Friday, April 25, 2008

Cuba Experience 1

I cannot believe I didnt post about my vacation! That is just how busy my year has been !lolololol

Scott and I celebrated 10 years together in October of this year. In that time we have not had a honeymoon, not gone anywhere together, not really done anything spontaneous together.

SO when Sarah and Brian encouraged us to join them on a trip south, we eventually came around to the idea even tho I didnt think we would actually go. Even while we planned and got our passports, I didnt really think we would go. UNtil we actually booked the tickets. :)

It was exciting! I mean, we NEVER did anything like that before. and the thought of being somewhere warm in January was intoxicating. :):):)

we booked tickets to the Iberostar Daiquiri in Caya Guillermo, Cuba. Sarah and Brian had been there before and were very comfortable there :)

Cayo Guillermo is a little part of an island, mid-Cuba. Amazing place. I realise ya take your chances with winds and cool weather but it was amazing for us!

From the air this place looks way different than it did in real life. And Im not sure how up to date these photos are because there are a zillion renovations going on, and things have changed a lot. Im only guessing since this was the first time Ive been anywhere but Sarah and Brian told us many things had changed. :):)

We left on a Friday morning after taking all the kids to school. It was SO hard! Annika went to Nanny's because she was sad, and the rest of the kids spent the week with Nanny. They really looked forward to that!

ON the shuttle that takes us from the park and pay to the airport. This was exciting lol cause we were just leaving. Coats and sweaters were left in the car and we were so cold! The driver waited for ages for a lot of slow people, and we were getting anxious about being late and missing flights because we were not sure how much before we left we had to be there. We were not late lol!

Sitting on the tarmac waiting for the plane to leave. We'd been through security and discovered that we had all this stuff that we could not take on the plane because we totally misunderstood the regulations lol so Scott had to check his carryon bag and away we went lol We had a window seat and I was so happy about that lol!

Taking off WHHHHHHEEEEEEE its always pretty cool, I think this is land over which some cargo plane crashed a couple of years ago.

We were trying really hard to beat a snow storm out of Halifax. We knew that our connection flight was very close, and to be late would be bad. Some snow was forecast, and we were Freaking sitting on the plane watching the flurries starting ARRGHHH FLY PLANE FLY!

I always think it's so cool to see the plane going up through the clouds. They were reallllly thick and nasty too!

And the pilot came on with his hellos and this is us and then he says Just so you know, the snow came about 3 minutes after we left, visibility was reduced to nothing, and planes are not leaving anymore for awhile. We cheered LOL!

And then coming up out of the clouds, from the snow to bright warm sunshine, was awesome. So pretty and one of my favorite views, I must have 100 photos of just flying above the clouds and looking through them at land way below.

On the plane all nice and happy, we had TV's in the back of the seats, and could watch a bunch of movies, tv shows, lots of stuff. Or music.

on the tarmac at Toronto where we had a connecting flight. It was nice and sunny and really cold there. Brian and Sarah stepped out for some fresh air and it took Scott and I about an hour to realise they could not come back in the way they went out, so we had to hike over to international terminal to try to find them lol. Not so bright of us. We had something to eat and got back on an airplane for a longer nighttime flight.
Bummed that we didnt get to see Cuba and the water around it from the air, obviously too dark!

A really big airplane landing while we wait to take off again.

I kicked myself for forgetting to get photos as we landed in Toronto, we went past a tonne of golf courses and the CN Tower, and I never thought to get photos so here is one photo of Toronto, the CN Tower is actually there if you can spot it.

Sarah being OH so pleasant, she didnt want photos taken I guess, this was the more polite one. LOL

No one slept on the plane to Cuba even tho it was long flight and we were all so least I dont think anyone slept. LOL
When we got there, we were watching, landing on this little paved strip at this tiny little airport and we were like omg where did we just land?? It was weird, like a different world. We got off the plane on the runway, and walked to the building. It was windy, there were palm trees all over, and it was WARM! We were not wearing winter boots and coats and it was like 9 at night and we were WARM YAHOOOOOOOO!

We all went in and went through customs. That was scary, we all had to go one by one, making sure we had our paper work all filled out correctly, I mean what would happen if we didnt? UGH. No one had any troubles but I was totally freaking because I just could not imagine what would happen if we were "not just right" and I had my cell phone because I forgot to leave it in the car, and what if they thought I was a spy...Oh it was rediculous!

But then we got to the other side of customs, hahahahha and there were men with rifles and drug sniffing dogs everywhere, all men dressed in army wear, I was scared to look them in the eye, for fear of looking guilty over nothing...the dogs were walking all over the luggage and sniffing for drugs and bombs I guess....I was just so tired! hahahaha nothing happened tho.

When we went outside, there were rows of tour buses from resorts waiting to pick people up. We spotted ours without trouble.

Sarah and I went to another spot and changed our Canadian money for Cuban Convertable Pesos. Im still not sure I understand what that means but we were able to buy stuff with them so whatever HAHAHAHA Scott and Brian stayed behind to get the bags. Everything came through ok, Although I think this is when Brian's bag looked like it had been dragged all the way to Cuba lol :(

Before one gets on the shuttle to the resort, one must first fill hands with beer. They sell it right outside by the buses lol and Scott and Brian made sure everyone had one. Happy faces now lol and on our way to the resort!

It was dark on the drive and I wish I could have gotten photos. There are no road rules that I can tell. People drove anywhere and everywhere, and fast too! lol there were cattle and a few horses all over the place! They just wander and they were on the roads and stuff lOl I wanted photos of this! LOL It was like being in another country OH WAIT we were in another country and it was like nothing I'd seen before LOL!

When we got to the resort we checked in and I was so in awe of everything! So beautiful! lol It was late Friday night and we want to get a drink and get to our rooms. lol

We headed up to the rooms and Sarah was SO not impressed with hers, we had a room in one of the outer buildings; We stayed in Matanzas; and ours had a balcony on the end by the beach with a great view; S and B had the one beside, not quite the same view. We had access to the big balcony on the front of the building too. The room was clean and comfy and it was good lol.

We had a drink from the lobby bar, walked to the beach in the dark,toured the resort a little bit (in the dark) before we unpacked and went to sleep. We were all very tired.

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