Cozumel: a guide and a goodbye………

DSCF6306Well,  this is my 112th blog about what it’s like to live on the island of Cozumel.  I’ve covered everything from charities to beach clubs, ruins to coffee houses, safety tips, illnesses, and holiday events. Sandwiched in between those you’ll also find a few posts that are simply about life as an expat.  Some of those moments are humorous, some, well, not so much.  So, at this point it seems  to be a good time for this expat to move on to other writings for a while.  But, for reference purposes, I thought I’d list a few of the various activities I’ve had the privilege to participate in over the past two years, as well as include a few of my favorite pics.   If you want to know more about a specific location, or topic, on that list (and would like to see the related photos), simply type the name in the search bar on the top of this page and you will be taken to that blog.  Simple, yes?  And, finally,  before I go I want to take this time to thank all of you for your support.  Your often enthusiastic responses have been greatly appreciated and you’ve made my “job” fun.   So, with that said,  here’s to the very special island of Cozumel, Salud!

 

Historical and Environmentalflower1

  • Chankanaab
  • San Gervasio
  • Punta Sur
  • El Cedral

Beach Clubs/Hotels

  • Buccanos
  • Barracuda
  • Blue Angel
  • Hotel B
  • Paradise Beach Club
  • The Money Bar
  • Sunset Bar and Grill
  • The Caribbean Sunset

Nightlife/Barsbench

  • Wet Wendy’s
  • Woody’s Bar and Grill
  • El Volado
  • The Thirsty Cougar
  • Zocalas
  • Kelly’s Pub

Holidays/Festivities

  • Christmas in the Park
  • Fourth of July
  • Carnaval17
  • El Cedral
  • Day of the Dead
  • Thanksgiving
  • Good Friday/Passion Play

Charities

  • The Chrysalis Group
  • It’s All About the Kids
  • La Esperanza
  • The Horse Sanctuary

Coffee Houses/Restaurants

  • El Cafe
  • Starbucks
  • Bisbees
  • Rock n Java
  • Cha Cha’s Kitchen
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Neighborhood Lodgings

  • The Coral Reef Inn
  • Villa Zaztun
  • Alicia’s Bed and Breakfast

Local Artists and Openings

  • Mariano Petit de Murat
  • Sarah Williams Pritchett

Local Craftsmen/Home Improvement/Computer Repair

  • Carpenter Chris
  • Cozumel Home Improvement
  • Edgar Ch L (computers)

Exercise

  • Tammy Cervantes’ Yogayoga 1
  • Ego

Shopping

  • Mercado
  • Malecon

Illnesses and Doctor’s Care/Costs

  • Dengue
  • Parasites
  • Shingles

sunset fury

 

 

 

 

 

 

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doggies doing time
dscf6976.jpgegret going to work

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beach entrance
chey
going home
water colors
ladies under wraps
horse and truck

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Cozumel’s Passion Play

It’s Semana Santa (Easter week) here on the island of Cozumel.  And, with Mexico having one of the world’s largest Catholic populations, it is quite a sight to behold.  Between the crowds of tourists (I hear we have 90% occupancy) and the crowds of the faithful, let’s just say that it’s a good idea to give yourself some extra time before going anywhere.  But, in this case, I consider myself quite fortunate since I live directly across the street from a large Catholic church in the so-called Corpus Christi neighborhood.  That gives me the extra benefit of easily walking over to photograph one of the local customs, the Passion Play.

For those of you unfamiliar with the concept, the Passion Play is a reenactment of the  trials and suffering that Jesus endured just prior to the crucifixion.  Now, this is not to be confused with “The Passion Play,” which, up north, is also a dramatic interpretation of the same events, but that play uses professional actors.  Our little production consists solely of devout parishioners dressed in homemade clothing to depict the historical time period.  These folks may indeed share the passion, but little to no formal training is either expected, or required, which leads to a sense of reality that I, personally, enjoy.  Picture this: altar boys, dressed in white and carrying candle, are then followed by Christ, joined by the two men who were crucified along with him, and all are led down the road by Roman guards while Mary and the devout walk behind.  The guards soon stop, flog him, and force him to wear a crown of thorns and carry a wooden cross.  Today this procession was also followed by well over a hundred local folks and a pickup truck with loud speakers that played somber music.  It really is quite an event to see.

Now, without me rambling on any further, I think I’ll just let my photos tell the rest of the story.  I’ll start with a few faces in the crowd, work up to the nervous antics of the participants just prior to the event, and will end with the Christ, himself.  I hope you enjoy and let me also take a moment to wish all of you a meaningful, and peaceful, weekend.  Salud!

 

 

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Back to Buccanos Bar & Grill

tin lizardMonday was my birthday and I decided to spend it quietly.  I might live on an island filled with possibilities, but it just seemed to be a day to spend at home.  So, after a morning swim,tree I lounged on my deck, did a bit of gardening, and a little light reading.  When it got a bit too warm  I went inside, put on the air conditioner and watched some classic movies with my dogs complete with a great big bowl of popcorn, we shared.   All in all, it was a good day!

fountainBut, when I woke up the next morning I had an urge to go to one of my favorite places,boat and chair  Buccanos.  A great little beach club located on the northern side of the island that has all the food and activities that one could hope for here on Cozumel.  I’ve been there before, and even wrote about it a couple of years back, but it is just such a lovely place that it seemed time to take another look and share it with you.  If you’ve been there, this will help remind you of why you went in the first place.   If you haven’t stopped there yet, maybe this will help show you why you should include it for your bucket list.

birdsNow this business is not new.  In fact, once known as Club Cozumelsign Caribe, they’ve been around for so long that they have a list of celebrities that have visited including Jackie Onassis and Princess Grace.  Yes, it really is that special.  Located on a quiet strip of land right next to the blues of the Caribbean, it has lots to offer including a lush view.  That view was what I was after so I grabbed a lounge chair on the beach under a palm tree for shade.  I could see both the ocean and the folks coming in from one of the seven cruise ships that had docked here for the day.

staffMy waiter was Tony and he was by my side in a matter of a fewmother and child minutes with a big smile and a friendly manner.  I started out with some coffee and settled back for a bit of people watching.  After snapping a few pics of the tourists, and finishing my coffee, I then headed off to take some photos on the grounds before the light got too harsh.

muralThere are lots of choices for photos at Buccanos, which is one of thegrotto reasons I enjoy visiting.  The owners really know how to make the day special with plenty of those little touches that combine the colors of the tropics with the beauty of the man-made.  Colorful murals decorate the walls, large stone arches give way to scenic walkways, huge vases are filled with flowers, and there’s even a grotto with a waterfall and a giant tin lizard.  In fact, everywhere you look there is something special that will make you appreciate island living.

poolNow, in addition to just wandering about snapping photos theremassage are lots of activities.  There is a large pool, snorkeling, massage options, great food, and cute little shops.  Oh, and that pic on your right is of my luncheon choice, lobster with mac & cheese, two of my favorite foods.  Pure genius was at work the day they came up with that combo, it was excellent!  I did everything but lick the bowl.  Once finished I did a bit of reading and then headed off for an hour of snorkeling.  I lobster mac and cheesewasn’t worried about my stuff since the staff makes sure to keep an eye on things for you.  So, without worries, I leisurely swam about checking out all the colorful fish and coral.  The current was strong, but I swim in the ocean a lot, so I wasn’t concerned.

Back in my lounge chair I spent another hour with a bit of reading.  Then the cruise ship dining roombenchcrowd was starting to thin so I just sat back and watched folks reluctantly pack up their things.  Another hour of that and it was time for me to go too.  I paid my check, reluctantly packed up my things as well, and headed for a taxi.  Like a little kid I shuffled down the road that takes you past a fountain, a wall climbing challenge, and more Bougainvillea than you could possibly imagine.  Finally, a cab stopped and I headed off to a friend’s home.  She’d promised me a free massage for my birthday and I just couldn’t say no.

wood benchNow, this is where I would usually sign off, but I have to say that after my perfect morning I also got the most relaxing massage I’ve ever experienced.  Yes, it was a free birthday gift, and, no, I wasn’t asked to write about it.  But, it was just wonderful so I’m going to mention it anyway.  For a deep tissue massage, let me recommend Barefoot in Cozumel, a local  business that can be found on Facebook.  That’s all I’m going to say since I really don’t accept suggestions, or compensation, but I do still like to pass on good experiences.  And today was  filled with just that, good experiences.  My birthday wish is this:  I hope all of you can have a day like I just did.  We all deserve it!  Salud!

p.s. I don’t receive compensation and I don’t write upon request, I just like to share good experiences!  And, if you’re thinking about going somewhere on the island and want to get an idea of what’s in store for you, just type the name of the place in the search bar above.  If I’ve been there I’ve written about it and included pics.  Happy hunting!

Special thanks to Lynda and Amethyst