Vacation Day One: Tampa, Florida

We were up REALLY early on Saturday morning to catch our 6:30am flight. I mean, we were in bed around 10pm and up at 2:30am.

Four hours of sleep? Yeah…four hours.

Y’see, between the two of us getting ready…driving to the park-n-fly…getting shuttled to the terminal…waiting in line…going through customs…it was almost 5:30am by the time we got through to our gate. So by the time we got on our first flight we were already completely worn out.

Of course, no vacation would be complete without a delay…and since there had been snow and ice pellets the night before we were an hour late leaving because they had to de-ice the plane.  So we decided we’d pass the time in the only way we knew how…

How does this playbook thingy work?

Thankfully the flight out of Newark was one time, so we landed in Tampa before 1pm and head off to our hotel. Once there we were immediately told that there was a “maintenance issue” with our room and there weren’t any more rooms available, so we were upgraded to the Holiday Inn Express, which was next door. While not Marriott, it was a pretty decent hotel and both Sunshine and I have NO complaints about where we stayed.

The Holiday Inn Express in Tampa, Florida was definitely a nice, clean family hotel. Free internet, hot continental breakfast, very nice pool, and a great walking track out back. We've got zero complaints for what we paid.
The view of the pool from our hotel room.
This was the walking trail behind the hotel. It circled around a duck pond. Loved walking this on an early, warm morning.
This was the view of Raymond James Stadium from our hotel room. I'm a HUGE NFL fan (even tho the Bucs so it was pretty cool to be able to see the stadium like this, especially where I've never been to a game in person before. The Yankees had their spring training games right across the street from the stadium. It's definitely a great spot if you're a sports fan.

We wanted to head out to pick up some last-minute items that one of us forgot to pack (ahem…it wasn’t me…lol) so we head out to the WestShore Plaza. The mall was nice enough, though none of the stores really grabbed our attention too much (not our style, I guess). We did end up eating at a place that was unique to us, EVOS. After having some really great organic fast food, we continued to stroll around the mall for awhile before deciding to make our way back to the hotel.

At this point it was after 5pm and we were COMPLETELY wiped out. But c’mon…we couldn’t go to sleep at 5:30pm, right?  Well, at this point the most amazingly incredible infomercial magically appeared in front of us on the television. There was Jack Wagner himself waxing poetic about how awesome 80’s music was and how “easy listening” was just the best.  While my love of Poison and Quiet Riot may disagree a bit with his personal preference, I’m a HUGE fan of all 80’s music.  And just because we’re so bloody compatible, so is Sunshine.

So we watched.  And watched. And watched.

It was 6:30pm by the time the infomercial was over. We had sung and laughed and enjoyed the cheese that was the 80’s. And if I didn’t already have 99% of the songs on the 10-disc set (normally 8 discs with 2 more thrown in for good measure!!), I would probably seriously think about possibly purchasing the Easy 80’s set.

We conked out around 7:30pm for the night.  Yes, seriously…7:30pm. We slept for 10 hours before awaking the next morning ready to tackle Day Two of our amazing, life-changing vacation!

Which, of course, will be discussed in tomorrow’s post.


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