Livin la Vida Loca: My Grad Trip Experience

Having finished my very last exam of my Undergraduate degree, I was so excited to go on the trip my friends and I had been planning for months. Having several hick ups this year, planning and booking our vacation. Although we started off with six people in our group, only half of us actually booked and paid to go on our grad trip. It was unfortunate to not have everyone come, but I was excited to spend a week with two of my closest friends.

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The deal we found popped up, out of the blue! At that point, I didn’t even think we were going to be able to go on a trip; with all the circumstances and setbacks. We jumped on it and booked the same day we found the all inclusive deal with Sunwing. Everything was perfect! We were all so excited to finally have found our dream trip to the Dominican Republic at a one week all-inclusive resort.

Things went downhill quite quickly. Traveling for me was a complete nightmare, out of a telenovela! And the damsel in distress was me apparently. I ended up missing my flight, my luggage got driven away with, I had to stay in a shabby (that’s the nicest word I can find to describe this place) motel for a night, purchase a whole new flight, and missed the first day of my vacation. To make matters worse, my new flight had been delayed and I was told that I would miss my connecting flight to my destination. I had only slept 4 hours in 48 hrs at this point, so I almost yelled at the almost uncaring staff at the airport who wanted to put me on another flight to Miami (which is completely out of the way).  By sheer grace, I was able to take the original flight and make my connecting flight (that had been thankfully delayed as well).

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I touched down in Peurta Plata, a day late and exhausted, but grateful to be there.  This had been my first time traveling completely by myself and it had been almost everything I had been afraid of. Either way, I was satisfied having known that I experienced the worst so I will never be nerves again: because it has already happened!

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When I got out of the airport, it was humid and hot! I was taken by a shuttle to my resort and I checked in. It was absolutely stunning! I stayed at Viva Wyndham V Heavens. The reception staff was wonderful and welcoming.

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When I finally met up with my friends I had so many horror stories to tell them about from the past 48 hours since I had last seen them. We laughed and caught up a bit, then headed straight to the beach to unwind.

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The resort, as I had mentioned, was gorgeous and modern. Everything was clean, sleek, white, and beautifully decorated. The food and drinks were delicious. Being full 24/7 was a dream! The only major con was that the entertainment staff was a bit unorganized and often didn’t bother showing up for scheduled activities. In addition, there were several incidents that both my friends and myself were sexually harassed on the resort, which made us feel uncomfortable.

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We only did two excursions on our vacation. The girls and I loved both of them. The first was a show at Ocean World called Bravissimo. It’s basically a variety show where several songs are performed by talented Dominican dancers. They wore these extravagant, over the top outfits – with no sequence, feather, or rhinestone to spare! The was a lot of boob and butt action: with both men and women half naked for most of the show. I Sex sells, what can you do? My friends and I enjoyed the singing and dancing despite the scantily clad performers! It was spectacular.

Or second excursion was a city tour of Peurto Plata. Our tour guide was informative and friendly. He gave told us about the historical significance of everywhere he took us (which being a history geek, I was all for it!). The only con was he spewed out propaganda left right and center! Having studied Latin American history, it was hilarious to here the idealized picture he was painting for us. I assume that they give this script to people on the premise that tour goers are ignorant. Either way, my friends and I smiled and nodded, despite the incredibly wrong and romanticized ideals he was disseminating.

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Anywho! The city tour was beautiful; we got to see the famous town square, a local market, the Amber museum and the Fitsleza San Felipe. The scenery was breathtaking!

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I wanted to buy souvenirs at these places but of course, it was overpriced! So I only bought a bottle of cane sugar rum and a bottle of pure vanilla, which I was happy with. I just wished I picked up some coffee and hot chocolate (completely escaped my mind when I was at the market! Bummer!).

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Another Bummer: Our return flight getting changed without any notice by Sunwing. Because of this change, we were going to miss our connecting transportation at the airport – leaving us stranded. We spend almost 4 hours trying to fix the situation. No one was helping us on either end of the situation. We needed up having to buy a new Greyhound ticket and wait 3 hours in the airport to come back home!

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This trip was filled with so much DRAMA! But it was also filled with a lot of laughter; relaxation, amazing food and drinks, and most importantly, quality time spend with two of my best friends. Even though this trip had its ups and downs I am glad to have gone on it. I had a blast! (For the most part)

Gracias y Adiós Puerto Plata!

 

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