in the pool and the temperature difference makes you jump. I am still avoiding things and scrolling through my timeline and newsfeeds quickly. I know I should just dive in and deal with the cold but I just wanna sit on the edge of the pool for a few more minutes. Just a few more minutes.
So… where should I go for my 30th?