Sunday, March 31, 2024

Let's take a trip!

March weather was very up and down, freezing cold days mixed with sunshine, and snow. Tristan and I headed south for spring break-a rare treat for us-to visit Japhy in Mexico! In February she finished her yoga training and after a little extra travel there she headed north to Bacalar, Mexico to work at a resort. We decided this was a great opportunity to visit her. 

There are always multiple steps to travel for us because we don’t live near a major airport. We drove to Minneapolis, stayed in a park & ride hotel, took the shuttle early early in the morning and then waited for the airport personnel to arrive. Note to self: do NOT arrive before 3:30am for your flight as the airport will be empty. But once we made it through ticketing we were ready to board for our 6am flight and we made it to Cancun by 11:30am. Air travel is an amazing thing. 

Tristan was thrilled to take on the adventure of driving in Mexico- I was nervous but it turned out to be an interesting challenge with no problemas. It was like driving through a video game with lots of roundabouts, big speed bumps, and cars passing on both sides. Crazy and we made it. He and I stopped in Playa del Carmen and picked a place for lunch. First language mistake: I ordered a shrimp ceviche without realizing it-it said cucumber!  All I can say is we loved the cucumbers and I did eat a few shrimp. Luckily we had guacamole and chips as well. We both wondered about vegan options for the rest of the week. 

No need to worry as it turned into what Tristan coined our “Mexican Anthony Bourdain trip”! We feasted and ate almost exclusively vegan in Bacalar and our return two days in Cancun. The food was amazing and I’m dreaming of it still. We had vegan burgers at Mango Y Chili our first night and they were delicious. Here’s an overall list in case you need to go just for the food:

Madre Masa- Tristan and I had lunch here, we had yummy veggie sandwiches 

Mi Burrito- a hippie food truck with amazing food and great outdoor atmosphere

La Playita- dinner one night with Japhy and her friend Klara. I had fried avocado tacos- amazing and we sat by the lagoon. 

Salon OP69- went for an appetizer while we waited for our dinner place to open- this is the only place we sat inside, it was cool and Arturo, our wonderful waiter took good care of us. I had a fiery margarita. See picture below.

Nixtamal- Japhy and I split a delicious tuna with grilled pineapple and Tristan had a pasta dish. We each received a refreshing shot glass of house kombucha. 

El Manatí- last meal in Bacalar and it was a delicious vegan brunch. I had chilaquiles which were amazing and I hope to recreate these at home. 

It was very difficult to say goodbye to Japhy but onward we went back up the coast to Cancun. We ran into a major traffic jam that held us up for about an hour. After getting into Cancun, finding our Airbnb, Tristan located Las Cepages, a French restaurant that was walkable. This was our least exciting meal but the atmosphere was lovely and I enjoyed a good glass of red with my house special fish dinner. The next day we discovered Bao Vegan and we were so excited by the menu that we each ordered two entrees. I had a mashed potato enchilada with mole sauce. The waiter was adorable and laughed at us ordering such a lot of food. I would love to have several restaurants like this at home-why are we not able to support healthy and delicious food like this? 

Tristan and I made it home by nightfall and had a great time talking about our adventures. We did take a sailing adventure around the lagoon which was a lovely afternoon. Make sure to wear a hat as you are not allowed to wear sunscreen in the water due to its delicate eco system.  Japhy is still traveling around in the Oaxaca region of Mexico with friends and will be back mid-April. I am really ready for spring weather and flowers. Unfortunately because of the weird weather my daffodils are so confused.