On That Cenote


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North America » Mexico » Quintana Roo » Chetumal
June 7th 2007
Published: August 8th 2007
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The rain poured, so we went to do something I actually found quite interesting. ‘Cenote’ cave exploring, this is a natural underground sink hole found in a nearby place called Dzitnup. This is where the Mayans used to get their fresh water. These Cenotes’ have been created over MILLIONS of years by drops of rainwater that slowly dripped through the Yucatan’s granite earth creating these beautiful hanging stalactites.

I slithered into the clear warm water and swam alongside hundreds of small black fish, I was on guard in case the big black pond monster lurking in the deeper abyss parts decided to show itself, my fear of water ever present, saying this it felt very satisfying being in there. The sun burst through the caves upper hole for about six minutes, but the light soon passed over the entrance like a rare full moon eclipse, making it impossible to take great photos.

Next-door was the second Cenote, this time as we climbed through the cave on all fours and looked up to the hole above ground, it was dominated solely by one mother of all trees, its mass of pure 100ft roots spiralling down like twists of ginger to the pool of clear water below, beautiful.

THE BELIZE BORDER
This is so simple, we went to the bus station in Mexico, said ‘Belize’ to the guard at the fence, told to wait in lower front seating area, a man came from no-where and sold us bus tickets for $90psc to Belize city. He changed my old pesos and gives me the best rates, believe me. I spent the last three months thinking in pesos and so couldn’t get my head around the exchange rate from English to Mexican to American back to the Belize dollar. I’d not had breakfast yet so these kinds of sums were as challenging as working out long division using roman numerals. Naturally I thought he may be fleecing us so I gave him half what we had, but when you reach Belize they do change money at the Island boat terminals in town but take a hefty commission, I was done over there instead. My advice to other travellers is the banks in Belize don’t change pesos at all. Change all pesos notes with the bus ticket men at either end bus stations to Belize dollars, which has Queen Liz on it. The bus itself played Guns & Roses really loud, I ate vanilla and sweet corn ice cream, washed down with tuna fruit juice which was both a must try, everything on the bus was written in English. The border was very easy and friendly and it took two hours to drive to the most hideous city I have ever been to.



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14th June 2007

am with you in the water
Ah Claire, how to live now? Can your idyll go on for ever? Am just off to face the hideous crowds and security at Stansted, so-called security, its here for ten years so trains from now on Much love and power to you and Stu Hugs xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
14th June 2007

Vicarious Vacs
Great to read your adventurous tales Clairey. You could start a vicarious travel firm for those like me for whom the phrase 'bus station' is equivalent to 'mildew' or 'mumps' or ... Igo4U you could call it. You describe it all so well that I've caught myself saying "Oh yes, Mexico, wonderful place." Bit tongue-tied on Belize for the moment - more please.

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