We encourage our visitors to submit their own travel stories and photos for all of us to enjoy.
I'll start it off by recounting how I fell in love with travel at an early age.
MY FIRST GETAWAY – by Elena
you remember when you first fell in love with traveling? Even if
you’re not a travel enthusiast, I hope our travel adventures will
encourage you to venture to an unfamiliar state or country.
My wanderlust began at the tender age of two. My brother Jimmy, considerate sibling that he was, came down with pneumonia. Our doctor insisted he spend the winter months in a warm climate. Jim and I were never fans of cold weather, particularly those often brutal winters in Chicago.
The opportunity to spend winter in a tropical climate was the best holiday gift I could have received. I don’t know if we ever made the connection, but of the four siblings in our family, the two, who as toddlers spent one balmy winter in Cuba, are the ones who for over fifteen years have lived in the warm climates of Las Vegas and Houston.
Here's an old photo my mom had of Jimmy and me enjoying Varadero Beach.
I'm the healthy looking one.
My parent’s friends were rather shocked at their choice of Cuba as a Caribbean getaway… even pre-Castro. However, at the time Miami was very expensive. So, my mom found a cottage in Varadero, a resort town in Cuba’s province of Matanzas. At the time, it was one of the largest resort areas in the Caribbean. My parents were fortunate that the cottage was large enough to accommodate a nanny. We were not so thrilled, since the only English she spoke was “No cookies, no candy.”
Friends Since Grade School
How to describe a trip to paradise with grade school/high school
friends? Words fail me. A chance to reconnect away from
responsibilities? A chance to laugh over the stories of youth long
gone? A chance to comfort one another about the trials of caring for
aged and dying parents and the death of a spouse? A chance to hear the
subjective experiences of our youths....that we foolishly thought we
knew so much about at the time? A chance to hear the stories of our
children and grandchildren experiencing the life stages that we laughed
and cried through? It was all this and more.
Friends Since Grade School Comida in Akumal
Connie attacked by a Giant Sea Urchin "Five Girls in Mexico"
The gift of those beautiful surroundings, the warmth of companionship, the wonderful food and the comical experiences that are part of the traveling experience are something we will always cherish. There is nothing that can compare to being among those whom one has known all one’s life and still admires so deeply and who return those feelings. None of us can wait to reconnect again next year!
Comments for Que Buena Semana con Mujeres Magnificas!
May 02, 2015
Glad I was there. Can't wait for next years trip!
THE TRIP FROM HELL I LIVED TO LAUGH ABOUT by Terry (Fishers, IN)
I was 24 years old and working one of my first jobs out of college for a downtown Chicago Brokerage Firm. I had gotten to be very close with 4 other women with whom I worked both inside and outside of work. We were together constantly and this seemed like the perfect getaway from the high-stress of the financial industry. We were headed for Acapulco. Being young and fairly broke, we were fortunate to be given the use of a condo which belonged to a friend of my Dad's. We were SO SO excited.
Our first little snag was that we could not all get seats on the same
flight. SO..2 of us went the night before and the rest followed the next
day.....Well, what I didn't know that left on our own, the two of us
really didn't care for oneanother. I was on a 2 hour flight from hell
with no way out! Then it was off to the condo. Thank God it was late
so we both fell into bed after a long stressful day.
When I awoke the next morning, I went to get out of bed and when I put my feet on the floor, I cringed! I was ankle deep in smelly greenish water.!! I literally saw one of my flip flops floating away from me. Well, needless to say, this was not going to work. We promptly went to the management office (Jackie full of rage) and they were kind enough to give us another condo…bigger and better at no additional cost to us. As we anxiously waited for our friends to arrive later that afternoon, I flew down to the beach while Jackie sat by the pool.
Our friends arrived at about 6:00. They promptly unpacked, changed, and
headed out for dinner and of course to the clubs. We had a great
stress free evening and everything was pretty close to perfect. We got
back to the condo around 4:00 a.m. Quite tipsy we literally fell into
our beds for a good nights sleep. At 7:00 I was still tossing and
turning wondering how the others could possibly sleep. It had to have
been 120 degrees in there! I checked the air…it said 68. There was no
way on Gods green earth it was below 100! I decided I’d run down and
place our towels on the pool chairs in order to secure our spots.
I then went back up and noticed that as the sun began to rise in the sky, so did the temperature in our fancy dancy condo. So..I grabbed my friend Amy and again, headed down to the management office. This time they weren’t quite so nice (Must have been the cranky weekend crew). They said it would be
“No problem”, they would check the unit. We went back to the condo, changed, got the others, and headed off for the beach. When we got back at close to 6:00 that afternoon…I would have killed for 120 degrees. Now it MUST be 150! Again, we gather up our forces and head down to the office. They told us something they obviously didn’t know we already knew…..the air conditioning was broken!! Again, they said “no problem”. We have another condo for you however, this one, would be $1000 extra for the week. Keep in mind we were young, broke, and wanted to spend the little $$ we had on the fun stuff.
We began calling other hotels, condos etc. with no such luck. It was after all, Spring Break in Acapulco!!
We then returned to the office, heads between our knees and begged for a better rate. They complied, only this time, they offered us quite the deal at $900 for the rest of the week.…needless to say, we all pooled our $$ and got our 3RD condo. Of course, according to all, this was entirely my fault. After all, had my Dad’s friend’s place not flooded, we would never be in this mess to begin with and they wasted no time reminding me of just that as the week progressed.
This my friends was truly the trip from hell. My next vacation the following spring was perfect. I went with one friend and stayed at a 4 star hotel!!
I must say my first girlfriends travel experience wasn’t all that great, however I’ve taken many since (with different girls) and they have more than made up for that one trip. In addition, it makes for quite a crazy story right?
MY VERY FIRST GIRLFRIENDS GETAWAY - by Elena
I left home for the first time without my parents the summer of
my ninth birthday. It was going to be a two month stay at Camp Birch
Knoll in Phelps, Wisconsin. My neighbor Donna and I joined forces to
attend. I’ll never forget waiting for the train at the station in
Wilmette, Ilinois with my fellow girl campers. Some of us had tears in
our eyes as we clung to our parents. Others hid their tears, trying as
hard as they could to show they were strong. Then there were the "cool
girls," acting as if they didn't even know their parents. They looked
instead for their friends. The look in their eyes said not only that
they didn’t want their parents to worry about them, but also that they
were mature enough to take care of themselves. Who were they kidding?
Those of us girls who had never been away from home without our
parents were terrified. The rest just wanted their parents to think they
Donna and I started camp that first year knowing only each other. Yet it didn’t take long before we developed friendships with the other eight girls in Cabin Two…a.k.a. "Beaver’s Nest." Camp was a place where we could learn how to swim, synchronize swim, horsebackride, water ski, and even take a
few trips a summer to popular tourist sites not far from Camp Birch
Knoll. One summer, we traveled to Mackinaw Island, Michigan….no one
makes fudge like they do. At the end of the summer, we put on a broadway
type show. This gave us the chance to try our chops singing or seeing
whether we had two left feet while trying to dance.
For those of you who don’t think you could survive eight
weeks without boys, you always had the option of reducing the number of weeks you spent at camp. For those of you who see the benefits of spending eight weeks at a girls-only camp, fear not. We had two socials a year with boys' camps. Furthermore, I can’t think of any of my camp friends who would have given up the opportunity to learn all of the above mentioned activities
without worrying about boys making fun of us.
I’ll never forget some of the pranks we pulled. There was the time we rounded up all of the bras in each cabin, tied them end-to-end, and hoisted them up the camp flagpole. And then there was the shoe heist. Early one morning we rounded up all the shoes we could find and lined them up in straight rows spelling out “Camp Birch Knoll.”
Sure we took a “lickin,” but it sure was worth it. We were given what
we considered the worst punishment possible. Once the culprits were
found, we (I’m not saying that I was amongst them, though I’m not saying
I wasn’t either) had to go to the Camp Director’s office. Just one
snarly look from “Pops” was enough to render us nine year olds scared to
death. Apologies were given and accepted. None of us wanted to find
ourselves there again. (even though some of us hadn’t gotten the
prankster out of our systems, yet.)
I encourage all young women to spend some time, whether it’s
locally or away from home, developing that special bond. While it may
not necessarily be unique to women, there is often in our DNA a
particularly exceptional closeness that binds us together from the time
we’re kids through adulthood.
Donna and I went on to spend five more summers in that same cabin. Those are memories I wouldn't trade the world for.
p.s. I welcome input from any of you girls/now women, in our
cabin… Ann Dee, Barb, Linda, Margo. Are any of you out there? What are
The Proud Girls of Camp Birch Knoll - Cabin 2
Do you have a great / wonderful/ enchanting/ unusual / or maybe a "trip from hell" girlfriends travel story?
Or maybe a helpful tip or place you recommend.
Click below to see contributions from other visitors to this page...
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MY VERY FIRST GIRLFRIEND GETAWAY Not rated yet
MY VERY FIRST GIRLFRIEND GETAWAY I left home without my parents for two months the summer of my ninth birthday. My next door …