Friday, January 18, 2008

Let's Finish That Ride!

On the last beautiful day we had here, as previously reported, I grabbed my camera, jumped on my Honda motorscooter and went for a ride around the island. You've seen the pictures of the pretty water (awwww), here's the rest of what caught my eye that day.

This is an area just south of us. Maybe a mile at the most. It is almost across the road from the local dump, er, that is, garbage transfer station. Thus we christened it Playa Basura. (Garbage Beach). It was beautiful back then. A protected little cove backed by the cliffs. Lovely sand beach. No rocks in the water, just sand. The waves always came high but soft here. It was the perfect little get away, undiscovered by tourists. We spent many hours body surfing and just playing in the water. It was one of the places I felt safe in the water. Then along came Hurricane Ivan in September 2003 and wiped it out. The cliffs behind it collapsed into the sea and it was no more. I was delighted to see that after four years, it is starting to come back. I wouldn't swim here yet, but maybe someday soon.

Traveling on to South Point. Or as I like to call it, Tourist Trap Point. This is what the developers call "Caribbean Village". Lovely, isn't it? It looks exactly like all of the villages I have seen along the Caribbean Coast. NOT!

Did you know that Isla Mujeres is the end of Mexico? It is the eastern most point of Mexico. Confusing I know since it is also the southern most point of the island. It's because of the way the island lies. We don't actually coordinate true north-south. More northwesterly to southeasterly. We get the first sunrise in Mexico.

Look at this! Finally! Somebody wised up and put a fence of sorts up at South Point. Those cliffs have been so undermined by the past four hurricanes that they just keep crumbling into the sea. Still, in my opinion, they are allowing people to get much too close to this precarious edge. Including snoopy bloggers!

Remember this scene from a prior post? Even more of the cliff edge has fallen in. It's that big pointy rock in the center of the picture. People. Please. Visit South Point. The view is indeed breathtaking. But stay away from the edge. I don't want to blog about some tourist falling off the edge.

Ooooooo! A genuine, ancient fake Mayan God statute! Who do they think they are kidding? I get the giving birth part, but what else is she doing? Delivering bread? Actually, I think it is supposed to be her dress and she is holding it up out of the way. I'm certainly not a prude but I wonder at the judgement of putting a statue out like this when lots and lots of small children visit here. Maybe it's a chance for parents to explain a few things to the kids. If I were a kid though, it would scare the beejeezus out of me.

Moving on around to the west side of the island we have this.

It's a great idea gone bad. I have only seen it in operation once in the last four years. I think it is permanently rusted in this position. Too bad. I think it would have been a grand view from up there.

On to the finger of land on the west side called Sac Bajo. The sea comes in and forms this alleyway of water. It is used by yachts and expensive boats. It is also where a lot of ships come for safe harbor during hurricanes. I would never, ever, never stick a foot in this water. Mostly because it strikes me as dirty but there is another reason also. Rumor has it that the people on these boats just toss their garbage overboard. And that attracks sharks. The locals say that if you want to see sharks on the island, just watch the waters here. Still, I have never seen one and I am constantly on the lookout everywhere I go for the tell tale fin.

It is also where old boats go to die.

There is an undeveloped area at the very end of Sac Bajo. In the rainy season it is mostly unaccessable. There is a really cool dirt road that runs around back in there, going nowhere. It is very isolated and really full of bushes. Also, I suspect, lots of snakes. Maybe even a boa or two. Evidently that doesn't bother some people.

Doncha wonder what story hangs here? Who put these panties on this bush? And why? Is it a flag of conquest? I'll leave it to you, dear reader, to work out your own story.

All over the island you can see these little white boxes on sticks. They are moth traps. Remember the worm that is eating up all of our national cactus here, the Nopal? The ones that invaded my garden and resulted in the city taking all of my Nopal cactus away. These traps are designed to trap the moths before they can breed and make more little wormies. The island is doing a valiant job of trying to keep this invasion contained here and not let it spread to the mainland. It would be disastrous to Mexico's national symbol were that to happen.

Finally I have something I have been wanting to show you for a long time. Can you guess what this is? Go ahead, enlarge it if you need to. I'll wait below.

Are you ready for this? It's my mechanic's work area! Yup. This is where I take my car to get it serviced, fixed, repaired, whatever. The roof is made up of old banners that have seen better days. The whole place is not much to look at, I know. But believe me. If you need work done on your car, this is the place to take it.

I hope you enjoyed this little updated trip around the island. I certainly enjoyed bringing it to you!


Anonymous said...

"Ooooooo! A genuine, ancient fake Mayan God statute! Who do they think they are kidding? I get the giving birth part, but what else is she doing? Delivering bread?"

LOL - Wayne you are a funny guy! I always get confused about genuine fakes and having babies for that matter - so that's how they do it.

Thanks for the tour - nice pics as usual.

My question today has to do with your Honda motor scooter. I remember reading about how is was displaced a few blocks from where you left it, but I am a detail man when it comes to Mexican life. I would like to know if you bought it there or some other area of Mexico or did you bring it in from the States?

I have a BMW motorcycle that I would love to get down here - but if I also want to get two cars down here it becomes a problem. Anyway - can we get some details on your scooter.

Juan Calypso

CancunCanuck said...

Fabulous post and pics Wayne, thanks for sharing your little piece of paradise!

MexicowithKids said...

I really enjoyed this post and the pics--thanks for sharing! Last time I was on Isla was 1989 so it's nice to get a glimpse of what it looks like now.

I'll be checking back to keep up with your life there. :)