Skiing in Vail

Last weekend I went skiing in Vail for the first time. I met up with Kev and some of his co-workers and we stayed in a condo in Westwind. The location was great. It was really convenient getting to the gondola; we literally just walked with all of our ski gear out of the building, through the village, and onto the gondola to hit the slopes.

It was also my first time skiing three days in a row. I was a little sore but to my surprise, I was totally fine. On Friday morning, we all slept in and Kevin and I took afternoon ski lessons to get some tips on skiing moguls. By the end, I felt more confident about skiing on terrain not groomed. Additionally, the lesson prepared me for the next two days of skiing. After lessons, Kev and I met up with the rest of the group for Aprج¬s-ski. The night continued with a hilarious game of Cards Against Humanity and just ordering in pizza. Nights like those are my favorite.
On Saturday it snowed all day. It was pretty cold and windy, and there was low visibility in some parts of the mountain, but Kevin and I still had a lot of fun going down more difficult Black Diamond trails and off-trail. On Sunday before we headed to the airport, we got a few more hours of skiing in. It was a beautiful day and we skied a different part of the mountain. I had a blast going off trail. I still have a lot of learning to do and I need to practice more, but I was proud of myself that I was able to keep up with the group, wasn’t too scared to ski through trees, and didn’t fall too many times.

This was definitely my favorite ski trip of the ski season. We had a solid group, ski conditions were great, and we had a lot of fun. I will definitely be going back to Vail in the future. (Below is a cool video shot from Kevin’s GoPro of us off-trail skiing.)

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Labor Day in Playa Del Carmen, Mexico

This past Labor Day I flew to Playa del Carmen, Mexico with my parents and boyfriend. We stayed at the Fairmont Mayakoba. We got an awesome deal through Jetsetter for an all inclusive stay, and we lucked out because it was a beautiful resort with several pools and restaurants. We had a jam packed weekend full of fun activities planned. Even though we didn’t fly into Mexico until late Thursday, we woke up early the next morning to go scuba diving. Kevin and I finished our e-learning, pool dives, and test back in Manhattan, so we planned to finish our remaining open water dives during our trip to Mexico in order to get certified.

Anyway, so on Thursday morning, the four of us woke up early and headed to the dive shop. I didn’t really realize until we were walking on the beach and I noticed how cloudy it was that it we were there during the off-season. From there, the rest of our morning was almost comical. We/Kevin had rented a private boat with a crew and our dive instructor to take us all out where Kevin and I would go scuba diving and my parents could swim and snorkel. What we weren’t anticipating was a small boat that a group of locals had to haul into the water and big, rough waves that were rocking the boat back and forth like a teeter totter. We all put brave faces on though and got onto the boat. As we drove out into the ocean we all got soaked with the spray. It was quite comedic actually. Once we got to our first dive spot Kevin and I went in and didn’t have any problems.

When we surfaced about 45 minutes later though we got back on board to find my dad super sea sick, so we dropped him and my mom back on shore before heading back out to finish our last dive of the day. At that point I was feeling a little sea sick myself, so I told Kevin and our instructor that I didn’t feel 100%, so we all agreed that we wouldn’t stay down long for our second dive. Luckily, Kevin also asked the instructor what to do if you were to get sick while underwater because once we dove in, despite my best efforts to keep it in, I threw up my breakfast. Since only moments before I learned what to do in that situation, I was actually super calm. What I wasn’t expecting though were dozens of fish surrounding me trying to eat my own vomit. It was an interesting experience to say the least. I was also really proud of myself that I didn’t panic in the situation.

Once we got to the resort, we met back up with my parents. My mom and I hung out in the pool at the swim-up bar and had a few drinks. Thursday also happened to be my mom’s birthday, so that evening we had a nice steak and seafood dinner(veggies for me) and they brought out a special dessert for my mom.

On Friday we spent the day at Xplor Park. It was SO much fun. The first part of the day we went zip lining, then we swam in caves, went rafting in the underground water caves, and ended the day driving around amphibious vehicles. It was a beautiful day and we had a great time. It was perfect too because there was something we each really enjoyed; My mom liked zip lining, I liked swimming in the cave, and the guys liked driving the amphibious vehicles.

Saturday was our last full day of vaca. My parents decided to hang back for me and Kevin’s last morning of diving. Our instructor took us to a Casa Cenote about 45 minutes from the dive shop in Playa del Carmen. It was really cool and a totally different diving experience than Thursday. For those that don’t know, a cenote is a it, or sinkhole resulting from the collapse of limestone that exposes groundwater underneath. Scuba diving in the cenote was a cool experience that most beginner divers don’t get to do before they’re actually certified, but I’m glad our instructor took us. To be honest, besides exploring every nook and cranny, it was a little boring after a while because there weren’t any beautiful, colorful seawater fish.

Kev and I got back to the resort a little tired after our last dive but excited to finally be PADI certified scuba divers. We met up with my parents for a late lunch and then just lounged around the pool bar for a bit. We were all completely wiped out by that point, so we called it an early evening and passed out.

Overall, it was a really great trip. I had a good time catching up with my parents and Kevin and I were super stoked to finish our scuba certification. Also, were really pleased with the Fairmont Mayakoba. The resort was beautiful and the restaurants were delicious. We didn’t have one bad meal there. I would definitely recommend staying at theFairmont Mayakoba for anyone traveling to Playa del Carmen, and I also highly recommend doing the Xplor adventure.

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