Better late than never, I wanted to post some memories from the trip we took to Mexico this summer for my brother’s wedding. Disclaimer: due to time zone changes, cerveza, or other factors, my memories of which thing happened on each day may have shifted.

Day 0: We got rebooked and had a slight delay but arrived in the afternoon to meet my family at the resort. It was a beautiful place. I played gigantic human-sized chess with my sister, who whomped me. At least there were free drinks to drown my sorrows. We went to the French restaurant on-site and had a delicious 3-course dinner.


The newlyweds’ patio

Day 1: Had a great night’s sleep (no dream of being attacked by giant knights and bishops). We rendezvoused with siblings, siblings-in-law, and brother’s other friends at the various beaches and bars. We took taxis to Playa Del Carmen for a special dinner arranged by the newlyweds-to-be. Before returning home we checked out what I presume is one of the world’s largest souvenir stores, but managed to escape without purchasing anything.


Central square in Cancún

Day 2: Ate a delicious breakfast (as usual); there were omelette stations and bottomless mimosas but I think on this day I composed some huevos rancheros. We started checking out the attractions off-site. Sara and I went to a particularly cool cenote named Río Secreto… it reminded me of past spelunking adventures but was much more chilled out. We skipped paying $100+ for the entire set of pictures but snapped a blurry bootleg of one image. We went to Cancún city afterwards; we got a little lost but then discovered some random outdoor concert/festival with lots of locals. It was a great adventure together, all in all. I tried out the churros. Verdict: they were delicious!


Brad, Isaac and me

Day 3: My brother Brad’s wedding. Got my fancy clothes on with him and then we headed out to the bar for his last pretzel as a free man. The other groomsman Isaac was there to party in fine style (pictured: the fanciest bathroom I’ve ever been in). The wedding was on a beautiful beach, with beautiful people, and beautiful food. Brad and Claudia gave very heartfelt speeches and it was my honour to spend that day celebrating with them. There was an extremely delicious cocktail made with special Pisco (a national beverage for the bride). Then as it got dark we saw just how good the resort was at wedding planning 🙂 From what I recall we danced with pool noodles, glowing glasses, balloons, noise makers, and managed to stay until the closing of not one but two bars on the resort.


Brad, Claudia and the Atlantic ocean!

Day 4: Recovery. We played a lot of volleyball in the pool. Delicious mexican restaurant on the resort for dinner!


Chichén Itzá’s one unrestored face

Day 5: Adventure. We rented two cars and drove out to Chichén Itzá. It was a very hot day but we had a good tour guide to keep us motivated. The driving was extremely peaceful as the highways were pretty empty. We learned that there were special acoustic effects built into the pyramids’ architecture, and that a lot of people “lost their heads” over competitive sports back in Aztec days. After escaping to some frosty beverages, we headed to Cenote Ik Kil; this cenote was a swimming hole set about 20 metres underground, with some fish patrolling the waters underneath us, and huge diving platforms overhead. Finally we headed to a delicious dinner of local Yucatan cuisine at Las Campanas, checking out Valladolid’s picturesque church before returning home.


Valladolid church

Day 6: I went on a whale-shark expedition with my cousins’ significant others, Matt and Taka. (Sara has a fear of neckless animals so she decided to pass.) I managed to put on my contacts while on deck a boat speeding across the open ocean, which was exhilarating. We chased those whale-sharks (they are vegetarian sharks the size of whales) for a good couple of hours, stopping 4 or 5 times to get in the water with them. Each time we dived in we were disoriented, not just from being besnorkeled and finned, but also from the sheer scale of the creatures. They normally carried in tow an entourage of feeder fish to their sides, above and below. They were as large as a bus and moved just as fast but it looked effortless and so it was a strange feeling trying to chase them while swimming. It was an unforgettable experience! They served some ceviche with hot habanero peppers on-board, afterwards, and we did some more low-key snorkeling near a beautiful reef. We had one more dinner back on the resort and my family kindly endulged us to show them pictures of our trip to Iran, for which we repaid them in Persian sweets.


I think this is our best direct evidence of being with the whale sharks

It was an amazing trip, both relaxing and full of unique celebrations. Congratulations again, Brad and Claudia! And thanks for bringing us all together on that awesome trip.


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