Cozumel: You Want How Much?? - Pt 2
So the day comes and we arrive in Cozumel. There had been some storms out at sea and the water was whipped up by the wind. We found out later that some of the kayak excursions had to be cancelled because of this. I am sure people who had to take boats to the mainland for excursions didn’t have a great ride on those either.
The Royal Caribbean port is closer to the city than the others; it actually empties out into an outdoor mall. Naturally, this mall is your stereotypical tourist trap with jewelry stores, junk stores, clothing stores, guys renting cars and scooters and so on. Not interested, Mike and I breeze through there and hit the main street looking for some authentic Mexican culture.
We went walking towards the main city and, for at least 10 minutes, were constantly (and I mean CONSTANTLY) hounded by store clerks. They were standing outside of their stores and calling to us, mostly in English, telling us about what they were selling, trying to hand us papers, and overall just trying to get us to come in. It was ridiculous and Mike was really starting to get frustrated.
We turned into this central plaza area, which was very nice and not full of people trying to get the tourist to buy things. Wandering up and around streets here, we found a lovely Catholic church that we stepped into for a moment. As we walked down a street, I found a street name I recognized and checking on the map, realized one of the chocolate shops I had wanted to look at was down that street. We went down a couple blocks and saw, sadly, that it was no longer there.
Disappointed and on the brink of exasperation, we decide to head across the main street to where the taxis were and see how expensive a lift to the lighthouse would be. The trip would take about a little over a half hour each way from what I had figured out before (31 KM = 19 Miles, approximately), so we figured it would be expensive.
We walked over to the group, found one that spoke English and asked about getting to the lighthouse. After consulting with others, he said it would be $70 round trip because the driver would have to stay down at Punta Sur to wait for us and drive us back. Mike and I both looked at each other and, with an eyes conversation, decided that was way too much. I then asked about the Mayan Ruins, which was half the distance, 16 KM, and because the guy would wait there for us, they still wanted to charge us $70. We thanked them, said we would think about it, and walked away.
At this point, we honestly did not know what to do. We knew where we wanted to go, but they wanted way too much money to get us there and we just felt stuck. What do we do now? Just get a tequila in the mall and head back to the ship?
Oh No! We are the adventurous type! We find ways to make things work! And as we walked back to the mall area and saw a group of people trying to get tourists to rent their vehicles, Mike got an idea…
Oh yea, another cliffhanger! And it only gets better from here!