We arrived at the Hotel Mirador Maya in Xpujil on Tuesday of last week. There's not a lot happening in this part of Mexico other than Mayan ruins, but there's a ton of those. In looking at Google maps there were at least 5 Mayan sites within a few minutes of our hotel. A group of students were occupying the entire hotel when we arrived so we parked between the complex of rooms and the highway. They stayed up late and partied, but left the next day and we had the place to ourselves - a typical theme in our travels. We rented a room for night #2, but still opted to stay in the RV.
Given our close proximity to so many Mayan sites we had to go check one out on Wednesday. It was Becan and was very cool. The pyramid here is higher than the much more famous pyramid at Chichen Itza, but this site is much less touristed (that's not a word, but it should be) - only four other people there. I checked out the sign-in sheet for the day and, as with the other stops we've made throughout Mexico, the site was mostly being visited by folks from Europe. The North Americans seem to be missing out more and more on the wonders down this way.
While we were at Becan, Ian and Penelope (our Australian friends) caught up to us. We were returning from the site and heading into town (past our hotel) to do a little shopping when we saw Wiggy, their urban assult vehicle, parked by our RV! We were going to make a quick swing through town, but decided instead to swing around and head back to the hotel to see Ian and Pen. We got a bit bogged down in traffic and by the time we got back they had moved on and left a note on the door saying they'd see us at the park in Chetumal.
Hotel Mirador is a super cute little enclave of casitas, but not terribly relaxing so off we went on Thanksgiving morning to our final destination in Mexico, Chetumal. The drive was smooth and less than 2 hours - what a contrast to most driving days. We arrived at Yax-Ha just after noon and set up camp next to Pen & Ian. There were two other campers here from the states, but other than that, isolation in paradise. And Yax-Ha really does feel like paradise. It's right on the ocean, but no beaches, so way fewer biting insects. The entire complex is grassy and full of thick, low-lying palm trees. Truly gorgeous. The sun has been on again, off again, but in general, the weather has been beautiful.
Pen & Ian needed to empty their fridge before crossing into Belize so we got invited to dinner with them for the next two nights. Great ribs and pork stew - not to mention the wonderful company. We had wondered where we would spend our Thanksgiving holiday and we can't think of a better way to do it than with our new, Australian family. It was a wonderful setting, a wonderful meal, and the best of company.
Ian & Pen set off for Belize on Saturday morning, the park filled up with local families over the weekend, our other two couples - long-term traveling brothers and their wives from the states, departed Monday morning and we were, once again, solo. That is until early that evening when the Swiss showed up. Who would have ever imagined we would be getting such an incredible European experience in Mexico?
Erika & Andres, on the more typical, one-year travel plan, started in Boston, headed north and did the Canada thing and then down to Mexico and beyond. Tooling about in their vintage Peugeot van, they've been pleasantly delayed multiple times, but are trying to get as far south as possible in the four months they have left. They joined us for dinner at the restaurant next door, mezcal shots into the evening, and off they went Tuesday afternoon. Here we are, alone again.
We find ourselves dragging our feet, leaving Mexico. We really love it here, but it's lonesome not being able to speak meaningfully with the locals. We will be back, but we must move on. The plan is to depart before the next weekend onslaught of locals. Off to Corozal Friday or Saturday. Until then...