Sep 4, 2007
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Well, I got back late last night from another great (but too short) trip to Mexico. We went down Thursday morning and arrived in Cozumel in time for a quick lunch and welcome margarita. After getting checked in, we took the ferry to Playa del Carmen to meet up with Roberta who had rented a couple cars for us. The temperature in Playa was approximately the temperature that I imagine Hell would be in the summer. I knew it would be hot, but I wasn't prepared for the actual oven-like heat. Roberta informed us that Playa is usually cooler than Coz since it gets the ocean breezes more... um.
Anyway, we finally got the car cooled down after about 45 minutes and were able to shut the windows and attempt to stop sweating! We drove for three hours through rural Yucatan peninsula. We passed a couple towns that had solar panels for electricity and farm animals in the front yards. We all talked about what it must be like to be from a town of 20 people or so.
There had been some thunderstorms, so the tarantulas were climbing out on to the road to dry off. The roads got progressively worse as we approached Chiquilá (pronounced chi-ki-LA). We took a small boat from Chiquilá to Holbox (pronounced hol-bosh), an island off the northern tip of the Yucatan peninsula that Europeans have been enjoying for decades. The color of the water was an amazing light green rather than the brilliant jewel tones of the water at Cozumel.
Our hotel was lovely. We slept like rocks and awoke in the morning to search out the whale sharks. It was an overcast day, so it took us a while to find one and in the end we only ended up finding one. It was amazing to dive with an animal bigger than the boat we were riding on. Hopefully I will get some video footage from Anna to post so you can see how beautiful the shark was.
Anyway, after one day with the whale shark, we reversed the process, boat, car and boat to get back to Cozumel. First we stopped off at one of my favorite restaurants in Playa, La Cueva del Chango (the monkey cave), and had a delicious meal and way too much to drink.
The next two days we spent diving and generally enjoying Cozumel. For whatever reason, the weather wasn't as hot as that first day the rest of the trip and we all decided that if August/September is as hot as it gets, we'll be fine here.
On the last day we spent happy hour in the pool bar at Casa del Mar. The pool had been empty when we arrived, but it was repaired and refilled in time for our last day. After a couple beers, we all retired to our rooms to get ready for dinner. Cat emerged for dinner with green hair. Not just a little green, but emerald green hair like she had dyed it! It wouldn't have been a problem if she was planning to be in Jersey for more than 5 hours before flying out to Vegas to do a presentation in front of 600 people! A quick phone call to her mom (and after setting an appointment in a salon in Vegas) we were armed with some remedies courtesy of the internet.
First up was tomato juice. We were all skeptical, but after 45 minutes of juice we rinsed out her hair and were surprised to see the water running green out of it. Next up was lemon juice, at which time I had to hit the sack! When I woke up, Cat's hair was blonde again. Thank you internet.
Finally, we spent a long time talking with Roberta (the owner of the hotel and dive shop we always use) about the logistics of moving to Mexico. She was very encouraging but expressed concern about us choosing Playa if Hans intended to be away on business often. She thought Cozumel was safer for someone like me to be living alone. Hans and I have started considering Coz again on her recommendation, since everyone we know in Playa would be likely to tell us that it was totally safe (and it may be for them because they're all Mexican). Besides, I'm sure Anna would be a lot happier if we were on the island... And we already know several people there... we'll see.
Well, back to work, I guess.