Wednesday, March 6, 2013


My Room

After two nights without sleep, I wasn’t much use yesterday.  I was just glad I was able to stay awake through my Spanish lessons.  Since Rosa picked me up from school, I didn’t really get to see anything.  This morning, I got up reasonably early and went for a run down to the beach.  I ran down Avenida Juarez to the beach and then west, looking for the hotel where I will be spending next week.  Avenida Juarez divides the town in half.  At the base of Juarez is the Cozumel ferry terminal.  On the east side are the even numbered streets.  This is the commercial side of town.  On the west side are the odd numbered streets and the “Zona Hotelaria” where the streets are mazelike and have exotic sounding names.  This area consists of resorts and fancy private residences and vacation homes.  It is very lush and green and was a nice place to run, even if I never found the place I sought.  I ran for several miles before returning home.

The House
It was quite warm for so early in the day.  There is no marine layer here in the morning.  The sun pops right out of the ocean, shining brightly.  It is very cheerful and might possibly even be able to make me like morning.  I was sweaty and ready for a shower when I returned but, alas, not a drop of water issued from my shower.  My landlady was out, so I was forced to take a sponge bath in my tiny sink.  It was impossible to wash my hair.

Just as I was about to hop on my bicycle to ride to school, Rosa returned and gave me a ride downtown.  The avenues run east and west and go by fives.    The school is at 15th Ave. and I am staying on 80th Ave.  It sounds like a long way, but is only a couple of miles.  The jackhammering had resumed, so Maria Elisa and I repaired to a coffee bar for our morning lesson.  I drank a cappuccino while I reviewed the present subjunctive and the uses of “por” y “para.”  I felt like I was back in Italy.  At noon, we moved to the park and studied there for another couple of hours, sitting in the shade of a palm tree.  Knowing we would probably be outdoors, I had made sure to wear sunscreen. 

My Ridiculous Pink Bicycle
After class, I used the internet at the school for a few minutes until they closed.  Then I walked down to Ave. 5, which is the big tourist street.  There are lots of expensive shops and overpriced restaurants.  I might have thought that Playa del Carmen was an expensive place if I had not eaten lunch with Maria Elisa in a restaurant near the school yesterday.  I walked inland a few blocks and had a tasty “Arab” taco (a gyro in a tortilla) for about $1.50.  I sat there reading an Oscar Wilde short story in Spanish and then walked back to the house.  I changed into my bathing suit and shorts, hopped on my bicycle and sped off down Ave. Juarez to the beach.  By the time I got there, it had already cooled off enough that I didn’t really want to swim.  I waded in far enough to tell that the water was a pleasant temperature and then stretched out on the sand to read.  It gets dark rather suddenly this close to the equator, so I could only stay an hour and a half or so before I needed to head home. 

Once I returned, I tried the shower once again.  This time, I was able to get water, although I never did get any hot water.  At least I managed to wash my hair, although the water was too cold to stand under.  The internet is still out of order, also.  Apparently, the cable TV is out, also.  A repairman is coming tomorrow.  This must not be uncommon, since the students staying in a different house are having the same problem.
There is another occupant of the house that I forgot to mention.  Her name is Shanti and she is the tiniest Chihuahua that I have ever seen.  I doubt she weighs two pounds.  Her paws are about the size of my index finger.  She is very shy, but will beg to sit in my lap when her mother isn’t around.  She hardly barks at all.  Even our small cat could eat her for dinner.  Fortunately, Rosa doesn’t carry her around in her purse or dress her in silly clothes.  She is allowed to preserve her tiny dignity.

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