Sunday was our first full day in Mexico. We knew we wanted to go to church in Playa and had looked up the local meeting-house location and times. One ward met at 8 AM and another at 12 PM. We of course chose to go at 12 since we were still on California time which is two hours ahead and 8 would have felt like 6! We had a leisurely morning and took a dip in some of the pools at the resort.
After the kids swam for a while they dried off in the hammocks that they have all around the resort.
It was raining pretty hard when it was time for church so we dashed into the building. We knew we would not understand most of the things being said but there is a nice feeling knowing that you understand the structure of things because the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is the same no matter where you go in the world. We sang an opening song that we all knew the tune to, just not the Spanish words. There were two baby blessings that morning and then we sang the Sacrament hymn and partook of the Sacrament after it was blessed and passed by the Priesthood.
It was Sept 1st so we knew that the first Sunday of each month is Testimony meeting where members of the congregation get up and bear their testimonies of the Gospel . Tim translated to whoever was lucky enough to be sitting next to him at the moment. I had to go out in the hall a few times with Levi. The building was built differently than the ones we have in the States. The Chapel had no actual pews, but only tile floor and fold up chairs. The one thing that surprised me the most was that only one person spoke to us while we were there. I had anticipated the people being friendly and inviting. Tim told us later that some of the people who had gotten up to speak had encouraged the ward members to be more friendly and inviting. I think the Spirit was speaking to them. :)
After church we went to a street market in Playa that is only on Sundays. It’s basically a flea market covered by tarps along a street. They were selling everything from used clothing, to $5 sunglasses (Tim and I both got a pair), to local fruit, to threaded bracelets that they spell your name in. We bought bracelets for Catelyn and Lydia and they got to choose the colors they wanted. As we walked down the length of the street the guy was making the bracelets and when we came back he had them done. The funny thing was that when we got back to the spot he had been at he was gone. He found us easy enough though. We stuck out on that street like a buffalo in a rain forest. We were all in our church clothes and Levi was riding on Tim’s back in this:
Tim says lots of people were commenting on the hiking backpack. That thing is the Cadillac of hiking backpacks and I’m sure many people had never seen the likes of it before.
Anyway, the guy making the woven bracelets said that he had to move because he didn’t have a permit to sell on the street and a police officer had come by and told him he had to move. He had moved his “shop” behind a row of other vendors and their tarps. It was kind of fun! Haha.
After that adventure we went back to our room and relaxed a bit until it was time for dinner. The next place on my list of restaurants I wanted to visit was near downtown. We all ordered horchata again and decided to go with a big platter with many selections to make your own tacos with. It was as good as it looks! Such a fun experience!
After dinner we walked along 5th Street which is designated for pedestrian traffic only and that the locals call “Quinta” which means “Fifth”. We hadn’t brought the backpack so Levi got a ride on Daddy’s shoulders.