Ron & Angie!!!!!
After waiting for what seemed like forever, we were finally in a rented car and on our way to Cancún to pick up Ron and Angie. Yippee! It’s nice to be on the road, but it’s really nice to be with family, especially those two. The four of us always seem to have way too much fun when we are together. We were excited like two kids in a candy store!
After a slight delay with customs......the airline didn’t have the correct forms on board to fill out in advance, they came through the doors. They were more prepared than some of the people on the flight, who came out, looked around; then took off their heavy coats. It was only about 8:30 in the morning, but a beautiful sunny day, and already in the mid 20˚s C.
The ride from Cancún airport to Playa is about 40 minutes. We arrived home, and showed them the digs. Barbie and I were feeling almost apprehensive; we so wanted them to have a wonderful time in the condo that we had chosen for their vacation. Also, we didn’t want them to feel that they were visiting us in our place. It had to be their home too. As is usual when friends get together, any apprehension disappeared immediately. We were just really glad that they were here, and they were really glad that the 25 degrees outside had a + in front of it. I don’t know how many times Ron said “It’s 10pm, it’s January, and I’m in shorts”!
We made a rough plan for our week. We wanted to visit some Mayan ruins, and all the good advise from Ixchel and other locals was Cobá, and Tulum. Chichen Itza is about 21/2 hours away, and very touristy. Also, you can no longer climb the ruins there. Cobá is in the jungle, and Tulum is on the coast. You can do both in one day, and that was our original plan, but we ended up doing them on different days.
We also wanted to go to the public beach at Akumal. Ixchel told me you can swim with sea turtles there, and we really wanted to do it. Akumal is Mayan for sea turtle. The advise was good, and it was an incredible experience.
Ron and I spent a day at Xplor (www.xplor.travel/); an adventure park with kilometers of zip lines (some with water landings), underground caves with rivers that you paddle a raft through, and 4X4s that you can drive in caves as well. It was an absolute blast. While we were there, the girls spent the day around Playa shopping, eating and exploring.
Another big thing on our list was Xcaret (www.xcaret.com). It’s a huge park with Mayan cultural displays and performances, a butterfly house, water activities including swimming with dolphins, a zoo, and the list goes on. Each night there is a stage performance which explains the entire history of Mexico, from the Mayans, on through the Spanish/Catholic invasion, up to present day.
The final thing on our list was a catamaran boat ride to Isla Mujeres. This one was highly recommended by locals, and included a stop in an offshore national park for snorkeling around a coral reef.
With our plan in place, we contacted our travel agent friend Patrice, and she dropped by for coffee one morning with our tickets and directions for the catamaran, and Xplor. It sure made us feel special to have such personalized attention. Patrice is actually Canadian, but she has been living in Mexico for about 25 years.
I’ve included some pictures here of us around Playa, but will have to make some separate entries for our excursions. For those that don’t know Ron, I’ll have to tell you that his passion and hobby is photography. In addition to all the pictures I took, I also have his on my computer. I’m sure that between the two of us, we have over 1000 pictures of this week. I’ll try to get the good ones up soon!
We have no pictures of Xplor. Because of the zip lines and water landings, you are not allowed to carry anything. It was an amazing day though. I think the longest zip line was 700 meters. Almost 1 km! At one point, there is a spot where 3 lines cross, one over the other. The little 4X4s were kind of like golf carts on steroids. There were 2 trails; one mainly above ground and the other mainly in the caves. It was really a fun day!
Once again, this is a time that even the best pictures cannot begin to tell the story. We had so much fun together, and shared so many laughs. The more time the four of us spend together, the closer we seem to get. Barbie and I always enjoyed Ron & Angie’s visits in Winnipeg, and now that we will be living in Edmonton, I’m sure we’ll enjoy lots of time together.