Once arriving in Mexico we stayed at La Amada Marina in Puerto Juarez, which is just a few miles north of downtown Cancun. After clearing in we headed to the beach at the Marina. It was a very windy afternoon so we didn’t stay more than 1.5 hours with the sand being blown in our face. The water is gorgeous and a nice 81 degrees. We headed back to the boat to get ready to head into Cancun for some local dinner cuisine and to restock some fruits and veggies.
We walked a block outside of the Marina to catch a collectivo—a minivan sized bus. The minivan seats are removed and benches are put in along each side of the van so people can get in and out easily and so you can fit more people in. Each bench can hold 4-5 people, which means you can fit 20 ish people inside this little van sitting, and a few more standing hunched over in the middle. The collectivos can get pretty full and so it was a fun experience. The kids wanted to know where the seatbelts were.
It took about 10 mins riding in the collectivo over the very bumpy road to reach near downtown Cancun. We walked along a busy street with lots of shops and vendors. David searched for a shop that had a sim card for his cell phone with the internet plan he wanted. He had looked it up beforehand so he knew what he wanted, just didn’t know how to ask for it in Spanish. We stopped at a little cafe and ordered some tacos and a torta sandwich to try for dinner. We then made our way to the mall which had a large supermarket inside. We picked up some fruits and veggies and some yummy fresh made pastries and donuts. We brought 2 back packs with us so we could only buy what we could carry this time. At the mall David had found someone who spoke english and a brochure that listed the cell phone plan he wanted, so we made our way back to the telcel shop out on the street to pick up the sim card now that he could point it out on the brochure. Always important to get phone and internet!
The next morning we did the same thing, walked out to catch the collectivo, but this time to head to church. I thought the collectivo would drive closer to church than it did. We ended up walking about 2 miles to reach church 25 mins late. But we made it, and the kids enjoyed primary, even though it was all in Spanish. We were able to catch a collectivo outside the church and see more of the residential side of where we were in Cancun. The buildings were falling apart and dilapidated, but still had people living in them. Clothes lines were strung up drying clothes, kids were riding bikes outside. I am grateful for my home and all that we have. The conditions of most of these homes, from the outside, were terrible. We rode the collectivo downtown and than caught another collectivo that went back to the Marina.
On Monday after David took care of the importation of the boat, we made arrangements for dockage at a small marina in Isla Mujeres. It is just a few miles across the bay from Puerto Juarez to Isla Mujeres. We arrived there late afternoon and the kids spent the rest of the day at the marina pool—which they said was very cold.