“You should see the baby sea turtles while you visit Ixtapa. It was on my bucket list and it was the first thing we did when we got there,” my friend gushed.
After she told me the price, I was deterred. It would cost a few hundred dollars to do the same sea turtle release event in which she and her family participated. My husband and I talked about it and decided that we’d wait another year. That way, our kids would be another year older and hopefully, they would better remember the incredible thing we’d be doing.
I put the baby sea turtles out of my mind for another year.
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Unwinding in Ixtapa
We chose to stay at an all-inclusive resort during our visit to Ixtapa. That takes the stress off meal times. As parents who wanted to unwind, Ixtapa delivered. We spent our days at the beach or in the pools. I ordered drinks poolside, as if I was a celebrity! There wasn’t an alcohol dispenser in our room, like at our all-inclusive in Jamaica, but that was actually a good thing. I don’t drink very much and I’d be spending all our room time keeping the kids away from it.
The kids slept well every night, which is my dream vacation. They made huge strides in their confidence in water, thanks to pools that were the perfect depth for them, and are now asking for swimming lessons. Yes!
Another awesome coincidence came about that good friends from our neighborhood were also vacationing in Ixtapa at the same and at the same resort. A kid can’t ask for a better vacation. Nor can a parent.
Soaking up the Sunset
“Look at that crowd on the beach,” I said to my husband, while lazily floating in the shallow pool water at dusk.
“Haven’t they ever seen a sunset before?” my husband asked, watching people taking their sunset selfies.
“Maybe not over the ocean,” I said. “It is beautiful.”
“I’m happy to enjoy it from here,” he responded.
If I’d been paying attention, I’d have been out taking sunset selfies.I’d taken a few in Puerto Vallarta, so I guess I was set for awhile.
The Sunset Photo Shoot
“The hotel offers a free photo shoot,” the woman said to us, after approaching us poolside a day or two later.
My ears perked up. Photo shoot? Free? Um. That’s always going to be a yes from me. I take a lot of pictures every day, but selfies just don’t do it for me usually. I love having the memories of family pictures taken by a professional and I even hired a photographer to photograph my extended family at our going away party before moving to Mexico. Yep, it was 100% worth it. I get to be in the pictures with everyone else.
The next day, at sunset, we joined the photographer on the beach for a sunset photo shoot. My kids cooperated for awhile and when they started to get too silly, my neighborhood friend took charge of them. She’d happened to bring her family to the beach… and when my husband and I were done with our photos, she motioned us over.
“They are releasing baby sea turtles,” she told me.
WHAT???? Can this day get any better?!
The only way it would’ve been better is if I’d had my camera. Just like that, I got to enjoy being in the moment.
“Maybe this is what everyone was watching the other day,” my husband said in a hushed tone.
The baby sea turtles made their way to the water, while a quiet crowd watched in awe. Just as the sun slowly went out of view, the turtles also completed their first trek to the sea. They had so much strength for such tiny creatures. They had so much determination to get to the water, even when a wave would push them several feet back.
“I wish you well, little turtles,” I said, barely audible.
I am the luckiest human in the world, I thought. Even without a photo.
What incredible experiences have you “accidentally” come across in your travels?