Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Paradise Island, Bahamas

I have finally recovered from our week long escape to the Bahamas! It was my first time there as an adult, previously only visiting on a day excursion from a cruise with the parents as a tweenager.

The first day that the next 6 months of flights are released is the best day to book Southwest airfare using points. I did just that and got the flights from BWI-NAS for around 5,xxx each x3, then used my companion pass for the 4th ticket. The flight down there was about an even 2 hours. Pretty easy flight. 

Our family chooses to sit front row on the airplane for several reasons. I like the extra leg room. It helps when our 3 year old has had enough of sitting in her car seat. We tell her she has two minutes to wiggle all of her sillies out. I like being the first off the plane. We get more attention from the flight attendants. Sometimes I could care less about the extra time, but when a child is screaming because their ears aren't popping upon decent, they've handed my oldest (9) a piece of gum. Or snuck extra snacks to the youngest who was bored. 
The entire trip we managed to have both sides of the front row to ourselves-Dad & Little B on one side & Me & Big A on the other. Southwest's planes have 3 x 3 seats, so this meant we each had an extra empty seat, each flight. Lucky us!!! No one wants to be the person who voluntarily sits next to young children! 
                                   
                                   

I was pretty hesitant to bring my children to the Bahamas. Just like every time I take an international trip, I had registered with the US government's STEP Program for our upcoming trip. I then clicked through to our government's site on foreign travel to the Bahamas. I was pretty thrown when I read that the most prevalent issue (next to petty theft) was human trafficking! There are so many islands that people are hidden on that they are rarely rescued. This had me terrified. I don't want to say I let my guard down, but after the week was up, I feel comfortable that next trip here I do not need to be a helicopter mom......as much ;)

The Bahamian waters are spectacularly turquoise. The beaches were the softest, most perfect soft white sand that my toes melted into. And there was beautiful greenery that added to the backdrop. 


This was my view in the late mornings. I'd sit on a wooden pagoda type deck and listen to the hard waves crash up on the beach, then roll back out to sea. I'm actually taking low dose chemo for rheumatic issues, and what a perfect way to spend my nauseous days where I'm usually in bed. The salt water air was the best medicine!

My husband would push me down the main road of Paradise Island to the Dunkin Donuts, to get an iced coffee and bagel, and the kids would pick out a donut. In the same strip mall as the DD were souvenir shops that were not overpriced (unlike the Marina Village at Atlantis.) we picked up a nice new SPF sunhat for myself, a handmade photo album,chocolate rum cake, postcards, a necklace for the oldest daughter, tshirts for the whole family, and of course a Christmas ornament, as is our family tradition to get one from every trip.

I have broke down my review into parts.
Part 1 Where We Stayed
Part 2 The Area
Part 3 Our Dolphin Encounter
Part 4 Our Day at Atlantis
Part 5 The Flight Home