Like how all my wedding blog posts start with “So, yeah…”?

What a difference between Philly and Jamaica, right now. We left 20 degree temps, and got off the plane into 80+ degrees and beautiful weather. Even when it rained it was beautiful. And it does seem to rain almost every day.. just a little.. in Jamaica. Rick and I stayed at the Jewel Resort near Dunn’s River Falls. Not that we have any point of reference, it being our first time at a resort, but it was FANTASTIC. The food was good, the staff was friendly and fun, the room was perfect, and we even got bumped up to “ocean view” upon arrival. They bring the newcomers rum punch as you wait in the lobby to get your key. The bartenders are a fun bunch, and will go out of their way to do things like bring your favorite drink to you in the hot tub, or suggest fun new drinks to try (like the “Jamaican Smile”). I know I said the food was good, but I have to explain that further. The common element to the restaurants at the Jewel is you get to choose an appetizer, a salad, a soup, an entree and a dessert at each place. And the portions are so perfect, this is actually not as much food as it sounds. Just a taste of everything. The breakfast buffet has every breakfast food you could wish for, plus some Jamaican specialties to try out! Seriously, a wonderful resort. Seriously.

Okay, now that I yammered on about that.. on to what we did… yknow, besides eat and drink. We were there for 5 days and 6 nights, and we did want to take 2 days to just RELAX and soak up the sun. But soon after we were wanting to actually go out and SEE some of Jamaica. So, we did 2 trips to touristy places… maybe in the future we can look of the beaten path, but as newbies it’s best to see the big landmarks. We took one morning/afternoon and went to Dolphin Cove, where we saw a shark show, went kayaking, took a quick boat tour of the coastline, met Elvis the Iguana, and watch the Dolphins goof around with the lucky few who got to swim with them. It was an amusing little trip filled with tidbits of everything.

The next day we took on the infamous Dunn’s River Falls. There are many different kind of trips you can take to see the Falls, but we chose the Catamaran Party Boat, under the name of Cool Runnings. This entailed a snorkeling trip, a stop at the falls to climb to the top, and then the boat bar opens and rum punch flows while the staff get everyone to dance (except me, of course, everyone knows I don’t dance.) The highlight of the trip for me was climbing the falls. It’s a bit intimidating at first, but once you start to trust your aquashoes’ stability on the rocks… even with rushing water… you gain confidence and it becomes fun. The guides gather a group of twenty or so people, and lead everyone up, hand-in-hand in a human chain, with stops along the way to take pictures or to slide down a “water slide” into a pool of water. I could not bring my camera as it’s not waterproof, so all I have to share is “borrowed” pictures I found online.

To top off the trip, we even made some good friends we hope to keep in touch with… and maybe even team up to do this again next year! Malcolm and Amber are from Washington DC, and we hit it off like we were old friends. One of those “instant connections” you hear about. During the span of the trip, we found ourselves striking up good conversations over drinks or shooting pool with other couples from DC, Boston, NY, and upstate NY as well. Everyone just seemed to be open and friendly.

It was a wonderful honeymoon, and what a SHOCK to come home to 15″ of snow when we returned to Philly. Brrrrrr…

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