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Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Day Two: Puerto Vallarta

The weather forecast for our day in Puerto Vallarta was for rain and unfortunately they were right. And it wasn't just sprinkling lightly, it was pouring torrential rain. But it was warm and we didn't really care and we had never been in Puerto Vallarta before so we bought 5 dollar umbrellas and ventured into the city. After a short shared van ride into the city center, it didn't take us long to be dazzled by the seaside town. We loved it in spite of the rain and that tells you something about the place. We enjoyed the big sidewalk that ran along the sea. Dolphins delighted us as they frolicked in the Pacific not too far from shore. We enjoyed getting a small taste of the "flavor" of Mexico. We couldn't resist the Cheeky Monkey restaurant with it's beckoning balcony that overlooked the sea and the promise of dollar beers and margaritas! This place did not disappoint. The waiters were darling, warm, friendly, outgoing young Mexican men and the margarita was delicious. We indulged (a theme of taking a cruise) in homemade chips and salsa as well and felt that perhaps it was the most delicious salsa we'd ever tasted.We paid our bill which amounted to $10.00 for 3 margaritas, chips and salsa and a tip. I love Mexico! The entire time we sat at our amazing balcony table, the pelicans put on quite a show with their dive bombing act! It was wonderful watching the surf come in and seeing the birds fly high in the sky looking for prey and then suddenly turn on a dive and head beak first into the crashing surf. Nature's beauty is truly the best entertainment.We wandered around a bit more and decided to walk back to the cruise ship. We were already soaked and felt we needed some exercise so we got directions and took off. There was so much water in the streets that every time a bus or truck came by, we were in danger of getting hit with a big wave from their tires spitting up water! It was kind of crazy at times, but fun to see more of a normal Mexican neighborhood as well. We had a little time before we had to get back on board and stumbled upon a great little local place called La Terrazza de mi Abuela...The terrace of my Grandmother. It was an outdoor place, thankfully, with roof, where we enjoyed some delicious homemade tacos and quesadillas. What a great ending to a wet day in Puerto Vallarta. We both expressed that we could easily return to this area for a longer holiday.
After getting back on board, I raced up to the 14th deck and indulged (see, there it is again) in a steam bath and sauna. It felt great to warm up a bit after wandering in the rain all day.