A few days ago, I saw a video that really got me thinking. I found myself wondering, what am I doing with my life? It reminded me of a phrase I had seen, which also touched me, essentially saying “If there isn’t at least one thing that surprises you every day, you should go to an eye doctor.”
At times we don’t realize how fortunate we are to be able to open our eyes at dawn and appreciate the gifts that our planet gives us. The simplest things can be the hardest to appreciate.
In Puerto Vallarta you can admire the most beautiful sunsets in the world; the ones that make you sigh and contemplate life. Here I share a few of them with you, from strangers, people you may never know or perhaps you’ve brushed past at some point in your life. They will tell you about a sunset that marked a moment in their lives.
“What is it that makes a moment unforgettable? Many will have their different reasons: the place, the people, the weather, or simply several elements aligned perfectly at the right time. But for me, what made that evening unforgettable were the many memories and emotions that the sky made me feel.
It is amazing how the sea, combined with the magical orange colors of the sunset, can dust off specific moments of life, an achievement from the past, the memory of the family united, friends enjoying time together and even the girl who stole your thoughts and life, making you wish that everyone you love could see the work of art that the sun and clouds were painting.
That evening managed to create a feeling of nostalgia and joy; sadness because the day was reaching its end but joy because the dawn was coming again. A feeling of anxiety and tranquility; the anguish of knowing that the sun was going down but the crashing of the waves against the rocks and rolling sea created a harmony necessary to appreciate the colors. All of this while the sun was disappearing and giving us its last rays of light, coloring the sky and the clouds bright orange, contrasting with the blue Puerto Vallarta sea.
I decided to capture the moment and give it to the person who crossed my mind just as the sun began to disappear.
“One of the most pleasant moments after moving to the city was enjoying the sunset while walking along the malecón. The sunset from the day before didn’t look like today’s and there lies the magic. You never know what colors will surprise you, whether you will feel melancholy, calm or a happiness that cannot be described.
For a foreigner, it is the perfect antidote keep you from missing what you have left behind, and all that you know, to embark on the unknown.
The first thing I did when I arrived in this city was walk along the malecón and find that watercolor in the sky. I confess that at in that moment tears welled up in my eyes, upon being in a city that I had only known by name.
Puerto Vallarta has given me so many sunsets to collect that you could delicately arrange them by color, feeling and season.
This magic can only be found here, the colors contrast perfectly with the sea, the perfect watercolor and create inspiration for the foreign dreamers, like me. “
“It is true that a sunset can make us feel an infinite number things. At least in my case. Tranquility, amazement, nostalgia and even a certain romanticism, perhaps due to the combination of light and colors ranging from a pink or purple to a reddish orange, as well as the textures and figures that the clouds draw in the sky. But that isn’t the only reason they captivate me so much.
I remember that day very well. I was sitting, watching the sun go down and listening to the sound of the waves. Everything created a Zen-like setting. Call it what you want: a moment of depression, sensitivity, corniness, hormones … but the sunset caused thousands of thoughts and feelings to be unleashed that eventually led me to take one of the most important decisions that have changed my life. That’s what makes them so special, because they seem to clear my mind in a matter of seconds. I discovered, ironically, that nature actually has a supernatural power within me.
Now whenever I want to find peace, I resort to a sunset. If I wanted to marvel at something, I would do it because every day brings a different show. But the most important and valuable aspect was to have felt an immense sense of gratitude for being able to fully enjoy the simpler details that life gives us. “
“The first time I visited Puerto Vallarta I was only 7 years old. My uncle had taken us to try fish roe. Since then Vallarta is a name that I carry in my mind because it was there where I first met the sea.
It was ten years before I returned to the port, this time with classmates for an end-of-year trip. I was more focused on making sure my companions got a good impression of Mexico as they were all foreigners. Perhaps I could not enjoy the ocean or the beach, because our main mission was to stay up late and freely imbibe every night at the Zoo de Vallarta night club.
In the summer of 2010 I decided that it was time to return to that place that brought me aromas and memories of the Pacific. I would finally go just to enjoy Vallarta. I did not know what to expect. On the previous occasions, had been with my family and students from in my class. But this time, a few years later, I was ready to conquer the beautiful port I had heard about so many times.
From the time I arrived at the the airport I felt like I was about to have an incomparable adventure. As soon as I got to the hotel I felt at home, everything around me looked familiar. The palm trees, the sand, the waves and the sun. I decided it was time to go and look at the sea and confess that all these years I had longed to see it again. Alone, face to face, I lay on the beach until the sun bid farewell, listening to the sound of the waves. Just imagining he immensity of the endless horizon made me understand that I was just a normal, small and insignificant human, but I had the privilege of being there; in a private interview with the greatest wonder of nature.
I had been told that the sunsets in Vallarta were different from any others. I repeated that phrase in my mind but I didn’t have a memory of any sunset. But that day I was witnessing and experiencing with emotion what would be the first of many unforgettable sunsets. It was a place that gave me the peace I always sought, where the sea invited me to tell it all my sorrows and my dreams.
I have had the opportunity to live near the sea, some with turquoise waters and white sands, I have traveled the world seeing places that are also bathed by the waters of the different seas, but I have never been able to feel at home. I have had to go back to Vallarta and consult with the sea many times, because it is where I feel good, where its houses with tile roofs continue to give it such a picturesque touch, where the crown of its parish continues to be symbol of the city in the world. It is here where its cobbled streets and its malecón full of tourists, locals, artists and vendors make this port one of the most beautiful on the planet. It is there that I go whenever I feel the need to be at peace with myself, because I know that the sea is always waiting to advise me; and through the cooing of its waves it gives me the answers I’m looking for. Just like that afternoon, my great friend the sea and I, have an appointment every summer since that sunset of 2010.”
“I remember the first day I touched the land of the “salty feet”; an Escuinapan in Puerto Vallarta, with my backpack full of emotion and at the same time nostalgia for leaving behind my family, friends and everything I had already created in my previous home.
I come from a place where going to the beach is something you do every Sunday. The town’s main celebration is dedicated to a beach and one of the main economic activities is related to the sea; this is why I had never appreciated a sunset in a different way.
Until that day, the sadness of having left all my loved ones and the opportunity of a new beginning, made me lie on the golden sand of the port and concentrate only on the rolling of the waves and the descent of the sun.
I was hypnotized by the combination of colors and watching the sun go down in the infinity of the sea. That first sunset made me remember where I came from and feel at home. “
Every photograph is the capture of an instant that these people will never forget. The magic of a sunset in Puerto Vallarta can dazzle you so much that it stays with you for the rest of your life.
Please share your story with us, to add it in the second part of this piece.