My friend Claire (her blog HERE) is currently living in Nicaragua and this weekend she's heading down to San Juan Del Sur, a small surfing town in the south. I went to Nicaragua for a week with four friends a couple years ago so I looked up the name of my surf instructor for her. Which led me to remember several now-funny things about that trip.

I've never felt like I had so much down-time, and yet did so many things, simultaneously. I remember lots of Hammock Time, swinging and reading on the front porch of our hotel, but then I also remember touring different towns/cities, deep-sea fishing, hiking a volcano, ziplining through trees, taking a boat ride with a monkey...and Learning How To Surf.

Backing up to before the trip- I can be over-cautious. Sometimes. Other times I do really stupid things without a second thought. But since we had months to think about this trip beforehand, I read up on the area and the risks thereof.

So I signed up to receive Department of State notifications in my email. You know, normal vacation planning, right? And I started getting emails with subject lines like: "Taxi Kidnappings and Residential Armed Robberies."

Oh good.

That opened up to say things like: "As reported in our Country Specific Information brochure on Nicaragua, violent crime in Nicaragua is increasing."

Ah, very nice. We'll not share THAT with the parents... so which swimsuits should I take!

And during my "planning" I also learn that it's suggested to get anti-malaria meds, just in case. So me and one other girl going on the trip- my friend Kami - do that.

The other three going on the trip are all combat vets and made fun of us.

Fast forward to a few days into the trip and LOOK WHO GETS SWINE FLU! Yeah, tough guy who thought I was being paranoid with my meds! Ha! (just kidding, I wouldn't laugh at him because he was VERY ILL and we self-diagnosed it as Swine Flu but to this day, we don't really know what it was)

But even if I did laugh at him, it wouldn't have lasted long because then the next person got it. And she was VERY ILL. Then the third person... so here's our room in San Juan Del Sur:

[And I was sharing a bed with Kami, who I eventually (accidentally!!) pushed out of the bed one night and she landed Here:]

But that's beside the point. The Point IS, that clearly this illness was systematically wiping each one of us out...and it was headed my way. Kami was my only barrier at this point - and I had just kicked her out of the bed. :/

End of story, Kami and I were the only ones NOT to get deathly ill on that trip, so I've gloated ever since that it was because we took Paranoid Meds. The. End.

I just realized this post is already too long and I've yet to explain my surfing experience. So come back and join me in a day or so and I'll continue!