Island Time!

23 Nov

Sorry about the lack of blog entry yesterday but we were having too much fun to stop.  Once our day had started and the chores were out of the way we let the cats explore the courtyard while we hung out in the swimming pool (normal morning).  It was incredibly hot yesterday, a nice change from the last few days of cloud and rain and humidity.  Sunscreen, shade and plenty of fluids were a must while working on our suntan.  A man from the states who was a friend of the Dave (the owner of our apartment) dropped by to say hi to Angelica.  We were introduced and found out he had lived here since the 70’s.  We talked to him for a while about island life and ended up making a friend.  A friend who owns a giant house (apparently with the best pool table in town), a giant boat and has a lot of free time.  We were invited to come over but we had to decline that day because we had made previous plans with Ricky.  Around noon we headed for the Hatch to meet up with Ricky.  The sky was blue and the temperature had already climbed to 33 degrees.  We followed Ricky on his motorcycle while he took us for a tour South of the city.   We left the fresh pavement and hit the old highway which runs around the island right along the shore line.  It was a sensory overload as we passed endless beaches and resorts with amazing coral and coastlines all visible from the road. We passed many people running the highway training for the iron man competition at the end of the week. Ricky pointed out the good places to check out (they all looked amazing to us) and we made some mental notes of where good snorkelling might be found.  Soon there were no more resorts and we had passed the last power poll.  We were officially in the back country and after driving kilometres of old highway, partly overgrown by jungle, we arrived at Bob Marley’s Reggae Bar.  We parked on the edge of the road that over looked the ocean and took in the view for a moment.  Waves crashed against a white sand beach and over coral and rock formations.  The salt air filled our lungs and brought with it the sweet smell of wild flowers. The breeze cooled our skin and we could not help but feel alive looking over the incredibly scenery of the national park next to the highway.  Ricky explained to us that for a minimal fee we could enter the park to watch the crocodile feedings and see some cool ruins.  We were already thirsty so we hit the beach bar and enjoyed some fishbowl Mojitos and a few cervesas.  The hot white sand filled my sandals and I was compelled to run through the giant breakers that are found on this side of the island.  Small crabs and fish scuttled away as I explored the coast line and the many small tidal pools housed within the fossilized coral and lava rock.  Once we were thoroughly refreshed we went back to the car, cleaned the salt accumulation off the windows, and hit the road.  We continued on through endless palm tree forests and rocky shore lines.  We drove by a couple more amazing looking bars and restaurants before stopping at our next destination; Coconuts.  The Coconuts bar is located at the geologically highest place on the entire island (not including manmade structures).  We parked along the highway, viewed the wares of a road side shop keeper that Ricky knew, and climbed up the stairs carved out of rock at one of a few entrances to the bar.  I could write a novel on what this place has to offer but I think to pictures could sum it up better.  We enjoyed some Jalapeño Poppers and more cervesas, accompanied by good conversation with some more new-found friends that Ricky introduced us to. We listened to the squawks and Spanish imitations of parrots and other tropical birds while the 2 beach dogs played around our legs.  The sun began to set and we watched the locals surf the giant breakers below well into twilight.  Soon after we were on the road back to town and ended up showing Ricky our apartment and introducing him to our cats.  We raided our fridge of cervesas and then headed to Prima for a 5 star dinner.  The restaurant is on the top of a condo development overlooking the ocean and is accessible by an elevator on the street.  We sat on the balcony and enjoyed some filet mignon, lobster ravioli, and triple-decker lasagna, while we were serenaded by the band.  The view was spectacular and we could clearly see Playa del Carmen and the resorts that dot the coast of the Yucatán peninsula.  Once full of good food and martinis we headed back to Rickys place to finish the night.  Once we left there and returned home we were surprised by a small social gathering in our courtyard.  The couple next door (a German guy and his Mexican wife of 5 years) were holding a get together for their friends who were vacationing from out-of-town.  We socialized and introduced ourselves (he works late at his dive shop so we never see them) and soon retired to bed just before midnight.

To sum it up I now more than ever want to continue exploring what this island has to offer.   It continues to impress me more and more, and I think it might take years for me to “see it all.”  I want to show all these places to my friends and family but I don’t know if we will have enough time to do it while they are here on vacation.

Esta isla es increíble!

                                                                                                                                                                   Work it like Mantequilla (inside joke).

Following Ricky into the jungle

The entrance to Paradise Beach.

Mojitos!!

One of the locals.

Climbing up to Coconuts.

This chameleon lives at the bar.

The view from Coconuts.

Just a raft ride away!

Bar Puppy.

Sunset from Coconuts.

The balcony at Prima.

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One Response to “Island Time!”

  1. Nicole November 24, 2011 at 9:15 pm #

    SOOOOO Jealous (even more now that you’ve been to Rasta’s) I LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOve Bob Marley!
    Glad to know you are exploring the island and I think you’ll have to take us to Rasta’s if we make it up!
    Justin Says F*#king B*@#hes! Joking he sends his love and is glad your having a good time.

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