Wednesday, July 25, 2012

In the Cave - Playa Del Carmen

DAY 4: Tuesday, July 24, 2012
This day began early once again. Dad and I were at breakfast at our hotel at 7:30. We headed to the dive shop around 8:15. We had to be there by 8:30 and it's a short walk so we set off on foot. We got there while our gear was being loaded onto the truck. We were going to dive a Cenote and were joined by a couple from China. They are an interesting set of people in that they are originally from China, but are working in Cuba for a telecommunications company and of course, are vacationing in Mexico right now. The man spoke English and Chinese, and the woman spoke Chinese, English, and Spanish. We have met some very interesting people on this trip so far.

We got in the truck and drove about 35 minutes or so to the Cenotes. The dive master showed us where we would be diving and we got our gear on and made the trek about 100 yards down some stairs to the diving site. We did this in full diving gear, including the tank on the back. It was heavy, but manageable. Unfortunately, I have an internal bruise on the bottom of my left heel right now so that makes walking somewhat painful and adding the weight of the gear and the tank was a bit rough, but as I said, it was managable.

And totally worth it! Once we got in the water and began the dive, I was in awe!! This place is AMAZING!! It's called Dos Ojos and is so beautiful I cannot even describe it. It contains a lot of stalactites and stalagmites and is very dark as you dive through so we used our flashlights to keep track of each other and to see everything around us.

The second dive took place in the same Cenote, but it was the other side of it and it contained a literal bat cave! The water has a place where bats congregate. It's so quiet and peaceful there, almost ethereal. Everything about the Cenotes is beautiful and I highly recommend diving them. I say this despite the fact that one of the stalactites jumped out and attacked me as I came around a corner leaving a nice bump on my noggin. Luckily, my brain has not been affected at all...well, I'm fairly sure of that anyway.

After our dive, we purchased T-shirts and a photo CD of our dive (like any good Americans on vacation, we must buy T-shirts and photos) and then got in the truck for the drive back to the dive shop. After that, Dad and I made our way to Las MaƱanitas for dinner, which was quite a surprise. We ate breakfast there in February when we passed through Playa for a few hours, but had never eaten dinner there. The portions are HUGE! You definitely get what you pay for and then some. After that, we stopped by the Dairy Queen. Again, we are total Americans. Neither Dad nor I had eaten at DQ in quite sometime so it was a nice treat.

We grabbed a taxi back to the hotel because we were tired. I have now showered and stretched out in the best bed ever. I seriously want to take this bed with me when I leave, it is SO comfortable. This was an amazing day and finally, on Day 4, I am starting to feel really relaxed and peaceful. Tomorrow, we have opted to dive Cenotes once again. I think we will be at a different Cenote than the one today, but if not, that is OK because seeing this one again would be welcome too!

Day 5: Wednesday, July 25, 2012

This day started with my not feeling so well, but I quickly got over it, which was good because we had diving to do! Dad and I had breakfast at the hotel and then headed to the dive shop where we hopped in the truck to make the trip to the Cenotes. We had the same dive master, Andrea. She is amazing so we were both happy to have her with us. We were also joined by a man visiting from Spain so it was the three of us and Andrea. A good group for the dive. 

We arrived at Chac Mool, the Cenote site. It was gorgeous!! I love the Cenotes, they are so peaceful and calm on the surface and what lies beneath them is amazing. A true natural wonder!! 

The dive master showed us the two sites we would be diving, they were next to each other. We then got our gear on and trekked over to the site, which was a few yards away. Once there, we got in the water and were ready to go. I simply cannot do justice to the Cenotes. It's just incredible, absolutely incredible. We dove for about 40 minutes and part of the dive was a cave where we could see tree roots growing. One of them grows until it reaches water and then stops so it has a flat surface underneath it. It was fascinating to have a view of the roots from underground. It's so peaceful and it feels like communing with nature when I am diving. I love it!

The second Cenote was just as wonderful as the first. It was deeper and had more intricate structures, but it was beautiful as well. I am in awe of these natural wonders. Words really cannot do them justice. 

After the dive, we headed back to the dive shop. I went to pay for our diving, only to find that my bank put a block in my card for security reasons. This meant I had to call them (at $1.79 a minute) and convince them I had not stolen my own debit card so they would remove the block and I could pay for the dives. My Dad will reimburse me for all of this since his credit card was stolen at the Subway earlier this week and normally he would pay for it. But still, it was irritating to be on the phone with this guy for 20 minutes at such a high cost. I appreciate my bank offering security measures, but it annoyed me. Anyway, we got that all taken care of and then headed over to Las MaƱanitas  for another excellent meal. After that, we had Dairy Queen again. We are treating ourselves down here. :-)

We walked back to the hotel and I took a much needed shower and nap. Now I am lounging in bed and resting. Tomorrow, we have nothing on the agenda at all, it's a free day. So I am going to sleep in and go shopping. Dad will come with me. He's one of the few men in the world who can stand accompanying a woman who shops for hours. LOL!


Karen Peterson said...

Those dives look gorgeous. I'd really love to learn how to dive. It always looks like so much fun.

And that's really lame about your bank. But I'm glad it all got taken care of.

Thank, Q said...

Ok, those photos make diving look pretty cool. I'm totally terrified of being underwater and if you mix in caves, that heightens my fear. I guess I'd try anything once to have photo ops like that though.

S.I.F. said...

Sounds like you are having such an amazing time, and those diving pictures are INCREDIBLE! I haven't been diving in way too long... consider me officially jealous!