A few days in to a 17-day vacation, I have hit a rhythm. On a good day, I wake up before everyone else at around 7:15 a.m. I’m out the door around 7:30 to run on the boardwalk. I’ve been aiming to do 4 miles. I feel slow and plodding at first, but the minutes soon feel less lousy. I’m cruising by the end.
After 45 minutes or so, I’m home to make/eat breakfast. In my normal life I make a virtuous selection of slow-cooking oatmeal. Here it’s bacon and eggs and bagels. Coffee is a must both places. On a good day, I drink the second cup on the porch while noodling around on my iPhone.
We slowly get ready for the beach. We’re out there around 10:00. We play in the waves. The 7-year-old rides the boogie board. The kids make friends, especially when they figure out some other family has better beach equipment, like nets to catch sand crabs in. We play in the sand until someone starts asking incessantly to go home (usually around noon). We go home, and eat lunch. Quiet time then commences. The 2-year-old doesn’t nap regularly but there is TV, and games, and coloring. Sometimes I run an errand (our nanny and my husband are in and out over the 17 days, aiming to alternate, though sometimes we’re all here).
We muster up the energy to head back to the beach a little after 3. We’re there between 3:30-4, and stay until a bit after 5/5:30. There are more sandcastles. The waves are rougher, so there’s less swimming. But there’s still some. Sometimes I go for a short walk on the beach. We’re back home between 5:30 and 6. I (or someone) starts dinner. We eat, sometimes outside. Then it’s off to the local ice cream parlor, which is located about 2 blocks from the house. I think ice cream daily is about right for vacation. One day, it happened twice. I’ve been working my way through flavors. Midnight chocolate cookie. Chocolate peanut butter. Peanut butter moose tracks. I instituted a house rule that you must be 4 years old to get a cone (it’s cups before that).
Then it’s back to the house for baths. When my husband is here, he reads a chapter or two from Harry Potter to the kids. We attempt to get them in bed. Sometimes we succeed. I brought books to read but I’m not really reading them. Instead, I watch mindless shows on HGTV. Things I have learned: property is surprisingly expensive in Kigali, Rwanda. Flipping houses is not an easy way to make a living (I knew that already). Removing load-bearing walls is a major undertaking. I go to bed between 11 and 11:30. On a good night, I sleep straight through until the run (5.6 miles before breakfast this AM!)
Photo: Home, sweet rental home