Thursday, April 1, 2010

M - E - X - I - C - O

We just returned from our week long Mexican Riviera cruise.  It was a perfect trip because everything we experienced was new, the weather was awesome, plus we had a great couple to enjoy the vacation with.  Jamie and Jon invited us to join them over a year ago, so the anticipation has been great.  We left our kids in good hands with Craig and Peggy over the weekends, and with our friends the Ramirez' during the week.  It was a little tough for us because we didn't get a chance to talk with them until our sixth day!  Luckily all was well.
The first two days were spent on the ship at sea, we were in serious relaxation mode, although we did play a mean game of beanbags and ping pong.  We also hit the water slide and watched dolphins as we lounged on deck.  From our stateroom we saw whales and even more dolphins as we passed by Cabo.
Our first port was Puerto Vallarta where we rented a jeep and drove ourselves along the coast and into the jungle where we zip-lined over huge ravines, rivers, and  lush vegetation.  Natalie and Jamie even went upside down on a couple of the lines, which was exhilerating.
Next, we gave ourselves our own tour with Brandon and the wheel and Jon navigating.  People say you can die on Mexican roads and we can attest to that.  It's really just one big free-for-all and anything goes. Brandon became our designated driver because he became accustomed quickly to the non-rules.  Our jeep also didn't provide much safety. We could view the road through the floor, the check engine light was covered with tape, and our seat belts unlatched while driving...yay.  The funny thing was once we stopped, Jamie and I couldn't release our seat belts without the help of the boys.
 Our boat didn't depart until ten pm that night so we spent our last hours walking the boardwalk viewing sand sculptures, and walking along the beach.

 That night we sailed to Mazitlan where the next day we took a zippy little open air taxi to the golden zone where we shopped til we dropped on the beach.  Unfortunately it was super touristy, and all the vendors were on the beach which made it difficult to relax.  Luckily, we attempted some body surfing and swimming in the ocean which allowed us some private time and a break from saying "No thanks" over and over.  This beach was perfect for combing for sea shells for the girls.

Our last port was in Cabo San Lucas.  After much deliberation over what to do, we finally picked a glass bottom boat tour which included, whale watching and snorkeling at lovers beach.  First of all I would have paid forty bucks just for the boat ride on the ocean.  It was a wild ride into and out of those big ocean swells.  We started out sitting on the bench near the rear, then moved to the front, soon we were standing on the front of the boat holding on to the roof for dear life. Miguel (our driver) was always the first to find the whales.  He was only nineteen but had been driving since he was eight years old.  He searched for whales by standing on top of the boat and steering with his foot.  On our way out, we were super lucky to see a huge sea ray jump and twist out of the water twice.  Lover's beach was our snorkeling destination.  The water was crystal clear and we were able to view tons of colorful fish.  There were sea lions and pelican's everywhere which added to the atmosphere.  Too bad we didn't see the line to get back on the ship before we did (yuck) because we could have added another hour or two of fun.
 Our last day at sea was cooler because we were cruis'n super fast which made it windy and we were headed back to cooler weather.  I think we took three naps and spent the rest of the day eating our lives away.  Creme Brule was the dessert of choice, says Jamie and I.  Jon was in heaven over the amount of food always available, and Brandon was our only inspiration for doing time in the gym.  On shore we did plenty of hiking, swimming, and walking to work off the amount of food we consumed on the ship.........hopefully?
 All in all, we missed our girls dearly and enjoyed coming home to hug them over and over again.  Back to life as usual............


Bre said...

SO jealous! Looks like you had a blast!

Codi said...

Looks so fun Nat! Good for you two for getting away. You look darling as always - miss you!

Katie Blacker said...

oh wow. looks like a great trip!

Kim Clinger said...

FINALLY I read about your trip - what a blast. Jamie and Jon sound like the perfect traveling companions. I love the pictures - especially the last one of you two on the beach. Ahhhhh....