Thursday, October 28, 2010

Life in the Mayan Riviera

As plans for our return begin, we find ourselves looking back on all the fun we’ve had. And while our stay has been extended, suddenly squeezing in more adventures is climbing our priority list. And as I plan away for more fun get-ways, my brain is generating an inventory of all the things I’ll miss and those I really won’t.
Things I’ll miss
Daddy. We haven’t lived on the same block in a very long time!
The Caribbean. Duh.
Fresh seafood. Eating seafood taken out of the ocean the same day is awesome. This week, hubby decided he wanted octopus… so he bought a fresh one and made it. This in landlocked North Texas is not exactly an option.
Food carts. The best grub! Fresh fruit, juices, tacos, panuchos, chaya crepes, tamales colados, vaporcitos, relleno negro, papadzules, cochinita pibil, marquesitas, churros, etc… And now I’m hungry.
Mom and Pop Shops with no name.  The one next to our place has everything from fresh bread, to light bulbs, wine, and roasted chicken!
Vacation weather. Sunshine, blue skies, and a cool breeze never get old. And this rainy season has been great. Showers last 10-20 minutes in the evening once or twice a week, giving us cool evenings and green parks.
Walking. It’s nice to live in a place where walking doesn’t involve heat stroke, sidewalks don’t suddenly end in the middle of an enormous block, and drivers don’t looked completely shocked and utterly confused at the sight of pedestrians.
Prices. Mexico in dollars is awesome.
Fair Tipping. It’s always really bugged me that in the States we are basically forced to share labor costs with every restaurant and bar owner in the country. If you don’t believe me, just try leaving 10% one day and see how fast you get chased to the door by the restaurant staff angry and asking “Was there something wrong with your service?” in a we’re-going-to-slash-your-tires tone. Here, waiters get a normal salary and voluntary tips that are just that: tips—not the rest of their paycheck. It’s a voluntary extra offered in gratitude for good service.
Cleaning lady. If it were this inexpensive in Dallas, I’d never clean a thing again, ever. Ever.
Laundry service. Once a week or so we pick up these lovely plastic packs filled with clean and folded little gifts of I-didn’t-have-to-wash-it-myself. It’s awesome.

Cheap Cabs. At the wave of a hand I have a ride anywhere downtown for under two bucks.  Gas prices don't even blip on my radar anymore.

Things I won’t miss
Dialup-slow Internet. While it isn’t actually dialup, it might as well be. I suspect the wireless Internet is actually powered by a couple of Mayan iguanas named ChaanbĂ©el and Maasil ChaanbĂ©el. Having pronunciation issues? Just call them Slow and Slower.
Not having a TV. That’s right, I am unashamed! I miss the screen of mindless fun. If the Internet iguanas ran faster, then maybe Hulu and NetFlicks would actually work! As it stands, local channels suck and cable contracts are too long for our brief stay.
ATM hold ups. OK, it’s not officially theft, but getting hit with ATM fees in both countries sucks like a big black hole.
Telcel. It’s Satan. And the workers there, poor things, are held hostage completely barred from reasoning or making decisions. There they sit, repeating their script ad nauseam until a manager finally comes online… and repeats his script. I picture them staring terrified at Carlos Slim, knowing that if they do anything at all to actually help a customer, he’ll melt their face off.


  1. Love the fact that you will miss more things than not. I agree with Telcel problems, can you imagine those little Mayan Telcel pions VS Anthony at their Playa del Carmen store.. They were quivering in fear..

  2. I feel bad for them. Day in and day out they are confronted with people who expect them to do their job, but if they do, their job is on the line. It's insane: do your job and get fired or don't and get an ear full. Satan, I tell you, TelCel is Satan!

  3. I would like to say this has been an adventure with the Hi's and Lo's being able to get in touch with my wife my own self and the feeling of having to start all over again. It has help me to wake up and open my eyes and think... "am I alive? Am I given a second chance? " and he answer is...


Thanks for the comment!


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