Sunday, August 17, 2014

Cowgirl Kristyn & Cowboy Sal

Earlier this year, Sal and I chose to spend our vacation in Florida. My friend, Olivea, was living there at the time for school, and proposed the idea that a bunch of us go down for the Country Superfest. It wasn't hard to convince me to take a few days off to see her in her element, and enjoy country music with good friends. I purchased the plane tickets, and counted down the days till we were on a plane headed to the sunshine state.

The plane ride was a bit uneasy as it was rainy when we left. We hit a little turbulence, though it felt like a lot more being that we were on such a little plane. When we finally got to her house, after what seemed like a very long ride from the airport, we were greeted by Olivea's friend, and a cute note Olivea had left while she was at her internship. Not only did she leave us a note (and a helpful map!), but she also left us towels and shot glass necklaces. We knew we were in for a great vacation. The weather was beautiful, and we weren't about to waste a day inside, so we threw on our bathing suits, and headed to her pool. 

We spent the afternoon laid out on beach chairs by the pool, soaking up the sun and breathing in the Florida air. I was so happy that we had landed safely and we now how the next few days to enjoy this.  I could not stop smiling, and my smile only got bigger when Olivea made it home from her internship. We spent a little while longer out by the pool catching up, and then we decided to head to dinner at Salt Life, on the beach. The wait was more than two hours long, and we grew bored quickly. We decided to walk to the beach, and enjoy the sunset.

By the time we walked back to the restaurant, the sun had gone down completely, and we were still told to wait. Finally, as the restaurant emptied out, and we swore we were going to be told they were closing, we were seated! We quickly ordered our drinks, and placed our appetizer order, choosing whatever the waitress recommended. She even ended up bringing us extra for free, trying to make up for the long wait. When dinner arrived, all I could say was, "mmm!" It was beyond delicious, and was well worth the wait. After many, many laughs, we walked out - happier than we had been before we arrived. We were almost at the door when Sal stopped us to take pictures with the fish tank that was featured on the show Tanked

We went home and wound up playing Cards Against Humanity, a game I had never played before. Let me just tell you, I could not stop laughing. Having never played before, made the cards that  much funnier, especially when you play with such great friends - old and new. We went to sleep with our stomachs hurting and our cheeks sore, looking forward to the next day. We woke up early, and headed to the local deli to grab sandwiches before we went to the country music festival. When we got to the stadium, we parked and chowed down. We didn't tailgate, instead we checked out the fan area, and enjoyed the music played by up and coming artists. 

The weather didn't look great, but we tried not to let it get us down. Unfortunately, the Florida weather hit us strong. There was thunder and lightning, and we found ourselves being herded inside the stadium, where it was safe. We were packed for a long time, and as time ticked by, we realized that the show was going to start extremely late. We were tired of standing, and we had all had enough. Everyone was hot and sweaty, pushing up against one another, and I wanted to leave. I wanted to lay down. The rain eventually stopped, as it always does in Florida, and the show began, but not before announcing that Big & Rich would be cut from the line up. Colt Ford came on, Little Big Town graced the stage, and then the two everyone was waiting for - Eric Church & Jason Aldean.   The first night was incredible, and as we walked back to the car, we sang the songs and chanted for the US of A! I could not wait for the following day - we were planning to make it better than today. I mean, just seeing Luke Bryan himself would make the day that much better. 

We went to bed, or fell into bed, exhausted. We woke up early the next day, and prepared. We got there early, and immediately lined up for the meet and greet. We were able to choose to meet Joe Nichols or Easton Corbin, and we ended up choosing Joe Nichols. I was excited, but again we waited. It seemed we did a lot of wasting, but in the end it was well worth it every time! He signed my ticket, and snapped a picture with me. It was Father's Day, and these artists who are dads had to spend their day putting on a show - I made sure to wish him a happy father's day, and for that I'm sure he appreciated. 

When the concert started, we heard Joe Nichols and Easton Corbin, Florida Georgia Line, and then Miranda Lambert, and finally Luke Bryan. When Luke came on, I nearly died. Even though I've seen him in concert before, he still stunned me. He's such a great performer. During his time on the stage, Jason Aldean came back out, as well as Miranda Lambert, and Joe Nichols, although I'm pretty positive Nichols was drunk, and had no clue what he was doing. We thought he was going to sing, but he just came out, stumbling and hugged, no it was more like fell into Luke's arms. The second day was definitely better, and it shines brightly in my memory. 

The next morning, some of our friends would be leaving, and I was glad that Sal and I had chosen to stay an extra day so that we could relax, something that we couldn't do the past two days. It's funny because you'd think that being on vacation, you would relax, but sometimes adventure calls me - more often than not. We still woke up early, we wanted to see the sunrise together. It was absolutely breathtaking, and to see the sun rise with people you care about, is such an incredible feeling. We walked the beach, saw starfish, all while waking up with the sun.

We left, and enjoyed lunch at this delicious local place, Mango Mangos. We ordered Pina Coladas, and I'm not sure why, but drinks like that always taste better near the beach, in the hot weather. For lunch, I ordered mahi mahi over salad. It was so fresh, and I ate every last bite. 

We hung out by the pool until Olivea came home from her internship, and then we got ready for dinner. It was just the three of us, taking on the town. After we enjoyed dinner, Olivea showed us around the town that she called home for the last two years. We explored the shops, the streets, and monuments from wars that happened long, long ago. We came upon the kissing tree, and Sal and I sealed our love underneath with a kiss. The night ended when we got our ice cream, because how else can you end a perfect day?

The next day was the day we were leaving, but we weren't about to leave without exploring the town on our own, and checking off more adventures off of our bucket list. I booked a later flight, so we had the whole day to wander around. Olivea had left us her bikes, and we grabbed them and rode around. Though we had a GPS, and Olivea's directions, we still found ourselves going the wrong way. Luckily we found what we were looking for - the lighthouse. I don't think I had ever been in a lighthouse before, and I was glad I was able to do so with Sal. We climbed the stairs, and I tried not to look down. It's not the heights I'm afraid of, but falling. I don't let fear stop me though. How could you, when you only live once?

Afterwards, we rode our bikes across the street, and chose to go zip lining over the alligator farm. Okay, Sal chose this, and I tagged along. I had always wanted to zip-line, and when I thought zip lining, I thought through the jungle on some island, not in Florida, but I am so happy that we did. With Sal lined up behind me, I wasn't frightened. I knew that I could do it, lead us. We zip lined over the alligators, and afterwards grabbed a bite to eat and walked around, enjoying the birds and alligators up close and personal.

Before we knew it, we had to go. We rode our bikes back, and quickly showered up. Our ride arrived, and we were on the plane before we knew it. Heading back home, heading back to reality. I was so happy; we had had such an unforgettable vacation, and even though I didn't want it to end, I'm so glad it happened. 

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