Sunday, October 30, 2005


Yes we have been of line for a day or two to think about what really stated Tulum is up and running, the dive center in Playa at this point is on and I will fill you in.

After shovellin for two days in the hot sun, washing the dive center and going out to buy paint...we ave discovered that there may be some structural damage to the dive center. This as put the dive center on hold for now until we can get the right people to assess the situation. Of course we found this out on a Saturday afternoon so there is nothing we can do until Monday...just our luck.

The good news is all the gus have come to Tulum to help out, they finally get to see what the dive centers are like and get to work in a different area. This has been fun! We have the captains sharing a boat, others are doing electrical work to make sure all the crazy electrical current runs the way it should. They are building things, making things and of course diving.

Most tourists at this point have left the area. This makes things a little slower tan we had a week ago. The airport is functioning better though is not perfect. Some flights are not being received but a few are coming in each day. So cross your fingers and hope all will be back to normal. Thanksgiving for the Americans is around the corner and the Riviera Maya mainland from Playa Del Carmen to Tulum is ready to receive them.

So Monday we will have a better idea as to what we have to do for the dive center in Playa. Whatever happens, we are not going anwhere and are ready to accept change if need be. The most important thing is to let you know wen the dive center will be up and running.

So that is the news for the day. We have been prett self absorbed so ave no other reports about happenings in the area, other than everone one in the State is working around the clock to make sure that things are running normally.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

WILMA PART 3-Getting Back to Normal

Well, it was another interesting day since the departure of Wilma. It was a scouting day in Tulum and yet another day of getting things set up in Playa Del Carmen. The guys are working hard and will have the dive center back to your normal in a few days. Right now without windows and doors, we are ready to open and dive but I think it may freak some people so we decided to wait. OUr normal right now is a far cry from other people´s normal so if it takes a few more days to finalize theproject, it takes a few more days. There are divers in Tulum so the employes from Playa are coming to help the gang in Tulum. A true team effort!

To assist those who are wobbling on their decisionto come to visit or not to come, Nicola went around the beach hotels in Tulum to scout out who has rooms and who is closed for a while. The results were fantastic and again we only have good news.

So the scoop,the real scoop, not the media scoop that is only showing the absolute worst pictures they can find (Mexican newspapers are doing the same by the way) is that only 20% of the rooms in Tulum on the beach were damaged. Nicola had a great walk south of Zamas to check it all out. Who could have a better job, the order was walk on the beach to find out what is happening. yes it is a beautiful sunny day but you msut walk o the off she went....hmmm......I hear it is starting to snow in areas around the world....anyway, here are the reults.

Ana and Jose, open, Posada Margarita, open with no damage what so ever, Parasio, open, Mezzine, open, Los Lirios, open, Coqi Coqi, open, Shambala will be open in a few days, Diamante K open, and there are many more. The beach is collecting debris that is now coming in from the storm, so the beach is not the brilliant white sand that we usually have, but the workers are cleaning rapidly. The beach is still fantasic, dont get us wrong, we just are not used to having stuff on the beach.....Nicola took three divers to the beach today and apologized for the mess. Their comment was, this is better than any beach they had been on for our entire i guess we are just spoiled. People were out and about sunbathing, swimming, snorkelling...just another day on the beach.

Playa Del Carmen is doing very well. There seemed to be some impromtu parties going on last night as the Ley de Seca (alcohol ban) was lifted from 10th Avenue to the beach. la Rana, Beer Bucket, Babes and others were rocking with locals and tourists sharing stories of the storm. Cenote Dive Center had their own impromtu party with local friends as we watched the hords of people walking up and down the new nicknamed ¨La Quinta¨ (5th Avenue) in Tulum. We are still busy down here and loving the new tourist that is discovering our great little town.

Reef conditions are still not known. All cenotes are open except for Carwash, as it was very flooded after the storm. Other than that, life is getting back to normal. The only person we know that is out of electricty is Dave....poor thing....he has not showered for days and I think we are all paying for it! Ryder, his little one, joined us for coffee this morning and he is great! What a bundle of joy that kid is. His cheeks are the biggest you have ever seen and he loves to laugh.....he is a great addition to the team...

Now we still are praying for all of our friends in the surrounding areas. Our story is looking brighter everyday and we are thankful for this. Cozumel is getting better we hear but dont know for sure, Cancun...well no one really knows very much....Isla Mujeres as well....they are toughing it out but the larger hotels will need some recovery time. Please put out some good energy for all of those who are less fortunate than us...we thank the gods each day for our good fortune and hope it will spread to the other areas...

Thank you again for all your emails and we are doing our best to get the information you need. We are on email each evening after the dive centers are closed so just please give us 24 hours to reply...your kind thoughts and messages really keep us going....

Tuesday, October 25, 2005


Okay, so you now know we are okay. the news is good for us but we should give you a report of the surrounding areas. Lets start north first and work our way down. We now have more information so we can give you a better update...

Cancun, this city did not fair well. Rumor has it that the ocean met the lagoon in the hotel zone so the this area turned into ocean....if the water dried as fast as Playa Del Carmen, this situation is probably not true anymore, but we an not get up there to check it out as the highway is closed to traffic. They may be opening it up today so we will get some more news. The airport is closed and should re-open on wednesday. The unfortunate thing is no flights are coming in. This is not good for us or those who wish to return to Mexico. Selma is on route back from New York but it seems she may have to enter the country a different way.

Puerto Morelos, 40 minutes south of Cancun, really has not done well. Most of the dramatic pictures come from here....We have lots of freinds here and we do worry, but again there is no way to contact them. We pray for them...once we have news we will let you know. Matt from Protec said that there are restaurants open there. I want to see for myself. I hope they are and I hoep all of our friends are fine.

Isla Mujeres. Oops, so much for starting north and working our way south. Isla is located off the tip of Cancun, and though we have not seen pictures the Island could be underwater, meaning lots of water went a shore and it will take time for it to drain. Once we have the update, we will pas it along.

Now as I sit here writing, I am listening to a woman at the internet cafe talk about her experience on Cozumel. Now, the tourists are being taken by helicopter from the Island to Tulum, yes our little town of Tulum. So what i just heard was, water up the people waists, no food, no water. But the military is removing people quickly and getting everyone safely onto dry land. This is not good news, but the great news is people are being taken care of and Mexico is moving fast....

Next, Playa Del Carmen. They are rocking. Electricity is bad in most places, water is running and people are happy. I think the prediction of a week for recovery is a good one. But that is not to say that others will need less time to get up and fully functioning. Java Joe´s was open and serving coffee. Got to love Ronnie and Joel. They dont miss a beat! Java was sourcing food, bread and suplies yesterday and they are open!!!

Puerto Adventuras got some damage again, same with Akumal and Tank ha Bay. The cenotes are up and running and people are diving in them today. Snorkelling will take a bit as the water levels are still too high, but diving yee ha!!!

Tulum is the hub....the town is packed and people are coming here for supplies, information and just to get out and about. I swear it is the little town that is a haven for most.

So that is the update today. More tomorrow!

Monday, October 24, 2005

IT IS ONLY GOOD NEWS!!!!! Wilma is gone

I don´t think we know where to start this tale of all know her and probably know too much about her...she was wicked, huge and did some bad things...but she actually did some nice things as on and the tale of Wilma will unfold...this story will take part in sections, there is too much to tell in one sitting. So tune in each evening for the on-going story of our great dance with this woman and how we ended the evening (36 hours later, the longest and worst date we have ever had and I dont think the relationship will re-occur nor will be we be heart broken with its ending)

Before we spill the real beans, not the media beans, it has to be said that the emails, the flurry of emails, was overwhelming when we finally got internet access today. Thank you for your support, the international support which was a great reward of Wilma. We never knew we were so humble as we are...really, we are all just divers who love to dive....but the emails were really what we needed today....we had cheeleaders world wide who were hoping we would be okay. And you know what WE ARE OKAY!

So your plan and property in Playa Del Carmen and Tulum are all fine. Wilma did not fair well in Cancun, Isla Mujeres or Cozumel. We are hoping that their recovery will have them in as good a shape as we are. Our hearts go out to our friends who are living or working in these parts. We are stil waiting for news so as we get it so will you!

So first Tulum, this is the good story! Tulum received rain and wind like Playa did. The beach also got a lot of sand....tons of sand....the boutique hotels on the beach all suffered some damage, but the eco-friendly mission of the area means that no one lost their shirts. Cabanas are easy to rebuilt and everyone is doing that right now. Each hotel lost at least one cabana, but when you have ten cabanas, one can disappear. People are working hard to regain thier momentum and will be ready for business soon. Now the city of Tulum where our dive centers are located did very well. Daniella and Nicola cleaned a little, swept a little and opened the doors. The ocean was fabulous today and we are ready to dive!!! Tulum has full service and parts of the pueblo had electricity in 12 hours after Wilma left. The hurricane cookies turned out great, with peanut butter and ginger snaps being served for all who visit.

Playa on the other hand was hit pretty hard. The media has taken this and ran with it, but we can say that with a week, we will be ready to receive our friends. All boats are in tact, all equipment is fine, we have tons of gas...the only little glitch is the 2 meters/6 feet of sand in the dive center. Everyone went down to pitch in to dig it out...add a few extra workers and they hit ground today, the floor that is they found the floor! By tomorrow we will have the entire dive center out of the sand and ready to paint. Now, windows would be nice before we put equipment back, but Nicola is all over that in Tulum, getting new door frames and glass for the new and improved Playa Del Carmen Dive Center. See, bad things never happen, only forced opportunity!

Playa Del Carmen does have some sad stories, some businesses were swept away by the sand and surge, more to the north of the Blue Parrot then south. As far as we know no one lost their homes, but I am sure that some beach front properties did not fair well. Our hearts go out to them and wish them a quick rebuilt.

So, for the first part of our story, we want you to know we faired well. Diving will be here where you come for your next vacation, hotels are around, restaurants are open and all of our local friends are ready for a great year! Now don´t book your ticket tomorrow, give us a week, we have a little makeover to do, but once you return, Playa will still be Playa and your friends will always be your friends, your friends at the Abyss Dive Center.

Okay I am tired now, emails, blog and yes, personal emails to let everyone know we are fine. To all of our divers, thank you, thank you for looking out for us and thank you for caring. Really, your heart felt emails were more overwhelming than the hurricane itself...we thank you for this.

Stay tuned for more information on Tulum and Playa tomorrow, after we go diving in Tulum and after the boys destroy the sand castle that is covering the dive center.

Thursday, October 20, 2005


Visions of Fred Flinstone keep coming to mind whenever we say this word...or should I say the name of the next ´system´as we like to call these hurricanes. And might I say we have been saying it alot in the past 36 hours.

Before I give you the run down, we all want to say thank you for your emails and well wishes. It is nice to think that others are looking after us even when they are not here. It makes us all warm and fuzzy!

Now for the goods. Wilma! is scheduled for tonight, Thursday evening, early Friday morning. You went throughthe drill with us with Emily and we have followed the same routine. Dive centers are packed up, cars are hidden, and we are all safe in our homes....we are getting really good at this hurricane preparation, too good. Oh and the boats are out of the water but we got smart, they are all located in different places so no matter what we will back diving as soon as we can.

We will try to keep you updated, getting on the blog as soon as we can after the storm passes. It will only depend on electricity and internet access....if we are cut off for a long time...start looking for the smoke signals over Mexico, you may see the Abyss Logo flying over the Carribean.

Currently at 11 30 am on Thursday the 20th, the sun is trying to poke through the clouds and there is no rain. So we are still around, walking about, watching everyone else getting ready for the storm. Things are calm and people are just shopping, getting water and making sure that everything is secure.

Predictions? We have none. This update is not to be used for your holiday planning, to encourage you to cancel your vacation next week or to book a trip. If we could make those predictions we would not be running dive centers in Mexico. So please watch the news and listen to yourlocal airlines if you were to travel in the next few days.

As soon as we can, we will update you on the results. This is always the fun part. Hang tight, and lets see what happens this time! And we can guarantee more hurricane cookies after this one....