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October 2012 - 3


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#1 DanB

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Posted 24 October 2012 - 02:37 PM

Friday morning we did some more diving. Sadly I killed my dive camera on the first dive. (It's just a canon powershot with underwater settings, not terribly expensive.) I didn't snap the waterproof housing properly and it popped open as I was descending. I noticed at about 15 feet and went back up to leave the camera in the boat. It did not occur to me to take the battery out at that point. I dried it carefully over the next 3 days. The battery re-charged fine but when I put it back into the camera, the camera flipped out (lights flashing and all that). (When I got back home I was able to buy a refurbished one for a reasonable price so hopefully everything will be good for the next trip.) When I got back from the dive trip I ran out to San Gervasio ruins. (One of the other 'audio tour' topics I'm considering is a tour of San Gervasio.) Just in case anyone wants to visit there, I got to the front gate a little after 3pm. I walked pretty fast through the place and went to the three points that are furthest from the central area, and got back to the entrance area a little after 4:30. They want everyone out by 4:30 so I had a park guy come down the path to the 'temple of ix-chel' to find me and chase me out. Unless all you want to see is the central square area, you might want to get there before 2:30 so that you have enough time. You pay $4 to the park service at the parking lot area, then you pay the ruins people another $4 after you go thru the concession stands area and just before you enter the ruins. Another thing to be aware of – just after I paid the second fee I pulled my video camera out and the guys came running after me to say that I could not video the grounds unless I paid an additional $4 fee. He said that still photos were OK. So I put my video camera away, pulled out my still camera, and whenever I wanted to video I set it on video mode. How strange! My observation of the ruins at San Gervasio are this – 1, San Gervasio was more of a rural, working community and not just a ceremonial center (like Chitchen Itza) so the structures are not as spectacular as some might expect. Also, 2 – the structures are not reconstructed as so many are at other sites so you have to use your imagination a lot more to get a picture of what it might have looked like.

There are 5 areas of the ruins. Only area 1 is open for visits. There is a central group close to the front entrance. Then a structure about 200 meters northeast and another one about 200 meters northwest of the central group. There is also a structure (believed to be the temple of Ix-Chel) about 500 meters west northwest of the central group.
This is a strucure in the what is called the 'central grouping'.
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This the structure about 200 meters northeast of the central group.

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And here is the temple of Ix-Chel.
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On my way back into town I wanted to see the 'new' sam's club and 'bodega arrerra' (wal-mart). I walked around both stores to check out the relative product selection and prices. The two places are right next to one another and seem to have a very similar selection and prices. The prices seemed good to me but Pancho (who I had picked up along the way to come with me) said that much of the stuff was poor quality goods from china that would not last. I also have tried at every grocery in Cozumel to find American breakfast sausage – you know, like Bob Evens or something. I can't find it. Everytime I ask for it they refer me to a section where there are different kinds of hot dogs (which are labeled salchica Americano). I tried to explain to Pancho what I was looking for and he had never heard of anything like that. A couple trips ago I asked the chef if I could have scrambled eggs and sausage. He said it did not have any sausage but would try to get some. Finally one day he proudly presented me with a plate of scrambled eggs with cut up hot dogs in it. Hopefully I came across as graciously as I tried to, but it was not what I was expecting.



Friday night I went to Wet Wendy's for dinner to try their coconut shrimp. It was excellent with the best side sauce I have had (a sweetened coconut sauce). Around 7pm a 4-piece rock band set up and started a set. They were really good, particularly the guitarist. After dinner I walked around the square and noticed that Woody's also had live music from a single guitarist/singer who was doing some great crowd pleasers. There wasn't any latin music from the bandstand so I went back and turned in early. My buddies arrive tomorrow and I am switching hotels early.

Saturday my dive buddies were arriving. When we were talking about accommodations, I found an amazing deal for a 4 bedroom, 4-1/2 bathroom condo on the 6th floor of the Palmas Reales complex (right next door to Nah-Ha). It was just over $600 for the week. (This was a special promotional price to introduce the unit to the market and to account for the October low demand.) But we grabbed it as soon as we saw it. I talked with Fulvio (the property manager) the day before and arranged for an early check-in/luggage drop. I met Fulvio at the property, checked into the condo, got the tour and was introduced to the security people.

Here is the main living area.
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The balcony.
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My bedroom (he who checks in first gets his choice.)
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The 2-person jacuzzi tub in my bathroom (everyone had there own and there were 2 more left over).
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The shower in my bathroom.
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The pool/beach area underneath our balcony.
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Then I went to the airport to pickup one of my friends. Bernardo was supposed to Detroit-Houston-Cozumel and Doug (who did not decide to come until the prices had jumped back up) was supposed to fly Detroit-Houston-Cancun and then bus/ferry over. When Doug got to the airport in Detroit he checked into going to Cozumel instead of Cancun. They said, sure – for another $700. He asked if there was anything they could do and the agent checked further and discovered that the Houston-Cancun flight was overbooked by 2. So Doug reluctantly offered to be bumped from the flight if they would put him on the Cozumel flight instead. So when Bernardo walked out the glass doors, Doug was right there with him.

I have never sat in the airport lobby before and watched people come out. I was astounded at how many people got taken by the timeshare salespeople (I would guess well over 60%). They would walk out, a timeshare person would ask where they were going, they would say 'X', and the timeshare person would "Oh yes, right this way". I had to keep biting my tongue not to yell out "Don't you people do any research before you travel? Don't you see what is happening here?". Anyhow, we took off for the condo. Here are some photos of this place. The day guard, Luis, and the night guard, Mario, and the maid, Ceylon were all wonderful and helpful. Condo was gorgeous and the grounds were very pleasant – no garden areas but a nice pool and entrance to the ocean.



After getting settled in we went into town for lunch. I had never been to Sobores and wanted to try it. It was open. It did not have the 'comida corrida' plate since it was the weekend but we had a great meal. Jaimaika to drink, chips and salsa with a habenarro sause that you just waved the chip over the top and it was still too hot.

Doug in the eating area in the back yard at Sobores.
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Doug had fish. (That's that killer bowl of habenero sauce in front of his plate.)
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Bernardo had grilled shrimp.
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And I had chicken enchiladas in mole sauce.
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After lunch we walked around a bit since Bernardo has never been to Cozumel before. Then we went to Mega to pick up some food stuffs and then back to the condo. That night we went into town for mass at the San Miguel church and then walked around the square. There was a nice mural on the wall of the Plaza del Sol building (east edge of the square) that showed the island.
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Then we met Pancho in the square and went to the restaurant next to Plaza Leza just on the south edge of the square. I was heading for Plaza Leza but one of the waiters grabbed Bernardo and got him to a table, so Doug and I joined him. After dinner we walked around the little Plaza Confetti area and made use of the photo statues. Doug choose the Maya Momma.
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Bernardo decided to be a singing mariachi.
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I, being the shy and retiring person that I am, declined to have my photo taken.

There was no music in the square that night so we walked down Melgar . We found a latin music group playing dance music in front of the museo. I think all the people that normally are at the square on Sunday nights were there having a good time and dancing.
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#2 ccannon707

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Posted 25 October 2012 - 01:40 PM

Nice place!!! Nothing compares with being on the water and being able to look at that gorgeous blue... I can do it for hours.
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...Christine

 

I drink to forget, but I eat to remember.... so it all balances out

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#3 jcole

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Posted 26 October 2012 - 08:15 AM

Is that room 6a? we stayed there last year. beautiful place
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