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Published: March 3rd 2009
Akumal is a beach area between Tulum and Cancun where sea turtles nest from May to October, and where the coral reef is fairly close to shore. Usually the turtles are gone by now, but for some reason some of them are still around, feeding on the sea grass in the area. We rented life jackets from the dive shop so we could swim farther and longer, and were able to see and swim alongside some turtles. We spend a wonderful day in the ocean, being amazed at the diversity of life in the ocean, and on this reef, the second largest coral reef in the world (after Australia's). We walked around the town of Akumal, which has a lot of big, fancy hacienda properties. Apparently, there is more tourist money here than in Tulum. Clouds had been threatening all day and raining a few warm drops on us as we walked, but they opened up with a serious downpour just as we found the beach restaurant we had been looking for. We sat out the storm, wondering if our towels and clothes that we had left on the beach would blow away. We had the cheapest thing on the menu,
along with our 'free drink' which is why we were looking for this place to begin with, and quietly laughed at the rich snooty people who acted like they were too good to be drenched and dripping like everyone else. (The cheapest things - a bowl of soup and guacamole and chips - were still $70 and $90 pesos - about $7 and $9 Cdn dollars each). Interestingly, the staff at this place were also less friendly than staff at the smaller, family owned places we usually go to. No smiles, and very slow service. You would think that they were doing us a favour! Observing human behaviour is always entertaining. Once the rain stopped, we walked back to the beach, and found all our stuff still there, but dripping wet. We put our dripping shorts on over our now-dry bathing suits, and walked back to the highway to catch a collectivo back home. Even wet, we don't feel cold at all. We grabbed a quick bite to eat at our favorite little carniceria, where they cut the meat for the tacos al Pastor right off a rotating spit, and then head down to a different restaurant on the beach
to watch a salsa competition. Wow - this is not like any salsa dancing we could ever do. The men spin the women over their heads like acrobats. The costumes are skimpy, even when the people are not. We drink tequila shots with our toes in the sand. This is the life.
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