Today I didn’t get off the ship. Somehow today was the day when all of the GOING and DOING and EATING caught up with me, and I could’ve happily spent the entire day sleeping. Chickadee was due to meet up with her aunt and uncle for ziplining early this morning, though, so I dragged my butt out of bed and took her to breakfast while Otto and Monkey got ready at a more leisurely pace.
Chickadee had eggs and a bagel and some fruit and juice and milk. I gulped at a cup of coffee and barely resisted the urge to put my head down on the table and fall asleep.
After Chickadee was packed off for her adventure, I went back to breakfast with Otto and Monkey. I had more coffee. And an omelet. And thought to myself that I was really, really tired of eating. And this was how I figured out that I was either 1) completely exhausted or 2) dying, because since when am I too tired to EAT?
I think that maybe yesterday’s adventure took a lot out of me. We went cave tubing in Belize. When we booked that excursion, I remember thinking that it sounded very relaxing. I mean, yes, I noticed that it listed a “hike through the jungle” to get to the tubing location, but then… floating in a tube! How hard could that be?
[Slight digression: This is me and Otto, looking at the excursion listings:
Otto: Did you see how strenuous this is?
Me: What? The tubing? It’s not strenuous.
Otto: It’s got three little people next to it. The only thing harder is FOUR little people. I think it’s pretty strenuous.
Me: It’s FLOATING. In a TUBE. How strenuous could it be?
Otto: IT HAS THREE PEOPLE. You have to hike through the jungle!
Me: Whatever. The minimum age is only eight. How strenuous could it possibly be? I’m sure it’s a walk along a path.
Otto: It’s a 45 minute hike.
Me: On a path. It’ll be fine.
Otto: THREE PEOPLE.
Me: We already bought the tickets. It’s fine.]
So here’s the thing about Belize: It’s a tiny little country, filled with friendly people who know a lot of really groan-worthy applications of the word Belize. You need to know all of those to fill the time it takes to get from where you disembark to where the tubing actually happens, because ninety minutes on a bus is long time if no one is telling you that your day is going to be UNBELIZEABLE and YOU HAVE TO SEE IT TO BELIZE IT. (Um. Wow.) Then after ninety minutes on an air-conditioned bus you get off that bus and get on an ancient school bus to ride down a tiny twisty mountain, and then you walk a little ways into the jungle and get outfitted with a lifevest, helmet, and a giant inflatable tube, and THEN you go on your jungle hike to the mouth of the cave.
The hike isn’t too difficult, but it turns out that taking a long walk with a giant tube is kind of challenging, particularly when the path is filled with multiple groups of tourists all doing the same thing.
The tubing itself is a lot less relaxing than I’d imagined; for one thing, they link the group together by making you stick your feet into the armpits of the person ahead of you. So Chickadee had her feet in my pits, which was fine, but I had to put my feet into the pits of some old guy from Florida. And then endure Chickadee loudly asking me if I was getting his armpit hair stuck between my toes. (Answer: I’m wearing water shoes, so no, and KEEP YOUR VOICE DOWN.) For another thing, you don’t really get to lay back and relax, because in order to sit upright enough to kind of steer the tube, you have to use a lot of stomach muscle power to stay balanced. And then—insult to injury—I couldn’t even whine about it to Otto because then he would’ve been all THREE PEOPLE, I TOLD YOU. This is all aside from the fact that the water running through the caves is “refreshing” (as the guides kept saying) and your ass is being frozen as you drift along.
The caves were very cool, though. Monkey had a fabulous time—I think it was just enough activity/stimulation to make for a great day for him—and Otto and I agreed that it was a fun experience. By the end of it Steroid Girl was kind of losing her crap, a la My Blood Sugar Is Low And Also My Butt Is Cold And You Guys Keep Floating Away, but after a snack she agreed it was pretty… unBelizeable!
And then it was a long trip back to the ship, of course.
For the first time, last night, Otto and I went out to the nightly show. After dinner everyone was so tired that we were able to get the kids to sleep before it started, so we did that, and then headed to the theater, and the show was all based on 80s music, which meant that at one point all of the dancers were dressed up as Madonna in various stages of her career. This caused me to lean over to Otto and whisper, “It’s a good thing I’m not drinking, because if I was I would probably think I was hallucinating right now.” (Seriously, 8 different stages of Madonna all at once is a little freaky. I’m just saying.)
After the show, we met up with the rest of the adults in the family for a drink, and it was a long day, is my point, and maybe that’s why I was so tired, today.
Regardless of what it was, after lunch today we came back to the room for a brief rest, and what happened was that the kids and I all immediately fell asleep. I guess Otto went and walked around Cozumel, some, but we were all very busy drooling on our pillows. I’m sure Cozumel is beautiful, though. I mean, it’s probably not unBelizeable or anything, but I’m sure it’s lovely.
Tomorrow we sail all day, and Sunday we get back. I have no idea where the week went, and at the same time I’m looking forward to getting back to my own bed and routine and days centered around something other than eating. I suppose that means this vacation was exactly the right length.