Arrived bright and early in Tulum after our overnight bus experience. Unfortunately the hostel wasn’t open this early (“working hours” are a little after 10am in most places). So just as we were settling into our second sidewalk relaxation period, guess who approaches us next?! Jehovah’s Witnesses! Wooo! We were given a book titled “Does God really care about us?”. Lucky us, reading material sorted.
But on a serious note, we had a FAB time in this hippy village. Our first scuba diving experience took place here, where we explored the underwater world of a cenote. These are lagoon like holes that are either open, or enclosed like a cave and host a range of saltwater fish and marine life.
Once we mastered the use of our equipment and I finally worked out the direction of the inflation/deflation (I was on the cenote floor for sometime), we had a ball! We saw a number of colorful fish, some that even insisted on almost hitting my mask, some freakily long seaweed and even had our eyes peeled for crocodiles. A fellow American traveller met a croc some days earlier and described her encounter as “life changing”. We were convinced that maybe she had had a little bit too much hippy juice, as life changing wasn’t what we were thinking… But regardless, the cenote was definitely very cool!
The next day brought us to the archaeological site of Chichen Itza (named as one of the original Seven Wonders of the World). Although this perhaps wasn’t as physically big as some other sites, it did have some interesting facts. One of those being sport. Athletes competed on the Great Ball Court which was about 150m in length, in a game that required contenders to hit a ball only with their hips, to reach circular goals some 8 meters high (challenging much?). We thought this was crazy enough in itself and could definitely understand why some games lasted weeks at a time. But what was even more interesting was what the winner received! Not monies, a trophy or possessions. Instead, the winners were killed. Way to preserve athletic talent we thought!
Other tulum-esque experiences:
- When I very gracefully crashed my bike on a main road (this simply occurred when I forgot how to ride one-handed). Result? Only a black tire mark down the back of my shorts. Winning!
- Ordering the spiciest salsa yet that required Meg to order a giant glass of milk. It was either milk or tears. We definitely chose well.
-Visiting a bar that served balloons of Happy Gas. This was the only reason we went there and had an interesting time inhaling them (perhaps just CO2?). Brain cells may have been diminished here.
-Celebrating Nick’s birthday (who we mentioned in previous blogs) by dancing the night away with some interesting locals.
- Meeting 3 Aussie boys who showed us a few “restaurants” that they had frequented. Note: one in particular would barely constitute a restaurant, as it had one table, a homemade BBQ contraption and live chickens that would shortly end up on your plate. Thankfully, our stomachs survived
- Going to a Mexican hairdresser to correct my very grey-green hair. Packet hair colour failed epically but the non-English speaking hairdresser was a lifesaver!