Monday, June 7, 2010

Channeling my Inner Drill Sergeant on Vacation

Vacation fun with the family, marine mammals, and all the free beer I can drink.

Some think I nicknamed my son "Darth Spoilboy" just out of some strange attempt at humor, that my son could not really deserve such a title. Most of the time that is true to a great extent but he truly earned his screen name Saturday. After months of waiting, we finally began our vacation Saturday morning after leaving the in-laws. We left Columbia Friday afternoon to drive up to their house and spend the night just to give the kids some time with them. However, it was already easy to tell that Spoilboy was not enthusiastic about the trip, he was being forced to leave his friends behind and in fact Thursday night had come home around 10:00pm wanting to know if he could stay at his best friend's house.

Now understand this trip had been planned for months with a trip to Discovery Cove in Orlando already paid for which cost the entire family nearly $900. No, refunds were not available since we had bought the package under the 30 day time frame. When Spoilboy was told about the Discovery Cove trip when it was purchased he said "cool, sounds like fun".

Last Thursday night Spoilboy went into a panic about being away from his friends, which was understandable, but he wanted us to organize a way for him to stay with his best friend but with us leaving the house the next morning that was impossible. As far as Spoilboy's best friend was concerned it would be okay with his parents but neither Dragonwife nor I were about to call anyone so late and ask them to take on such a huge responsibility on such a short notice. While I am not the sharpest knife by any means I figured if what Spoilboy's best friend said was true about his parents being okay with their sudden plan I figure they should have called us.

Anyway, while on the road Saturday Spoilboy did everything in his power to make Miss Wiggles, Dragonwife, and myself miserable. After driving all day, we arrived in Orlando late in the afternoon still listening to Spoilboy whine between text messages he was sending to his friends back home. While we were at dinner that night Spoilboy finally crossed the line when he said he would ruin the vacation for everyone. Seeing my daughter, who was sitting beside him, begin to look like she would cry was the straw that broke the camel's back. This trip was all Miss Wiggles had talked about for months with the dolphin encounter she and I would have being the part she was most looking forward to doing.

My inner Drill Sergeant emerged and I went off on Spoilboy saying things that my wife would later claim had put the "fear of God in him." Seriously, I'm not proud of what I said, its not easy to get me enraged and when it happens the anger is soon spent leaving me feeling stupid and foolish. Never the less, Spoilboy has been amazingly easy to get along with since then and is doing his best to convince me he is having a good time, at least for his mother and sister's sake.

As for the picture above, it was taken today at Discovery Cove were I kissed a dolphin, swam with sharks and barracudas, floated down a tropical lazy river, played with stingrays, and watched a multitude of MILFs cavort in the crystal clear water wearing tiny bikinis. As everyone can see above, my wetsuit had a fantastic effect on my body with me turning all the heads in the place, or at least until told that I was wearing the damn wetsuit backwards.

Discovery Cove is part of the Sea World chain of theme parks which are owned by the Anheuser Busch company. Much is said about how they should not be confining marine mammals into small enclosures and putting them on display, there is something to be said about for that point-of-view but what I can say is that the general American public will never win any awards for knowledge of the oceans and the animals that live there. I honestly believe places such as Sea World and Discovery Cove provide an outlet of real education wrapped nicely in a family theme park which massive but delicate American egos will far more readily accept than blunt force preaching. No, it ain't pretty or full of warm fuzzies for the animals but right now we are just not in the position to turn away any possible educational advantage in a country full of Marching Morons.

After our dolphin encounter today I am convinced that the trainers truly care for the creatures under their stewardship and only wish to educate as many people as possible about them and their environment. Our schedule time with the dolphins slipped back twice with the trainers explaining that the animals really ran the show, if they did not feel like working they simply did not work until they were ready. The biggest reason for the delay this morning was that several of the animals felt "flirty" and had no intention of arriving on time. Wiggles was not at all happy with the delay but as long as someone was getting some I figure more power to them. My understanding was further enhanced since the adults were served all the free beer they could drink for the entire day, God bless their golden corporate hearts.


Will "take no prisoners" Hart said...

Too bad Corona doesn't own any of these theme parks. Of course, if they did, you'd probably never leave, huh? LOL

Keshi said...

hey BB hows u my dear friend? Missed ya! tnxx for all the msgs. I hope all is well with u and ur fam.

TC n hey hv a great sabbatical :)


sunshine said...

Yikes! I wouldn't want you angry at me with that face! :P
You do look like a Drill Sergeant standing there. :)

Kids are a pain in the ass. No two ways about it. We had a similar issue with Joe a couple of years ago. It isn't easy when they stop wanting to spend time with us. We're still in "family mode" and they are moving on... It's difficult to switch gears before you're ready to. I completely understand what you were going through.
Have fun watching all the MILF's.


TomCat said...

Sounds like you're having a great time, Beach. have a cold one for me.

Liberality said...

Well, hey, they got a lot of beer there I'm betting so why not? It's the least they could do.

Pixel Peeper said...

Ahhhh - the joys of having a teenager! You take them on a 500-mile trip and then they'd like to spend all their time in the hotel room with the laptop and various gameboys and such.

Glad you enjoyed my corner of the country - we've lived here almost three years and yet have to swim with the dolphins.

And - what are MILFs?

Beach Bum said...

Will: Thought about that, A nice Corona Beer resort in Mexico with senoritas and white sandy beaches would get my business.

Keshi: WOW!!! Its so great to hear from you. Doing pretty good, on vacation right now.

Sunshine: Well, not long before that moment someone told me I had the wetsuit on backwards.

Spoilboy is a pretty good kid but he really crossed a line with me this time. The one thing I did not mention was that both Dragonwife and I tried our best to accommodate his any desires he had for the trip and outright tried to appease him. He literally spit it back in our faces which set the stage for me to go DI on him.

Tomcat: Actually had two this afternoon and a bottle of wine at dinner.

Liberality: Truthfully, I'm not a huge beer drinker back home but I was in hog heaven that day.

Pixel: Spoilboy does have his X-Box and while relations have greatly improved just to not stress the situation I am happy for him to stay in the room and play it.

Will "take no prisoners" Hart said...

I gotta be honest with you, double b. I'd even go to a resort that provided Piels and Schaffer - providing it was free, of course.

David Barber said...

Kids eh? You should have thrown him in with the sharks. Joking. :-)

Have a great time mate and leave some beer for the other guests.

Randal Graves said...

I think the little scamp missed his XBOX. Free beer and MILF watching? A family vacation doesn't sound so bad after all. :)

TomCat said...

Sounds great, Beach. But go home before the GOP Grease reaches you.

TRUTH 101 said...

I'm a firm believer that beer and bacon make everything better.

Beach Bum said...

Will: Was really bummed out at Sea World Wednesday, they also had a free beer program that was ended a few months ago. I was crushed!

David: Throwing my oldest to the sharks was forefront in my mind several times. The little shit ticked me off so bad I was ashamed he was my son. I understood he missed his friends but claiming he would ruin his sister and mother's vacation was enough to make me sick.

Randal: We let the little shit take his X-Box even though my wife originally wanted him to do stuff with us. Of course I'm glad we did let him bring it now or he would still be a shit and I would have fed his ass to the sharks.

Tomcat: I can not describe how happy I am that I missed most of the South Carolina primary. Of course I turned on the television for a short time today and learned of a possible "plant" on the Democratic side of the senate race against Jim DeMint.

Truth 101: I agree and wish like hell sometimes they could combine beer and bacon.

Middle Ditch said...

Teenagers eh? I remember a similar incident with my then 16 year old daughter. A pain in the arse she was. Until, like you, I lost my temper and she was as good as gold then.

Have a cold beer on me, will you?

TomCat said...

Beach, I understand that in many precincts, got more votres than the total number of people who voted.

lime said...

well i don't know what you said to darth spoilboy but i am glad he has shaped up. glad that in spite of the delay you enjoy the dolphin swim and came away feeling generally positive about the way the animals are treated...and hey, good for the eye candy and beer too.

Teeluck said...

Come to of it, I do see some of that free beer showing around the ole waist there Beach, have a couple for me too bro, and be safe.

Gwendolyn H. Barry said...

Kissing strange dolphins? And what, WAT IF That WERE MY DOLPHIN? LMFAO sounds like even through the nagging and halting you had some fun fun fun...