How I spent my vacation: An Essay

Did anyone actually write these essays in school, or was that just something that was made up for entertainment value? The only time I remember anything like it was when my parents pulled me out of school over Thanksgiving to take me to Disney World and my teacher made writing a “what we did” essay part of my make-up homework.

ANYWAY, this past week my in-laws took the family on a southern Caribbean cruise to celebrate their 40th wedding anniversary. (I know, crazy generous right?) We did all the cruise things: ate until we looked like balloon people, swam in crystalline water, learned local history, and ate some more, just to see if we could. It was a heckin’ lot of fun.

But one of my very favorite parts of this trip was the towel animals. Our room steward, Herminio, was an artistic genius:

Just look at that menagerie

Naturally, when I learned their was going to be a towel-animal-folding class, I was there.

We were each given a big bath towel and a smaller hand towel and told to take a seat in the ship’s theater (I know. They’re huge!). Kevin declined his towels, which turned out to be lucky for me because some of the animals were more “four hand” projects, at least for us neophytes.

In theory we were supposed to be seated nicely at tables to practice our folds, but I ended up the on the floor, because dignity is for people who don’t take their towelimals seriously.

After several minutes of folding, a little swearing (not from me, from the guy behind me) and a whole lotta “Why does yours look better than mine?” (Answer: guy in front of me was ex-Navy, and therefore was A LOT better at rolling fabric than I was.) I was the proud parent of this:

It’s a dinosaur! Get it?

It wasn’t as nice as Navy Guy In Front of Me, let alone the demonstration model, but I’m proud of it. The dinosaurs weren’t complicated–mostly it was a lot of rolling–but it was tricky to get the head in the body. Still, it’s freestanding, no rubber bands or anything!

The next one we made was with the same pre-rolled towels from the dinosaur. We had to take the head back out, tweak it a little, and voila!

Elephant! African, of course. Just look at the ears.

My elephant was even farther from Mr Navy and the demo, which is why the picture is from this angle. You can’t tell what it’s supposed to be in any other photo.

Lucky for me, after that we unrolled the towels and began again to make one final animal. This guy!


I know, you’re astounded by my recreation of the canine form.

While I can’t claim to be a master of the art of towel folding, I am determined that whoever stays at our place next is being greeted by a towelimal on their bed.

So who’s planning a trip to Disney?

Has anyone else tried making towel animals? Which one is your favorite? HAVE YOU SEEN THE MONKEY ONE!?  Let me know!

P.S. My manuscript is in edits. Uuuugh.

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