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Vacation Journal
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Texas to Isla - June 2009-Day1

Date: 3/9/2010

Trip report-June 2009—FINALLY!

After a relaxing morning of cleaning out the refrigerator and washing sheets for our fabulous house sitter, we headed out to ABIA. My darling husband and our awesome friend Kate and I were finally headed to Isla after 9 months of crazy high school students. Austins airport is always entertaining as we listened to a fantastic acoustic guitar duo while we drank our Austin Java coffee. I have never had a fear of flying and usually feel sky high about heading to Isla. Today however, I was extremely on edge after a last minute trip to the ER had my husband in stitches (not the laughing kind). Ready to relax, I walked down the jetway to our teeny, tiny Embraer jet for our trek through Houston. This plane was so tiny that I actually had to remove my seat bottom flotation device to fit my carryon under the seat. Not to mention the completely overwhelming scent of dryer sheets that literally made my nostrils burn. After an intriguing trip through the Sky Mall ( I MUST have a Garden Yeti), we began our descent into Houston. Descent it was not, it was a 30 minute tour through a cloud forest, complete with turbulence and speed changes; an excursion that I did not sign up for. As we waited on the Tarmac to exit our last-row seats, all I could think about was dinner on hidalgo and an ice cold Sol.

One train, three concourses, an airport sandwich, one miller lite and a cheesy chick-flick later we were on the ground in Cancun. Our USA transfers guide was ready and waiting for us. The Mexican travel gods must have been smiling because we entered Gran Puerto at 7:02 and still caught the 7:00 ferry. The new UltraMar deck seats were a nice surprise for our short trip to paradise.

As we approached the island I was a little disappointed to see the new Isla skyline. Yes, the Privleges Aluxes hotel is striking and new, but no one likes change and my island isnt the same anymore. I think we finally got the packing right this year. In the past, Michael and I have packed in one VERY large suitcase and an awkward dive bag that was difficult to carry. No more are the days of wrestling with luggage. Backpacks for both and a shiny, new rolling dive bag made it easy to navigate Avenida Medina to Posada del Mar. Usually we stay at Playa Media Luna, however, this year there were 2 weddings booked there this week. I have to apologize for being a little sore on this subject. We met the grooms family last night and I have to say that I am a little jealous. Maybe its because we couldnt stay at our favorite hideaway or because Hurricane Wilma detoured our wedding away from this beautiful place 3 years ago. Nonetheless, Posada del Mar is cute, clean, renovated and close to everything! Unsure of the correct shortcut in the dark, we took the scenic route to Hidalgo passed the gargantuan new hotel and its Thai restaurant. Hidalgo was an eerie place with so few tourists. Although the new road looked nice, it saddened me a little to see empty and even closed restaurants tonight. We watched the fire show and ate wood- fired pizzas while we drank our beers and enjoyed the cooler-than- Texas weather. Michael decided to order a tribute to the cause of this lack of tourism; Pizza covered with ham. What Swine flu?, he
said as we posed for a photo shoot with our first meal on the island.

Then it was of to Faynes for a little music- and maybe a celebratory tequila shot. Miguel, formerly of Sergios Playa Sol fame, was a fantastic and fun bartender. Although he says he doesnt know how to dance, dont let him fool you. I highly recommend stopping in to have a drink with him.
We expected to hear a Cuban drummer and a classical guitar as we had heard in years past so we were very surprised to meet Javi, a little ball of performing dynamite. He apologized for needing to play cheesy covers like Sweet Home Alabama and obliged us with salsa beats.

Somewhere between Sols and shots, Michael told Miguel that we play in a band back in Texas. 20 minutes later, my talented husband was singing Folsom Prison by Johnny Cash in a bar in Mexico. We have always been dreamers and, on rare occasion, have played an impromptu song but usually we discuss it for a minute then quickly move on to another beer. Im not sure he entirely remembers or consented to it since his new buddy Miguel was serving up doubles (or maybe they were triples) of Crown Royal. Great performance! We watched wedding parties dance, bachelorette parties do shots and snuck out fairly early before the real debauchery started, no doubt.

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