Spring Break 2017: Dominican Republic: Day 3

I woke up around 8:00 AM and snuck out of the room with my clothes because Drew was still sleeping.  I got dressed, put on my socks and shoes (because it’s unsafe to wear open-toed shoes in the kitchen), and walked downstairs, only to see Helaine, Heather, my grandma, my Aunt Nina, and my Aunt Marilyn doing yoga instructed by a woman that came here yesterday to talk to Helaine because she had wanted to do yoga here (I think the woman’s name is Carol, and she was able to fulfill Helaine’s request because otherwise, those five relatives of mine wouldn’t have been doing yoga this morning).

For breakfast, I had two small pancakes with maple syrup, a chocolate muffin, and a glass of orange juice, and it was good, you know, pretty substantial even though it wasn’t my first choice.

I put my bathing suit on under my clothes when I got dressed earlier, and I decided to go swimming with my cousins, so I put on my water shoes, some medicine for my bug bites, some bug spray, and some sunscreen.  I went into the pool, then the hot tub, then the pool again, and then the hot tub again, and it was fun!!!!!  After that, I went upstairs, took off my bathing suit, and got dressed into my regular clothes that I was wearing before.

Bode and Cory put on their own little interactive show of Beauty And The Beast as Drew, Lucas, Barry, Heather, Helaine, Mason, and I watched/acted as best as we could.  Mateo watched for a little bit, too, and it was really cute.

I helped Anna by cutting up some kale, an endive, and some small red radishes that she peeled most of the skin off of, and we arranged it onto a platter.  Next, she had me dice up an onion and slice up some lettuce that we put into a bowl to make a salad.  Then, she had me use my hands to add the cooked chicken that was in a bowl on the counter to the salad as she mixed it up with her hands, and she transferred as much of the salad that could fit back into the bowl that the chicken was in before I added it, and she left the rest of the salad in the other bowl that she was transferring from.

She covered it with plastic wrap, and put it with the rest of the food that was on the other counter, and finally, I said, “Gracias,” and left because there wasn’t anything left for me to do at the time.

For lunch, I ate some potato-carrot salad with parsley (I just had the potatoes and the parsley because I don’t really like carrots), a few grilled mushrooms, a little grilled zucchini, and a piece of grilled fish that I paired with my Russian dressing because it tasted kind of plain and bland to me (my Russian dressing is just simply ketchup and mayo).  I also ate a slice of red onion from Mateo’s plate because he let me have it when I asked him (he sat next to me), and my mom had me try a piece of the fried fish.  As for my drink, orange juice was my choice, as usual.  Everything was really good!!!!!

“Después de limpiar la cocina, puedo a hacer mi postre?” I asked Anna after lunch when I entered the kitchen.  In English, that means, “After cleaning the kitchen, can I make my dessert?”

Anna just nodded enthusiastically and gave a wide smile, and I was so excited!!!!!

Some of us went for a little drive in the golf cart.  Bode sat on Drew’s lap in the front next to Barry (he drove since he was the only adult there), and Mateo, Lucas, Cory, and I sat in the back.  We drive for a little bit, and then, Barry asked if any of us wanted to drive, and Bode, Cory, Mateo, and Lucas raised their hands.  First, Bode sat on Barry’s lap to drive for a little bit.  Next, Bode moved to Mateo’s lap, and Cory drove on Barry lap for a little bit.  Then, Cory went back to where she was sitting (next to me), Bode got off of Mateo’s lap and sat where Lucas was sitting (in between Mateo and Cory), and Lucas stepped up to the wheel for a little bit.  Even though Lucas is nine years old and is probably perfectly capable of driving by himself with adult supervision, he sat on Barry’s lap as well to be safe.  After that, Lucas went to sit where Mateo was sitting, and Mateo went up to sit on Barry’s lap, and drive for a little bit.  After that, Mateo moved to the back and sat in between Lucas and Bode, Barry scooted over a seat to let Drew drive because he wanted to, and he’s confident behind the wheel (I know because I’ve seen him drive the golf cart in Florida), Cory moved to the front to sit on Barry’s lap, and Bode moved onto Mateo’s lap.   Bode and Cory wanted to go to the park, so we were trying to find it, but we were having trouble, and I didn’t want to go, so they dropped me back at the house, and they all went to the park without me.

My mom helped me make Sophie’s Mango-Lime Mousse, and it was a long process, but I think it was worth it, and I was really excited to dig into it after dinner!!!!!

Uncle Rick had come into the kitchen earlier when we were making the mousse and let us know that we were going zip lining and to the monkey jungle tomorrow, so I’m going to go to the monkey jungle like I said yesterday.  For the waterfall thing, there are twenty seven waterfalls, and you walk around to see them all; it’s like a hike.  Some of us are going to do that on Thursday, but I don’t think I’m going to.

My Uncle Rick forced me to come to the beach against my will because he just always makes me do stuff that I don’t want to do.  Helaine and Bode played in the sand, and above the beach, there are a bunch of pathways made of rocks, and one of them leads to a little pool that you’re able to swim in.  That’s where Mateo, Lucas, Drew, Barry, and Cory were.  They were swimming, and when we got there, my Uncle Rick hopped in with them.  Heather was sitting on the side with my Aunt Nina, who was playing with Mason.  My Uncle Jerry was there, too, and I sat down in a lounge chair as we talked by the pool.  After talking for a little bit, my Aunt Nina suggested that we go to sit in the lounge chairs above the beach to watch the waves in the ocean, so we did, but then, we moved to another spot with lounge chairs to get a better view of Helaine and Bode, but they started coming up from the beach to where we were, so we went back by the pool.  My mom came, and she went in the pool for a little bit, but she only went in halfway.  Bode went in, too, and my Uncle Rick went into the ocean/. For those of us who weren’t in the pool or the ocean, we just walked around and watched, and after a while, the people who were in the pool all got out to walk down the pathway to the beach.  I went back down to the lounge chairs to watch them, and most of them went into the ocean.  Mateo didn’t go in, though; he had buried Bode into the sand, except for his head.  Then, the people that weren’t in the ocean, which was very few of them, went in, except for me, of course.  Bode was still buried and was just hanging out like nothing was wrong.  My Aunt Nina came over to talk to him, and everyone seemed to be having fun.  Bode got out of little burial and just played in the sand, and Barry and Drew came over to talk to him.  Then, Drew stood there and watched as Barry helped Bode construct whatever he was attempting to build.  Helaine got out, and then, it was just my Uncle Rick and my mom left in the ocean.  My Uncle Jerry came up behind me to greet me once again, and he sat down in a lounge chair next to me to watch as well.  Basically, people went in and out of the water, all except for my Uncle Jerry and I.  This isn’t usually something I’m into, and it still isn’t, and I still hate when my Uncle Rick forces me to do stuff against my will (which he does a lot), but this was okay, just like every other time.  It wasn’t good, it wasn’t bad, it was okay.

When I got back to the house, I showered and put on sweatpants and a t-shirt, my socks, and my sneakers.  Apparently, my Uncle Jerry is going to be hiding the Afikomen again for us to search for after the Seder, and that was a surprise to me because usually, you only do it on the first night, after the first Seder, but I guess it’s different in some cases, and it was his choice, so…yeah.  It’s my favorite part of the Seder because usually, when I’m away in Florida or back when I stayed on Long Island for Passover, we (would) make a whole big thing/to-do out of it.  My cousins and I would search high and low, near and far, asking my grandpa (on my dad’s side; my dad’s dad; or my Uncle Jerry if I was back on Long Island) to repeat his riddle that he made up (he loves riddles) that contained clues pertaining to where the Afikomen was hidden.  Anyway, after I got ready for the Seder, I went to the kitchen to see if they needed any last minute help, just like I did before the Seder yesterday.  To my surprise, no one was in the kitchen.  I saw Rosula and Anna sitting by on the steps by the front porch talking, and the other José (yes, there are two, and this one speaks a little English) was outside setting the table.  I talked and played with Cory in the movie theater as Heather talked to us, Mason in her arms, and then, Barry came in to sit, and talk to Heather for a little bit.  Heather had to go for a few minutes, so she handed Mason over to Barry, and Cory and I hung out with them and each other.  Honestly, I don’t care that she’s four; she’s my cousin, and at least it’s someone to hang out with.

I asked Mateo if he wanted to play pool, and he said yes, so we each grabbed a pool stick.

“I suck at pool, just letting you know,” I told him as he started setting up.

“Me, too.  You’re not the only one,” he replied to me.

As we played, he told me how to hit properly, and did the amount of time we played, it was fun, but we had to stop midgame because of the Seder.  I didn’t mind, though.  I didn’t mind at all.

You know, I didn’t realize until the Seder tonight that both Seders are pretty much the exact same thing.  Anyway, for dinner, I ate mac and cheese because Heather told me that she took the box out of the cabinet for the chefs to make for Cory, and I love mac and cheese, so I asked her if I could have some, too, and she said yes, so that was that.  My Uncle Rick suggested that I try yuca, and I wanted to, so he got some for me.  Apparently, from what I saw on my plate and what he told me, they serve it with pickled, carmelized red onions because it adds to the flavor, and he was right.  It was sooooo good!!!!!  We searched for the Afikomen, just as we did yesterday, and tonight, Bode and Cory were able to participate.  Barry helped Cory, and Helaine helped Bode, and I was glad that for once, we got to find out where it was hidden after both Seders and not just the first one.  After that, I went into the kitchen and grabbed the mousse.  I grabbed plates and spoons and brought everything out.  It was sooooo good, everyone loved it (I even asked José (the one in the hat, not the other one that I mentioned earlier) and Rosula if they wanted to try some, and they loved it!!!!!), and I didn’t regret making it one bit!!!!!

After that, I got ready for bed: I took my medicine, put on my pajamas, and brushed my teeth.

Before I went to bed, I went down to the basement because I knew everyone was going to be playing Blackjack just like last night.  Tonight, Mateo, Drew, my Uncle Jerry, my grandpa, Lucas, Barry, and Helaine were playing, and my Aunt Nina was sitting on the side watching them.  If only I could’ve joined in, but I knew that I had to go back upstairs, hop into my bed, and go to sleep.

I’m glad I had fun today, and I can’t wait for more fun adventures tomorrow!!!!!


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