After almost 2 months straight of volunteering, I was ready for some major R and R.
A few of the other girls had mentioned going to Manado after work on a Friday and spending the night at a resort. Then we could relax by the pool and have a spa day the whole next day.
I was in!
This was just what I needed.
We booked our rooms at the Tasik Ria Resort, arranged a taxi, and counted down the days to our girls getaway.
As soon as 3:30 hit, we all rushed back to the volunteer house to take showers and pack up our stuff. Bathing suit, money, music…….check, check, check.
We were ready!
We Finally Arrive at the Resort
We got to the resort just in time for their delicious buffet dinner. There weren’t a whole lot of vegetarian options, but I still really enjoyed the food. Since I had been eating rice and noodles for the last couple months, I openly welcomed the more westernized selections.
I’m not normally the person to go for cakes and pastries, but not having them for so long made me realize how much I took them for granted. Just seeing the dessert spread at Tasik Ria was like Christmas!
Orange mousse, um yes please!
Chocolate raspberry layered cake, absolutely!
Thankfully they were smaller buffet style portions, so I didn’t feel too bad about my choices.
While we were eating, the manager came by and introduced himself. His name was Dan, and he went above and beyond to make sure we were having a good time.
He ordered us a round of the resort’s signature welcome cocktails and chatted us up for a bit before heading off to make his rounds.
That evening we didn’t go crazy as planned. To be honest we were in bed by 10:30pm which is absurd since I would normally just be going out at that time were I in LA, but waking up a 5am takes it’s toll on you.
I’m not mad about it though. I hadn’t been sleeping very well, and that night at Tasik Ria was the first really good nights sleep I had gotten in a long time.
Time for the Pool
We started the day with a yummy breakfast. Then quickly headed for the pool where were stationed for hours.
There is something about laying around a pool that is so relaxing. You forget all your troubles and responsibilities and just take the time for you.
The best thing about Tasik Ria’s pool is that it has a swim up bar. I have been to countless other places with swim up bars but never really took advantage of them. I don’t know how I could have missed out on such a great thing!
Seriously, there are bar stools in the pool, so you can be at the bar but never have to leave the water! Brilliant!!!
I think about 70% of my time was spent sitting at that bar chatting away with the girls and guzzling cold beers.
Enjoying the Spa
After carrying SCUBA gear on my back and shoveling dirt, I was in desperate need of a good massage.
The setting was perfect!
One thing I kept thinking about was how much I would have loved my boyfriend, Alan, to be there with me. It was so romantic and would have been great to have that experience with him. Guess that just means we’ll have to go back some day.
After an hour massage, a warm bath was filled with fresh herbs and flowers to sit and relax in. And to top it off, we were also given tea and brownies to enjoy while we relished in the tranquility.
All of us couldn’t stop talking about how great the whole experience was.
After our massages, we spent the rest of the day back at the pool bar until we had to pack our bags and head home to Tasikoki.
A Change of Plans
Since we had some time before our ride was scheduled to arrive, Dan offered us another round of drinks to bid us farewell.
We sipped our cocktails and chatted for a bit until we realized it was almost 20 minutes past our scheduled pick up time. Anthony our driver was not normally late, so this was cause for a bit of concern.
One of the girls called him and found out he was in the hospital for a nasty stomach bug. He wasn’t feeling well the day before, but when asked if he was OK, he assured us he was fine and would be there to pick us up the next day.
He said his son was going to pick us up and take us back to the rescue center instead but didn’t know what time.
We waited around for nearly 2 hours without any sign of a pickup. We tried calling Anthony again. No answer.
Dan checked the availability of the resort’s van, but it had been sent out earlier that evening. We called cab companies with no luck. They all wanted to charge us an exorbitant amount of money to make the long drive back to Tasikoki.
We were stuck.
I’m not going to lie….I wasn’t heartbroken. I had been enjoying the relaxing time so much that I didn’t want it to end. I felt bad about not being there to help out the next day at Tasikoki, but there really wasn’t anything else we could do.
Another Night Begins
We were able to catch the tail end of dinner before the party started.
Dan set up the karaoke machine, so what else do you do but start an intense game of karaoke roulette.
I’m not one for karaoke really. I have terrible stage fright and always seem to clam up once I’m in front of a group of people, but this time was different.
Maybe it was because there were only 7 people in the bar (5 of us girls, Dan, and the bartender), or maybe it was the mixture of beer and Tasik Ria’s signature drink, but I rocked out!
We all did!
The night was a blast, and it ended perfectly with the bartender singing a beautiful rendition of Enrique Iglesias’s Hero.
The next day was another one spent chilling out by the pool, drinking beer, and chowing down on pizza. We milked it until the time came for us to load up the van and head back to Tasikoki….for sure this time.
It was the best day turned weekend getaway anybody could have asked for.
Where was your favorite weekend getaway? Tell us about it in the comments below.
If you are planning to travel to Manado and are looking for a place to stay, check out Tasik Ria’s website. You won’t be disappointed!