This past week has been disaster-recovery work.
I’m starting to realize how little storage there is in our place.
We’ve moved in – sort-of. Our new place, the main floor of a monstrous war-time mansion in Kitsilano, currently has no furniture, making the window bench a particularly nice feature. Our stuff – a great deal of not-yet-used Wedding presents and a couple pieces of furniture – should arrive on Thursday, so I’m trying to enjoy the sparse minimal look while I can: the crazy box-filled mess is coming…
Although our 6-month cruise ship contract was an adventure, neither of us have any interest in doing another contract.
The past 2 months we’ve been busy finding this place while living in a furnished condo in North Vancouver. Things are coming together really nicely, and after a few years away being in Vancouver feels fantastic – our place is a short walk from the beach, boutique cafes, and record shops – Vancouver captures what we love about New Zealand with (in my opinion) the best Canada has to offer.
It’s unclear how old the ruins are, and there remain many mysteries about the Mayan people. Our guide dispelled a few Mayan myths – first, that the Mayans and Aztecs never met (often these civilizations are discussed interchangeably), and secondly that the Mayan people disappeared with their civilization – the truth is that today, in the Yucatan Peninsula Mayan people live who do not speak Spanish (they speak Mayan). According to our guide it was only the socio-political structures – the Mayan society – that disappeared. It remains unclear why or how this occurred, but when the Spanish arrived in the 1600s, they encountered the abandoned ruins of Tulum. The Tulum ruins themselves were constructed during the decline of the Mayan civilization – hence other locations, like Chiche n Itza are much larger, featuring higher multi-faceted pyramids.
Our guide focused on providing a larger less stereotype-driven perspective of Mexico, and stressed the diversity of the many states – specifically that found in the North to South of the Yucatan peninsula.
The ruins like on the coastline; descending a wooden staircase a beautiful beach is found. It was amazing to swim in the water with the Tulum pyramid looming in the distance. Before heading on the bus we stopped at a small Mayan restaurant for fish tacos and cheap Coronas – a fitting farewell as it was our last visit to Mexico on this contract.
There’s a countdown on our wall – each day our whiteboard is updated, and currently reads 25 Days Left.*
*I have a habit of packing and preparing too early; months before we left for New Zealand Becky came home to barren walls and a spare bedroom full of packed boxes.**
**I have actually taken everything off our walls already, except for the whiteboard.***
***Actually, we also have a Calendar for crossing off days; it seemed anti-climactic to just write the 25 Days Left…
I noticed this evening that the floor was at a steep angle – drawers sliding open, bottles falling over: walking in these conditions feels like going through the Crazy Kitchen (at the Ottawa Museum of Science and Technology). It turns out we’re going through quite the storm; lightening, giant waves, and frequent loud booms that resonate through the corridors. I already knew about pitch and roll (forward/aft movement / port/starboard movement respectively), but tonight I learned about listing (the vertical tipping of the ship to one side). Apparently* in some cases can be quite bad.
I keep reminding myself that it’s December, and that next week Christmas will be here. I hope everyone has a wonderful time with family and friends. If you discover a way to send us my Mom’s Christmas baking I’d be very thankful. As for us, we’ll spend Christmas Day somewhere between Jamaica and Miami with a handful of friends and thousands of strangers.
Wishing all of you a wonderful Christmas and Happy New Year
Matt & Becky
* according to my scientific reference point of The Poseidon Adventure