Sunday, February 14, 2010

Vacation, Part II

On Sunday, we boarded the Norwegian Spirit in New Orleans. This picture is not taken in New Orleans, as evidenced by the warm weather attire, but you should feel free to use your imagination.

Monday was an At Sea day, which Andrew and I thoroughly enjoyed. We spent some time in the bar at the front of the ship reading and some time on the deck. Sadly, Brandy, Kyle, and Rachel were all suffering from seasickness. This journey was quite a bit rougher than the first cruise we took. We don't know if that was because of the time of year, difference between ships, different area of the ocean, or some combination. Andrew and I could definitely tell there was a lot of movement, but thankfully it didn't make us sick.

Tuesday was Costa Maya, Mexico. It's a port city--it only exists because of the cruise ship. We took a bus to the Chacchoben Mayan ruins. I didn't feel well there. I got pale and sweaty and nauseous. I called it the Curse of the Mayas, but I think it more likely was the drastic change in weather. Apparently I am allergic to beautiful weather in February. A very nice woman gave me a package of peanut butter crackers and told me that maybe I needed the salt. I did feel better, so perhaps she was right.

Something to note about our trip: I would say that our ship was 80% retirees. This, for us, is AWESOME. I did feel badly at Chacchoben that the retirees were doing fine while I was thinking I was going to vomit, but I was extremely grateful for the mature woman who provided me with crackers. Very kind.

After that we did a bit of touristy shopping at the port.

Wednesday was Santo Tomas de Castillo, Guatemala, and it was my favorite excursion. Guatemala, or the tiny bit I saw of it, IS BEAUTIFUL. Astonishing and shockingly beautiful.

Rachel and Brandy took a tour of San Felipe Fortress. Kyle took a trolley tour with a depressed and unfulfilled tour guide. Andrew and I went to Las Escobas Waterfall. It's located in a nature preserve, and I have no words for how gorgeous it was.

We got to swim at the base of one of the waterfalls. I'd put a picture in here, but swimming almost always equals bathing suits, and there's no need for pictures of me in a bathing suit on the blog.

Thursday was Belize City, Belize. Kyle and Rachel went ziplining and cave tubing while Brandy, Andrew, and I went to Altun Ha Mayan ruins. Our guide was excellent. They haven't excavated everything, and that which they have excavated is fantastic. We were able to climb the Temple of the Sun God. This picture doesn't show how high up it was, but it was high. Sixty feet, I believe, and the Mayans liked to make their steps steep because they felt it looked more impressive.

Here's a mask from the front of the temple:

I need to tell you what we found on top of the Temple of the Sun God.
There was a young man with a small alligator on top of the temple. We could have our picture taken of it if we wanted.

Now, I have what some would consider an irrational fear of alligators, crocodiles and the like. I say that my fear is NOT irrational as these horrible reptiles from hell could kill me. I read somewhere that they were one of the few natural predators of humans, and that was it for me.

I'm a Religious Studies girl. I feel a little uncomfortable climbing to the top of someone's temple and taking pictures of myself to put on a blog. (I did it, but I did have some unease.) This was a TEMPLE. It should be treated with respect. Instead, thousands of tourists with cameras and fake smiles trot up it and complain about the stairs. It seems only right that there would be an alligator when you get to the top. We were all lucky not to be killed.

Friday we went to Cozumel, and Andrew and I did a three reef snorkel. The water was really choppy and the current was pretty strong--there was a storm coming in--but I love to snorkel regardless. I've been trying to put it into words and can't, so I'll stop trying.

Saturday was another At Sea day, and it brought its own adventures. Perhaps another day for that story.
Hooray for vacation!

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