Your Next Vacation Will Probably Suck

You should probably expect for your vacation to be at least a little trash and here’s why…

I recently traveled to the Dominican Republic and, while it was a great time, I ran into some bumps.

Most were minor, of course: a smeared black stain on a skirt that I wanted to wear to dinner, my hair not drying in a decent amount of time, leaving me with frizzy, dandelion hair, and the like. Nothing too major.

And then I got on a boat.


I haven’t been on a boat since high school. As a person that has an irrational fear (and vivid nightmares) of open water, I usually steer clear of going out into the middle of the ocean. But there were promises of a secluded island and endless food; all I had to do was take a short boat ride to get to the destination. It’s going to be nothing. Right?

You Already Know It Wasn’t “Nothing”

OK, so the boat ride to the island was pleasant. The steady rhythm of the waves actually seemed peaceful as our boat bobbed against the open water. I rather enjoyed it. And then, a few yards away from the shore, we stopped. Unsure of the situation, I looked around to see what everyone else was doing. Nobody else seemed confused so, you know, it probably was just me. It’s always just me.

I knew there were plans of snorkeling, however, I assumed that the snorkeling would take place closer to the shore; where my feet could touch the ground. I’ve been snorkeling before in Hawaii and my feet were so close to the ocean floor that my knees were scratched up by the end of it. However, our tour guides began to frantically hand out flippers. It became apparent what was happening; I was about to die.

Without letting my traveling partner know of my fear, I threw on my oversized flippers and goggles. My breathing passage immediately became obstructed. I sucked in the little air that I could. “This’ll be easy,” I calmed down my friend while my heart pounded unpleasantly, “Just relax.” Meanwhile, my legs were about to buckle as I glanced out at the open water. A small girl no older than seven and with no sense of fear jumped out into the water in front of me. I followed behind her, silently cussing a small child out for making it look so easy.

One of the guides held out his arm, “Grab it.” He instructed. I knew his scrawny arm would not hold this body but I grabbed it anyways and plunged into the water. Instantly, I was engulfed by nothing but water. My life vest shot up over my head. The goggles filled up to the point where I could see nothing. NOPE! I had NOT planned on dying that afternoon!

I grabbed the boat and, in my panic, forced myself to swing underneath it and push my head underwater a second time. My once panicked friend effortlessly splashed into the water after me as I frantically pulled myself back onto the boat. Mmm.

Long story short, after pulling my flippers off, I stood on the boat and silently watched as everybody else splashed around in the water. I knew I was going back in. I had never done this before and who knew if I would ever do it again? Except, this time I made sure to get back in on my terms. I kept the dumb flippers off and, instead of diving into the water face-first like I did last time, I used to stairs to slowly walk myself into the water.

Once in, I still panicked at the fact that I couldn’t feel anything underneath my feet but took deep breaths and splashed around a little, attempting to get used to the unfamiliarity of being in the open ocean. One of the guides swam over to me and pointed to my goggles. “5 seconds, ok?” he said. I got it. I put the goggles on and then waited for him to count to five. I then submurged my head into the water and felt immediate satisfaction as the fluorescent colored fish swam in between our bodies.

Despite my fear, going back in was so worth it.

Soon after, we all filed onto the boat and completed the journey to the island. We relaxed in the warm water, ate fried fish, and baked in the Caribbean sun. At 2:00PM, it was time to depart. Our group once again boarded the boat to return to the van that would take us back to our resort. Ominous clouds formed in the sky just behind us, and then, it began to rain. And the boat began to rock.

And I got sea sick.

So yeah, a few aspects of my trip were sucky. However, that daywas probably my favorite of the entire trip.

Let’s face it…

Expecting the perfect vacation is completely unrealistic.

Things are going to happen. If you’ve had a perfect vacation where literally everything went right, please let me know in the comments below. Because I definitely have not. But instead of letting these little mishapsdefine my vacation, I put them in the “Learning Experiences” category and let them go; only recreating the scene to laugh about it later.IMG_2553 2

Expecting a perfect vacation will ruin your entire trip. Just because you’re out of town doesn’t mean life stops happening around you. Something – even if it’s just minor – is going to go wrong. Life is never a linear experience; it’s eitheron an upward or downward slope and constantly shifting. And that is just fine. If you learn from the mishap, and learn to let it go, it’ll make the rest of the vacation that much better.

Have you ever had any hilarious vacation mishaps? Let me know…


6 Non-Christmas Films That Gas Me Up For the Holidays

Christmas movies are ass so here are 6 non- traditional movies (and 1 that is technically a Christmas film) that get me ready for Christmas.

I love the holidays, but I’m not a huge fan of Christmas movies…

I once stanned for The Santa Clause but ex-coke dealer actor Tim Allen’s willfully ignorant, conservative views has left a sour taste in my mouth in my old age. I’ve also never liked A Christmas Story and you can fight me right now if you feel it in your spirit.

These movies are not necessarily marketed as Christmas movies but give me the Holiday feels (mostly for no reason at all):

1. Moana (2016)

Three words: The F***in Music

Moana some of the best music that Disney has ever given us. Thank you, Lin-Manuel! I never saw Hamilton but I know it was a treat.

Although this is a new one on my roster, it’s one that gets me ready for the holiday season. The message, which deals with the struggle of staying loyal to your home life and being content with “Where You Are” in the present while also developing your dreams and going against everything you’ve ever known, speaks to me in a way a child’s movie has never done.

Moana’s self discovery throughout the film is so real, and it inspires me to steer off my linear path to dive into a career and a life that fulfills me. It’s a perfect feel-gooder for the holidays.

2. The Dark Knight (2008)

The Joker’s scarred smile reminds me of holiday cheer.

No, I seriously have no idea why I love watching this movie around the holidays. I love really big, over the top superhero movies (with the exception of the scalding hot garbage that was Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice), so when The Dark Knight came out, I was first in line. I mean, I was literally first in line; I worked at the movies.

The excitement I felt for the release of this movie recreates itself every time the Joker pops up on screen and I’m taken back to high school; a pimply face black girl in an AMC Theater polo surrounded by various white dudes covered in sweat and wearing Batman costumes.

… They wore costumes. That’s probably what gives me the Christmas jitters.

3. Mean Girls (2004)

If there was ever a movie that described my late middle school, early high school career, it was this one. This and Boyz N The Hood.

I remember the day my mom scored a free screening for this movie and I could not mask how unimpressed I was. The poster and commercials did not do this movie justice; I just knew it was a generic teen dream film. But we saw the film and even my mother laughed; that’s usually how I know something is funny.

I was a woman possessed. I spent about 80% of my time talking about Mean Girls, and the other 20% of the time, I was praying for someone else to bring it up so I could talk about it more. I LOVED it and, to this day, watching it warms my cold, chilled heart.

That memorable open legged knee slap that The Plastics do while performing “Jingle Bell Rock” is a reason to watch this movie during the holidays on it’s own.

4. Toy Story (1995)

Although Buzz Lightyear is voiced by an ex-con, Woody just happens to be voiced by Tom Hanks, number two on my list of Older White Dudes That I Enjoy (with John Goodman being number one). The movie begins and ends on Christmas and, while I wasn’t one of those sociopathic kids that thought my dolls were talking to me after seeing this movie, I’ve always appreciated the fantastical premise.

Watching it now brings me back to being a kid and being engrossed in the film that questions: “What adventures are your inanimate toys embarking on when you’re not looking?”

Buzz Lightyear sucks, btw.

5. Just Friends (2005)

This is a serious hot take. I can probably count on one hand how many people I know that have seen this movie and they’re probably all of the people I went to see it with in eighth grade.

It details the main character – who was a fatty in high school – inadvertently returning to his hometown years after moving away to the big city and leaving his fat baggage behind. It’s more of a silly movie than a knee slapper; with goofy elements such as Ryan Reynolds with six turkey necks and a mother with a weirdly high pitched voice. But I watch this every year; mostly for that sense of nostalgia. It also takes place during Christmas.

6. The Lion King (1994)

My all-time favorite movie of ALL TIME *Dave Chappelle voice*

We used to consider this a black movie – mostly because of James Earl Jones and the fact that it was set in Africa – so I’ve always identified with the film. Which is a damn shame because why in the world do we STILL not have a Disney movie that feature black and/or African culture that don’t have the main characters as animals? They made a movie where the black girl was a FROG for 80% of the damn movie!!!

Ok. Let me dial it back. We’re not talking about that movie.

However, I just love this movie. It’s not even about nostalgia, it’s just really well done and the music is perfect. R.I.P. Mufasa. They didn’t have to do you like that.

7. The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)

Consider this one a bonus.

My affinity for the macabre is probably the only reason why I like this movie. Because it’s weird af. When I hear the first few chords of the opening song, I get so geeked. It also is literally about Christmas, but also about Halloween, so I watch it in between seasons to give each one a fair chance.

I’m sure I have more favorites but those were what I could think of.

What are your fave holiday films? Let me know in the comments.