We went on a cruise with our good friends from CT. The Western Caribbean, for a week. Costa Maya Mexico, Belize, Honduras and Cozumel. We were excited. But the best laid plans and all that…..
We had a great ride from Tampa to Costa Maya, where we learned to make salsa and guacamole, tasted about 5 kinds of Tequila, and learned to dance the salsa. (Well, kind of, lol) Then it was down to the beach where there were massage tables set up and got a half-hour massage for $25, under the palms. It was nice. It was also where we bought handmade trinkets, etc, and the guys bought really good cigars for cheap too. Costa Maya is a resort under construction, really, where beautiful buildings, apartments, condos are being built next to shacks of people who live in abject poverty.
Then it was on to Belize, where we were going to go snorkeling. Belize has the 2nd largest barrier reef in the world, and I’ve always wanted to snorkel there. We had a nice easy ride overnight to Belize, and then a nice excursion ride out to the reef. The minute the excursion boat dropped the hook the wind began to blow, kicking up about 3 foot waves we were trying to snorkel in. The bottom was all kicked up with sand, and even though there were beautiful corals, etc, we could barely see them. The waves began breaking over the snorkels, causing us to swallow way more seawater than we ever wanted to. I was very glad to get back into the excursion boat and get a free rum runner to get rid of the taste of the water.
The wind kept blowing, and the sky kept getting darker. That night we headed to Honduras in 40 knot winds, with the boat rocking and rolling in 10-15’ seas. When we got there in the morning, it was pouring rain. During a break in the rain, we walked down to the “welcome center” and shopped a little, a very little, until the sky just began pouring rain, and with the wind, it was unreal. As we got back on the cruise boat the crew met us with dry towels and warmed up cloths. It poured the rest of the day, so not too much was accomplished in Honduras.
The next and last stop was supposed to be Cozumel. It was the one stop it seemed everyone was excited about, since it’s not a made for tourists trap. However, we never got to see it. The wind, by the time we got there was blowing at over 50 knots, which is about 57 mph, basically tropical storm force winds. The captain of our ship chose not to try to dock the boat in those conditions, which turned out to be a wise choice. A short time later two Carnival Cruise lines ships, attempting to dock there, collided.
The captain headed back to Tampa at a slow speed, taking 2 days to get there. The wind stayed at over 50 knots the whole time, with seas of 15-20’. It blew hard enough that they closed the decks due to wind, so everyone had to remain inside. We were ok with that, all 4 of us being boaters and none of us susceptible to seasickness, though apparently many people were. They had barf bags outside the restaurants. One woman said to Dan, “Why are there doggie bags here?” He replied that they were actually barf bags, and the poor woman got the most horrified look on her face.
We still had a great time. There is so much to do on the ship, we were never bored, and the drinks kept flowing, and the food. But I think the fact that we were all confined inside the ship probably helped me to come down with the worst cold, well, the only cold, I’ve had in a decade. We got back Sunday morning, and I was at the dr this morning at 9:45. Not a good thing 2 days before Christmas. So, here I sit, by myself because I kept Dan up all night coughing last night, so I told him to bring me home so he could get some sleep tonight. My temp was about 101° but has gone down now I think. I can only guess because I dropped the thermometer down the cracks between the cushions of my sectional and can’t seem to find it.
So ends the adventure of the western Caribbean. I just hope I’m well enough on Wednesday to join Dan’s mom and brother for Christmas dinner. I’ve included some pictures of the seas, taken from the 9th deck balcony of our friend’s cabin, probably 70’ above the water. The pictures don’t really convey the size of the seas because they were taken from so high up, but it was crazy. Everyone was walking around the ship like a drunken sailor.