Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Sun, Warmth, Sand and Friends...The Return to Puerto Vallarta

After leaving New Zealand on February 25, we spent the next 10 days in the Pacific Northwest vising Kelly's family and we also made a quick trip to Bend.  On March 8th we flew to Puerto Vallarta with Norman and met Liz & Alex to begin our beach vacation.  For the third year in a row we stayed at Casa Benjamin.  We had been dreaming of being back there since mid-December and it was those thoughts that kept us going through those long 12 hour work days at McMurdo.

Here's Liz with her first Mango Colada of the trip.  She had been waiting for this for a long time.

This is how we spent most of our days...relaxing on the beach.

We would then head back to Casa Benjamin later in the afternoon to have cocktails in our infinity pool and watch the sunset.

Here's Kelly enjoying a dip in the infinity pool on our deck.

Dave enjoying our infinity pool.

Kelly, Liz, Norman & Alex in the pool.  Some evenings we could see whales and dolphins in the ocean below while we enjoyed our pool time.

 Liz, Norman & Alex watching the sunset.
Kelly, Dave, Liz & Alex

Sunset from Casa Benjamin

Frigate Birds flying by as the sun sets

Norman was usually the last one out of the pool.

After cleaning up from the pool and the beach, we would usually head out for a happy hour before dinner.  Here are Kelly & Liz at Nu.

Alex, Dave & Norman at the Crows Nest, which is the bar at The Swedes Restaurant.  It's one of our favorite places and we ate there often.

Wednesday is "Cosmo Night" at the Crows Nest.

Here's Norman with our friends Tim & Mike from Chicago.  We met them two years ago in PV and we ran in to them again so they joined us for Cosmo Night.

After happy hour drinks comes dinner.  Here are Liz & Kelly at Joe Jack's.

Kelly, Dave, Norman & Alex at Joe Jack's.

Here we are at another favorite restaurant, Cafe de Olla

The margaritas are strong at Cafe de Olla

One night we split a Chicken Caesar Salad for two at No Way Jose, which was made table side.  It was delicious and it only took a few days to get rid of the garlic taste in our mouths.

Some evenings we would stop at Sama on our way home.  Here we all are on Norman's last night.

Norman, Dave & Kelly at Sama.

This is the view of the beach we hung out on as we come down one of the many sets of stairs leading from Santa Barbara St. to the beach.

Here's Alex dreaming of anything but work.

Dave & Kelly at the beach.

Kelly, Dave, Liz & Alex.

Liz & Alex

Dave & Kelly

The day that Norman left our friend James from Toronto came to stay with us for a week.  Here we are with James at the Red Cabbage restaurant.

Liz & Alex at the Red Cabbage.

Sunday March 17th, Liz & Alex left so we moved from Casa Benjamin (a 3 bedroom condo) to La Aguilera (a 2 bedroom condo) in this five unit complex called Villas del Macuaz.  One nice thing about this place, is that it was a closer walk to the beach.

This is the entrance to La Aguilera, our condo for the next 10 nights.

Our condo overlooked the pool.

Our bedroom

This place was much smaller than Casa Benjamin, but suited us well and was nicely decorated.

The sitting area and kitchen.

Kelly relaxing in La Aguilera.

Another seating area in La Aguilera

The second bedroom, where James stayed.
The view from La Aguilera

James and Dave enjoying the pool

Looking up at our place from the pool.

Dave enjoying the pool at Villas del Marquaz.

We got to see some beautiful sunsets from La Aguilera.

One of our last nights in PV we had margaritas on the rooftop of La Noche.

We then went to a new bar next door called Margaritas and they made some of the best frozen margaritas we'd ever had.  Here's Dave's mango margarita on the left and Kelly's cucumber margarita on the right.

Here's Kelly at Margaritas with our waiter Jesus and our friends Guillermo and Mark.  This was one of our last nights there.  We flew back to the States on March 27th and moved back in our house the next day.  Fortunately we've been having some nice spring weather in Bend, so it hasn't been a bad adjustment.                               

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