Tuesday, July 31, 2012

In Cancun & Tulum

Today was to be a day for exploring Cancun--but first I needed a haircut. The bright sun meant I needed to wear a hat whenever I was outside. Once I had the hat on for any length of time my hair was so soggy and greasy looking I wouldn't take it off. The solution was a scalping.

I went to my friend's barber who was shocked that I wanted my hair cut so closely. After a false start--when he cut only the top of my head down--leaving the sides long, it was a done deal. I didn't care if it looked terrible or not--it felt GREAT! Cost? Fifty pesos (about US $3.75) including tip. Not bad.

Kerry wanted to show me how inexpensive local housing was away from the tourist zone. We went to visit a local businessman he knew. Horatio had a small internet cafe and was building a hotel adjacent to it. We toured the construction and he offered to show me some other property he owned that was for sale. He had a three bedroom house with a garden courtyard for sale in the Cancun city limits for $57,000 US. He also had two bedroom apartments for rent at 300-500 dollars. Later we looked at one and two bedroom houses for sale from $10,000-15,000 US. These were not in fancy tourist areas, but in the real world where "real" people live. It was encouraging to me that housing could be that affordable. I'm sorry I don't have photos for you to see.

I'll grant you that most from the states would not want to live in these areas. The quality and cleanliness in these areas varies from house to house; they are a long way from the beach and here your neighbors would not be rich. But for me, that is not troubling. I prefer to be comfortable rather than fashionable; economical rather than astronomical.

Later we headed to a huge mall were we walked around checking prices. Most of the products were high end and not discounted. Kerry assured me that most everything we saw there could be had for less somewhere else.

We stopped at a kiosk (Spanish=cabina) marketing new construction one and two bedroom condos. These were not the upscale, fancy tourist condos, but real world stuff. One bedrooms were about $20,000 US, 2 bedrooms were about $26,000.

The next day we headed to Tulum, a smaller city south of Cancun. Tulum has the only known Mayan temple site on the ocean.

Image: traveladvisor.com

Image: tropicalsky.co.uk

(Here you might ask why I am using other's photos. There is a pretty good reason . . . I accidently deleted mine.)

While the temples at Tulum can't hold a candle to those at Chichen Itza they are sited in a fabulous spot. I heartily recommend it as a must see place.

The beaches at Tulum are marvelous--but they are priced waaaay out of my range. Here's a shot of where I won't be living . . . rats!

We toured the modern city of Tulum as well. I stopped at a little shop to buy a hat with a larger brim. I found a beauty. I was surprised and pleased to find that it was made in Texas! Why is it every hat I look at in the Wal-Mart at home is from China? Can't they stock anything from the US? It is a shame when I have to travel to Mexico to find something made in the USA.

Here is the American-made hat, with my American-made head in it.

After Tulum we headed back to Cancun where we had some terrific fish tacos in a side walk shop in the tourist area. Good eats, great prices.

The time had flown by, I had seen and learned a lot, but tomorrow it would be time to go home.

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