Rocks and Rockstars

There are quite a few clouds when we wake up, but the day ends up being very nice.

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We go to breakfast.

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Even Zung has a Mimosa this morning.

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He goes back to the room and works and I go to the beach and don’t work. Seriously, we are on vacation, one of us has to not work. He does contribute to the vacation by taking some awesome pictures.

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Our regular beach waiter, Jonatan, is off today. I miss him, because he is so darn cute, but our beach service is still pretty excellent. Zung joined me after a couple of hours. I’d just ordered a Mudslide, and he ordered a Margherita. I can tell from this picture that I must have had a hang-over from all those chocolate cake shots. I will drink plain coke the morning after and it seems to make me feel so much better. There is a half-drank (drunk?) glass of coke on the table here.

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I refer to the Mudslides as milkshakes for grown ups.

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When we are finished with our drinks, we decide to take a walk. It’s always important to take water with you on your walks. There is lots of seaweed, which has been an ongoing problem along the Riviera Maya beaches for the last several months. This was December and I am still hearing about it now, in May.

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We came to the rock sculpture garden, where people have stacked rocks. I decide to make one, which is easier than it sounds, since I didn’t have shoes with me. Some people recommend wearing shoes when you take this walk, but I never do and generally it is not a problem. My sculpture is not very elaborate, but I am proud of it.

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Phew! That was hard work. I need to sit down and have a drink of water.

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Zung is wondering why there is so little walking on this walk.

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As we are walking back there is a couple standing there and they are looking at us rather expectantly. I am thinking they are going to ask us to take their picture. Instead, it is a rock star moment. He says something like, “You don’t know who we are, but we know who you are.” They are a very lovely couple from Louisiana named Levy and Reba. He had actually sent me a message before this trip telling me they chose the Grand because of me. We talked with them a couple of times and they liked the Grand a lot.

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After our walk, we are hungry and thirsty, and we head right for lunch. The usual suspects of sauvignon blanc, Victoria beer, and shrimp fajitas make their appearance.

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Another Awesome Day in Paradise

After lunch we head back out to the beach. We stop at the pool bar to say hello to Humberto.

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We settle in for a relaxing afternoon, enjoying the view. Enjoying the sound of the ocean. I’m sure there were drinks involved too.

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There is some more photography of the pretend brides.

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When the shade chases us away, we go to our room and realize how awesome that corner suite is.

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It’s so nice to sit outside and enjoy the view and sit in that big jacuzzi. If you can get one of these rooms, it is worth the investment. When the hotel first opened they wouldn’t let you book these rooms. You had to just wait and see if one was available when you checked in. I don’t think they charged extra for them either. I can’t remember how long it took them to realize there was a demand for them and they started charging extra. They have also realized the upper floors have a high demand, and now these have a surcharge too. These are just sound business decisions in my opinion.

We dress for dinner.

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Tonight is our Romantic Dinner on the beach. Except it is very windy and they call us and say it is too windy to do it on the beach, and is it okay to do it inside La Brisa? I say okay, because I don’t know what else to say. I know this is what they do when the weather is not good, but La Brisa used to be empty when they did the dinners at night, but now it is open as the Mexican restaurant and will be full of people.

We arrive and they have set up our table down where it is out of the way of the other tables. They have decorated the table and set up candles around it and tried to make it nice.

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But, it just is not the same as being outside. Of course, it isn’t windy either! Almost any time of year it is windy at this time of the evening.

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Oscar comes over and talks to Zung for a long time about tequila. He knows so much about it. It’s very interesting. He brings Zung a bottle of 1800 to take home. Rafael comes by to see how our dinner is going.

They bring the different courses.

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The fettucine is delicious. I eat a lot of it, but it is so rich I cannot eat all of it.

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My entree is the spinach covered potato thing I had the last time we had a Romantic dinner, except this time they made it with cream cheese and it’s just weird. I don’t eat it but I am full from the fettucine and I tell our waiter it is fine.

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It is a good dinner, but really not the same as being outside, just the two of us. So, we don’t linger. When we are finished eating we leave. We stop at the room, where the maid has done this…

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And this.

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Which is very sweet, but we are headed to the lobby bar, so it goes unused.

Daniel is waiting for us. Or ready for us. One of the two. Maybe both.

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We make some new friends, Maggie and Det. We really like them. Maggie and I hit it off and we do A LOT of chocolate cake shots.

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Maybe six. I can’t remember. Which shouldn’t be surprising in light of the fact that I did six shots.

And so ends another awesome day in paradise.

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Just another day at the beach

Goooooood morning Mexico!

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It is a sunny day, and at this hour, quiet on the beach.

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I have to make a correction to my last post. I said we had Cucaracha shots. They were actually B 52’s and they were Ian’s call. Since I can’t remember much about them, I will have to do them again the next time I am there.

We head off for breakfast at Bella Vista where the usual suspects make their appearance.

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After breakfast I head off to the beach and Zung heads off to the office. Wouldn’t this be an awesome office view?

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It looks like they are setting up for a small wedding.

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The bride is pumped!

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Or maybe she is just getting ready to rumbles, because a short time later I see this…

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I am confused because I know there is only one wedding a day allowed (at each hotel – so theoretically there could be five weddings at the Iberostar complex). I see a wedding planner looking person and ask her when the wedding will be. It’s possible that it is a wedding between two women and they wanted to take pictures separately beforehand. This is not the case. The wedding planner looking lady says it is not a real wedding. It is some kind of photography competition.

I wonder who won?

All this wedding confusion has made me hungry, so we go to lunch. This is the view from outside La Brisa toward the pool.

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I personally prefer the view towards the beach.

Zung celebrates a hard mornings work with a Victoria beer.

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I ordered and then got some apps from the buffet.

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Then I had a quesadilla.

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Zung had shrimp fajitas.

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We finished with some coconut ice cream.

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So far, a day well spent.

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Quite the Night

After dinner we go to the bar. We do shots. Lots of shots.

First there is this one. It’s a Cucaracha shot and it gets lit on fire. I can’t remember whose idea this one was. It’s got Kahlua and tequila in it. It has a third ingredient, but that can vary and I don’t remember what it was tonight.

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John points out that he had done “my” shot (chocolate cake), and had bailed on “his” shot (tequila) and it was time to pay up. He ordered tequila shots with sangrita chasers. It appears from this picture that it is only John, Ian and I that do this shot.

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I didn’t like the tequila and really didn’t like the sangrita. I don’t like tequila and I think drinking tomatoes is just yucky. And for those of you who think I just haven’t had good tequila, I have and it all tastes like gasoline to me.

After the shots, we go to the show. There is a guy in front of us that is really feeling the music. He is as entertaining to watch as the show, It is the Beatles show. All the shows are good, quality shows. Don’t miss them because you think they will be like the usual cheesy shows most resorts have. They have some really talented singers and dancers.

After the show, we all take a golf cart ride and we go to the Disco. The Disco is at the shopping center and has a very cheesy Star Wars theme. We sit for awhile and watch the Star Friends and some other people dance. I get a drink at the bar. They don’t have Havana Siete, so I settle for Havana Club and start plotting my escape.

John has informed me that I am going to dance. I hate dancing. I have no rythym. But I have had enough to drink that I agree to it. Ian and Janette and Suzanne and John pull me out to the dance floor. Zung watches, but thank goodness, does not take any pictures. I dance for a song or two and when they aren’t looking, I go back to Zung and say let’s get out of here.

We go back to the Lobby Bar and I order a cucumber mojito. Ken and Patrick are there.

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Someone decided there should be chocolate cake shots for everyone.

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Suzanne and John and Ian and Janette return. They said they looked around and we were GONE! Suzanne and John are leaving tomorrow, so we take one last shot of Suzanne and I. We clearly are both feeling no pain.

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I’m sure, I HOPE, it was not long after this that Zung and I went back to the room. We had gotten into enough trouble for one night. Well, I had at any rate, and he is guilty by association.

Posted in Bars, Drinks, Entertainment, The Grand | 2 Comments

Corner Suite Tour and Unplanned Group Dinner

There are two ocean front buildings, 70 and 71. Each has three floors and two corner suites on each floor. One of the corner suites on the third floor is a Presidential suite. I’ve never been in a Presidential suite. I have asked for a tour a couple of times, but they have always been occupied. I had never seen a corner suite until we walked through the door of ours. This is the first thing you see, a little room with a couple funky chairs and ottomans. I’m not sure if they originally had other plans for this room or if they think people might hang out here, but it strikes me as a little odd. There is a door to the rest of the suite.

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I included both pictures because the chairs look so different depending on the angle.

When you walk through the next door, it is the same as a regular room, with the closets, bathroom and mini-bar. There is another door and then you come to the room with the bed. That is identical to a regular room. Then you step down, and this area is a little larger in the corner suite. In a regular room the table starts where the drapes are. There is also the nice, big window by the table in the corner suite. No window in a regular room.

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Here is a picture of a table in a regular room for comparison.

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What really sets this room apart is the nice big jacuzzi on the balcony, and in this particular room, the incredible view as you sit in it.

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When we are prunes from sitting in the water for too long, we go inside and shower and dress for dinner.

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We still have a bit before dinner, so we go to the lobby bar. Sheila and George come over and we chat. Ian and Janette show up, and we chat with them too. Sheila and George are going to the Mexican restaurant and I recommend the chicken molé.

As it turns out, Ian and Janette are going to the same restaurant that we are tonight, the Japanese. And so are Suzanne and John! We ask the hostess if we can sit together and she put us at a hibachi table. Those tables are designed so couples are kind of off to themselves, so we probably should have asked for a regular table. I don’t think they have any already set up for six though.

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They bring some sushi rolls to start, which I usually pass on.

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We have ordered some fried stuff. I’m not sure that pink stuff on the plate adds to it visually.

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I have ordered a wok dish, the beef fillet with oyster sauce.

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Zung has ordered chicken and shrimp. This is before they give him his veggies.

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Dinner is good. Dinner at the Japanese is always a leisurely affair. After dinner we go back to the lobby bar. And I do what we all tell our teenagers not to do.

I submit to peer pressure. And it involves alcohol. And dancing. Yes. You read that right. Dancing..

Posted in Food/Menu Items, Restaurant, The Grand | 6 Comments