Nodding in and out during most of our five hour Interjet flight from LAX to Cancun left me half groggy, yet somewhat dopey-refreshed those last forty-five minutes descending toward Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula. This aerial view from my seat wasn’t by any means the Southeast Asian soaring jungle I previously noted, lush with its tropical trees. Our plane was cruising over low-lying jungle so dense, nothing else, not a thing could be identified.
My wife and I pay taxes in America, however, January 2015 until now, we’ve spent an earth-shattering five month total ensconced in Los Angeles, New York alongside San Francisco as we attend patrons every six weeks, like a Swiss watch.
Colin Kaepernick mopes around, sitting our national anthem out — my family has elected a kinder, rather more respectful objection. Basically, I’ll be quick here, America has two acutely unpresidential nominees up for grabs on November 8th’s ballot — each candidate exemplifies the term blowhard. For the record I’ll rise instantly upon hearing, “O say can you see,” that’s a given. Politicians haven’t since who knows when, in my opinion, spoken nor conducted themselves with sincerity, not what our twelve, soon to be thirteen year-old daughter should echo.
I do believe I’m hyperventilating; let me catch a breath and exhale — alrighty then.
While landing deep within Mexico’s Mayan jungle, part of me patted my own back fleeing Americana, while another portion remained skeptical, “What’s in store for us when we hit neighboring Playa del Carmen?” Leaving Cancun’s airport parking lot gaining speed on the two lane highway, I saw complimenting myself was obviously premature. Gwyneth Paltrow, the reigning queen of trendoid consumerism materialized, emerging from one gargantuan headshot, hands down 30 feet by 30 feet — a black and white billboard hawking luxury baubles before this once sacred jungle.
Our intention was to nurture Mr. Haute Coiffure utilizing social media, while blogging and casually arranging life’s pertinent details through August 2017 from Playa del Carmen. Those who’ve experienced Playa realize what I hadn’t before arriving; Riviera Maya my tookus. Say California’s Orange County and the Jersey Shore were somehow squished together inside one of those impressive contraptions that crush automobiles and afterward got shrink wrapped using a cellophane Mexican flag, there we’d have Playa del Carmen — not for us, probably you neither.
Boom shakalaka — here’s how famiglia di Schiavo rolls, pedal to the metal, bolt for Tulum, no problemo, only an hour car ride away. Hang on there amigos; Tulum’s a bit tricky. Before proceeding I’ll be ultra-frank, I am but a workin’ man; there’s no money tree in this fella’s yard. Forty-two nights at any Tulum beach resort could’ve easily set us back $300 nightly, 12k USD before Mexico’s 19% hotel tax. Beach Road restaurants exist to gouge famished tourists; taco stands, juice stalls, fruit and vegetable markets are nowhere in sight.
Back in America I’m a niche hairstylist; patrons request their Jehrcut; although throughout Tulum or any other location where folks communicate speaking Spanish pronounce Jehrcut, “haircut,” the J is always silent. Within Mexico’s border I’m pure gringo, I have no sway; I would’ve wasted twenty grand at any of Tulum’s waterfront hotels, feeding me and my family three healthy meals and renting us a car forking out seventy dollars per day with mandatory insurance — homey don’t play that.
If your gears click as my extra resourceful wifes do, you’d be chill’n where we are: shrimp tacos, gourmet tamales, chilaquiles, ceviche, fresh juice, cocos frios, Mexican gelato; it’s a hit parade, the list can go on too long. Breakfast is included, 8 until 10, a narrow rustic counter, ample matching benches, knockoff Malibu spread beautifully laid out, balmy morning air couldn’t be more pleasant. Our modest space is tucked away in a corner: two silent ceiling fans, light streaming from three sides, wide open floor plan, but my biggest wish come true, our own private outdoor ginormous soaking tub and rain shower, surrounded by miniature bird-of-paradise foliage. If I gloated telling you how much dinner cost last night, it would be gauche, not even Hoi An’s back-alley restaurants serve food at such giveaway prices.
On route into Tulum from Playa del Carmen we stopped momentarily at an ATM. I sat shotgun beside our driver, while waiting, he unfolded his Por Esto! newspaper to explain that morning’s headline along with its full page photos of Donald Trump and Presidente Enrique Peña Nieto. My shared lesson whittling this week’s anecdote, if there is but one: there’s no amount of running, dodging nor hiding; America’s disagreeable matters shall undoubtedly trail behind — exposing especially, us post-postmodern patriots.