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Lots of surprises in Mexico

JoAnn and I visited Mexico for the first time last week, and what a wonderful, magical visit it was. We stayed at the Dreams Resort and Spa just south of Puerto Vallarta, which incidentally, we highly recommend.

Three highlights for me were these. First, the warm, hospitable nature of the people. It was a real pleasure to relate to them -- and their dignified spirit.

Second, I must mention Igor the iguana. I don't know if that is his real name, mind you, but it seems as suitable a name as any. JoAnn and I were having lunch in a little outdoor restaurant overlooking the sea at Dreams when a lady stood up at a nearby table and began to walk toward us. She was saying something to us while at the same time pointing downward toward our feet.

Perhaps she wanted to warn us in case we would be startled. In any case, we looked down, puzzled -- and there was Igor motionless on the deck about 6 inches from our feet staring up at us with beady little eyes. He was the first iguana I had ever seen. I’d guess he was nearly 2 feet long from head to tail.

We had been completely unaware of the creature’s presence. Cameras were clicking at surrounding tables as I stared in utter fascination at this visitor from another planet. I have to admit that the world seemed to stand still as my mind processed this extraordinary sight.

Igor stayed with us for quite a while, perfectly still and content -- head turning a little from side to side once in awhile –so we could get to know him (or her) a bit better. 

Then a dream came true when I finally saw a humpback whale and its baby up close in the warm ocean waters of Banderas Bay. We followed at a respectful distance in a 50 foot sailboat for more than an hour.

What magic to watch the two whales, one large, one small, as they swam peacefully through the ocean. How graceful they were, underwater for awhile, then coming to the surface in a graceful arc every few minutes to breathe the same air we were breathing before plunging back beneath the depths. A couple of times the baby leaped out of the sea like a happy child.

I was able to sit next to Manuel, the captain, as he steered the boat, and share with him and others  in the excitement of watching for whales. It was an especial pleasure to meet Brian, a young member of the crew from Minnesota who has made a new life for himself in Puerto Vallarta, learning to speak fluent Spanish, marrying a local girl, and raising a family. The obvious friendship between him and the rest of the crew was a pleasure to behold. 

We are very thankful for our visit to Mexico, and the opportunity to meet people and creatures of a different culture who share the same elemental connection with life and truth that we all share.

I send you greetings and love and as always, would love to hear from you anytime about anything. Be well.

Photo credit: Aaronaeus photographicus



{ 22 comments… read them below or add one }

Ciara January 16, 2012 at 3:43 pm

Sounds like a wonderful break Christopher, thanks for sharing your special moments.
Ciara recently posted..The Crucial Missing Ingredient for Creating Positive Habits


Christopher Foster January 17, 2012 at 12:58 pm

Hi Ciara, many thanks for commenting. Your current post sounds really intriguing, very happy to share this extraordinary experience of life with you.


Cathy Taughinbaugh January 16, 2012 at 4:12 pm

Hi Christopher,

Your post title caught my eye. We spend time in Mexico every winter and we have a Dreams Hotel right next door. I’m so glad you shared your positive experience in Mexico. The people are warm and friendly and you can’t beat the weather in the winter. Someone mentioned recently that the condo they rented cost less per month than their winter heating bill, so it is indeed still a bargain.

Mexico has gotten a bad rap lately and many are afraid to travel there. But I too have enjoyed my time and what I have loved seeing recently are the turtles hatching and watching them make their way to the sea. It is really a heartwarming sight. Thanks for sharing your enjoyable post.
Cathy Taughinbaugh recently posted..Meet Tess Marshall: Creator of Take Your Fear and Shove It!


Christopher Foster January 17, 2012 at 12:54 pm

Hey Cathy,

Thanks for writing, I’m delighted to share your own first-hand obvservations and experiences of Mexico. We didn’t get to see the turtles hatching but one thing we did see while we were out on the sailboat was a turtle swimming slowly and leisurely past our boat while we were out in the open sea. Who knows, there may have been some dangerous creatures around, and we were quite far out, but he didn’t seem worried at all. Great fun watching him (or her) at really close quarters.


Carol Wills January 16, 2012 at 5:06 pm

What a lovely post. Just for a few minutes, I was transported to Mexico to enjoy
the sights and the people, thanks to your skillful and poetic description of your holiday there. Thank you!


Christopher Foster January 17, 2012 at 12:42 pm

Your words are a blessing Carol. Thanks for writing.


Nadeja Gerasimow January 17, 2012 at 6:05 am

What a magnificent gift from the animal world!! They obviously know who to visit!!!!So glad your visit was so magical. Love to you and JoAnn.


Christopher Foster January 17, 2012 at 12:39 pm

Thanks so much for sharing Nadeja. It’s always a deep pleasure to reconnect with you. Every good wish to you.


Noel Gaughan January 17, 2012 at 6:34 am

Hi Chris,
I have been blessed enough to see several beautiful bushy tailed foxes in the built up town of Dunlaoghaire (Kingstown) where I live at night and it is wonderfull to feel that these wild creatures are trusting me insofar as they are willing to reveal themselves to me. What pleasure and joy this is.


Christopher Foster January 17, 2012 at 12:37 pm

Hi Noel, good to hear from you and I’m very happy to hear about the foxes. One of my favorite animals. I was sick one time a few years ago and a young (I think) fox came and decided to visit. He slept every night under a bush in our backyard for three weeks, then one day, he was gone.

It may sound strange, but I like to think he stopped by to lend me a bit of support in my recovery. Blessings to you Noel.


Bette Fannon January 17, 2012 at 6:56 am

thanks for the lovely comments about Mexico – it gets rough write ups in the press, some earned I am sure but there is beauty everywhere in the world…. Wonderful that you and Joanne had a lovely time. Bette Fannon


Christopher Foster January 17, 2012 at 12:31 pm

Bette, thank you so much for your kind and positive comment. I’m always so happy to hear from you. I sometimes think of Mexico as a beautiful, priceless painting that has been covered over in some ways by human tragedy and yet the beauty is still there to see if we look. Blessings.


The Vizier January 17, 2012 at 9:09 am

Hi Christopher,

Wow, your trip to Mexico with JoAnn sure sounds like fun!

I love your story about Igor the Iguana. He or she is indeed worthy of mention since he or she was so well behaved haha!

The humpback whales must have been a sight. They are so majestic and it makes us aware of the wonders of nature and our place in it.

Hearing about how Brian made a new life for himself in Puerto Vallarta is also heart-warming. This is the way the world should be isn’t it? Without barriers and boundaries. If only people appreciated the simple things in life, the world would be a different place.

Thank you for sharing your experiences in Mexico Christopher, it almost feels like we were there with you! 🙂

Irving the Vizier
The Vizier recently posted..Sharing Your Inner World to Enrich Memories and Experiences


Christopher Foster January 17, 2012 at 12:23 pm

It’s lovely to hear from you Irving. Thankyou as always for your warm, clear and very constant affirmation of the inherent beauty and wonder of life. A real pleasure to share it with you and I will be turning up soon to leave a comment at YOUR blog. It’s a terrific blog, you put so much of your clear and uplifting spirit into it. Blessings to you Irving. Be well.


Vlad January 17, 2012 at 3:40 pm

Hi Chris!

Welcome back! I can relate to your experience as a few years ago, my family and I spent a vacation in Puerto Vallarta. We also noticed how open and kind the people there were. Goes to show that you don’t have have much to be happy!

We didn’t get to see any wales, but the Iguanas used to hang out right in the middle of people near the pools! They are such beautiful creatures! It’s hard to believe they are wild! Thank you for sharing your story!

Vlad recently posted..Tips For Dealing With Passive Aggressive People


Christopher Foster January 20, 2012 at 12:04 pm

Thanks for sharing these thoughts Vlad. I love your comments on the iguanas, you’re right, they seem quite happy to be near people don’t they? Very thankful for my connection with you and wish you well.


Noch Noch | be me. be natural. January 18, 2012 at 6:11 am

i love it when whales spout water. i had the luck of seeing dolphins in Bali once, they swam next to our speed boat for some 10 minutes. extraordinary sight. in situations like this, I marvel at God’s creation. the world is so big, and i feel so small – in a good way… that all problems seem to dissolve and I wonder why I even focus on them. happy are the dolphins (and whales…. and Igor…)
Noch Noch | be me. be natural. recently posted..is it really a rat race?


Christopher Foster January 20, 2012 at 12:01 pm

Thanks for sharing your delightful, warm spirit Noch. I could see you out there in the boat keeping company with the dolphins. Love and blessings to you.


Tess The Bold Life January 19, 2012 at 11:41 am

It’s like the Universe was waiting for you and JoAnn to share in its magic. How wonderful is that? And you’ve made my day by sharing it with myself. I love Mexico and its people.

On the farm we had migrant workers that would come in a bus to spend summers working. We worked right along side them. In the evenings they would go to their living quarters and we to ours. My mom always told us to leave them alone and not bother them.

We never listened. We would sneak into their huts with our peanut butter and they would share their tortillas. We also played checkers with them. My sister Cher’s birthday was in August. They would all gather around her and one would pass their “hat.” And they would fill empty their pockets of change and present it to her.

On Sat. nights my dad would take them in the back of the pick-up truck to attend Mass in Spanish. We would beg my dad to let go along. He never wanted us too because we’d fall asleep because Mass was in the evening.

Sure enough, he’d give in, we ride in the pick-up, fall asleep in church, and have to be carried out!

It’s no wonder 2o+ years later I majored in Spanish. I’ve been to Mexico more times than I can count. Once I stayed for 10 weeks and volunteered in an orphanage there.

Those are my magical moments connected with Mexico. No fear here.
Tess The Bold Life recently posted..How to Live a Bold Life Without Being Loud


Christopher Foster January 19, 2012 at 6:26 pm

Wonderful thoughts Tess. Thank you so much for sharing. I’m so happy I was able to interview you regarding your newly released ecourse on fearless living. You are an inspiration. As you say, “no fear here.”


Noel Gaughan January 22, 2012 at 6:22 am

A saying I believe true that has value for the true seeker is, “Where there is danger there grows also what saves, or as the Master puts it u must be willing to lose your life(RELIGION WEALTH HEALTH GOOD NAME AND ALL FRIENDS ETC)to win your life.

In life experience is the great teacher and with sensible living and intelligence we safely grow and learn the art of living despite the real dangers which we find can have no real power over us as we dare to challenge the fear which the noisy terrorists use to attempt to control us for their own devious ends. Also another useful saying is “A fool learns from his mistakes while the wise man or woman learns from the mistakes of others.”


Christopher Foster January 22, 2012 at 6:59 pm

Thank you so much for your sharing Noel. Love and blessings to you.


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