Books Worth a Look

  • Little Bee by Chris Cleave - This book is a must read. Better than anything else I've read, it takes you vividly into the life of a person in the 3rd world who has no choice but to escape. It is brilliantly written & works well as an audio book. Often I've sent info about the wonderful refugees I've met in Europe. We know only so much of their plight as it is painful for them to recall much less live through again by recounting it. But over time it is clear what they've lived through. This book is excellent as you discover the horrors of their world. Somewhat how to me, it is like being in Europe near a Concentration Camp. One has an obligation to visit it. 'Never to Forget.' In this case, to have our eyes opened.
  • Garbage King by Eliz Laird - The book is set on the streets on Addis Ababa, in Ethiopia and here lives Mamo and his sister Tiggist. When Mamo's "uncle" offers a job, he soon sets out on a bus to work. Little does he know that he is actually being sold into slavery...

Friday, April 22, 2011

Puerto Vallarta with Laura & Jay

We are completing 6 days at the beach in Mexico. For me it has been a much different trip but most enjoyable.

Last year while studying Spanish in Tlaquepague, Jalisco. Mexico. I came here for 3 nights. My good fortune was to find a hostel that is now ranked by Lonely Planet # 1 in Vallarta. Part of the complex is a hotel with rooms & another building with suites.

Ricardo, Vallarta Sun, decided to upgrade us to two suites with no increase in rate. It has been great as we each have our own room with private, bath, kitchen and a balcony. The pool is below and the beach is 1 block away.

Puerto Vallarta is quite safe. Similar to my other Latin Americn trips, it is sunny every day & here temperatures ranging from 76 to 85 during the day.

Jay is quite skilled at finding great beach locations. Three chairs, table & umbrella right up front at the water for the day. You get your drinks & food from them & they treat you like kings. We stayed almost five hours today for $ 10 +- a piece.

Zip Lines aka Canopy Tour.

The high point (literally, well except the beach did beat all.) was our 10 zip line Canopy Tour (canopy because you glide above tropical vegetation, canyons & streams. It was an adventure as we hiked up lots of stairs & trails, well atop a nearby mountain.

You are harnessed with two safety leads. You step up & the Mexican guide hooks you up tells you to lie back with legs straights or knees bent depending on speed needed to complete the trip. Listo (ready?) and off you to. For me it was at first a bit daunting as you ate suspended by wire high above & you are going, going. Once acclimated some choose to go upside down backward or spinning. Not Laura & me!

The three Mexican guides were great providing water stops when needed. It was not just me who had to stop several times to catch his breath!

(pictures to follow on Fcebook.)


We found the restaurants nearby offered great food at reasonable prices, given a beach resort. Several were right on the beach. Tonight, our last, will be a great Mexican restaurant two blocks away.

Spanish school & Semana Santa

Two afternoons I left Laura & Jay at the beach to trudge 35 minutes to Solexico for two hours of Spanish class. It was great & I highly recommend the school to language students.

This week is Semana Santa (Holy Week) & a big holiday week in Mexico. The religious outdoor activities are bland at best here in comparison to Queretero last year.

Getting here! The only pain for Jay's sinus infection & our flight here. Due to storm in the U.S. Saturday, April 16th, our flight out of Baltimore was 80 minutes delayed - leaving us literally 7 minutes to race out the plane, down the ramp, into the terminal & down/around to the loading plane connection. Phew! Jay's infection along with flying interaction made for a rough 1st day & several days adjusting. But all in al we had a greatweek.

I highly recommend Puerto Vallarta & Vallarta Sun hotel & hostel to anyone looking f a wonderful foreign beach vacation. No sadly, its back to work full time! For me, 6 1/2 more weeks!


waseembutt said...

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Todd Waddell said...

What a fantastic trip! I'm sorry to hear about Jay's sinus infection. I hope it's passed now.

Howsabout posting some pictures?

Todd & Sarah


Thoughts on the amazing people I get to meet.

Rich, my 19 year old friend, soon to be Franciscan and recent community member at Haley House in Boston. An article he wrote.