This is my last post before I leave. By this time tomorrow, I'll be somewhere tropical. Me, my backpack, and my boyfriend. What was sold to me as a vacation with the promise of little activity has somehow morphed into "You can't wear sandals in the jungle, Laurie. You need to buy something that covers your whole foot." What? Jungle? Nobody said anything about traipsing about in the jungle. Waterfalls, yes. Jungles, no. But I've agreed to keep an open mind and do things I've never done before. Jungle included. No doubt that, by this time tomorrow, he'll be on the fast track to convincing me to dive/explore/speelunk. I've taken money out of my savings account and traded it in for oh-so-dorky Traveler's Cheques (although I'm pretty sure that I'd be better off bringing bananas and coconuts for currency in the freakin' jungle.) and I've mentally laid out all that I'll be taking with me.
I really can't believe it. Less than twenty-four hours to go.
I actually did all of my shopping yesterday. I'm completely, 100% ready for my trip...Save for a visit with my parents and a good pedicure. No, I didn't tan, and I didn't stop eating. And, yes, I did buy shoes.
But I'm stubborn, see. So I didn't buy the sports sandals as instructed. Because, believe me, I tried. I really, really tried to just shove all of my feelings of hatred for the footwear aside and suck it up and buy a pair, even if it meant I'd just wear them while I was there and then LEAVE them in Belize. But I couldn't do it. No matter how hard I tried. And it's not vanity that kept me from purchasing Tevas or something of that nature. It's comfort. I'm not going to enjoy myself if I feel uncomfortable. And I'm sure sports sandals are very comfy shoes, literally speaking. But it's the figurative comfortable to which I'm referring. I just don't feel like those shoes are me. And any woman who loves shoes, who sees them as an extension of herself, totally understands that. If you feel like your feet are swathed in crap, you're just not going to be happy. No matter how beautiful your surroundings. Which is why I bought these Skechers. They don't look so cute in the only picture I could find of them, but trust me: They are. I actually like them. And they're pink, which is awesome. Billy has warned me that they're going to get all messed up and dirty, but I'm going to try to keep them sort of clean. I may actually wear these when I'm not in Belize. You know, in my house. Alone. Where no one can see me.
In order to keep my toes from suffocating, though, I thought it wise to purchase some flip flops. Because I don't own any. None without a stiletto heel anyway (Yes, I have stiletto-heeled thong sandals). So I bought some more Skechers. If you'll notice, they have a slight lift in the heel. Because I can't go completely flat. I think that years of wearing very high heels has done something irreversible to my feet. Like, I am now physically incapable of wearing flat shoes. I'll be honest, even tennis shoes (or "sneakers" as people out here call them...) hurt my feet after a while. My arch is very sensitive. These have a little arch support, and the thing between the toes, which in every other pair of flip-flops I tried on killed my feet, is a soft cottony fabric that I could forget is even there. But I'm not going to lie. I did buy a pair of high-wedged sandals, that are a natural beige tone, and sort of dressy. I thought it was a good compromise. A heel with a jeweled accent, but still in a raffia/ bamboo/ pseudo-natural color. They could be dressy or casual. Tricky, very tricky.
A hundred bucks later, and I think I'm good in the shoe department.
Next, I moved on to makeup. I've thought long and hard about my makeup situation. I really don't want to wear a full face of makeup when I'm going to be in the hot sun all day long. For a number of reasons, not the least of which being that it'll probably just melt right off of my face not five minutes after application. And I think I'm being generous in saying "five minutes." Plus, there's nothing more pathetic than a girl on the beach with a full face of makeup on, from foundation to eyeliner. Even I, Lover of Makeup and All Things Concealing, recognize this. And I do not want to be that woman. So I bought this happy compromise: Estee Lauder's tinted moisturizer/ sunblock. (As an aside, the stuff comes out of the bottle gray, but as you rub it in, takes on the tone of your skin. Crazy.) It gives me the tint I need to not feel self-concious (it's not that I have horrible skin, it's just that I'm used to my face with makeup), the sun protection my pale skin requires, and is really two products in one, hence lightening my load by at least one bottle. Genius. I'm wearing it today (it's a test run) and I must say I'm impressed. It feels light, smells summery (of cucumbers and sunscreen), and looks natural. Makeup: Done.
The last necessity on my list was pants. Because, so far, I've only been planning on packing one pair of jeans and a handful of skirts. And I'm pretty sure I won't want to wear my jeans much, and I keep having this vision of me hacking my way through some Belizean jungle in a booty-skirt. Which is, in truth, kind of stupid looking. Fashionable, yes. Appropriate? Not so much. But I had more or less given up the search for a comfortable pair of capri pants (the closest thing to shorts I'll actually wear) due to ass issues. My behind is very round and very high. It is a sharp contrast to my smallish waist. Which makes for difficult purchase of pants. If they fit in the waist, they will most certainly not fit around my derriere. My ass, in this situation, looks not unlike a sausage. And this, my friends, is not a flattering look, no matter what country you're in. If, however, pants fit in the ass, chances are they will bunch and/or gap at the waist, threatening to fall off and any moment while simultaneously flashing my cute underpants for all to see. Not only is this an uncomfortable option, but it also borders on indecent. Which is why I was so happy to find these pants at, of all places, Old Navy. I've never shopped in there before, but as a last ditch effort, I gave it a shot last night. And I was thrilled. They fit really well. They're cheap. And they're convertible. They can be pants or capris. A backpacker's dream! (Who the hell am I?)
So, now, I'm ready. Except for the actual packing portion of my preparation, I'm done. I have all of my bug spray, my sunscreen, my cream for the bug bites I'm sure to get despite the bug spray. Hair stuff, notebook, books. I'm ready.
See you in ten days!