Friday, November 16
After an awesome night's sleep I was starving so decided to enjoy the hotel's breakfast buffet which I figured should fuel me more most of the day. With nothing on the agenda I set out to explore. I happened to be near a bus stop when I saw "Rt 1 Hotel Zona" pull up so decided to jump on. Since I haven't figured out the coins yet I just showed the driver my handful and he picked out what was needed. I got off near the Ruinas Del Rey after being informed by the driver on which bus to take back. The ruins aren't all that interesting but the abundance of iguanas is lots of fun. I came upon some tourists maintaining a good distance from a rather large one and told them not to worry, they're herbivores. When I walked right up to it, she passed me her camera. Chicken. haha
After spending much time playing with lizards I left and tried to walk the beach. I couldn't find public access and walking a road lined with hotels is no fun so I hopped another bus. After all, it's only $8.50 (pesos = about 75 cents) I got off with a bunch of people who appeared to know where they were going which ended up being a public beach.
I could never get tired of the Caribbean. The colour is amazing and just gorgeous. The Cancun sand is soft and white and a pleasure to walk. It's lined with hotels and the beaches are covered in tourists who don't appear to have bought the idea that the sun is bad for you. After about an hour I started looking for a way to get off the beach. I was starting to wonder if I'd have to turn around and go back to my starting point when I saw a jetty, figuring that was some kind of ferry terminal. Nope. They ended up being private docks. This is where the rich Mexicans live. So I kept walking. Finally I came upon what turned out to be Playa Tortuga, a beach that was on my list to see. Cool.
Back on the road, another bus and driver who picks out the fare from my hand full of change (gotta love bus drivers!) and into the city. I started looking for the Nader St and when I saw it, stood up to get off the bus at the next stop. Right in front of me was McDonalds which made me want ice cream. I ordered a cona oreo and put my change on the counter. The kind young man counted but I didn't have 9 pesos. Oops. So I pulled out a 20 peso bill. Now I've got bus change again :) I found a grocery store and picked up some water, fruit and yogurt to have for supper and walked in the general direction I thought my hotel should be. Hmmm. It was far. I got out my map and studied it. Checked out street names and finally figured out where I was and that I was headed in the wrong direction. I was almost ready to give up and find a taxi when I stumbled on the hotel, across the street from where I thought it should be. After all that I deserved to sit by the pool and read so I did. I decided to find a bank and change some money so set off again. I came out to the Tulum St and looked around. Not 5 minutes down the road was McDonalds. Seriously? I must have walked for 45 minutes. The teller at the bank spoke no English and apparently one needs a passport to exchange dollars so back to the hotel to get my passport. I get the money laundering problem and can see it for large amounts but to change $200 you need to get a copy of my passport and I have to sign 3 forms? They're a thorough bunch!
Back to my room for a delightful shower and yummy supper of an orange, banana, gatorade and yogurt (which I had to eat with my finger since I neglected to think of a spoon) and for desert,lemon potato chips!
** I figured out my issue with the change when I examined it with glasses on. Some of it's not Mexican. Some of it appears to be African. I don't know which country or how it got mixed up with the Pesos but at least I'm not a complete idiot. Sort of :)