Wednesday, June 25, 2008

The Adventures of Ashton and Meghan in Cancun, Mexico

Sorry it has taken me so long to share with you all about mine and Ashton's amazing trip back to Mexico. I have been a little swamped at work (after missing a week and have been trying to catch up:) Well here it is.

Saturday: As soon as we got off the plain I could feel the humidity hit my skin like a actually felt really good, and I didn't start sweating right away:) After we picked up our bags we headed out of the baggage claim area and instantly people were trying to sell us their trips, their taxies, and whatever else they were offering. Luckily our shuttle was waiting for us, so we didn't get too distracted. We spent most of Saturday getting settled in at the resort, eating dinner, and picking up our rental car. Saturday night we all headed down to the pool to enjoy the amazingly refreshing water. It was a really relaxing day.

Sunday: Ashton and I got up a little earlier and got ourselves ready for church. We ended up finding a ward that met in the heart of Cancun just a couple of blocks from a real Mexican mall. And I say real, because it wasn't a mall for tourists. But I'll talk about that more in detail in a minute. Ashton and I headed into the church and the rest of our party (Ashton's parents and their friends) went to the mall. After sacrament we met a really cool couple, the husband worked for a hotel chain and he met his wife on one of the islands. She related her conversion story to us in Sunday School, here is my condensed version of her story. As a little girl her non practicing Catholic mother would let her go to the LDS church with her neighbor friends but would never allow her to be baptized, regardless of how much she loved the church. As she got older she never really had the desire to drink, smoke, behave in an unchaste way with men, or do anything that might question her virtue. She said that deep down she always new that those things were wrong and so never had the desire to do them. In her teen years she, her brother and her mother moved to a small island that only had a small branch that met in a house that she was unable to contact, so she went on with life, still living virtuous. When she got a little older she met her husband, who at the time was working for a hotel on that island. He asked her if she wanted to go to church with him on Sunday. She agreed, thinking it would be a Catholic church...little did she know that their was a new LDS church and that this guy (her future husband) was an LDS return missionary. That morning as they walked through the doors of the church, she was startled to see the three men from her dream the night before in a picture hanging on the wall (they were the prophet, and his first and second councilors). After discovering who they were she felt the spirit so strongly and decided that it was time for her to be baptized (now she was old enough to be baptized without her mothers consent). She asked her future husband right then and their if she could take the missionary discussions and be baptized...and the rest is history.
It was an amazing story and made everyones hair stand up. After the class we were taking in the hall when we ran into a guy who literally looked as though he had just gotten beat up. He had a big black eye, his pants and shirt were dirty and untucked, and I think he was missing a soc or two. Ashton walked right up to him and started talking to him. He was nice and friendly and when asked about his shiner, said that it was too dangerous for us to know (ps he was kidding). After a couple of minutes we discovered that, while he was nice and had a sense of humor, he was just a little bit crazy. We came to this conclusion after he started say that he has had personal revelation that their is going to be a war for water in Mexico between the hotels and the people. First of all, has anyone seen how lush and green the jungles are in Mexico not to mention their are ton's of underground rivers still going strong; and second, most of the Hotels make their own water through revers osmosis. We were nice to him though, and just kind of nodded to his claims in wonderment with smiles on our faces. After church we headed to the mall to meet up with the rest of our group. It was a run down building that was hot, sticky, smelly (both sewer and exhaust), and sold amazingly cheap jewelry. An absolute fabulous necklace with earrings only 18 pesos. Translation, a buck eighty. Awesome, I am pretty sure I saw a similar necklace at Vanity for $15 US dollars.
After shopping their, hitting up the touristy flea markets, and eating at an awesome restaurant we headed back to the resort to get ready for some karaoke. Mike and Charlotte insisted that I entertain them. I wasn't complaining though, it was really a fun night. We were the only party to break a glass and also the only party void of alcohol.

Monday: We got up early and drove to Tulum. It was gorgeous and hotter than heck. I was really happy that Tulum had an amazing beach with refreshingly blue water that we were able to cool off in.
A view of the park from the entrance.
Family Shot
Another gorgeous view
Ashton and I enjoying the shade...really!
The sting ray that we both stepped on by accident. Yeah, scary. We are just lucky we didn't get stung

Tuesday: We headed to the jungle for an amazing Selvatica (?), canopy tour. Sadly upon arrival our cameras battery decided to die. But we did buy the video and bought a couple of the pictures that they provided. If you would like some pictures of the tour, check out Cori's blog, because the went on the same one, just a week earlier.
Anyways, the tour included and 2 mile tip line from between 12 different trees, a mile bike ride through the jungle to a cenote (by the way the coolest thing ever and so refreshing) that also had a zip line that dropped you into the water (a little scary but a real rush) and then a very tasty Mexican lunch. After the Tour Ashton and I hit the beach at our resort. It was so much fun. We were in the water four hours, in fact when we got out my lips were so pruned that I couldn't even feel them. That night we ate at a restaurant called captain Willies, a little pricy, but the restaurant literally hangs over the ocean. PS the food is delicious.

Wednesday: Wednesday was our free day. Ashton and I played on the beach, swam in the pool, painted some Mexican style pottery (a vase and an apple piggy bank) and then the big storm decided to roll in. It was actually kind of fun. Thunder, lightning, and rain everywhere. At one point during the downpour Mike opened the sliding door to the balcony and within seconds was drenched. Talk about tropical storm. But it was overall a perfect day.

Thursday: Because of the stormy weather we decided to visit Chichen Itza on Thrusday hoping that cloud cover would help with the unbearable heat. It did, a little. We found out ahead of time that Chichen Itza had a cenote the public were allowed to swim in, so Ashton and I resulted to our swim suits and cover ups for our dress attire. It also helped with the heat.
Cutest taxi driver I have ever seen:) Ashton's parents insisted that he drive the entire time, but he liked it and we got everywhere much faster.
Me in the car
I wasn't kidding when I said the jungle was lush and full of water. They literally have to use a huge machine as big as a garbage truck to cut the jungle back from the road. Not to mention they also have little fences too.
In front of the big pyramid. Sorry we had no control of how well the picture was taken(the top of the pyramid was cut off)
Ashton standing in front of the city of warriors. (Geologist say that it is supposedly tied to the two thousand stripling warriors because the markings on the pillars represent warriors and their are two thousand)
I think it is the building were they practiced astrology and various other sciences...yeah that's what it was:)
Just as we were finishing up with the ruins the storm began it's downpour, which was a good thing because Firl, a member of our party, was just about to go into heat stroke. After making it back to our car we headed to a town called Villodolid (sp?) where we ate dinner in this amazing restaurant. It was huge, beautiful, basically only covered on the top and on the sides replacing walls were beautiful pillars. I order hot chocolate(by the way it was real hot chocolate with coco and oiled cinnamon) and fajitas. It was truly amazing to be sitting their enjoying our meal with the storm all around us and occasionally spraying us with water. Outside of the restaurant was, what seemed to be, a dance floor creatively tiled. I'm guessing for all of the fun Mexican parties. PS that night we did Karaoke again, and the same scenario happened again. We were the only non drinking party and also the only ones to break a glass.

Friday: We got up early and headed to Excaret. I would highly recommend that you make that an important stop if ever in Mexico. It's a huge park with: a half a dozen beaches perfect for snorkeling and scuba diving, swimming with dolphins, rivers that you float through that run under caves and caverns, a huge butterfly observatory, a huge fish aquarium (with all kinds of creatures, including sharks and turtles), alligators or crocodiles (I can never remember:), caged (kind of) animals lining all of the trails, restaurants, blow holes, palm trees with hammocks, and if that isn't enough an amazing show at the end of the night in an enormous theater/arena. Very, very worth your time and money.
Me standing in front of a huge waterfall inside the butterfly observatory.
Peter Pan
Baby turtles sleeping. I guess they put their hands on their backs like this when they sleep, cute, cute, cute:)
We were walking through the park and saw a big rock hanging on a chain from a tree. Se stopped to read it and got a kick out of it...enjoy
The sound of drums fills the park at around 7pm when they start ushering people to the theater. On the way in the path is sporatically lined with people dressed in Mayan and Toltec character.

Just as we were leaving the park I got to see a baby chicken hatch. It was sooooooo cool...I almost started crying:)

Saturday: We enjoyed the rest of the hotel as we waited for our shuttle to come and pick us up. It was a smooth plain ride home and once in Utah stopped at a McDonalds and finally made it home by 11:00pm.
& Meghan
Waiting for our shuttle and sad to leave Mexico


Cori said...

FUN FUN FUN. Your post made me want to go back so so so bad. I'm so glad you guys had such an awesome time.

julie said...

so cute. :) can't wait to go some day.

Trevor and Jackie Norris said...

Looks like you had a blast! The pictures are awesome!

Raquel & Marc said...

So fun! Is that Lemual you are standing with? I totally imagine the Lamanites to look like those guys. I can't wait to travel someday. Also, we miss you.

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