The morning of the first day of our Costa Rica trip was a slightly frantic one. George slept until 7:15 AM (we don’t wake sleeping babies) and we made a dash to get packed, dressed and ready to depart at 8:00 AM. After making our way to the hotel lobby, we checked out, stored some luggage until our return (in January), and departed for IAH – right on time.
We made it to IAH in 30 minutes, with George eating an apple and Cheerios along the way. We parked at Terminal E (we don’t park off-site to save time both pre and post flight). Checking bags at Terminal E was somewhat of a scene, although it only took us 20 minutes to make it though the line and to check our bags. Thanks to TSA Pre-Check we sailed through what otherwise would have been an hour line. Amen.
We made our usual pit stop in the United Club for a bathroom break and diaper change before picking up a few contingency snacks (waters, Chex Mix and a Lara Bar) to go along with the fresh fruit that we packed. We got a gate check tag for G’s stroller and before we knew it, we were boarding.
We used United miles to book this trip during the summer and we booked first class as a little extra treat for us. It’s always nice to have the extra space and the 2-2 seating arrangement is truly ideal. The lower passenger to flight attendant ratio and the on-board meals are also nice touches.
We left the gate on time and, due to a longer than normal taxi experience, took off just a few minutes later than expected. George was enthralled by the taxi and take-off and it was so fun watching him take it all in.
We have a good little traveler and I hope it doesn’t change as time passes. I am also glad I packed the container of yogurt pretzels that you see in the picture below. G was occupied with this snack for a good 45 minutes.
For lunch, I chose the chicken, rice and vegetable entree. This was a pretty tasty lunch and I shared it with G (he had the rice and bread and I had everything else).
George also filled up on fresh fruit that we brought from the hotel. I’m a little embarrassed to admit this, but George orders sparkling water whenever he is asked what he’d like to drink. However, in his defense, he comes by it honestly – I guzzled it daily when I was pregnant with him (and I still do). Naturally, he asked for sparkling water when the flight attendant asked if he wanted a drink.We ended up sharing many glasses during our flight.
For dessert, G and I shared a small slice of chocolate cake.
Afterwards, George watched some “Mickey Mouse Club” while I watched CNN. G rarely gets screen time, but we make exceptions while we are traveling.
After we arrived, we took a shuttle to the National Car Rental office. It took us an hour to get our car. An HOUR. We had to remind ourselves that we are in a third world country and that customer service expectations are not as high in Costa Rica as they are in America. Even still, it was frustrating.
The drive to our hotel was gorgeous and an easy trip. George passed out as soon as we started driving.
We arrived at the hotel and we were quickly checked in by super friendly hotel staff. By the time we got to our room, we had just enough time to unpack before it was time for dinner. We had hoped for some time to explore the resort, but thanks to the rental car issues, it was not in the cards.
We had a reservation at Faisanella’s, the resort’s Italian restaurant. All of our food was delicious. We had bruschetta (John) and tomato soup (me) for appetizers and lamb (John) and homemade portobello mushroom ravioli (me) for our entrees. G was perfectly content with his fruit plate, chicken tenders and fries. In fact, G ate everything on his plate. For dessert, John and I shared an amazing chocolate lava cake and homemade vanilla ice cream while George tried lime sorbet for the first time (he loved it).
We got back to the room around 8:00 PM and we were all exhausted. After showers, it was an early bedtime for everyone.