OK, I'm back. Had to run the kids to school and dash into the office for a few things before we head out of town later to celebrate my folks' 50th wedding anniversary. 50! That's a lot!!
Mostly we just played. On one of the windy days BD (dive instructor) and I headed off on the Blue Hole trip (my third) with ADM while the rest of the fam fly to the mainland for the zoo and cave tubing trip. They thought that going tubing in the afternoon would avoid the cruise ship crowds but were proven wrong. We did that before the ships and loved it. Mrs. Mot said it was wall-to-wall tubers and not nearly as fun, but the zoo was grand.
The Blue Hole was deep, as usual. We did the Aquarium and Half-moon Caye Wall dives after that--two of my favorites. It was especially nice to be paired with BD and he remarked on how nice it was to just be diving for fun, as he's usually with students and working, not playing. He and I were able to relax (I'm often with the family and others less experienced divers and watching them and their air, etc.) and really enjoy the day. Very memorable trip for us both.
Spent a day fishing, beach BBQ and snorkeling w/Kord (sp?) from Freedom Tours. That's Hillyboo's operation but he mostly does deep sea fishing, not reef and snorkel trips. Kord was great--a very friendly and happy young man who was a delight. He brought his wife along and they cooked up a wonderful lunch while we popped in up north at the Rojo Lounge for a few Belikins and frozen delights.
Rojo is near Mata Chica and is a beautiful little bar and restaurant. Jeff, the owner, and his partner are just opening a resort (two buildings) called Azul right next door. We toured them with him and I was amazed at their beauty and craftsmanship. I think they're the nicest structures on the island.
After lunch of mostly yellowtail and trigger fish, we snorkeled Mexico Rocks, which, IMO, is the best snorkel trip from SP. You can see the sharks and rays (although not as many) as you do on other trips and lots more stuff...like the occasional squid, cleaning stations, abundant reef fish, etc., without nearly the crowds you're liable to run into elsewhere. Truly world-class.
After that, we called it a day and ran in early to hang around the pool and relax. We've done the fishing/snorkel/bbq thing a few times and all agreed that, next time, us boys will just book a guide for a day of fishing (probably deep-sea w/Hillyboo) and let the girls stay and lounge. We're spoiled with diving and good food and have done most of the snorkel trips available...but you should try them if you haven't.
Let's see...ate at Carumba's, Caliente's, (twice, the kids love the coconut chicken and the coconut shrimp curry is spectacular), Blue Water Grill (delicious), George's Kitchen, Duane's Kitchen (or whichever name on the building they're calling it), had breakfast burritos from The Name We Must Not Utter several times, lunch at BC's both Sundays (man, that shrimp was good and there's sooooo much food there) and had the certification celebration dinner at El Divino, where I had to hunt down the chef to tip him as well, it was so good.
Was honored to meet and spend an hour with Tom Vidrine, president of the Chamber of Commerce and his assistant Jules. Great people, very involved in good projects for SP. We discussed some collaboration between the SPSC, www.sanpedrosc.org,
the trolleys they're about to start running to get kids back and forth to school and how we can help with that. They also provided some valuable insight into buying property and living on/off the island. Great folks and very hospitable.
Had some water and electricity challenges but nothing we couldn't live with and, sometimes, laugh at. Hey, it's the Caribbean, mon.
Can't say enough about the good folks at Xanadu. Truly a family friendly bunch and without equal in service and helpfulness. They have, both times we've been with them, bent over backward to do their best for us. I highly recommend them.
That's, for the most part, the highlight reel.
Go, relax, enjoy, giggle at the rare "problems" and come home happy.