Monday, June 28, 2010
Incredibly flawed vacation
Let me preface this post with saying that we extremely blessed. Even though we have had a rough few months, we see how fortunate we really are. We have our health and great family and friends. Chris has a well paying job that he loves and we are extremely financial secure at our young age. We are able to live in a beautiful home and travel whenever we please. However, this vacation has had a few more downs than our usual ups.
Our journey started of later than planned to our favorite vacation spot. Our original flight time was scheduled for 7:00 a.m. This would ensure us a full day on the beach. We were notified after booking that the departure time had been moved back two hours still giving us plenty of time outside. The day of our flight however, the plane experienced some technical difficulties, thankfully before we left the house and without anyone on the flight, and would inevitably push our flight back six hours from the original flight time. We finally were on our way to Mexico to soak up the sun and lay on the beach for six glorious days. Our flight was late, but we were still happy to check in to our five-star, all-inclusive hotel.
After the flight we were escorted to our shuttle where we ended up waiting 30+ minutes to board. We were crammed into a 10 passenger van like sardines, where Chris didn't even have his own seat, and scurried away to our individual destinations. Next time we will book direct transportation. Then Tropical Storm Alex hit. The poor driver could barely drive in normal conditions, let alone in the torrential down pour. We made it to our hotel in one piece. Upon arrival were greeted with champagne and friendly faces. We were able to upgrade to an ocean view suite and were whisked away to our room.
It was an ocean view if you stood at the correct angle and tilted your head 45 degrees while singing "Freedom" by George Michael. Oh wait. That is in another part of the story. You did have to be a contortionist to see the ocean view without being on the balcony. We promptly unpacked, ordered room service and settled in for the night. I decided a nice, relaxing jacuzzi bath was just what I needed after a long trip. I soon discovered that there was very little hot water escaping the faucet. It took an hour to fill up the tub. Our room service was an hour instead of the promised twenty-five minutes. The food arrived soggy, but we didn't mind since we were starving. Also, we had to call to and remind the front desk to push the two beds together to make a gargantuan bed. (They were booked in all of the single-bed rooms.)
All of this was acceptable. However, at 10:30 p.m. our lovely neighbors decided it was party time. Our suites shared a door which did not help the noise cancellation that was much needed. After being up since 5 a.m. I was ready to sleep. Words cannot express how loud the music was. Let's just say that I have been to many rock concerts and the noise level was the same. We made it through George Michael's "Freedom," bad techno, 50 cent's "In da club," and Green Day before I begged Chris to call the front desk. Chris, in his naivete, thought that the best idea would be to go bang on the neighbors door and ask them to turn down the music. I informed him this would not be the best idea seeing how they were probably plastered drunk and more likely than not, one of them was a "mean drunk." (In his very sheltered life, he has not had much experience with drunk people, let alone angry ones.) After informing the hotel management, they sent up a security officer who politely informed the wanna-be-club-starters that people were trying to sleep and they needed to turn down their music. At this point Captain Cool-dude started shouting, "REAUHLLY? I'MA PAYIN' LIKA SHEVENTY MILLION DOLLAS A NIGHT?" The security officer remained calm and explained again that their neighbors were trying to sleep and the music level was unacceptable. Mister McCoolster was like, "REAUHLLY? Who complained? These folks? The people with all the food?" (We had a peephole we were looking through and there is a secret box that you can have room service deliver your food and where you can leave it when you are finished instead of just outside in the hall, which can get pretty gross in this hot climate.) The kind and considerate neighbors continued their harassment of the officer a little while longer and then they all filed back into their room and slammed the door in his face. They then turned their music up even louder.
At this point I didn't feel comfortable staying there and just wanted to change rooms. We visited the front desk, now at 11:45 p.m. and requested to be moved. They obliged and sent for a bellboy to retrieve our luggage. Our new room was a down-grade. Small shower since the previous room was a 6-shower head luxury palace. The DVD player had no compatible remote with it which would have come in handy. However, no loud neighbors, the hot water worked and if you are on the patio you could see the ocean.
We woke up to more of Tropical Storm Alex. Sunday we spent most of the day inside. Room service took longer each time and sometimes they would never even show up and we would have to call and make our requests again. Needless to say, the service is less than five star. The food, which was one of the selling points, since most all-inclusive resorts have horrible food, was promised to be the best. It is probably the best out of all-inclusive standards, but not enough to convince me to book there again.
Monday was a beautiful day outside and Chris decided to brave the sun. This is his usually attitude to the sun, but for some reason he loves tropical, beach locations. We had a fun time relaxing and being pampered. Everyone was outside since it rained non stop Saturday and Sunday. After coming inside to get cleaned up for dinner, we realized that he should have reapplied sunscreen. His burn got worse during the day and I knew that on Tuesday I would be flying solo outside. Exactly what you want to do on a romantic getaway with your husband.
Tuesday was absolutely gorgeous. Chris ventured outside for a short time, but did not want his sunburn to get worse. After lunch, he started feeling pretty crummy. We later found out that we had the dreadful Montezuma's Revenge! It lasted the rest of the trip for him. Poor thing! I, on the other hand, who always has stomach issues, didn't get sick once! Amazing.
Wednesday I decided to stay outside the entire day. We had a delicious breakfast and before we left I got some fresh squeezed orange juice. When I took my first drink, there was some sort of plastic wrap that I almost swallowed. I took it out and examined it and placed it on my plate. I wasn't grossed out, which was odd for those who know me. However, one of the hostesses saw what had happened and rushed over to our table and with a very concerned look on my face, she asked if I was OK. I replied that I was, but she insisted on taking my plate away. I figured that maybe she was embarrassed that someone let the Saran Wrap fall into pitcher after setting it out for everyone. We got up to leave and we were promptly confronted by the morning manager. He starting apologizing profusely even though we said over and over again how everything was fine and it wasn't a big deal. He continued to state that it was "ridiculous" and that he was going to have to fire the person responsible. I thought that it was a little "ridiculous" the big deal they were making out of this. Out of all the things that happened, this was not the most ridiculous. He wanted to prepare us a nice Mexican platter and a fruit juice spread. This being a buffet restaurant, I didn't understand. He wanted us to come back at 1:00 p.m. For some odd reason, Chris and I forgot to show up. He called us at 1:30 p.m. and asked Chris (since I was outside enjoying the beautiful weather on our last day), "Do you know who this is?" and Chris responded with, "No...", "It's me, Jose!" (the manager from the buffet),"Did you forget about something?" Obviously, this guy was not going to let this go. We agreed to see him in the morning before we left.
We went back to the restaurant the next morning, but thankfully Jose didn't remember us. We decided to take the ferry over to Cozumel while we had time before our flight left. We walked the few blocks to the ferry, bought our tickets and took the hour ride over to Cozumel. Chris unfortunately got sick due to a combination of no AC, extremely rough waters and a killer headache he already had. We realized that we would have to take the immediate returning ferry if we were going to make it back to the hotel in time for our flight! So I stepped off the ferry, took a picture of Cozumel and got back on the boat.
We made it back to the hotel in time and drenched in sweat and headed to the airport.
We were so glad to be back in the USA.