Saturday, January 24, 2015

THE SUNSET FROM THE TOP OF THE HILL

With the days of Audrey's visit flying by we've really ramped up our activities in the last few days. Still, we aren't moving at that fast of a pace - in this heat you can only go so far. We are still thoroughly enjoying her hotel room since it is shaded in the afternoon and gets the breeze coming off the ocean.


Here are the photos of our trip to Jungle Pizza Wednesday night. The waiter took a photo of the four of us - with all the ladies wearing our new dresses from our shopping spree.


We must have all been hungry because we seemed to have arrived pretty early - it was still light out for quite a while. I know - you'd think we'd check the time but we don't do that so much here.
Usually we are here just before dark. 


Wood fired pizza at Jungle Pizza.


Almost - this kitten almost got a ride back to Canada with us. She took turns sitting on our laps. BUT - we keep thinking of the logistics of taking a cat home with us in a cage for the next month of travel in the van and talk ourselves out of it again. So cute though and sad because she is a stray.


We went with two pizzas this time and even had enough for lunch the next day.

Thursday night - Derek and I decided to walk to the top of the hill as promised a few posts ago. I didn't take any pictures for the first part as I posted them here .


You just have to laugh at this. 
So - we are walking along and suddenly a car stops right beside us. The guy flies out - wanting to know about Rufus. Name - age - sex etc. Now, Rufus gets attention wherever he goes but this was over the top. The fellow then gets his phone out so that I can take pictures of him with Rufus. And then he picks him up - I finally figured I needed a photo too. Great picture with is wife/girlfriend looking on. He really wants a Husky but not a good dog for this climate.


Further along we came to a place that we could see the sun setting. Our timing was perfect for our walk. 

We stood for a minute to see the view and catch our breath. 


And then the gate opened. I was a bit worried that since we were actually standing on a gated community driveway we were in trouble. Nope - he just wants to ask us about Rufus!


And then we hoped that he didn't mind that we gave Rufus a drink from the fancy front pool.



We continued up another steep part watching all the taxis come by,which led to this - a traffic jam outside of a fancy restaurant. Instead of getting through and turning around many of the taxis just drove down the hill backwards until they could get themselves turned around.


And then we came to the end of the road. Actually the road does continue but it's gated. An amazing view of Playa La Ropa. You can see our RV Park if you look to the right of an orange building just below the large green area in the middle. You can see the fifth wheel with a white tarp over it - our neighbours and Barb and Dale's C Class.


We took a ton of selfies but none made the cut - so we took turns taking a picture of each other. We were pretty proud of ourselves to get to the top of 'killer hill' as named by Irene. It's the kind of hill that lets you know that you are really doing something. 



The last place before the gate.


From there we started back down. 


Funny that Derek turned around just as I took this picture - I guess he was wondering where I was. We are now back at the place where the security guard came out.


We stopped again to watch the sun continue it's decent.


As we sat on the wall and I looked over I just had to take a picture of this. 



From there we continued on - it doesn't look like it but it was getting dark fast and we wanted to be down the hill by the time it was. This is where we stopped last week - looking down at Pacifica Grand. 


Further along the sunset really became amazing. This is the second stellar sunset that we have seen since we arrived. 


Too bad I don't have a picture of me taking these pictures. I was standing on a concrete curb stretching myself up and over a chain link fence barely able to look at the screen for the picture. Derek was doing the same beside me. I just started clicking hoping for the best.


I'm so glad we did that - timing is everything!



From there we headed back to the beach. We thought that we would miss the rest of the sunset so we walked pretty fast. We were just in time.



Since Cassia was with Grandma - Derek went and got us two beers and here we sat drinking them and listening to the music from the nearby restaurant. 
Perfect.

We had another great day Friday when we took a trip over to another beach - Playa Las Gatas. Surprisingly, it was our first time. Too bad we left it so late it's an amazing place! Derek and Cassia went snorkelling while Audrey and I lounged on the beach. Those pictures next post.

Teresa




Thursday, January 22, 2015

A WALK TO EL CENTRO AND SHOPPING AT THE ARTISAN MARKET

Tuesday was the day to take Audrey (Derek's mom - for those of you just joining the party) for her first visit to El Centro. As most of you know, we make this trek each week to visit the Humane Society and El Cafecitio - and do whatever shopping that needs to be done. And - we take the combi. We have walked it once - two years ago. It's possible but a bit of a death march. 

Once was enough.

Except for today. Audrey wanted to walk it - so we walked it.

First we walk the length of Playa La Ropa - at the far end, by the rocks I have been showing you for the last few posts, there are stairs up to the Escenica La Ropa.


The stairs lead to this …..


which carries on like this. 
You really have to put your back into it and keep your head down. I find if you look up you can easily get discouraged. I'm wondering at this point if Derek's mom - at 75 I might add - is looking around for a combi!


A bit of a struggle but we made it to the top!
Since we walked on the beach first we all had sandy feet. Derek was generous enough to clean Cassia's off for her. We all needed a breather anyway.


Great views of the bay along the way.


Lots of road construction on the main Playa La Ropa road right now.


Since we were walking right by we decided to get a retake of a family photo we posed for at this spot two years ago. Last time it was in the evening - this time the morning - thus the sun shining in our eyes.


A short cut….


To another steep road - thankfully down. This is a crazy road that the taxis sometimes take us up - I'm always thinking the car is just going to flip backwards being on such a slope.


Since I'm generally at the back taking photos I get a lot of back shots. This time I got everyone to stand together.


After a bit of street walking it was back to the beach. 


This beach is called Playa Madera - also with hotels and restaurants but smaller than Playa La Ropa.


It leads to the sea wall. Yup - we are on a mission by this point - pretty hot already.


From this point it wasn't long until we were at the Municipal Plaza.


A quick stop to get a shot of Grandma with Cassia and the crocodile.


Then it was off to the Humane Society to pick up our dogs for the day. We got Frisky 2 and 3 again plus a little pup for Cassia. Unfortunately, the puppy wasn't sure what to do with his freedom out of the cage so Audrey ended up carrying him.


He was a cutie though with the bluest eyes.


I'm gonna love ya and squeeze ya…

After our dog walk we sat down for our coffees and Cas's Pina Colada smoothie at El Cafecitio.


Not one good picture of all of us - but here's a pic of Derek enjoying his coffee and e-cig courtesy of Cassia. For those of you that were with us when Derek started with is e-cig more than a year ago - he is still going strong. He was still smoking 4 cigarettes a day but since Dec. 29 he has just been vaping.


Charged with caffeine - it was time to shop - we headed to the artisan market. Only a few pictures as I was way to busy to snap pictures with all the looking I was doing. By this point we had already bought a dress each. I passed on this one but Audrey kept hers. 


So much to look at - very overwhelming.


Audrey needed a hat…..


Cassia not so much but she tried a few on anyway.


Although not really known for his shopping patience - Derek did VERY well - I was impressed. This is how he passed his time as us women hummed and hawed.


After much time spent at the artisan market we finally started making our way home. Our final stop downtown was for coffee at Cafe Molido. The supply that we brought with us has finally come to an end. 1 kg for 120 pesos! Try that at home!


I was in luck because the bags I have been eyeing are sold here. Cassia is modelling the one I chose.


But there are many more - at 30 pesos each I may just have to stop in for a few more - and more coffee to take home!

After that things got a bit confusing. What we should have done was take the combi or taxi home - but we didn't. Our first thought was to go to Pizza Loca for a late lunch. But they were closed. We then decided to start walking back and go to a restaurant by Playa Madera. By the time we got there and read the menu we weren't sold on the place - so we continued on. We almost stopped at Paty's once on Playa La Ropa - but with our feet in the water we decided we had just enough energy to get us home.


What a day - not only walking to El Centro from Playa La Ropa but back again. From here we changed in to our suits at home and headed to the ocean for a swim. Lucky Cassia who had a ready made swimsuit built in to her outfit.



One of the great things about the location of Audrey's Hotel - El Pirata is that she is right down by the beach. The other night we went to the top floor of Rossy's for drinks - and hammock lounging.


The second floor offers a great view of the ocean. It's a popular place to have dinner while watching the sunset. We may do that one night pretty soon.



Drinking fruity drinks has become a past time of ours lately. Derek sticks to his beer but Audrey and I go in for the sweet - her's is a banana daiquiri and mine a pina colada. Cassia was thrilled with her chocolate milkshake.

What a day! Good thing we had a lot of energy stored up from our few days before of relaxing. Wednesday, we were back to the beach - and today too! Derek and I were feeling good enough tonight to take on that hill we've been showing you. This time we made it to the top - just in time for some stellar sunset pictures. Those up next time.

Tomorrow is Friday already - one week since Derek's mom arrived. She's with us until next Wednesday so we still have some time to show her around and try a few more restaurants.

Teresa


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