After Rich and I spent two nights in the Berkshires last March as a little getaway, I came up with the idea that maybe, just maybe, in 2014, we could vacation somewhere tropical for our 10 year anniversary, which technically is in the fall but because that's hurricane season, the spring would be better. Especially seeing as, every year, winter loves to hang around for much too long. (Hello! We had snow and ice on the ground this morning.) All I wanted was two full days to just sit on a beach and read a book. That's it. I even had the book picked out and ready to go.
It was one of those "wish list" conversations that you have once or twice and then reality sets in so you kind of give up and stop talking about it. Six months later, in the early fall, we were at a family party when Rich's sister told us that her daughter was planning a destination wedding in Turks & Caicos for April and that everyone was invited. They were still finalizing the date and location but that's all we needed to brush the dust from the wish list vacation. The wedding made it easy as we didn't have to hem and haw over where to go, when to go or even where to stay.
So although kids were invited and a few of the girls' younger cousins were in attendance, Rich and I went alone. It was a tough call and, in the end, the decision was mainly driven by selfish needs. One cannot sit on a beach and read a book when accompanied by three first graders. Plus, it would have cost thousands of dollars more to bring them and I did feel a bit apprehensive over the thought of traveling with young kids to a slightly underdeveloped foreign location. I love my kids so very much but sometimes I need a break. I'm not going to pretend to be a superhero. And yes, it would be remiss of me to leave out how extremely lucky we are to have a grammy who loves our kids and so graciously helps out.
We stayed at The Sands at Grace Bay as this is where the wedding was held and where most of the guests stayed. Our first inclination was to book a courtyard room because it was the least expensive. (We did receive a small discount because we were part of a group.) However, I discovered through my research on TripAdvisor that these rooms are very dark and only have a small window instead of a balcony/patio. No thank you. We booked a garden view studio, which meant that we were going to be on the first floor and although being on the second or third floor would have given us more privacy, I didn't think it was worth paying for an ocean view, not to be confused with ocean front.
I briefly debated over whether or not to bring my camera only because I didn't want to have to worry about it. Turks & Caicos is one of the safest islands you can visit but there is still plenty of petty crime against tourists. I knew I couldn't leave the camera in my beach chair while I went for a swim in the ocean but I can't do that here either. It didn't take me long to decide that I had to bring it. I would have been so mad at myself otherwise. I didn't bring anything extra with me though - no Speedlight and no lens options. I went with my "walk-around" lens (the 35mm) and that was it.
I have so much to say about this trip. It was so beautiful on that island that in a way, I feel like it was a once in a lifetime vacation. (I hope not!) I think I'll do a detailed trip report, with many, many photos, spread out over the next few weeks with my regular, or irregular, posts. Thank goodness for the holiday this week. My work week has officially ended!