[Feb 2012] This trip was not much more than a break. A break from the monotony of work days and morning frost on the windshield. A break from a cold winter in Chicago and a bevy of responsibility. A cheap flight (can you say, Spirit airlines!?) and a free stay in Colleen’s parents condo minutes from the beach… and we were sold. Four friends (Meghan, Brooke, Colleen and myself) would venture to the Southeast tip of our country and thaw out in Fort Lauderdale for a good few days.
I waited at the airport upon arrival (I flew solo as no one else needed to deal with dreaded Spirit air) and was met with a threesome of drunks. The goal was to catch up on the balcony overlooking a hotel pool in the warm night air, and play cards in the lovely condo we would call home. The night hours whisked by and the beers went down smoothly. We may have been a little too excited for the trip ahead considering our 2am night swim shenanigans invited a premature scolding from the retired neighbors not fond of our drunken stupor.
We woke up to our first gorgeous day of sunlight and 80 degree weather. We headed straight for the beach where we walked off our hangovers, toes in the sand, and explored the town. The day's agenda: the pool. Sun, music, and friends were all we needed as the hours passed by. A sudden rainstorm was met with an intense water volleyball match between me and Colleen. We freshened up for a lovely seafood dinner in town and happy hour with two-for-one glasses of wine. The fresh Chilean Sea Bass and gorgeous beach views from our outdoor table were perfection… and followed by a slightly less quiet evening of Taylor Swift karaoke and dueling pianos. The walk back proved interesting with a stop at a random outdoor hotel pool with an easy-to-climb gate…
The next day we laughed at the night’s events over a seaside brunch and mimosas. We let our melanin kick in at the pool for the day before showering up for a great evening. Newly tanned and ready to go, we enjoyed calamari and drinks along the harbor downtown before boarding a booze cruise around the inlet. We gawked at the mansions lined with palm trees and made a few notable bar stops along the water’s edge. Martinis capped the night of bar crawling, along with a Frank Sinatra dance party back at our digs. Encore!
Our third day was a beach day with crashing waves as our soundtrack. We chatted and napped, read and enjoyed. We may have tried a self-timer photo shoot and ended up with a few too many photos, but we got one keeper out of it.
After a long day we dressed our best for a picture perfect sunset at a lovely hotel overlooking the shore. The sun dropped and sky lit up in color as we sipped overpriced white wine spritzers and swayed in old fashioned rocking chairs painted a milky white. It was hard to leave that porch of paradise, but we had sushi reservations awaiting us downtown. Our scenic table set on the corner of the restaurant above a creek cutting through town was ideal – and we celebrated by ordering a bevy of sushi rolls. And by that I mean: way too much. I have never eaten so much sushi in my life – it somehow turned into a personal challenge to see if we could finish our ridiculous over-ordering… a hot dog eating contest of sorts with cold fish instead of ballparks. What a mistake. Our foursome was visibly hurting as we tried waddling our way through the cute shops of town, before giving up and heading back to the condo to rest our aching bellies. Tums, anyone?
We woke up significantly rested and overly burned. It turns out our all-day beach extravaganza was a little heavy on the sun and low on the SPF. My calves were so burned I felt tingles up my legs with every step! Luckily the weather was faulty this day so we didn’t feel guilty hidden inside watching scary movies and eating pizza. We did venture out for a casual dinner at Hooters – and freshened up for a much-needed night of dive bar-hopping.