This may sound cliché but hot damn does time ever truly fly by when you’re having fun. It’s wild to look back over the past 4 weeks, at all the things we’ve accomplished, and all the times we’ve also just taken time to ourselves to relax, recuperate, and rest. Strange to think that only 4 weeks ago we were sitting at our table, each on our own laptops, waiting desperately for news from WestJet that perhaps they had found our lost luggage, that nothing was missing, that it was en route to us. Of course, that didn’t happen that Monday, and rather a few days later, and thus, we had to travel 8km into town by foot to buy much needed items like some new clothes, essentials like toothpaste, toothbrush, shampoo, soap, toilet paper and all other mundane items, and of course, food to feed our bellies!
Those days now seem like a distant past. Now we have our very own bicycles to ride to and from town with, single-speed, second hand beach cruisers, complete with some rusty kisses, splash guards, and front baskets. Acquiring bikes one week after our arrival was a godsend, opening up a world of purchase possibilities. It made traveling to our local OXXO (corner store/dépanneur/convenience store) to purchase 20L bottles of water that much easier (considering this is done an average of 4 times a week, carrying that was not fun for Matt).
We’ve had meetings with our lawyer, met with an accountant, got acquainted with the friends we made through Skype who we will be working as independent contractors for, made a slew of brand new friends, some local, some expats, some retired, some worldly travellers. We typically bike either 16km a day, or 32km a day, pending if we travel in to Playa del Carmen once or twice. We still bike down to our beach at the end of our road, playa Xcalacocos, where we frolic in waves and try hard not to touch too much seaweed some days. There’s an adjustment period to familiarizing yourself with seaweed, and we have yet to reach it. That being said, our seaweed isn’t your usual slimy seaweed, but more so reminiscent of the green plastic fake items you add to fish tanks to liven it up a bit. We have also been spoiled by being invited over to a friend’s place a couple of times, where he and his girlfriend have an amazing loft apartment in downtown Playa del Carmen, and there’s a small rooftop infinity pool there too. Needless to say, a few light beers are enjoyed while relaxing in a pool which is less than 4 feet deep, with the cool breeze and the hot sun on our faces, great conversation with awesome new friends, great tunes in the background, and time just sort of stands still and could last forever in moments like those.
We have had a chance to travel to an Eco park nearby, Kantun-Chi, where we chose the day pass with access to 4 cenotes. It was a first experience for each of us, and we had a blast. Having agreed to wake at 6am, to optimize both our time spent there, but also, before many others decided to travel there too. We arrived at 9am, and had the park to ourselves for the first hour and it was glorious. The water was SO cold, and so refreshing, with only one being exposed to the air outside, and thus having any sort of green slimy moss growth on the rocks in the water. Everything else was shielded within open cave like nooks, and it was quite interesting to explore all four of them.
We made a day trip to the island of Cozumel for a day last Monday, completing our photos and fingerprints for our immigration cards, and subsequently deciding to make it a day excursion. We caught the 8am ferry, had a chance to walk around, looking for a breakfast option and winding up enjoying some of the best burritos we’ve been fortunate enough to eat in our lives at Burritos Gorditos.
Then it was off to the immigration office to deal with the business side of life, and once complete, more time for us to walk around, hide in a department store and buy umbrellas as we were suddenly caught in quite a bit of rain.
Eventually, we were able to wander to a scooter rental, and ride the tour of the island. We stopped in two places, Paradise Beach and Playa Palancar, to go snorkeling. Paradise Beach seemed to have more fish, whereas when out far enough at Playa Palancar, we saw some conchs and a massive starfish at the bottom of the sea,
alongside fish, and when walking about, hundreds of tiny hermit crabs milling about. After the two stops to get wet, we opted to just cruise around, enjoying the scooter and the beauty the island had to offer, landing us to a restaurant we’d checked out a few years back, Coconuts Bar & Grill.
Enjoyed some chips with pico de gallo and guacamole, had some much needed beer refreshments, and hydrated with water. Eventually, making our way back in time to catch the 6pm ferry ride home, for dinner and much needed rest after such a long day.
And that was only a week ago.
Here we are, a few more meals and outings accomplished, two lovely dinners with friends we’ve met through meetup.com, with Chicago deep-dish style pizza at Don Chendo’s restaurant, and last night was a splendid affair at Zenzi’s beach restaurant, sharing some of the best nachos we’ve ever had, with the same MeetUp crew of friends, enjoying the Supermoon reflecting off the ocean’s mild night time waves, and being proud of ourselves for all we’ve accomplished in these past four weeks. Cheers to them! Cheers to us! We are excited about what the future, our future, here in Playa del Carmen, has in store for us.