a blog launched to laugh at my own expense

When Vacationing with The Keatings

Every January, the Keating Family goes on a vacation. I am sure my parents started this tradition as a way to take a vacation from their children, but 26 years later my siblings and I are still clinging to their bag tags.

Obviously I am biased, but my parents are the best. I want to be just like them when I grow up (except for the having kids part). Everything is always FUN with J and A. A, my mom, is energetic, passionate, and innovative, and J, my dad, is her ying yang with an incredible sense of humor, an easy going personality, and a knack for finding great food. The latter is very important because my vegetarian mother subsists on bird food and cardboard tasting crackers.  
This year, we opened up Google Maps and decided Belize would be our next passport stamp. The trip itinerary was confirmed only after my bikini model of a sister checked the Instagram location and decided that, yes the water was blue enough, yes the sand was white enough, and yes the wifi was strong enough.

When Traveling with the Keatings:

  1. Make sure your selfie stick works. One trip, I asked J to photograph me swimming with dolphins. I came out of the water, breathless but ready to instagram, only to find pictures of J’s face. He had the camera pointed at himself instead of the seas and now no one knows I swam with dolphins and J is no longer trusted with iPhone photography. (The world’s loss on both accounts).
  2. Pick a seat partner who will entertain you the entire flight. No offense, but I would not recommend my boyfriend MJV for this task. He basically fell asleep before we boarded the plane.
  3. Confirm the native language before you get to Customs and Immigration. As someone who barely passed Spanish 101 after the third time taking it, I thought I would sharpen my Spanish in Belize. I stepped up to the Immigration Desk and floated a few lines of Spanish. It went terribly. Why? Because Belize was a British colony until 1981.
  4. Pack snacks. My Keating counterparts are known for their below average BMIs and can not be trusted to observe my 10 daily feedings. Pack your own snacks or risk weight loss.
  5. Don’t let anyone bully you about your breakfast choices.
  6. Be open to new adventures. Like birding: my new favorite non-contact sport.
  7. Don’t forget to pack your fedora. I used to think fedoras were helmets against making friends but now I know they are the best thing to happen since McDonald’s drive thru windows.
    If you do forget your fedora, make sure you get your hair highlighted before the trip or expect your entire family to make jokes about your roots.
  8. Find what you like and stick to it. MJV and I went to one restaurant 4 times. In 8 days.
  9. Don’t go on the trip expecting to get a new Facebook default picture. 90% of my photos look like the photo below:
  10. If you have seen one Mayan ruin, you have seen them all.

  11. Beer is a great motivator. Especially when your partner is paddling and you are deadweight sitting in a sinking kayak.
  12. Befriend the locals or risk having to paddle your own canoe.
  13. Don’t let the golf cart run out of gas. You can’t blame a language barrier when the fuel indicator looks the exactly the same as it does in the USA.

I can’t wait for our next Keating Family adventure to Colombia. I will finally get to meet Pablo Escobar and I have been practicing important Spanish phrases like…Donde esta el wifi?


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