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We had the strange and amusing experience, this past week, of vacationing with the very rich on a sunny Carribean isle. We’d gone to celebrate a good friend’s nuptials, and what can I say? The rich live well. Fluffy towels in our marble-clad bathroom were swapped out twice a day. The ice box was refilled thrice daily. The air conditioner ran nonstop, to compensate for windows flung wide open.

A year of green living, wiped out in one fell swoop. And that’s not counting the airplane and boat rides it took to get there.

Like us, our food was shipped in by boat, and we feasted on an endless supply of pineapple and mango and melon, money being no object. Dinners were heavy with meat and cream. No facultative vegetarianism this time around, not with that incredibly tasty mahi mahi caught hours before dinner, then grilled simply with olive oil and herbs.

Truth is, it’s pretty darn easy to slide into the good life. Frighteningly easy. I can’t remember the last time I felt this ambivalent about returning home when a vacation came to it’s end. But for a number of reasons it’s probably a good thing that we didn’t vanish to some far-away desert island. Not least of these was that the best eating came on the trip home, off of a handwritten menu in Puerto Rico. We ate fried pork, yellow rice with pigeon peas, and the freshest grouper you can imagine. The sangria, fragrant with ripe mango, was unforgettable.

So we’re back home now, home being a place where we’re lucky if the towels get washed once in a month. And after a day of facing the music, I’ve returned to my senses.

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