A Day at the Beach With Mr Sanchos

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North America » Mexico
February 21st 2017
Published: September 6th 2017
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Geo: 20.4286, -86.8792

6:30am this morning comes way too soon. The boat has been rockin' and rollin' during the night but, upon awakening, the water is calm and we're approaching Cozumel just as the sun is rising. The forecast is for overcast skies and 81°F but looking from our deck, there's quite a bit of sunshine right now.  Jonathan wanted to see how the ship docked but all is quiet from their room and it appears we will be docking on on the starboard side while our stateroom is on the port side.  This won't afford him the excitement of watching the lines tossed to the pier with the captain bringing her in ever so gently right up against the fenders. We are both dressed by the time room service arrives with our breakfast at 7. Still no action from next door so we start our breakfast in peace and quiet. But wait. Not so fast.

Jonathan comes over. Where's his breakfast? Now yelling can be heard from their room.  On RCL, we've discovered that they call those that request room service about 5 minutes before they arrive with the food.  Maybe they find people still asleep or nobody there to accept their meal.  They called us.  Apparently, our traveling partners never responded to the phone or the door, being asleep at the time and with the phone off the hook. While she calls room service to complain, I attempt to calm the situation with the words, "Where's your breakfast? Mmmmm. These eggs are cooked perfectly." Now that gets some attention. Their breakfast, enough to feed a family of six, finally arrives resulting in our leaving the ship a little late.

It's a long walk on the pier to the town of Cozumel. We roll through security. By design, the cruise port layout is such that in order to exit the port area, we're required to wander through a myriad of local shopkeeper establishments, all barking out today's specials and one of kind deals. Scarlett buys the kid a $2 pair of sunglasses for $10.  It's not easy but we find our way to the taxi queue and, because we're after the big rush, we find one right away. $17 is the standard rate to Mr. Sancho's and the taxi coordinator directs us to our cab. Queenie is definitely not comfortable with this. "I would just hire a limo", she states, adding, "This just isn't safe. How do we know where he's taking us? To which I reply, "Why, Mr. Sanchos, of course". My answer provides no assurance to her which is, of course, the idea.
During the next 20 minutes, Ruben, our Mexican driver, and I converse between ourselves in Spanish, leaving the three occupants in the back seat wondering what we're talking about. I fill in the blanks for them using words like sharks, cholera, banditos, etc. Karen and the kid think it's all funny and, whith Ruben and myself laughing and continuing with the comments, Scarlett's eyes just get wider and wider.  Unbelievably, Ruben gets us to Mr. Sancho's without robbing or kidnapping us and, although it's not customary to tip in Mexico, he gets $20.  

Señor Sancho's Beach Resort is rated #4 on TripAdvisor for activities in Cozumel. We have reservations for four, placed several weeks prior to our departure. It's $50pp but includes our private palapa and beach lounge chairs, free food and beverages including alcohol and use of two pools with swim up bars. They take us to our palapa, right on the beach and bring us some drinks to start. They're not stingy with either the food or beverages and our waiter, Salvador, keeps us well supplied. The only one not indulging is Scarlett, who warns us of the dangers of eating anything from a foreign country. I'm amazed that there's human life of any kind outside the US. After traveling the world, she offers these words of wisdom: "I have zero desire to eat or drink anything here.  I got sick one time in Arizona."  While we enjoy the shrimp, Margaritas and the 5 bowls of coconut ice cream consumed by Jonathan, she spends the day drinking only the questionable bottled water and reminding us of what is to become of the three of us later once the parasites take over. We all drink to her premonition including her son, Jonathan.  "Pass the nachos, por favor!" 

There's only three cruise ships in port today and we're luck. Yesterday I hear that there were eight ships, with many of the guests coming here, obviously unaware of the dangers lurking about. That's a lot of cruisers! It seems only the kid and I went into the ocean. Mom did join us in the pool. Scarlett's only indulgence was a massage, accompanied by Karen. They both said it was really nice. It's 4pm when we finally leave the beach side resort. On our return trip, our new driver suggested several times that we stop at a "tequila factory" for some good deals and each time I declined. I'm sure it was his brother-in-law.  I skip my Spanish lesson with this guy since he doesn't present himself as a friendly sort.  Queenie is freaking out about this and gladly pays the $20 to get us out of there. We head back on the pier, through security to the ship and our stateroom.

No one's in the mood for a fancy dinner so we all take naps for awhile and make it the Windjammer Buffet by 7pm. This is Queenie's first food since breakfast other than the bag of M&Ms I had in our room. We bought two bags in Puerto Rico and she's already gone through one of those almost by herself.  She has no idea where they actually came from.  After, we walked around the sports deck and wandered down for an encore performance of the Aqua show we saw several nights ago. With that, it's was time to retire. I worked a little on the blog and called it quits. I'm good on the narratives but lagging on the photos. Don't worry, tomorrow is a sea day. I'll catch up.  For now, let's sleep in.

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