Mexico Part 1 – The Tourist Edition

Plane touched down at YYZ about 6 hours ago.  Since then I have been busy doing laundry, cleaning, and uploading my pics.

Ravi and I have spent the past week at an all-inclusive resort in Playa Del Carmen.  This was not our usual sort of trip, however, we were graciously invited to spend the holidays in Mexico (all expenses paid) with his family.  

Sun, beach, ocean, diving – hellz yeah!

So where to start?  I have so much video and still footage to share and have decided to break it down into 3 parts (the 3rd will be the best for sure – Ravi is currently editing the footage!)

Part 1 – Tourist Footage

Took us a few days to learn to relax.  The first night of all-inclusive cocktails definitely helped but we found it hard to figure out what to do during the day.

Within the first 24 hours, we were battling poisonous spider bites and “severe” lacerations. 

Braving it out, the “men” helped by bringing us all back to our youth spending a day building the most amazing sand hole and castle.  

The hole drew quite a crowd but the most fun was had scaring unsuspecting walkers as they sauntered by.

Looking back at all we did during the week, this day at the beach was probably the most special for Ravi and his family.  We went on tours, planned dinners and outings, but I saw more smiles and giggles on the beach than I did all week.

Ravi, his parents, and myself needed an actual “Mexican experience” so we took a short (+1 hr) cab ride to the Pre-Columbia Maya Civilization in Coba.  

I had seen some pictures of the temples and was stoked to race Ravi up (what looked like) 100’s to 1000’s of steps.  The tallest temple, Nohoch Mul, is actually 42 metres (138 ft) in height.  

Ravi won the race up and down – only because I took the time to photo journalize the event.  

The climb up was no problem but it was pretty funny watching everyone come down.  The steps are slippery and uneven and a few people had some “difficulty” getting down.

I, of course, sauntered down with ease and enjoyed the 2 km walk back to the entrance, while some of the other tourists enjoyed tricycle rides.  

Stay tuned for Mexico Part 2…

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Awhile ago, my good friend Sarah had a birthday. Some of you might recall my hangover tweets and posts the next day.

I was planning on doing a blog post about it the day after but I couldn’t find my point-and-shoot camera.  Found out later that I had left it at Dakota Tavern and my friends brought it home (after taking a bunch more pictures).  

It was a pretty fun night with good food, drinks, and friends.

Started out at Fynn’s Temple Bar for dinner where I enjoyed a delicious veggie burger.  Apparently they have awesome vegan caesar drink but I was drinking white wine and sparking wine that night.

Moved to a Tequila bar on Ossington for a few shots before heading to Dakota Tavern.

The night became a little fuzzy after that.

I do remember a kick-ass band was playing but as Sarah and I have learned, all music sounds awesome after a couple of Jager shots.

I’d love to tell you about the rest of the night but I honestly cannot remember.  I think there was some pizza involved but who knows.

5 days until Christmas (and 3 days until Mexico)!!!

Happy Monday suckers.

I guac this so much!  Avocado Salt and Pepper shaker from dainapaltais.com 

Vegan Diner Lunch

If anyone knows of a place in Toronto that makes a vegan BLT please let me know.

In the meantime, I gotta make it myself.

Awesome veggie bacon (from the little store in King’s Cafe Restaurant in Kensington).

McCain shoestring fries.

Voila!  Moko’s Diner lunch.

Woke up at 5:00 am to the sound of whispering in the living room.  I stumbled out of bed (in just my t-shirt) and found a skinny little 20-something kid sitting in a chair while Ravi was on the couch.  I asked, “what’s up?”  Ravi said, “nothing, go back to bed.”

I had hit the sac at a reasonable hour last night while Ravi went out for a bit.  Around 3-4 am ish he got in the elevator in our building.  In the elevator was this 20-something kid, crumpled on the floor.  Other people got in the elevator and laughed at the guy. “Have too much to drink, buddy?”  After the idiots got out, Ravi stayed on.  He asked him, “are you ok?”  The kid, drunk and upset, whispered under his breath, “My girlfriend. My best friend.”  

The kid didn’t have a coat on so Ravi asked, “do you live in this building?”  The kid shook his head no.  Feeling the kid’s pain and worried that he might freeze to death in the cold, Ravi brought him to our place.  The kid then spent the next few hours on the bathroom floor and in living room sitting silent with a pained look on his face.  By about 7:00 am he was starting to sober up and he left.  Ravi, exhausted, climbed into bed.

Ravi woke up a little while ago to tell me the story.  Ravi’s kindness and generosity to strangers never ceases to amaze me.  While others ignore the cold and homeless sitting on the street corner, he always says “what’s up” and gives them whatever change is sitting in his pocket.  And while the other (asshole) tenants in the building laughed and made fun of this broken-hearted kid, Ravi brought him home and sat with him until the sun came up.  

#HOHOTO

Did you know:

15% of children go hungry at least once a week.

Over 1 million people visited the food bank in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) last year – 34% of them, children.

The use of food banks has increased by 15% across the GTA.

Daily Bread relies on support from the public and food industry to raise 13 million pounds of food annually, and distribute it to over 150 agencies.

I was delighted to attend last’s night #hohoto Daily Bread fundraiser at the Mod Club (thanks to the generosity of the night’s sponsors, CommandN, @ambermac and @chrisdick for getting me the ticket!)

It was magical – the people, the decorations, the music….

I was super stoked to meet some famous TO bloggers as well as some twitter/blog followers and fans.

@casiestewart casiestewart.com (with lurker in the background)

@krustation

The best was that you could request songs through twitter by tweeting to #hohotodj

Holy futuristic batman.

@kelzor @chrisdick @ambermac 

@carlospdiaz (with @kelzor lurking)

My song got played literally 30 seconds after tweeting the request (it was Just Like Heaven by The Cure for those who care).

@photojunkie

@mdee14 and @chrisdick

In the end #hohoto raised over $61 000!  

Well done people!

However, the Daily Bread can always use more donations.  For information on how to donate please go to www.dailybread.ca

Photos by me, @mdee14 and @photojunkie

Rest in Peace Mr. Mojito.  You were loved and adored.  We will miss you so much.