Thursday, December 30, 2010

Day 12 and 13 Cancun

   In a beautiful ceremony at the Chapel of Guadalupe here in Cancun, Philippe and Fernanda were married on Wednesday, 29th December, before over 30 friends and family who flew down from Canada and Mexico City, or drove up from Tabasco. With the Caribbean Sea as a backdrop, the horizon massed with clouds and a setting sun, we gathered dressed  in white, in the small chapel for the traditional Catholic mass and wedding. A lone harpist accompanied the service with some very special music that we all will remember for a long time. Following a toast to the beaming couple we enjoyed a delicious dinner in a large ribbon and flower decorated gazebo on the beach, then, with our own three bartenders keeping us in drink, began three hours of fun, dancing, and the throwing of the gartar. Then we all proceeded to the room of Cesar and Rosalia for more food and songs by Fero and Rosalia's nephew, Jesus. It was a beautiful and touching experience for both Marie and I and we were honoured and happy to be welcomed into this wonderfully close family.

Today was a day to recover, relax and reflect and think about the next big celebration ahead : New Year`s Eve! We enjoyed a sunnier, warmer day here so Marie and I went swimming in the heavy surf that was still pounding the sandy beach. The winds, continuing to blow steady from the north, brought scudding clouds and the occasional sprinkle of rain later in the afternoon. Thankfully we had no rain for the wedding!Tomorrow is our last full day in Cancun before moving on to Cozumel on the 1st. It has been a fun week, getting aquainted with new friends and family, and we both will miss them all. Our party tomorrow night will be our last together for a while but we will leave with many happy memories! gws

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Day 11 Cancun

Hola from Cancun!  Another overcast windy but warm day here on the peninsula. Marie and I were up early to stroll along the beach in front of our room while Lara and Chad were geting ready for their bus trip to Tulum. We have decided to wait before going and see what they thought of the tour. It will be a good day to enjoy the big hot tub in our room while their gone!

View from the resort of the beach and chapel of Guadalupe

Last night we took in a show here, a performance by local people celebrating the PreHispanic rituals and dances and then had a late dinner with the family in honour of Cesar's 67th birthday. His son along with Fero and his family are due in tonight, then all will be here. Keeping our fingers crossed for some nice weather for the wedding tomorrow! Lots of pictures to come!  gws

Monday, December 27, 2010

Day 9 and 10 Cancun

  Hola from the Gran Caribe Real in Cancun! Thats our building above, located right on the water and, as we face the sea, hear the waves crashing all night long outside our window! Thats because it has been very windy and cool so far at the resort but a good time to chill and plan the for the coming week. Yesterday Marie and I walked down to one of the shopping centres to pick up a few souvenirs and scope out the place, a typical tourist trap full of the type of chintzy junk people bring back you'll find at any yardsale. The food here is pretty good, not spectacular, and the beer a little watered down according to Phil. We have the all inclusive so we can eat and drink whenever we want but try to stick to the customary Mexican meal hours which are breakfast around 9, lunch at 3 or 4 and dinner anytime after 8 or even later! The resort is upscale and has everything you need, including all sorts of pools, a beautiful stretch of fine, white sandy beach and is very clean.

 Our large, double room faces east, and, as we are early risers, Marie and I can watch the sun rise from our king size bed! We share the room with Lara and Chad who arrived Saturday with Christina, Rosio and her mother.Today is a beautiful warm and sunny day and the wind has died down so it looks like a great beach day! Tomorrow I think we plan to vist the ruins at Tulum, and Wednesday afternoon the raison d'etre for being here, Philippe and Fernanada's wedding! The little chapel is at the resort, right on the water and we are all keeping our fingers crossed for nice weather. Hope wherever you are you had a happy Christmas!  gws

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Day 7 and 8 Mexico City/Cancun

Feliz Navidad!! Marie and I spent a wonderful Christmas Day with the Panagos and Herrera family in their home, opening gifts after dinner and taking pictures. Shortly afterwards in the Mexican tradition, we drove over to Cesar`s sisters home for their annual family get together and were made very welcome as we joined them in celebrating this special day. We met many of the twenty or so friends and relatives who will join us in Cancun including Fero, his parents and younger brother. After lighting candles and walking through the streets singing, we gathered on the front lawn to break the pinatas, one for the children, one for the older kids and one for the adults. We all got a chance to "beat the devil" and spill the beans - candies, fruit and nuts. Rosalia had written a short play which everyone had a part in and we continued on into the house to listen to this very special.message, based on Mexico`s bicentennial this year, of love and peace. Then, promising to see everyone at the wedding, we were off to bed at midnight for an early flight to Cancun the following day. We arrived safe but tired after long delays to the resort, the warm sun and sparkling blue green seas welcoming us for the next week. Next post will be pix of sun, sea and sand! Have a wonderful week!   gws

Friday, December 24, 2010

Day 6 Mexico City

A quick visit to the Coyoacan market - the " place where coyotes lived" - this morning! What a kaleidascope of colours, aromas and  exotic fruits and vegetables we can only imagine back home! Being Christmas Eve the people were all in a festive mood and smiling, everywhere clusters of pinatas hanging like giant multicoloured pods, as they shopped for that last gift or for the traditional late dinner that will continue to the wee small hours of the morning! Again, Feliz Navidad a Todos!  gws

Day 5 Mexico City/Cuernavaca

Yesterday we all piled into the big SUV after a traditional Mexican breakfast and headed southwest to the city of Cuernavaca for the day. The toll road passed through beautiful mountain scenery and was lined the whole length with flowering bushes and trees. The highway itself was one of the most cleanest and well kept roads I have ever seen, well lighted and empty of billboards or any other type of advertising I think Canada could well use as a model. Cuernavaca, the City of Eternal Spring, is located 89 km (55 mi) south of Mexico City, in the northern region of the state of Morelos and on arriving we could tell how much warmer it is than Mexico City ( an average year-round temperature of 23º C (73º F). Cesar and his family have their "summer home" there, a lovely flower filled spot (many kinds of orchids to Marie's delight) private and inviting. Naturally we explored the city, strolling through the market and the magnificent historic buildings, such as the Convento del la Asuncion (Convent of The Assumption), la Capilla de San Jose (San Jose Chapel) and the Palacio de Cortes (Palace of Cortez).

Afterwards we returned to Cesar's place for a wonderful Mexican lunch with his brother and family who live near by. Today we are off to explore the local food market here and tonight a Christmas Eve gathering with Cesar's sister. It will be an early wake up Christmas Day as we are off to Cacun! Till then, Feliz Navidad!  gws