With Christmas almost upon us we finally stopped for a breather this weekend. In the past month we've been on two trips; the first to Bahamas and the second to Florida, in our continual attempt to avoid Canadian winter..even though winter has hardly yet hit southern Ontario. We returned to the same resort we visited last year on Paradise Island in Bahamas. But this time, damn the luck, the kids both came down with a fever and cold the day we left. To sum it up...it was a bust. Try as we might to keep jovial, the two sick kids had the upper hand and did their best to thwart all attempts at relaxation and calm. It didn't help that the weather was cool and windy, in fact, it wasn't even nice enough to spend much time in the pool. We can't blame the kids for getting sick, but since we had already paid for the accommodation there was no way we were going to stay home so we just made the best of it.
Fortunately, we did get an afternoon away at my favourite bar in the world - Hammerheads, which we followed up with conch salad and fried fish at Arawak Cay. The trip to Florida was a completely different story. The kids were back to normal and traveled like champs. We flew into Orlando and spent a day at Disneyworld with the kids then were met by our neighbours Jess and Andrew who flew in the next day, after which we drove to Pompano Beach, just north of Fort Lauderdale. Disney was about the last place in the world Ana or I wanted to go but Jess' mom had three tickets she didn't need which she gave to us. It was nice to go for a day to see it, but any longer would have driven me crazy. I cannot believe how people can go there for entire weeks, just not my thing I guess. It was probably the six dollar cold hot dog that turned me off. Or maybe it was the standing in lines all day long. The kids thought it was okay but I think they are still a little young to know what most of it was about. At least Stella got to have her picture taken with a princess! The place we stayed at in Pompano Beach was excellent - right on the ocean with miles of beach. My old buddy Stillman lives in the next town over so we met up with him a couple times...and finally got to meet his girlfriend, which was long overdue. Once again, though, we didn't exactly luck out with the weather. It was nice and warm, but overcast most of the time with a little bit of rain. Nevertheless, we had a great time and explored some parts of Florida that were new to us. We also did some hunting around for real estate...but didn't find anything too interesting. We're still wary of owning anything in the US due to the distance, administration and tax issues. As a final word, our big backyard project is COMPLETE and has already hosted a party or two. It turned out spectacular, if I do say so myself.... Stay tuned for my annual Christmas letter.