Here, There and Everywhere

I was supposed to be back in Germany last Monday morning but fate had other plans for me. My initial two weeks in the US went as planned - I worked in NJ during the week and visited friends and colleagues in Philly over the weekends. It was great to see a good friend from college, her husband and their 1 year old boy, another friend of mine who was celebrating his 35th birthday, and still another good friend from Spain who had moved to the US last fall.

On the Thursday before I was scheduled to fly home, my project came to a halt and I, along with others, was asked to take a week holiday. With no certainty as to if and when the project would resume, I decided to stay a bit longer on this side of the world so I could visit my parents this weekend. But what to do with the week when my parents were working?

I have so many miles and points that I rarely get to use so I decided to check out what options I had in the Caribbean for a last minute trip. My only requirement was that it be somewhere I felt safe enough going along, that miles would pay for the flights and that the flight schedule would get me to CT by Friday afternoon.

Turks and Caicos fit the bill - lucky for me! Usually me Caribbean time is spent in Mexico so this was really my first trip to one of the islands and I can only highly recommend it!

The weather was gorgeous, Grace Bay Beach perfection, the people friendly and the food tasty (especially the conch fritters at Da Conch Shack). I would say TCI are more for a relaxing retreat or family vacation than a big party spot. There are tons of things to do if you are so inclined, from spas, to diving, snorkeling, sailing, kite surfing, horseback riding and parasailing. I loved watching the kite surfers go ripping past up and down the bay. TCI feel off the beaten path but there is quite a bit of development going on; hopefully they won't overdo it.

I arrived in Connecticut late Thursday night and spent Friday tacking a nasty to-do list (including taxes, apartment searching, bill paying and all those kind of fun things). Friday night I made Mom and Dad a knock-off of a meal I had in the Caribbean - red beet and goat cheese salad, sea bass over caramelized balsamic onions, chorizo and roasted tomatoes and molten chocolate lava cake with vanilla ice cream! I can't wait to have my own kitchen again.

Today I went horseback riding with Mom (my legs are crying now) and then it was her turn to make dinner. All that is left now is breakfast at Diane's, the hole in the wall cafe where we always have my farewell breakfast when I return to Germany. They have the best giant pancakes and creative omelettes around. I head to Newark for a 6 PM flight back to Düsseldorf and work on Monday (as far as I can tell).

All in all it's been a nice, if strange and unexpected, 3 weeks in North America. Something tells me that the surprises are not over yet in this roller coaster of a year.

Posted from East Hampton, CT


Expat Traveler said...

wow - your vacation photos are simply amazing!

ian in hamburg said...

Looks just lovely. Good to know you put some of those miles to good use. Many don't have the time, and if they do, the airlines won't let them book.

My open roads said...

how nice that you got to take a trip to a nice warm place! lovely pictures! enjoy the rest of your stay in the US!

Hawaii Tours said...

You have such a wonderful life :) You're so lucky to travel those places.

Michelle said...

Hi Hawaii Tours - welcome to my blog and I am lucky but Hawaii is pretty great too!