Here's what I've learned so far this week.
1. I love sunshine, but I could never live in a place where it's hot and humid year round. I can be a sweaty mess for a week, but that's about it. Tucson in the winter looks better and better as the time draws near.
2. A week in a villa with an ocean view is a great place to catch up on reading all the New Yorker, Atlantic and Time magazines I brought with me.
3. Taking an exercise class for seniors three mornings a week at home means that we have the stamina for all-day outings in Mexico. We are the oldest of the 28 people here, and no one had to slow down for us. That makes it easier to get up in the morning for the class even when it's raining and not really light out yet.
4. I remember most of my very bad Spanish from our trip to Ecuador last February.
5. Chichen Itza is worth a three-hour van ride.
6. It is totally awesome to snorkel in the midst of a large school of fish.
7. It is even more awesome to wake up the morning after snorkeling and feel no sore muscles.
8. Sunscreen is my very good friend. Numerous family members are quite sunburned. Playing on the beach for three hours in the heat of the day will do that. Especially in places nearer the equator than Washington State, where most of us live.
9. It doesn't matter what I wear as long as it's cool. Today I am wearing a ten-year-old tank top and the shorts from even older convertible hiking pants. Who cares?
10. If there is an enormous supply of beer and wine and liquor in stock, it will all be consumed. There's no such thing as too much. I remember this myself from years ago, but I see it big time this week. My goodness!
My stepdaughter Laura lived with us from the time she was 14 until she joined the Navy at 19. She has become a beautiful, self-possessed, independent young woman. I'm very proud of her and am grateful for the part I've been able to play in her life. She has chosen a young man who is her equal. I'm delighted with that. Last summer, Laura and Brian flew from their home in New Jersey to Seattle for the wedding of one of Laura's friends. On the day of the wedding, during the "getting ready" time, Brian spent two hours sitting at our table, explaining their work to us (they're both engineers working in the nuclear power industry). He was patient and an excellent teacher. Then he asked Art for permission to marry Laura! He's a great mix of the modern and the traditional, and we're pleased as we can be that he'll be part of our family.