Belize and Mexico Adventure 2016 – Mexico

I got up early to write and look at our travelling options. Considering going on into Mexico today. Not sure if I can take another night without sleep. Hoped to visit another piece of property for sale here on the coast. Thinking we may just go on if we can’t find it.

I thought I would catch some shots of the sunrise from the balcony, but we are facing south. Once I realized that, I walked down the street to get a few shots.

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(Sunrise in Corazol.)

We walked around town early. Nothing opens before 8am here. We found the local market and walked around while they setup fruit vendors and random flea market crap. Found some bananas, 8 for a dollar, and some juice. Spent .25us on 4 bananas and 1.75 on a bottle of watermelon juice and a cup of orange juice that was obviously diluted.

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Saw the fountain and clock in the center of town. Found the dream wall and the cultural center. Walked through the children’s park. Watched tourists hire boats to run them out to the cayes or wherever they ended up.

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A guy came by trying to sell hand-carved wooden trinkets. I told him I didn’t have room in my bag to take anything.

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(Nobody cares about their hair at this point.)

I started looking for a way to go on to Cancun a day early. We need a break. Belize has been an adventure, but doesn’t look like the destination we had hoped for. We are considering another run like this, with the kids, through Mexico. Maybe at the end of the year. It would be cooler and a little less stressful.

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(The library in Corazol. Creepy statue used to have a book in there.)

Decided to call it done in Belize. Packed up and headed for the bus station. (not before finding another ATM and pulling 400bz or 200us, just in case.) Talked with Steve and Melvin before leaving. I just can’t spend another night on a that bed. Steve said nobody ever complained before, but we also found out that nobody my size had ever slept on it.

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(Some good advice at the park.)

Picked up a final order of ganaches and fry jack from Melvin’s mom who runs a small shop at the market. Walked around the market and found the bus station right behind it. They told us it was a half hour until the next Chetumal bus, but one pulled in after five minutes. We jumped on and paid the big $2 fee. They let us off at the border where we began a whole new adventure.

I later figured out that we should have waited for the next bus. It takes you all the way into Chetumal. Our bus dropped us at the border and we had to figure out how to get into town.

Another $20 each got us paperwork to cross into Mexico.

Unfortunately, we had no idea where we were or what we were doing. We ended up in a parking lot where an old man told us which was to walk. We found ourselves walking on an open road to nowhere. A taxi driver found us and took us to the next stop. He let us out and said he would be right back.

They checked out passports and gave us forms. Then we were told to go to the next building and Geri had her bananas taken away. One more building and we filled out another form. Fortunately we had pens, because there were none in this building.

After that, we were back on the sidewalk, waiting for the cab. The shifty looking security guards offered to get us a cab, and then followed us around texting and calling people while we waited. Our cab finally arrives and we struggle to have a conversation all the way to Chetumal. Another $20 later, we were in the bus station.

The bus agent didn’t speak English, and my Spanish is limited to items on the taco bell menu, so we had an issue. She found a translator and told us the next bus was in ten minutes.

I only had Belizean cash and they wouldn’t take it. I ran to the ATM and attempted to navigate an entirely Spanish menu. Pulled out 1000 pesos (which was twice as much as the tickets. About $27 for both of us) and ran back to the counter. I kept asking for ADO bus line and all I got was “second class” as a response. Since neither one of us understood, we ended up on a slightly better bus than the ones we have bumped around on in Belize.

Take note here. ADO is the luxury bus that crosses from Chetumal to Cancun in about 5 hours. The “second class” bus costs a little less and takes almost 8 hours.

The air conditioner worked fine when we were stopped, but alternates with random blasts of heat when moving. It also had an entertaining leak from the AC that dripped on a kid in front of us. The bus made three stops before leaving town and had people standing in the aisles. It continued to pick up and drop off folks all the way into Cancun.

We are so over this part of this trip. We don’t actually have reservations for tonight and I can’t get a response from the travel agency. I may be booking us somewhere else tonight.

We finally reached Cancun almost 8 hours later. found a cab and rode with an older driver who spoke no English, but drove like Richard Petty. Once here, we went to check in and they said our agent had not contacted them.

The front desk guy found one room available and it was almost $300. However, it was an ocean view room with a king bed. We also found out that our reservation was not all-inclusive even though their website doesn’t even show another option. It cost another $66 to change our reservation and keep the new room all three nights instead of moving.

I paid it and we went to the room for showers and to find something to wear that didn’t smell musty again. This one night cost us as much as all the rooms we booked through Airbnb in Belize combined.

We found a nice Mexican restaurant near the hotel with a mariachi band and a beautiful room. The food was amazing. We walked back and eventually went to bed around 11pm. Exhausted.

We knew this would be the longest day of the trip. We just didn’t expect it to be quite as exhausting as it actually was. At least the room was nice and we now have a view of the beach.

M. Erik Matlock is a self-professed recovering knucklehead with more than 500 articles and four books in print. He shares his hard-earned wisdom at ErikMatlock.com, ProSoundWeb.com and through his books, which are available at Amazon.