Opening Statement



Thursday, 26 December 2013

Jibicoa Cuba: A Beach Resort



I was at the Breezes Jibicoa Resort from Dec 14-21. The Jibicoa is halfway between Habana and Varadero, about an hours drive either way. It is in a garden setting below a small steep coastal hill lining a long wide white sand beach. I had come to go diving in the Atlantic. There is a big coral reef. It comes right up to the shoreline. I like that a lot. Janet was with me. She likes to lie on the beach chairs in the sun or under a tree. Me too. This was our 4th visit to the Jibicoa over the past 8 years or so. My treat. It was an early Christmas holiday for us both.

December is cool for Jibicoa Cuba. Like in Canada it is their winter. The climate is subtropical. During the day the temperature was in the mid 20's, and cooler at night. It was minus 15 to 20 degrees Celsius in Toronto. We flew out of Pearson Airport in a blizzard, a hour late. I could see the windswept runways, piles of snow everywhere outside the frosty air plane window. Ground crew ran about bundled up thick against the cold moving cartloads of luggage, driving snow tractors + preparing the jets for takeoff. It was a rough ride up through the clouds  and a bumpy flight all the way to Cuba. Here are some of my notes:

Our Room 


We were on the second floor with a balcony facing the swimming pool. First morning I awoke + stepped out on the balcony. I watched 2 people swimming their morning laps, the still, glass, smooth water rippled by their strokes.

We had a queen sized bed, a dresser + a closet. We didn't use the coffeemaker or freezer much.
There were clothes hangers on the wall. The room had a high pointed ceiling with an arched entrance way. There was a hallway and bathroom inside the front door.



We had a flat screen television set with HBO. We half watched the television shows, the beginning, middle or end fading in and out along with the dialogue, images, story lines + intrigue, when we came and left the room or maybe took a nap. Also before bed at night. It was rather unnecessary, but familiar + surreal all the same.

The Food
 A lot of the guests said they liked or didn't mind the food. It is usually pretty touch and go at the Jibicoa, the only drawback to an otherwise very friendly, cozy, picturesque and relaxing resort. Food preparation + handling safety by staff is rudimentary at best. Regretfully, this time I was sick the last day and after I got home. Blech.


 Friends

 The Jibicoa is a small resort. The visitors keep coming back. Your sixth stay is free. We hooked up for the trip with a British couple, Richard, Elaine + their adult son Alex who we have met there twice before. Richard and Elaine are a delightful couple who are very interesting + easy to get along with. Alex is a strong swimmer. It's often hard for me to find good swimming partners who like to go snorkeling a lot and can keep up, especially when they reach my age.


Adults Only

There's an age limit of sixteen and up with parents only, strictly enforced, another reason we come here a fair bit. Especially noisy, rude or drunk guests are removed immediately and sent to another resort in Varadero where they will be more at home. Otherwise it is a very fun, laid back and informal adult resort, never too uptight. It is very popular with Canadians and Europeans.

The Beach

It is the reason why we like the Jibicoa the most + keep coming back. Here is a map of the coral reef along the beach:



First Swim

Swam with Alex from the beach hut [above left] to the pond.
Pond is like a huge aquarium of tropical fish with coral walls
Swam in and out both passages [top right + top left of the pond]
Water too rough to explore along the outer reef wall
Rode waves across the flats to make landfall 100 meters down the beach [to right]
Lots of fun!


Second

Swam by myself from the beach hut to explore the pond.
Swam out passage way [top right]
Very very rough water beyond pond
Waves breaking to right and left of the outer coral wall
I was getting tossed about and fighting the currents too much to stay outside the pool
Hard swim to get back through the passage way and into the pond again
Finished a full circuit of the pond
Near the valley [top left of pond] saw a huge school of Blue Tang.
Saw Barracuda swimming back to shore across the flats.
An invigorating swim -quote the adrenaline rush!


Third

Very windy, rough day.
Crossed from beach hut to the pond. Took a long time fighting the waves.
Made it to the pond which was too rough. Saw hardly any fish even beneath the coral ledges
Rode current back to shore making landfall near the beach hut.
A good workout but far too risky!


Fourth

A water camera shoot
Swam from beach hut to pond
Very very rough, too stirred up even for fish
Explored coral garden at right end of the pond
Passed through the reef to the sea side again
Getting pulled out then pushed back towards rough coral on crests of the waves
Swam as hard as I could just to get back into the pond. Rather touch and go
Dove down below waves + just swam hard as I could
Made a complete circuit of the pond
Waves pushed me into middle of the pond
Some coral photos but few fish except near shore
Rode current back to make landfall near the dive hut again
Totally exhausted. Dragged myself out of water + just lay on the beach to catch my breathe
Very tired + sore next day! Felt nauseated.


 Fifth

Swam with Elaine towards the pond but she swam back
Explored beach side of the pond not much fish
Swam out to middle of the pond looking for fish
Crests still breaking over the coral reef
Swam back across the flats. Saw lots of big fish, some Parrot fish too
Made perfect landfall on the sand beach.
Lay in sand on shore + just enjoyed the sun!
Technically near perfect swim but another rough day.


Conclusion
Vigorous swims but water was very rough most of our stay this visit. Other times it has been very still, almost glasslike, with few strong currents. Atlantic seaboard winds are quite common and unpredictable.


Flying home 

No comments:

Post a Comment

Communist Girls ARE More Fun!

Communist Girls ARE More Fun!
See below ...

Youtube Bar: Afrika Bambaataa!

Loading...

Communist Girls Are More Fun #1

Communist Girls Are More Fun #1

Communist Grrrls are More Fun #2

Communist Grrrls are More Fun #2

Communist Grrrls Are More Fun #3

Communist Grrrls Are More Fun #3

Communist Girls Are More Fun #4

Communist Girls Are More Fun #4

Art at the Paris Louvre: What does it mean?!?

Art at the Paris Louvre: What does it mean?!?
A careful analytical study!

Help! I Have No Arms!

Help! I Have No Arms!
Please scratch my back.

I can't find my underwear!.

I can't find my underwear!.
Have you seen them!

Weee! I can fly!

Weee! I can fly!
Look! I can crawl thru walls!

I have a headache!

I have a headache!
And a broken nose.

I have a square hole in my bum!

I have a square hole in my bum!

Here try this, it's very good!

Here try this, it's very good!
No. You have a bird face.

I have an ugly baby!

I have an ugly baby!
No I'm not!

Let's save all our money + buy pants!

Let's save all our money + buy pants!
OK but I need a new hand too!

Oh no! I got something in my eye!

Oh no! I got something in my eye!

You don't look well.

You don't look well.
No. My head hurts +I have a sore chest.

Would you like a bun?

Would you like a bun?

Chichen-Itza: Lost Maya City of Ruins!

Chichen-Itza: Lost Maya City of Ruins!
The Temple of Kukulkan!

Gotta love it!

Gotta love it!
Truly amazing!

Under Reconstruction!

Under Reconstruction!

Temples + Snakes!

Temples + Snakes!

The Snake!

The Snake!
It runs the length of the ball field!