Monday November 27th:
Travel Day. We left the house for Pittsburgh International at 2:30am. I had about 3 hours of sleep on the couch, Thomas stayed up and played Rocket League. I could hear the occasional goal score by Thomas’s screams of joy toward the computer.
We had no trouble getting to the airport or through security. We ate bagel breakfast sandwiches and waited for the Rite Aid to open at 5am. Thomas had forgotten his sunglasses, and I forgot hair mousse.
We arrived at our gate by 5: 15am. We were ready for boarding. At first, we thought that our flight might be delayed because there were two gentlemen with the same names (I think they were father and son) that fucked up their tickets. We were going to be pissed if they delayed the plane.
Our plane was tiny. Our bags were valet checked, the overheads just couldn’t fit everything. There was a girl that I 100% thought was about to have a panic attack. That plane was straight up claustrophobic. Thomas immediately fell asleep, and honestly, I think I did too as soon as we took off. The flight was short- only about 50 minutes.
It was time to boogie to the next flight, no time to waste. This was a much larger plane, three people on each side of the aisle. I was in the middle, Thomas on the aisle. Some woman named Gina was beside us. She didn’t even try to talk to us, and I used her armrest, without even realizing. It was a win-win.
They served us some delicious almonds (I am easily pleased), pretzels and cookies. This flight felt like first class compared to the first one. They had places to charge your phone and a television screen for each seat. The flight attendants provided headphones for everyone. We watched a Will Ferrell movie, and then all of a sudden, we were in Punta Cana.
These Dominicans are EFFICIENT. We were through customs and immigration in less than 20 minutes. It was astounding. This is when it started to get a bit nerve wracking for a minute. We found our transportation. Initially, they couldn’t find our names. They added us to a van. We waited about 20 minutes for a few more passengers. There was one woman that I had noticed from our flight. She had her head shaved, a septum piercing, and a big Japanese inspired back piece tattoo. She seemed to be traveling alone. I remember thinking that was pretty ballsy.
We drove through the streets of Punta Cana. On the highway, their traffic lights have counters so you know how much longer the light will be red. It is amazing how the natives drive. It is nothing less than organized chaos. People on tiny motorcycles and scooters weave in and out of traffic. Cars are pulled off the sides of roads haphazardly, and there are hundreds of speed bumps.
It took us about an hour to get to our resort. We got to a portion of the road with big pot holes and water covering portions of the road. Shit, we booked a busted down, janky resort…
Our van dropped us off and we went to the front desk. I instantly felt better. The reception area was covered by a huge palm tree roof. They were in the middle of putting up a Christmas tree that must have been 20 feet tall. A man from the bar in the lobby brought us two drinks with pineapple slices upon our arrival.
A woman named Carmen welcomed us. She gave us a map and began explaining things to us. She threw a lot of information to us in a short period of time. It was in broken English so I understood about 75% of it. Even though it was 3pm, our room was not quite ready. we were instructed to hang out in the lobby for a few minutes, until our room was complete. I ordered us both a coconut rum and pineapple. I was literally tipsy after drinking it.
We got to our room. It was gorgeous and very modern looking. There was a large king sized bed with a heart made out of towels on it. There were tiny red flowers adorning the sheets. The tub had a swan made of the same towels and flowers. The shower rained down like a waterfall. The white tile looked sleek.
My first experience with room service and Dominican food was a pepperoni pizza. It was not what you would find at home, but I gladly ate it as Thomas slept beside me. He at his while I took a nap.
It was dark, but only about 7:30pm. We walked down to the pool and beach area, but nothing was really illuminated, so we couldn’t see much. The sand was soft and fine. When we returned to the room we watched the end of The Longest Yard. I made it about 10 minutes into Speed.