Adios Amigos

So I apologize, things have been a little crazy and life has turned upside down…but it will be okay.  Unfortunately my time in Cancun has come to an end(actually January 30th).  I will explain what has happened over the last month or so(again, I apologize)…So I got back after Christmas vacation expecting to start my new job in Playa del Carmen.  It was for a Canadian company called Ontario Homes.  I THOUGHT it was going to be just booking appointments, pretty mindless, but a job and temporary.  Oh no, Corinne, you were wayyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy wrong.  It was at this girl’s house in Playa del Carmen, cold calling people from Canada.  You had to call and try to do this spiel over the phone and try to convince them to sign up for an appointment if they had an old furnace. blah, blah, blah.  NO WAY JOSE!  I love the Cancun area, but I must have a job that I can live with (or should I say live with myself).  I tried it for a couple of days and the girl asked me if I wanted the job and I politely told her Hellz no.  How would you say that in Spanish?  Anyway, so back to the drawing board.  I didn’t tell you, but I’ve done some other interviews and other things that didn’t work out.  (I should’ve posted all about it!!) Now that this new law passed in Mexico, one cannot go from a tourist visa to a working visa.  You have to leave the country and get hired by a Mexican consulate!  I get it, but it sucks.  I had another job opportunity to work for the hotel called Dreams as a “liner.”  They are the lovely people who try to convince you to buy timeshare crap.  I went for an interview and got it, but long story…no go!  Recently, I went to one last interview.  It is for a company called Froggin.  It is an after school program for learning English.  It is just starting in Cancun.  They have a bunch of the schools throughout Mexico.  I could’ve done that job, but it was part-time and something I would be doing just to stay in Cancun.  I realized(over the last couple of months)that I really, really want to go back to school.  Since I am a veteran, the VA can help out with school if I live and go to school in Wisconsin(the place that is colder than the North Pole right now)!!  So I am trying to soak up all the sun, drink all the cerveza, and eat all the guacamole I can before I leave.  Ok, not really, this place has made me gain a bunch of unwanted weight(like weight is ever really wanted).  So basically, I’m trying to get sun before I go to freeze and have to wear 6 million layers to go outside.  So I guess this blog will have to be discontinued…I will have to change the name or something? Ahhhhh, it won’t be exciting… I am going to miss this place, but I am doing the right thing.  I can’t just stay in a place and not have any goals here.  Everyone needs a dream…

(I took these pics today)…first one is outside of my apartment.

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Just Another Day…In Paradise

One of my favorite things to do here is really just going for a run or a walk on the trail by the hotel zone.  The other day I was not really in the mood for a run, but thought I was overdue to go.  I was just going to run for a little while and see if I had any energy.  Then this older guy (Hilberto-sp?) ran alongside me and started talking away.  He was a marathon runner and from Mexico City(which is where many people are from).  He started speaking Spanish, but then figured out I didn’t know a whole lot.  I sometimes like to tell people to just talk slow and I’ll try my best, but I was finding it hard to run and think in Spanish at the same time! haha  Maybe it was just that it was the morning and I was just waking up!  He quickly switched to English.  He knew a lot of English(he was a doctor).  I have found that most doctors know a lot of English.  Anyway, he was very nice and I ended up effortlessly running to my usual spot.  I like to run to the first beach on the trail.  He said he was tired (from the marathon the day before) so he was going to turn around.  I wanted to hang out at the beach before I ran back.  I love going there in the morning and just sitting on a bench and thinking/relaxing by myself.  It isn’t the prettiest beach in Cancun and the water isn’t as turquoise as other beaches, but it’s still beautiful.  It’s a very small public beach that isn’t very busy.  I love how in the morning there are people who just go there for a quick swim or just seeking somewhere peaceful.  I know before long, I need to get up super early and make it to the beach at sunrise!  Below I added some pictures of what I see on my run/walk.

Where Are We Going?

I have to apologize because I keep having these long breaks in between writing posts.  It’s not that I don’t have anything to say, but I keep feeling like I should have some “great” story…Yes, I know it doesn’t have to be a “great” story, but just something I want to share.

Anyway, last Sunday I decided I wanted to go to the beach very early.  I had some friends that were out the night before and didn’t want to wait for them to join me(I knew they would be hung over).  So I jumped on the R2 bus right by my apartment.  What caught me off guard is that instead of going straight(in the direction of the hotel zone) we took a right.  I know most people would’ve jumped off the bus or asked where were going.  I thought there might be a chance that we were going to go a little further and then take a detour towards the hotel zone, but NO…the more we kept going in the other direction, the more I thought “I’m not jumping off now, I need to see where we are going.”  I also thought, “this is on the way to Playa del Carmen!”  This would be one cheap ride to Playa!  8.5 pesos to Playa!! haha  I knew we weren’t going there, but I’ll admit that I was a bit worried.  I finally asked a girl that I was sitting next to in my best Spanish(which is not good) where the heck we were going!!  She asked what hotel I was staying at and I told her that I lived here, but wanted to go to the hotel zone.  She reassured me that we would be going around to the hotel zone.  Then we finally took the loop by the airport and went the other direction to the hotel zone area.  Whew!  I was relieved to be at Playa Delphines at last!

 

 

Mushroom?

After I went snorkeling a couple of weeks ago, I noticed I had some bumps on my face around my nose.  I didn’t think anything of it.  I thought it might be from a sore that was open and the salt water aggravated it or something.  Well, it’s been over 2 weeks and it’s gotten worse.  I have all these bumps, but they keep peeling and then bleeding.  I think I had something like it before in the US.  It was a bacterial infection.  I have a friend here that knows a doctor(his brother).  He called him up and explained my symptoms.  The doctor then told him what medicine I should take.  My friend  told me 2 things that his brother thought it could be.  One thing he said was that it was like a type of inflammation of the skin from the snorkeling mask and sun.  The other thing he described was like a bacterial infection, but he said it had a name.  He didn’t know what the name was in English(my friend didn’t).  He called his brother back to ask what is was in English…he said mushroom!  I immediately started laughing because obviously it meant fungus(bacterial infection).  So funny, I have a mushroom on my face. 🙂  It’s so funny how some things don’t translate well and some don’t at all.

Agua

In the US (and other places too) we take for granted that we can drink water out of the sink.  Obviously in Mexico this isn’t the case.  Although a friend of mine said that she has had water out of the sink and has been fine.  She said she would never do it in places like Mexico City, but she thinks Cancun is ok.  I asked about the white chunks that I see floating in the water sometimes.  She said something about the calcium in the water or something like that?  I don’t know, I sometimes don’t have the greatest memory.  One time when I ran out of water, I drank a glass of water.  It didn’t taste good, but I didn’t get sick!  Yes, I know, I know…you’re not supposed to do that.  I won’t be doing it again…

So anyway,  everyone has to buy water to drink.  At my old house, there were many “water boys” that came around and delivered water.  Where I’m living now, it’s a bit different.  Occasionally I hear someone yelling “AGUA!” but I don’t bother and just go get it myself.  I used up all my water and it’s very cheap to get more, but it’s really, really heavy!  I went to the Extra(24 hour convenience store) where they sell my brand of water (there are many different brands).  I went to pay and the guy was going to lift it to take it outside.  I tried to explain that I didn’t have a car.  He looked at me like I was crazy, but then I left 🙂  I carried it the couple blocks home and up the stairs to my new home.  I told a couple amigos that and they got kinda mad.  They would say, “Why didn’t you tell me? I have a car and I can do it for you??”  I told them it’s not a big deal, but it’s nice of them to offer.  Sometime I might take them up on that offer! It’s a good errand to do in the morning or in the evening.  It’s a little cooler then for weight lifting or carrying water. 🙂

 

Wal-mart

I love being here and not ever thinking about snow…but then I saw this pic on the side of the Wal-Mart.  NOOOOOOOOO!!!

I also found this attractive lady at Wal-Mart.  You can’t see in the pic, but she is surrounded by alcohol and bread.  This is typical, right? 😉  (Yes, I know it’s for the Day of the Dead).

 

Who knew that Walmart could be so exciting? haha

Isla Mujeres=amazing!

Yesterday, one of my amigos asked if I wanted to go to Isla Mujeres.  I really didn’t have to think about it.  I’ve been here for about 3 months and haven’t been there yet.  When I went swimming with the Whale Sharks, then I saw it and hung out in the water close to the island, but didn’t get to see it.

Anyway, we took the ferry and it’s just a short trip to the island.  I was a little worried about the ferry trip, but it was ok.  The last time I was on a ferry, I spent the whole time very nauseous!  This time it was no problema.

We got to the island and rented a golf cart and just drove around.  We checked out the Tortagranja(Turtle Farm).  I’m pretty sure I was more excited than the kids were!  They had some different kinds of turtles and different areas where ones were about to hatch, ones that were a couple of weeks old, 1 year old, 3 years, and adults(not that many adults).  They even had some turtles that were albino turtles, I guess.  I’m not sure of the name of them, but they did look a bit strange.

Then we went to the southern part of the island and checked out the little bit of the Mayan Ruins(it’s very small).  I guess it was ruined by Hurricane Gilbert.  It was said that it was an observatory dedicated the goddess Ixchel.  Also you get the most amazing view of Cancun and the Carribean Sea.  I think I was in so much awe, that I forgot to take pics! 😦 Oh well, next time.

After having a drink then we just looked around.   My friend was driving the golf cart.  He isn’t very used to driving them(it’s been awhile for me as well).  He decided he was going to back up and park in front of this van.  Well instead of hitting the break, he floored the gas!  We nailed the van!  I couldn’t stop laughing.  It might’ve been more a nervous laugh.  Luckily, the people who owned it were around and they didn’t seem to care(there wasn’t any damage).  My friend bribed them with cerveza and they were happy with that!

Then we went to the beach(Playa del Norte) and relaxed and listened to a Cuban band.  It makes me want to go to Cuba even more!  We(I should say my friend) talked to one of the guys in the band.  I have never heard anyone speak Spanish that fast in my life!  My friend even said that sometimes it’s hard for him to understand.  I was able to tell him in Spanish that he talks fast.  He just laughed.

So this place where we were listening to the band and having drinks, I happen to meet some people.  What do you know, I met some more people from WI!  One of them lived on Isla Mujeres!  Crazy!

We have the best time and maybe a couple too many drinks, but they were yummy!

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Mi Nuevo Casa!

Hola everyone!  Sorry for the break in the posts…I’ve been a little busy and not in the writing mode.  I will get back to it though…

Well, I’ve been in my new house for about a week now.  I absolutely love it!  It is in a great location.  I am able to walk to everything and anything I need.  I’m also very close to the trail along the hotel zone, which is awesome!  The other day, I had the perfect start to a day…a run on the trail and then sat and overlooked the ocean.  I just thought the whole time, I can’t believe I can do this everyday!

It’s kind of funny because 4 people I know live in the same apartment buildings where I live (3 of them teachers).  At first, I had my doubts about living so close to so many people I know.  I thought it would be weird or that I wouldn’t meet as many people, but it’s fine.  They have different schedules and I really don’t see them all that much.

I love the neighborhood too!  It’s perfect!  I also feel very safe.  I hear the occasional dog barking and sometimes the traffic, but it’s not a big deal.  If I have the fan or air conditioner on, then it drowns out the sound.

I’ve always said that I wanted to have a palm tree in my back yard…well it’s not exactly a yard, but I do have some nice palm trees right out my window!

One of my Mexican amigos said…it looks like I live in a “Barbie house.”  I couldn’t stop laughing because I seriously didn’t think of that!

So I’m an idiot…

Before I say anything…I never believe people and I never hand out money…this is unbelievable.  What I’m about to tell you will make you never trust people again.  I am not a nieve person, but it happened today…GRRRRRRRRRRRRR!

So, I was walking from the bus stop and I see this guy and just do the usual “hola.”  This guy keeps going and then turns around and looks kind of frantic.  I was a bit worried and skeptical at first, but decided to listen.  He first asks if I speak English and then proceeds to tell me this story…I should back up a bit.  He was dressed as a tourist…He was about 55 years old, nice shirt, nice shorts, hat, and sandals.  He tells me that he doesn’t usually do this, but he needed help and was desperate.  He said he arrived in Mexico at the bus station and was held at knifepoint by 3 guys.  He said he had on a fanny pack(which sounds dumb, but could really happen), was carrying a really nice guitar.  He said this whole story of how his life flashed before his eyes and he really didn’ t think that could be the case, but it did.  He said he was grateful that he was alive.  He went on about how he learned a lesson and that he couldn’t stay anywhere because he didn’t have his passport(in his fanny pack).  Oh he started kind of almost spitting and he apologized and said it was because he didn’t have his bottom teeth anymore, they were also in his fanny pack!  He said he finally found one place that would let him stay for about 250 pesos…he said he hadn’t had anything to eat and was had to go to Mcdonalds to use the bathroom.  He said the one at the bus station makes you pay 5 pesos or something…He started to tear up and said that he is ashamed that he even has to ask and that he would never otherwise ask…  Long story, but all I had was 500 pesos(around $50 US).  I figured that he could wash his clothes and get something to eat too.  I was being nice!  I really thought this guy was legit!  He even gave me his name and said he had gmail and fb accounts and that he would send me twice the amount.  He said I was  heaven-sent or something…I felt so good about myself helping someone in desperate need!  I googled his name when I get home and find this article…from a blog

http://aboutislamujeres.blogspot.mx/2011/10/tragedy-stirs-rumors-more-security-cams.html

This is Roy Allen Smith, an American who was arrested in July for attempting to steal $9500 pesos worth of jewelry from a store in Isla Mujeres. Yesterday I received an email from a German named Jakob Henschel saying he was scammed by this man in Cancun the day before and asked me to publish this picture and tell what happened. Jakob says he was in Cancun, at the corner of Bonampak and Chichen Itza. He says Roy Allen Smith and his wife Ann (nee Soto) Smith said they were tourists who had been robbed of all their money by a taxi driver and needed money to go to the US Embassy in Merida. He said they had American accents and he had no reason  not to believe them, so he gave them money. He would like to warn others. I advised him to contact the police, which he will have to do via Internet, since he was leaving Cancun.

I just want to say all the swear words and I’m feeling really bad or ashamed that I fell for it.  He took my time and my money!  I need to let other people know this as well.  I never fall for stupid stuff.  I even left some parts out on how he talked about the guitar being from his ex, blah, blah,etc… He could’ve won an academy award!  I came home and told my parents and they were like “Corinne, you got scammed.”  I was so sure and now I’m going to be bitter!  Like it’s going to take me some time to get over this!  Yes, it was only $50, but still!  I do have a big heart, and that is never a bad thing.  I wouldn’t have fallen for it, if he hadn’t cried!  Please someone tell me something to make me feel better!  I feel like crap now! 😦

VIP movie

The other day, a few friends and I went to the VIP movie theater in the mall.  It’s crazy because it’s super nice with leather recliner chairs, side tables, waitstaff, pretty decent menu, and the list goes on!  Oh, and it’s cheaper than going to a movie than in the US!  It was soooooooooooo nice!!  We watched the movie “Ted” which has been out awhile, but was very cute and funny.  I think I might have to go back there soon.  It’s hard to tell in the pic, but my friends are pretty relaxed. haha

VIP