So I returned Thursday morning from a family vacation to Aruba. Lest you get all jealous of me, let me explain just what this vacation entailed:
1) I brought books to study with. Since my qualifying exam (a big oral exam I need to pass in order to stay in grad school) is the 2nd week of January, I needed to prepare. This meant bringing my large suitcase, and having to bring at least 2 books in my carry on bag with me (due to weight limits on my bag).
2) Actually finding time to study while in Aruba proved more interesting. Our hotel thought it would be a nice added touch to have live parrots on the property. The only problem: they start squakking at about 7am and don't stop until long after dark. You ever try studying with parrots??
3) My mother. For those of you who have heard me complain about her before, enough said.
4) Looking at the large number of Americans ridiculously overweight and sitting on the beach. One guy was married to a muslim female who wore a Hijab, but for some odd reason he didn't think modesty rules applied to him. This was unfortunate for the rest of us, who had to look at his ginormous belly all day.
I'm going to expand on this one for a second. Look, I understand that some people have higher metabolisms than others, and that your metabolism decreases as you get older. But here's a news flash: if you eat a ton and don't move off your tuchus for any sort of physical activity, you're going to gain a hell of a lot more weight. And when you pack on a great deal, your health decreases dramatically. No, you don't need a pill to help you with cholesterol, you need to get off your ass and do something, exercise, if you will. And as your health decreases, your cost of health care increases- who do you think pays for this increased burden? Seriously, there should be a fat tax, just as there is a tax on cigarettes. You want to be detrimental to your health, fine, but why should the rest of us have to shoulder your burden??
5) Family vacations mean separating yourself from the local customs and visiting everything as a complete tourist. There is no going to a bar at night and hanging out with the locals, no getting invited into a stranger's house for coffee and talking politics, no actual interactions with the non-touristy culture. Do I even know what people do in town for fun?
Ok, I'm done complaining. The vacation did have some highlights (beautiful scenery, driving a large jeep offroad on a very bumpy and windy path down a mountain, watching my parents attempt to play air hockey, some cool snorkeling), so all in all it was an ok time. Just not so much my idea of a vacation....