Waking up a little earlier than I normally would, instinctively wanting a cup of coffee, I wash up (still trying to get in the “no flush-paper in the trash can” mode…….ooops) and head out to Aluxes. Get a blueberry muffin and coffee and walk to the grocery store for a 6-pack, a few items, yogurt etc. So nice to see how Inexpensive beer and yogurt is!
Back to the apt., fill ice trays with purified water, get out the sunscreen…….DAMN!! I had the stick of 30 for lips and NO sunscreen. HOW in the heck did I forget that?? I knew I bought some at CVS the day before for the trip. Can’t imagine trying to cover myself with a stick all week, and the prices of sunscreen sucks in Mexico (WHY is that??) I refuse to pay 24.00US for sunscreen. So off I walk to the Navy store thinking I’ll find it cheaper there. Damn again, they are closed!
Oh well, I enjoyed the walk and seeing old familiar faces and places. I now find myself humming, which I normally don’t do as I walk, but somehow Isla gets me going. (Buffet-margaritaville)….I cut through a path to walk the return on the beautiful walkway along the Caribbean side, feeling the wonderful breeze and smells of the ocean and coming from homes cooking food.
Head off to the beach after dropping off goods, find my little area between Buhos and Na Balaam to park myself under a palm tree. I begin the watch…….local venders setting up their day, guys tempting people to sign up for snorkeling trips, noticing how long people have been on the island for. You can usually tell by the color of their skin. I notice one lady is scarlet, yet still laid out like a slab of meat on a grill hoping the red might turn to brown?? I don’t get it!! She has to be feeling excruciating pain!!!
It doesn’t take long before I want a cold cervesa, after all it IS 5 o’clock somewhere! I pop open a frosty Sol, and immediately start thinking about Maria! She is a favorite vender of mine who sells her wonderful pepitas (shelled pumpkin seeds) and peanuts. I take a dip, put on my hat and walk down towards Chi Chi’s where I usually find her in years passed..
Passing the crowds at the high-rise hotel, I CRINGE at the sights, Tarzan quickly tries to get me to “buy” a seat for the day before I make it any further…no gracias…I scoot away and pass the stretch of beach there before I get an awful feeling in my stomach of the “bad” that happened to Isla (good for the locals maybe BUT bad for me).
I come across Chi Chi’s and see a smiling familiar face and ask if he has seen Maria……..”No, manana maybe!” he tells me he will tell her I am looking for her. I ask what time will she usually come around, he says about 10 or 11 in the morning. GRACIAS!! I buy a beer, and he says to sit and take a lounge chair (apparently if you drink, you get the chairs for free??) as I have been told by others, although Tarzan told me a price when I asked how much (I didn’t want a chair, I was curious as to the price going these days).
Walking back, the street-side this time to avoid the pit in my stomach from the high-rise crowd views, I start to become hungrier, not caring what time it was, or if it was still breakfast or lunch…..on Isla it doesn’t matter, I drink and eat when I want as often as I want. I walk past the little tienda beside Sea Hawk Divers and say hello to another familiar face, she remembers me, and I ask what she’s cooking today, “Tamales today??” “No, empanadas!” I ask for one, and off I go, buying a cold beer to go ( I just now realize 14pesos for returnable Sol, or 11 for media sol non returnable…..hmmmm, why have I not figured this out until NOW??? Lol! Been on Isla many times! Back to the beach and eat my empanada with chopped boiled egg, onion and other stuff!! 10 pesos for the empanada! YUM!!
I eat every morsle, and gaze out into the ocean which looks like a blanket of darker skies coming from Cancun ,,,,uh oooh. Not like a thunder shower cloud, but a blanket of rain.
I think it may be a time for a siesta ? I walk back to the apt., can’t sleep, wastes too much time awake!!
Therefore I say hello to Hortensia and her family and see how the babies have grown. I have a bag of little girls’ shoes, a dozen or so, and ask where I can drop them off to donate and if they wanted a pair for the little girl. Well, she was delighted, as was a friend, and her friend and her sister and so on and so on, and all shoes but 3 pairs I said I wanted to keep (I KNOW they weren’t being greedy at all, just didn’t understand me when I asked about donating.) They asked how much and I said nothing….zero….for YOU! Smiling, the little ones say Gracias, the toddler took off with hers on, staring in delight. The women then came bearing little gifts for me. That was so kind, and though not expected, I felt so warm inside for the “giving” that just took place.
I walk down the street to restaurants to see if I could smell the direction my nose would take me this night. I ended up at a place called Maximum, needed pasta, and the smell of garlic drew me in closer. Also, the fact it was a new place, she looked like she was slow and hoping for new business. Well, it was a good choice, although NOT fresh pasta as she stated, the dish was FRESHLY made, marinara was homemade (so it tasted like it). I love fresh pasta and I later in the week hear Mama Rosa has fresh pasta such as her ravioli (which I never got to eat…..hope to next time). The butter was real butter, served aside with the garlic toasted bread, and the red wine was decent. I would eat there again. Marinara had spices that were wonderful and bacon chunks in it, served over ziti. Restaurant near south end of Hidalgo.
I watch cats gathering around a island in the street and up comes a woman who serves the stray kitties their evening meal of cat food from a can. So nice of her to do that! I love cats!!
I stroll down to area to see the venders near the church area (Sunday night brings out the good cooks) and I buy up a slice of chocolate cake with a layer of flan on top, bring it home and eat every last morsel. Brush my teeth (almost forgetting to use purified water, and almost forgetting to NOT flush paper………..I think I am back into the swing of settling into Isla living……..ahhhhhhhhh…...thinking now, as I drift off to sleep, I better eat light tomorrow, or NO bikini for me by mid week!!!