Day 4: Going snorkeling
Since yesterday was a "big day" (big=expensive) that meant today would be our "off" day. I wasn't quite sure what we were doing yet but waking up at 4:30am because my arms fell asleep on me, my belly was growling and hungry and I had the urge to potty (and by potty I mean POTTY) meant I had plenty of time to figure it out. Geesh what was wrong with me. I just couldn't go back to sleep for some reason so I guess that meant I was staying up.
I headed out to the deck in the dark to wait out the hours before sunrise. Tick tock, tick tock. I decided to head down for a snack and some caffeine because if I'm up, I might as well be up. Eventually it started getting lighter outside and it was SUNRISE TIME! This morning was looking like it was going to be a firey sunrise.
Yep, it was a firey ball of light and you could already feel the climate change this early. It was going to be a hot one...but when wasn't it during this vacation?
Since I had plenty of nothing-to-do-but-stare-at-the-sky-time, I was able to go through my list of things I wanted to do while we were here. I decided today we would go to Garrafon de Castilla. I knew it was pretty cheap to get in and had read there was snorkeling there and snorkel is what I like to do most...so might as well right?
The hubby was up at 7am and we did our morning ritual...open up the window and sliding doors out back to get rid of the heat on the first floor, load up on caffeine, and since it was so hot outside by now, I went and got my bathing suit on and decided either 1) I'd already be ready for the day or 2) I'm getting in our pool to cool off before we leave.
On my way out to our patio pool, as I went to step into the water I felt something hit the side of my foot and looked down and found this angry guy ready to tear me to pieces.
He looked not only pissed but pretty darn intimidating. I didn't even know they spread their wings like that. All my life I have held praying mantis's and never seen one do that. I must have come really close to stepping on him or something. I guess they make them feisty in Mexico.
Hija was now up and came to examine the situation. She picked it up hoping her animal instincts would calm it down...but no! It didn't work and she couldn't get it off of her. It started pinching her and there was no calming it down. We had to use the camera to get it off of her and then it wouldn't come off my camera. It kept one leg on the camera strap and every time I tried to pull the strap away, it would grab it real quick. Geesh, never in my life have I witnessed this.
Eventually Sakari picked it back up and she managed to put it in the palm trees by the pool and finally the wings went down.
I decided to make breakfast and I had brought pancake mix in a jug with me. The kind you just add water and shake and it's ready. Well you are supposed to put 1/2 a cup of water in it. I wasn't sure if I could trust the water from the sink so I used some bottled water from the refrigerator instead.
I poured in 1/2 a cup...it didn't do much of anything and was clumpy. I poured in another 1/2 a cup. Still clumpy. What was going on??? I poured in another 1/2 a cup. A little better but not running enough to pour out. Then I just stopped measuring and started pouring water in. Is this Mexican bottled water different than ours? Something was definitely wrong. I make these all the time and never had this problem.
It was time to try to cook this blob of dough...how can someone mess up an add water and shake meal? Obviously this girl. I was crossing my fingers and hoping for the best.
It got the approval of the family when it was done so I guess that's a good thing. I seriously don't know what happened. So weird.
Well, we were supposed to go to Ciro's for a gas fill up every 2 days and we are now on day 4. So, we decided to head out and get our gas before going anywhere.
Along the way and snapping pictures of course...
This guy made it across the road just in time.
While we were filling up our gas at Ciro's, I decided to head next door, to Banco Azteka, get some dollars exchanged to peso's. We were running a little low after giving Squalo's most of it the day before of our last excursion.
When I got there, the line was almost out the door. I had seen pictures of this place and the people waiting in line but didn't realize it seemed to always be like this.
I stood there for awhile and the line didn't even move. There's no way I'm about to wait this long to exchange money. I'll go to the ferry terminal before waiting this long.
I have to say this was the weirdest bank I have ever seen. It was inside a place that sells electronics and appliances. I read it originally was a place for the locals to pay their weekly payments on the items purchased there (I'm thinking like a Rent-A-Center) and then it somehow morphed into a bank as well. Super weird to me.
When I came out the hubby was down the street parked and waiting on me. He said they told him he had to move so others could get in/out so he went around the corner. No problemo.
So off we went (snapping pictures of course) and I told the hubby to just go to the ferry terminal and exchange to peso's. So quick and easy and I really didn't care that they say the exchange rate isn't as good as at a bank. It's worth it to not wait in line.
Sent the hubby to exchange the money while hija and I sat in the Jeep in the heat...whew it's hot. It was always comfortable when we were moving in the golf cart but you stop, then you roast!
Gassed up, money exchanged...now it's time to head to Garrafon for some snorkeling. Garrafon is located on the south end and the admission price to get in is $150 pesos (which equals around $7.45 US) or if you are paying with US it is $9.00. See how you save if you have pesos?
We used my MapsMe and it was an easy find.
Look at that beautiful water and we haven't even made it in yet.
They do give you wrist bands to wear after you have paid.
Now this place does have a lot of steps and sits up on a hill. However, it did have a wheelchair ramp and that made it easier on me thank goodness.
We looked around for a spot to sit. There was plenty of lounge chairs in one area, but I decided to keep walking and we found a spot all alone, with 3 chairs, under a coconut tree up high overlooking the beach area. The loungers at the beach were all taken I might add. Hubby sat down and said "I hope I don't get knocked out by a coconut"
It was so hot so hija and I headed down to the water to cool off. Hubby snapped this picture of us. Can you tell I was ready for some snorkeling?
We decided it was time to head out and see if the snorkeling was any good. I had the older GoPro and Sakari had the new one.
Large Blue Parrot Fish. The blue parrot fish are the ones that get the largest.
A very large school of fish. They were everywhere by the rocks.
A lonely red sea fan. It was the only one that I seen. :(
As we went around the rocks to the left, it started to get interesting. There was more coral, anemones everywhere and hundreds of schools of fish everywhere. I mean there were a lot! It was so pretty.
Yes, those are all schools of fish all over the coral.