Part of the fun of owning a classic Jeep Wrangler is tinkering with the darn thing. There are many aftermarket sources of parts that allow anyone to customize their ride to their own liking.
Just yesterday I received a box of stuff I ordered to remake the interior doors. I’ll pull off the old cracked handles and replace them with new ones. While the panel is off I’ll clean and re-spray the door with plastic paint to repair all of the dog toenail scratches.
Under the seats the old brackets need painting so I’ll pull the seats, then the brackets and spray those satin black.
None of this is expensive and the results are impressive.
I had a great vacation but have really had a fit decompressing and getting back to the winter grind. Snow here? Again? Today?
Just yesterday I got back in the gym and it felt good. My pal Thomas called last night and insisted we “play golf” Friday. He said, “Dress warm, pack plenty of beer and we might as well take our clubs in case we want to hit a ball or two.”
I understand….we just need to get out but it will likely be too cold for a real game. Riding around on a lovely landscaped winter wonderland drinking beer with laughs might be the ticket.
Last week I jumped at the chance to drive round trip to
On the way up I drove through
In three days I drove 1600 plus miles by myself and it was fun and exhausting all at the same time.
When I was a young man…say 15, my thoughts often turned to sex. I would estimate 98.9% of my brain was devoted to the fantasy and possibility of having sex. This used to worry me until I read somewhere that this was normal.
The other small percentage of my brain was used to keep my digestive track, heart, and lungs working…..along with blinking my eyes.
By 18 that percentage had dropped significantly to 97.9%. The other 1 % was devoted to my new friend alcohol.
At age 23 I was married and yes….my thoughts were of sex but now it was down to a dismal 97% of brain capacity. I had a job now so I devoted some of my brain to work.
Now at 53 and almost 54 I would say I now think about sex frequently (more than 50%) but honestly I am almost at the point where I have to be in the mood to have sex. This kind of scares me.
I have a lot of spare brain capacity and this is new to me. Don’t get me wrong…my wife is as sexy as ever to me.
But it occurred to me this evening when I was driving from
Is this the way women feel most of the time? Do I need dude counseling? Am I getting old and withered?
Not this year. This weekend promises to get to winter normal for a few days so we expect highs in the low 50's. Then it turns below normal cold again.
Lucky me I get to extend my time off one more day by today being President’s Day.
Many folks have asked and I am sure some are curious what it costs to take a nice vacation in the winter during high season to a tropical paradise like
In the winter
Keep in mind I am not a rich man but make a nice living and have some discretionary income to enjoy this annual ritual.
Usually we make our vacation plans well in advance to get the choice villa. We settle up on who plans to go and all commit with a deposit of 50% back in August.
In our case we rented from Vacation St Croix one of our favorite villas Sans Souci at $6,700 a week for 5 couples.
So, back in August I coughed up $670 deposit for Gigi and me to rent a luxury villa in February.
Each couple has their own bedroom and bath. The villa has a pool and maid service. It is spotless when we get there and midweek a maid comes to freshen up. Then we leave the villas as is and we do not have to clean as we leave.
The villa is well equipped with a TV and Cable, Internet, a well supplied kitchen, linens and towels, toilet paper and paper towels, soap, hair dryer, air conditioning, and fantastic views.
After I send in the deposit I start looking for deals on airfare. There is a direct US Airways flight from
So I book airfare for both of us at a cost of $575.
Total cost so far $1245.
We usually book at least 2 cars. This year we booked three. The one I booked was a 7 passenger Explorer for $425 a week.
Now this gets into a category of shared expenses for the common good of the group. We all during the week save receipts of purchases we make for the common good including cars, grocery items, booze, eating out as a group, etc. The receipts are marked with who spent the money and are tossed in a bowl in the kitchen. More later on this subject.
Come December it is time to pay up the other $670. Now technically my vacation is paid for and it has cost me $1915. I have had six month to pay for my air and accommodations for both Gigi and me. About $137 per person per day including air. Not bad.
Getting back to the common good expenses like groceries and rental cars. This year we rented three cars, had the villa provisioned out with food and adult beverages, more groceries, several times dined out as a group, gas for the cars, and the total came out to an additional $742 per couple for the week.
So the grand total for Gigi and me last week all inclusive was $2,657.
But there were times when it was just Gigi and I, the massages mid week, the jewelry purchases, the scuba dives that added on to that bottom line number.
Suffice it to say that you can pull off a very nice vacation at about $1.600 per person per week at high season. $3,200 a couple.
This can be done cheaper. If you shop and look around at some villas by owner like Pink House St Croix or Sun Dog House you will get better rates. Some owners are willing to negotiate price. Most individual owners will require a deposit.
I talked to a guy at the airport that was saying he loved the island but $700 a day at the Buccaneer resort, plus air and car was killing him. He gave me his email address and asked me for some suggestions. I will email this blog post to him.
The weather in St Croix has been beautiful off the charts. Each day it gets to the high 80's with blue skies and warm breezes. The water is clear blue and warm by winter standards.
Yesterday I scubaed with Michael twice in the salt river and then again just outside the harbor.
I have spent fun times in town and revisited with old friends I have eaten some incredible meals.
Right now I am waiting for a massage while Gigi enjoys her massage outside under the shade of a tree.
This afternoon I will drive to the tidal pools while Gigi relaxes at the beach at Sunset grill.
Tomorrow night an evening kayak in the Salt river.
Best of all I have relaxed and have slept well. 12 hours of blissful rest just last night. This is a fine vacation.