Day 3 of my Caribbean cruise and chocolate hunt was, of course, incredibly beautiful with the sun and sea right outside my stateroom window. We docked at Cozumel, Mexico and I couldn’t help wondering if we’d see the 11 Cubans rescued by our ship’s captain last night. We did not. So all 10 of my group caught cabs and went to downtown Cozumel. Myself, my daughter Kelly, daughter-in-law Yvette, and family friend Patricia had attended a lecture about jewelry and where to shop in Cozumel. The speaker, Ian Wilson, Port Shopping Guide and Gemologist on the Navigator of the Seas, was wonderful – funny and entertaining, yet very informative.
We took his advice and headed for Diamonds International. It’s a lovely, sparkly shop right across the street from the sea. I was approached by a handsome, soft-spoken salesman, Peter Tekel. I wanted to bring him home with me but he was wearing a wedding ring so I didn’t even ask. I spent nearly an hour selecting a ring and a watch. Peter was quite patient and he and I spoke a little French, so I was happy, happy, happy right where I was, surrounded by Peter, diamonds, and other shiny things. If you happen to be in the neighborhood, ask for him at Diamonds International – he’s the best!
But I remembered what I was there for and set out to find chocolates. I found a nearby shop with lots of interesting things. The woman helping me was really pleasant and let us sample. One bite of the chili pepper-infused dark chocolate and I had to have some! I bought several packs of 3 chocolate bars tied with a bow; chili pepper, coffee, and plain dark chocolate; all are Kaokao brand, 60% cacao. I also got chocolate rum balls, chocolate rum cakes, and a variety pack of chocolates by Britt Chocolates of Costa Rica; pineapple, coconut, orange, almond, passion fruit, guava, chocolate covered macadamia nuts and coffee beans. Tropical chocolate heaven!
We were running out of time so stopped for a bathroom break, where we each giggled when we were told we had to pay 50 cents and in return received a few sheets of toilet tissue and a small paper towel. Gotta love it – it’s just part of the adventure of travel. The grandkids, Kyle and Hannah, were beyond perfect, so I stopped to buy Kyle a t-shirt and Hannah a hammock. We grabbed a quick lunch at an authentic Mexican restaurant – they didn’t speak English so I pointed to a word I knew on the menu; taco. It was yummy; we were glad we went local.
Back to the ship and I knew we had to eat some of my chocolates or I’d never be able to carry my bags. Sitting on my balcony, wearing my new ring and watch – again, tropical chocolate heaven – everything was delicious; no regrets or complaints about my purchases.
We were traveling with family friends from Argentina, and Enrique told me at dinner all about the wonderful chocolate logs that are a specialty there. So much chocolate, so many places to go. Don’t cry for me, Argentina; I’ll be there next year!