Saturday, August 1, 2015

Cozumel trip

Our birthdays are 2 days apart--mine on the 27th and Dana's on the 29th of July, so this year we decided to go on a vacation on our birthdays in lieu of buying gift. From a guys standpoint, that's a win win. Of course, the wife had to be in agreement as to the location of said vacation, and I knew that anything with a beach would more than suffice. 

I tend to favor all-inclusives since meals are included, as are drinks and tips. We have been to Cancun, and to Playa del Carmen twice, and thought we'd try Cozumel. We had actually visited the island via a ferry from Playa del Carmen, and once as part of a cruise. While I was not overly impressed with the old town of San Miguel, the island was beautiful and the people were nice. We were booking late, and found a deal that seemed good, and I started the booking process, and stopped to discuss it with Dana over dinner. When I went back to push the GO button, evidently the last vacancy was filled, and I went back to the drawing board.

Iberostar looked good, and I read the reviews and they were mostly good--the only bad ones were people complaining that their air conditioning was not cold enough. Duh--it's Mexico. Tourists are the only ones who even use air conditioning or heating on the island. Other than that, the place got glowing reviews.

 So Monday morning we were up at 3:00 am, and got to the airport at 4:30 for a 6:30 flight. We parked at Fine Airport Parking and used the valet service. It was fast and efficient as advertised. No, we did not "do the Fine-dango." Our flight was uneventful. We got through the plane change and customs in Cozumel, and our transport to the resort worked out fine, although I was mislead by a person impersonating the transport company whose only interest was to show me good deals on excursions, cheap car or jeep rentals, and I found out later--time shares.  Very sneaky of them.

The lobby at Iberostar was a huge grass hut, and branched out to a gift shop, two restaurants, and a open theater. A friendly parrot was perched on his favorite chair. He didn't say much other than an occasional squawk, but enjoyed having his head rubbed.

A pond of nice green water was home and feeding grounds to a family of flamingos. They stood in this same pond the whole time we were there, slurping water through their upside down bills, filtering nutrients from the water. It seemed like they were gargling. 

 Most of the accommodations were four-plexes--stucco on the exterior, and all with grass roofs. It never rained while we were there, but I'm betting they did not leak.

The room was just right for a couple--I'm sure they had bigger units for families. We were impressed. The air conditioning was fine IF you took a shower, turned the ceiling fan on high, and slept with a sheet and a light blanket.

The pools here are awesome. They advertised 4 pools, but two of them were wading pools. The other two were huge and 4 1/2 feet deep and separated by a swim-up bar. <3 We changed into our swim suits and took a bar stool. 

Then we strolled to the beach and drug a couple of recliners under a coconut tree and just vegged out.

Dana--the girl who never wears hats, fell in love with this pink straw cowgirl hat.

I had my trusty 100 mile hat. We had paid for a data plan and wifi, so I'm sure it seems like we were on our phones a lot, but we really weren't.

Each night we'd watch the sun set. Catching the sunrise was not really an option because 1. we slept in. 2. We'd have to go to the other side of the island. 

 And so it goes. This was the life we lived while there. We didn't go deep sea fishing, no zip lines, no shopping in old San Miguel, no visiting the ruins--we just relaxed.

We also went to the evening shows. The first night they did the Horror Show--including a Thriller rendition, and then several tunes from the Rocky Horror Picture Show. Then the next night they did a show that was sort of like the Newlywed Game, but with stunts and challenges. If was goofy but funny. We missed the show the next night--it was merely a disco party on the beach. Thursday night they did dance routines to movies. It started out bad and got worse. America's Got Talent would have buzzed them out.

The food was good--I'd give it a 7 out of 10. But don't expect good desserts there. They forget to put the sugar in their after-dinner treats. Soft serve ice cream was great however.

Bacon--it was what's for breakfast. They'd cook custom omelets, and there was also about anything under the sun you would want for your morning meal.

A visitor to our table would have pulled up a chair and joined us were it not for the netting. We treated him to some bacon, and bits of bread. A peacock will nip pretty hard on your fingers if there's food involved. 

The ritual--eat, swim, lay on the beach, repeat. 

Usually this place was packed. The bartenders there make mixed drinks non-stop from 9:00 or earlier until 7:00 pm. And they are not weak drinks either. They'd pour a glass 2/3 full of coconut rum, and top it off with coke. They'd add a shot or two to their pre-made frozen margaritas and daiquiris. And then there's the Miami Vice--a mixture of a pina coloda and strawberry daiquiri--Dana usually added a shot of coconut rum. My favorites besides the rum and coke, were the mojito--a mixture of mashed mint leaves and real lime mixed with a little sugar, white rum, and club soda served over ice. Also, the Michelada--a mixture of beer, Worcestershire sauce, Tabasco sauce, black pepper, lime, served cold in a glass with a salted rim.

Swimming pool rules--every public pool has them. #3 is a good rule--keeps us married guys out of trouble. #4 is a joke. Everyone in the pool visited the swim up bars. And notice there is no rule against peeing in the pool. I am confident those hanging around the swim-up bar all day, some of which brought their own insulated bubba cups and had them filled and refilled--they NEVER got out to pee. It did always seem like the water was warmer around the bar.

Dana was in picture taking mode. She was one happy camper.

And quite the selfie queen too. :-)

Each day it was 87° for the high and 71° for the low. laying in the shade with an ocean breeze was good.

Taking a nap was awesome.

Each night pool boys worked on making these pools perfect. They treated the water, swept the pools, and by the next day everything was like brand new.

Thursday we went snorkeling. We rented snorkeling gear for 2 USD apiece which was good for all day. We were told there was lots of fish along the pier, and they were right. We saw thousands. Most were big flat gray fish (maybe grouper), but there were also lots of yellow and white striped ones, and a few with some blue and orange (looked like exotic perch.) a mask and snorkel does not work well with a mustache, so we only stayed out there an hour.

 Stuffing my face wit good food, ice cream, and wine. This is as tan as I get.

And a couple more sunset pics. There was never a bad one.

About half of these pictures are Dana's. She took some awesome shots. 

 A night walk out on the pier. Out of 15 tries, this was the best one.

Finally, Friday came and it was time to pack it up and come home. I took a few more pictures of the wildlife on the resort. The flamingo feels right at home with turtles in it's face.

We saw a small wild pig run across the walkway right in front of us but I couldn't get it's picture.

If you were looking, you could always find an iguana. 

This bearded dragon strolled around like he owned the place. We never saw any alligators, but there are gators on the island. No snake spottings either, but there are a few species of snakes there.

Probably one of the most pesky snakes is this one: the dreaded time-share snake.

According to the weather charts, it is a few degrees cooler there in January. Still low 80s for the high and upper 60s for the low. That might feel good that time of year. If Jon Snow were walking down the street in Cozumel and said, "Winter is coming," ---he would be wrong.

1 comment:

  1. What a trip. We had fun on our Hawaii vacation but I would liked to have vegged out a little more. We love beach vacations. I'm glad you and Dana enjoyed yours.