Day One - The Evacuation
We were handed a bulletin written in both Spanish and English outlining instructions for the evacuation. I was skimming the page and came to the part that read "From Thursday 20th at 8.00 a.m., we ask you to be prepared for the evacuation."
I read no further!!!
I began to run around the room picking up all the clothes and personal items and smashing them into suitcases. Joe took a shower, but I had showered before going to bed and decided not to waste time!!! It was 7.45 a.m. and closing in on 8.00 a.m.
What does one wear for an evacuation? I chose white Capri pants and a blue Old Navy V-neck tee. We proceeded to go down stairs to see what was going on and eat breakfast.
It was very close to 8AM. There was very little activity in the lobby. I asked at the front desk and was instructed to go eat breakfast....a good breakfast, the evacuation will take place in time.
In time. Time became our nemesis .....in time.
There was no panic. Things moved along slowly. We watched the staff climb around the balcony area and tape the windows. We watched as they took apart the heavy glass doors leading to the swimming pool area and the beach. We watched people watch people.
The bars are closed in a crisis event. Any type of alcohol sales are prohibited. People were drinking the Corona's from the refrigerators in their room.
Joe and I returned to our room and gathered what the hotel staff had instructed...pillows, passports, money, personal cosmetic items. We skipped the blankets. We were only going to be gone for 12 to 24 hours! We placed our luggage in the bathroom later to be moved to the bathtub by the hotel staff. Naturally we filled a water bottle with tequila from the bottle supplied to us in the room. Survival.
We patiently waited for buses to pick us up. All our belongings resting in the large plastic bags supplied to us by the hotel. We watched the staff begin to remove coconuts from the excessive number of trees surrounding the hotel, then some of the limbs themselves.
Out of boredom we began to chat with a couple seated with us, close to the back of the lobby. Bob and Judy.
I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship.