Sunday, December 18, 2011 - Day 28 – Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
I go on the horse riding excursion today - a nice way to get away from the
commercialization of Puerto Vallarta. A bus takes us inland to an arid area
behind Puerto Vallarta, where the real Mexicans live. There are no Wal-marts,
Home Depots or upscale shopping centres here…just little cafes beside the road
with a few tables and dirt floors, and vendors barbequing chicken beside the road,
selling to the local families for their Sunday dinners.
|We arrive at the hacienda and are assigned our horses based on our weight and
skill level. I get a horse called Grandpa (Abuelito in Spanish). There are about
thirty riders from the ship, so it is a good-sized group as we leave the corral
single file and try to get used to our steeds (and them to us, no doubt).
Grandpa seems to be very good at following the horse in front of him, and that
suits me fine.
We travel slowly across country similar to the dry and scrubby land landscape
I remember from La Enscenada Lodge ranch on the Gulf of Nicoya in Costa Rica. We
cross the river twice, once where it is less than a foot deep, and another point
where it is probably about a metre deep. Grandpa is one of the bigger horses, so
I don’t get my feet wet, while other riders do.
We have a rest stop after an hour, where they have a little cantina setup
with beer, pop and water for sale, and of course there are also bathrooms
available. Some people have a dip in the nearby hot springs, while others ride a
horse which likes to swim in the deeper part of the river. I just take it easy,
take some photos, and then climb back on Grandpa for the return trip back to the
After dinner on the Lido deck, I see the
flash of the setting Sun from
the poolside table in the Lido as the ship sails up the coast. My friend takes
some good photos of the green flash from the deck above, however I’m pleased to
visually observe this apparition. This is a personal first for me after many
years of trying!
Cabo San Lucas, Mexico
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