04 December 2009

O, Promised Land

A year and a half ago I had a vision: Family, friends, fresh lobster, cold beer, hot tortillas, Thanksgiving Day spent in Yelapa.

Yelapa is a tiny, tiny jungle town outside of Mismaloya, which is a tiny village outside of Puerto Vallarta. It is so small and so isolated by jungle and beach that they never built roads to it, so the only way to get to it is to take a water taxi there. A wide, beautiful beach greets you upon arrival followed by the friendly restaurant owners. There are 3 restaurants in all of Yelapa, on the beach. You order your fish, they go catch it for you. There is a tiny town that you can walk through as well, and it leads to a beautiful waterfall.

Anyway, I had this vision of the lobster, the beer, the family and friends, the beach. And sitting at the plastic table in the sand last Thursday I looked up from my plate, scanned the table and the faces of all present, took a long gulp of my beer, and realized that my vision came true. It was the first of (hopefully) many Thanksgivings spent here in Paradise.

I was gone last week to give Thanksgiving it's proper due here, because other than the eating and socializing, Thanksgiving's meaning is what makes it such an important holiday. I've been giving it its proper week-long due of what I am truly thankful for in my life, kind of like an inventory check, if you will:

I am thankful for my parents. [This probably sounds lame or rehearsed, but I am so blessed to be given such understanding and loving parents. My dad and I are like best friends, he gets me and understands me. My mother is crazy and eccentric, and I see a lot of her in myself. I am thankful they are still healthy, and I am thankful we are all still together and truly happy when we get to see each other.] I am thankful for the relationship I am (finally) in right now. [It's only taken us 3 1/2 years to get it right, but he and I are here and making this work. Complicated doesn't begin to describe it, but with all our frustrations and the distance, I am happy to say I am happy with it.] I am thankful for the place I am at right now. [I am going to a great school in an interesting little town, and while living up here in the middle of nowhere gets to me sometimes, I realize that never in my life will I ever have the chance to live in such a rural place again, and I am embracing the changing seasons and colors, the rain and the latitude.] I am thankful for my friends, new and old. [Again, rehearsed, but if I went out to describe each and every person I am thankful for in my life no one would continue to read (that is, if you still are). But truly, and most sincerely, I love each and every person in my life right now--near and far.] And lastly, I am thankful for myself. [Note that this is not a narcissistic statement in any way, it's taken me years to face myself and come to terms with myself and look myself in the mirror and accept myself for who I am. It is a daily struggle, to be happy with myself, but I am here, and I am loving the skin I am in (even if this skin is a little stretched lately due to the 10 pounds I put on eating my body weight in guacamole and margaritas in Mexico).]

I hope you all had a blessed Thanksgiving. :]


  1. You need to try Belize!!! It is AMAZING! Start out in Belize City, then head south to Punta Gorda. They have islands you can rent!!! AWESOME scuba diving!!!

  2. I'm thankful for my loving parents too. and myself


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