Back to Cozumel Mexico (1/16/2010 – 1/23/2010)
01/18/2010 (Monday) Sun, Wind and Rain
Well we made it to Cozumel for our weeklong vacation. The flights down were nice, on time and comfortable. We flew from St. Louis to Charlotte, N.C. for an hour layover before heading down to the beautiful island of Cozumel off the coast of the Yucatan Peninsula. The first afternoon here was nice and sunny with a good breeze to keep you cooled off. We all checked into our hotel rooms and then headed to the main square for some beers and food. The waiters naturally remembered us and we enjoyed a leisurely meal. After I finished eating I got up to walk around the square and take a few photos before meeting up with Cyndi, Mona and Kelly to try and find a cambio to exchange our dollars for pesos. I’m still referring to them as Soles, can’t seem to escape from Peru. That took us well off the main track and let us get a good look at the interior of the city of San Miguel. Getting our Pesos we headed back to the main square to Wet Wendy’s for a good margarita and to talk with Chad and Clara the owners. Only Clara was there this evening but she was happy to see us. As the evening wore on, it clouded up, got a little chilly and started to rain. The rain didn’t last long but the wind got heavier the later it got. Eventually we all ended up back at the hotel and hit the sack very early. I think it was about 8pm when my head hit the pillow and I slept a good 11 hours.
We woke up Sunday to a partly cloudy day with heavy winds. That didn’t keep us from getting our walks or runs in for our morning exercise. There is a nice free breakfast buffet here at the hotel but as all of you know that only tends to make you over eat. It wasn’t really cold despite the wind and clouds so after having a little balcony party at Mona and Kelly’s room we headed out for another walk around town. Eventually we settled into a little bar called “Woody’s” and watched a football game. From there it was off to the main square for some street food and to listen to the entertainment. Cyndi was hungry so we I went with her to Casa Denis so she could eat a decent dinner. While we were there we met a nice couple from Wisconsin who both had lived in Illinois for long periods of time. He (Tim) had lived in Evanston (where Cyndi is from) and she (Sally) had lived in Springfield and partied in Carbondale for Halloween in the good old days. We had a great time talking about the various things we remembered like Merlins in Carbondale and Garcias in Champaign (the Flying Tomato Brothers), a pizza place. Then back to the hotel about 10pm for another good night’s sleep.
Today the sun is out and it is very warm and humid outside. I will probably spend the day by the pool and maybe wander around and take a few more photos. I’m already a little bored with the island life. More later my friends as the mood hits me.
01/20/2010 (Wednesday) The other side of the island and days of leisure.
The last couple of days have been very relaxing. I’ve gone for long walks every morning and have tried taking a few good photos along the way. Each day I have headed out in a different direction to see as much of San Miguel on foot as I possibly can. It has certainly been an interesting experience. I am still seeing a lot of properties for rent or sale and the number of visitors to the island by cruise ship have definitely decreased. Who knows whether it’s the economy or the fact that they have built new piers for the ships to dock at along the coast. For me personally, I like the island a lot more without all the boat people. It sure makes walking around a lot easier. The people living on the island still seem to have a better life than when we first started visiting over 10 years ago. There are lots of nice new homes, large department stores and the town in general looks a lot nicer. Everyone is on a motorized vehicle instead of a pedal bike although as with us, everyone looks a little heavier too. I went back to Poncho’s Backyard for lunch Monday and had their famous Black Bean Soup. It was good as always but the portion sizes have gotten smaller and the prices have gone up. I’m still calling Pesos, Soles and confusing the waiters. I’ve also done a couple of sketches and written in my personal journal to help pass the time.
Yesterday we rented a Jeep and headed over to the other side of the island to cruise the various bars and beach spots. It was a beautiful partly cloudy day with a nice breeze to help keep the affects of the humidity to a minimum. It was beautiful as always over there and there were a couple of new places that had opened. We started out adventure at Bob Marley’s on the south side of the island with a view to Punta Sur’s light house. We stopped for drinks and food at almost every spot and enjoyed the magnificent sea views. Of course we stopped at Coconuts, our all time favorite and saw Coco, the owner, who was happy to see us again. The views from the hill top, the highest point on the island, are always a pleasure. He also has a little zoo of local animals up there for everyone to enjoy. Cyndi particularly enjoyed one of the new spots we stopped at called Punta Morena. It was nice and had a very relaxing atmosphere. Unfortunately it was getting late in the day so we only stayed for one and then left. I think the staff was closing the place up anyway. There were no people on the Naked Beach (bummer) and we ended up at the last bar, Mescalitos, just as the sun was beginning to set. It made a perfect ending to a perfect day.
Today I plan on another long walk and then maybe I will head over to the middle of the island with Mona and Kelly to look at some work by a local artisan. It will just be another relaxing day without many plans on my part. Kelly is going to play golf and Mona will go ride in the cart with him. Cyndi is heading out to one of the beaches for a day in the sun. No plans yet for the evening so we’ll see what happens. Hope all of you are enjoying the week regardless of where you are.
01/22/2010 (Friday) Days of rest and a sinking barge
It’s our last full day here finally; it’s been a long week of rest and relaxation with the rare good meal thrown in. Yesterday I spent most of the day down by the pool reading a book. I actually started and finished it in one day. It was one of those fairly predictable “serial killer” books. A big breakfast and lunch on the square pretty much took care of my eating for the day. I didn’t have an appetite for dinner so Mona, Kelly and Cyndi went without me and I watched a movie on TV (I told you it was boring LOL). It has been a different trip for me. I think the fact that I am retired now and taking these week trips do not really accomplish much for me. I have no stress or work to get away from so it feels different to me on the island now. It’s still a beautiful place though with nice friendly people and Wet Wendy’s (Chad and Clara’s place) is still my favorite place to have a bite to eat and drink a Margarita.
Today I was up early again, had my breakfast and went for my walk. I was glad that I had my camera with me once again. As I was cruising up the walkway by the beach to the Northern side of the island I got to witness a barge sinking off the coast. A lot of boats rushed out there to help the Captain and his one man crew. I think it was just a trash barge because there were a lot of bundles of plastic bottles and cardboard on it. Then again it might have been taking those things to a recycling center. I also walked up to the piers used for the luxury yachts and snapped a few photos. All in all it was a very interesting morning. After I got back I went on a little shopping trip for some gifts for friends in Peru and some Vanilla for my sister. We then had lunch at Wet Wendy’s plus one Mango and one Coconut Margarita.
Now I’m back in the hotel room writing this up and getting ready to pack my bag for the trip back. I’ll be glad to get home and start work on my taxes plus packing my personal stuff up for storage. I might add something at the airport tomorrow while we are waiting for the plane but who knows. Have a great weekend everyone.