Ever wondered what it's like to spend 3 days a week in Mexico for 3 months? Yeah, me neither. But we were about to find out real quick. First, I wanna start off by clarifying that some of our best memories from this trip were in Mexico, but........there were also some sketchy times. Our two ports were Cozumel and Yucatán (Progresso). In Cozumel, the ship port was VERY tourist-y. You step off the ship and you're immediately bombarded with men and women on stilts wearing nothing but neon feathers, looking like they are part of Cirque De Soule. They wanna take pictures with you. It's weird. Then there is this little "village-like" area that has tons of shops and restaurants, but this isn't the authentic Mexico vibe we were wanting. This is a Carnival owned area that wants your money.
Eventually, John and I found the good spots. The ones with the AUTHENTIC Mexican food & shopping, and even though that's what we wanted to experience, there were still moments of "WTF ARE WE DOING OVER HERE?". One thing that drove me crazy was shopping. Hey, if I WANT to walk into your store, I will. But don't follow me for 2 blocks and tap on my shoulder trying to get me to buy your knock-off Louis Vuitton bag. I don't want it. I said I didn't want it 10 minutes ago......still don't want it. I also don't want to buy your 'Cuban cigars'.....what I want is 20 tacos and a smoothie because I'm hot, I'm irritated, and I'm pregnant. Some of the people we met were SO nice, don't get me wrong. But unfortunately for John, the ones who weren't so nice got to experience my raging hormones in a way no one should ever have to experience. Lol I remember one day, we were walking through what looked almost like a flea market. There were a bunch of cute little beach shack type stores that we needed to walk through to rent our jeep for the day. There was a man trying to get me to buy something and although I politely declined, he continued to follow me, trying to persuade me to buy something. I kept my cool until eventually he stepped out directly in front of my face and kept talking. Once again....I was hot, irritated, and HANGRY, so I used a few choice words and completely flipped out on the dude. Then he looked at John and told him to "tell his woman to calm down"............BAD IDEA. John said some things back and we got out of there real quick.
Another day, we were jeeping around Cozumel with our friends Chris and Michele, when we stopped at this little shack that had "Beers to-go" (yes, you can drive around sipping beer in Mexico) and while I was ordering my fresh coconut, I turn around to see the cutest little iguana in a cowboy hat sitting on John's shoulder. This man walked up behind John and placed the little (big) reptile on his shoulder while he wasn't paying attention. But then get this......we were all admiring the cuteness of the cowboy iguana, and of course I snapped a few photos, when all of a sudden the man said "Ok that's $5 each". Uhhhhh nooooo? I probably could've been a little nicer but I literally laughed in his face and said "You're kidding right? YOU walked up to HIM and put this little dude on his shoulder without asking. I'll be more than happy to delete the photo, but you're damn sure not getting $20 for putting a reptile on someone's limb. Get out of here. Bye." lol he just gave us a dirty look and walked away. Whatever. That's one thing I learned by spending 3 days a week in Mexico. I definitely didn't let anyone try to take advantage me or take my money. Noooooope, not today Mr. Sanchez!! It's ridiculous. Even at restaurants some of the servers were SO rude about money. I've always been a good tipper. I waited tables for 5-6 years. I get it. It's hard work and you should ALWAYS tip your servers. But some of these guys at the more "authentic" Mexican restaurants would literally stand over your table asking for MORE of a tip. They would hold out their hand and say "5 more dollars?". So annoying. I could go on and on about all the annoying/obnoxious tricks some of these guys had up their sleeves, but I'll spare you the rest.
There were also some AMAZING people we met in Mexico. One was Gonzalo Morelos: this guy was responsible for feeding me and baby the BEST Mexican food imaginable while we were in Cozumel. I can't say enough good things about this guy. He's the owner of the incredible Chalos Antojitos Mexicanos & sea food, and his hospitality is out of this world. For all you pregnant women out there, you know you can be a pain in the ass when it comes to eating what you want and getting it NOW (I know I am) and whatever I was craving, he'd fix it right up with his own unique recipe and went above and beyond to make John and I (and baby) happy! He was just so sweet to us, and will definitely be missed!!! Another was Aby Ramirez: Aby is a bartender at No Name Bar Beach Club, Cozumel, Mexico(a crew only bar in Cozumel) and she was one of my favorite people to meet! She always had a smile on her face and was so sweet. I really enjoyed hanging out with her every time we went to No Name. She also made the BEST smoothies everrrrr for my growing baby belly.
I know I kind of went off on a rant in this blog, but overall I'm so thankful for all the memories that were made in Mexico. Especially in Cozumel, the water was SO beautiful. It was unreal. One of our goals on this trip was to learn to surf. I even signed us up for surf lessons before we left for the cruise, but obviously after I found out I was pregnant that wasn't an option, but John did still learn to surf, and it was on a day that the water was super rough, so that was fun getting to watch him crash a million times. Ha. It was amazing getting to experience another country over and over each week, and become familiar with a place we never thought we'd even have the chance to visit. I look forward to sharing all of these stories with our son someday when he's older!