I cannot count the number of restaurants on this island, nor the number that offer drinks two for one. If you are travelling with two, and you like the same drink, this is perfect. If you are alone, this provides twice the opportunity for a very entertaining evening. The benefit is that there is no driving home, and not that far of a walk. The downside is that the next day may be a write off.
I think sometimes people choose travelling when they are at a transition in their lives, or perhaps they are ready for a transition. This morning, I was thinking about how people can be much different than when they are at home. The desire to wiggle out of what they have become might be an impetus. Or perhaps they are peeling back who they have become to see who they really are. It is an opportunity.
Yesterday morning, I went to Bistro Francais for desayunos (breakfast) and had to have the French toast - it was very yummy. And then it was beach day. It was a very relaxing day on the beach as I chose Playa Sol (west side) under the palm trees with friends from the hotel. There are two things significant about this spot - this is where Mexicans hang out and there are virtually no vendors.
I am getting into the habit of watching the sunset, but this means careful timing because I have to go back to the hotel and have a shower. This is imperative after a day in the sun with my skin caked with suntan lotion, sea salt, and sand. There is nothing like the feeling of a shower after a day at the beach. When I got back to the hotel, I had a conversation with Lupe´s 7-year-old son, who I think decided I was an impossible Spanish student. In the end, once he was able to write out the letters, he taught me the word rana and I taught him the equivalent in English - frog.
When I went upstairs, Gail (from Kelowna) was sitting in the guest-gathering place so I sat and we had a chat. I heard voices behind me and looked towards the stairs; I saw Lupe first and then behind her was Jaime! Jaime and his wife Carmen (Cristina´s sister and brother in law) stayed with me for a couple of weeks at the beginning of January 2009. What a surprise!
Jaime has been working in Playa del Carmen, and decided to come and visit me on his day off. Playa del Carmen is one ferry ride, one taxi ride, and a one-hour bus ride from here.
So off we were for dinner at Sancochoz´s, and had 2 for 1 - lime margaritas - I cannot say I am enamoured, but the experiment will continue. I had a chicken taco and a fish taco as well as a quesadilla for dinner. The fish taco was a wonderful surprise, considering I am not that into fish.
Jaime and I caught up on all the news, and were amused at where life takes us. We never could have imagined a year ago that we would see each other on this side of Mexico. Also that his wife Carmen is in Nelson right now with Cristina, who is taking care of Julia.
We looked over photos of both of our lives in El Caribe. Jaime had a photo of 3 women who were travelling from Canada; when I looked closer, they were people who lived in Nelson! I said to Jaime - did you know there were from Nelson? No, he said, only that they came from Canada.
We were having a long conversation about his theory that there were really no problems in life, only opportunities. I glanced up at the couple who were reading the menu close to our table. And I said, is that you, Deb? Indeed, it was her and her partner Ben, both from Nelson. Isla Mujeres was their last stop before they are leaving for home. What a surprise!
So the four of us chatted until it was time for Jaime to catch the ferry. Though it was the first time that Jaime had been to Isla, I was grateful to my "host," for his thoughtfulness in coming a long way to visit me. And wonderful company!
I rejoined Deb and Ben at the bar where there was a live Mexican band. And ordered a mojito, which has been my favourite so far. We stayed until the band finished and then walked the main street for a couple of blocks. The party at one restaurant was going full swing with a couple of women who were dancing on the bar.
Which gets me back to going on holidays, and what it brings for, and brings out in us. Opportunity. Life in a way that you could never plan.