Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Cruising the Mexican Rivera

I want to continue on with my trip to Mexico last week.

Living in Northern CA, you have to drive or fly to get out of town. So we drove to SanFrancisco, and then picked up a plane to San Diego the friday before we picked up the boat. Phew, what a long day! We stayed at the Sheraton in San Diego, a very nice hotel, and these are pictures of the Marina right outside our balcony window. Very picturesque!

On saturday, we boarded the Oosterdam, one of Holland Americas cruise ships, and left San Diego around 4:00 in the afternoon. The first day on the boat was a day at sea. The waters were a little rocky, but not too bad.

I took a few photos of the artwork that was displayed on our boat. They have quite a collection of expensive pieces. These were my favorites.

I have to tell you, I wanted to take this chair home. Besides tigers, I also have an affinity for lions. This would be my perfect throne!

The next 3 days were days at ports. Monday we visited Cabo San Lucas, tuesday we were in Mazatlan, and wednesday we were in Puerto Vallarta. I did not take any pictures of these 3 cities. The reason why is because they look very much like cities in America because they are tourist destinations. We did ride in a couple of taxis away from the ports and almost got into 2 separate accidents. There we got to see the conditions many Mexicans live in. There is a vast difference in how the average Mexican lives and the cities.

Any where we would walk in Mexico, we were approached by people that wanted to sell us something. "Hola amigo, you want this, you like that, how much you pay?" And nothing is priced in the stores, at least the touristy stores we went in. It is expected that you will bargain for your price. Scott and I were not very comfortable with that at first. After a while we figured it out.

The water in Mexico was beautiful, clear and turquoise blue. And the beaches were beautiful also, from what I got to see. The beaches we got to see were known to be tourist destinations and so once again, we were approached by someone wanting to sell us something. I understand that this is how some of the people make money for their families. But it wore me out to keep saying no thank you over and over again. It was emotionally exhausting.

The last 2 days of the cruise were on the boat cruising back to San Diego. These are a few distant photos of Mexico from our balcony.

On all cruises, there is usually 2 formal dress up nights where you can have photos taken if you like, and then go to dinner. The cruise usually sits guests together, and we shared a table with a very nice couple, Bill and Katya from San Diego. They were very interesting to talk to. They were both fairly well traveled. Bill was originally from South Africa and Katya from Russia so we got to learn a little about both of those places. Bill was very interesting to me. He had a very forceful personality, very strong. It was interesting to hear him talk about the time he worked for Barnum and Bailey Circus, and then some of his later business enterprises. Very nice couple.

This is Bill and Katya.

And Scott and me, the last night of the cruise.

We took one excursion while we were in Puerta Vallarta that I will do my next blog entry about. Don't miss it!

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