December 15,2015

One day closer! One day closer I get to see my loved ones. I left isla mujeres yesterday after I returned there to grab my computer and stuff I didn’t want to take to Cuba. It rained like crazy. It smelled beautiful. I was able to take my new osmo camera and film some musicians and an acrobat, really being able to open up my eye to this new 3-axel gimble camera. It made the trip back to isla that much better. But it was time for me to go. Waiting to catch the ferry back to cancun where I would grab a taxi to bus to tulum, Jules, my new friend from isla, called my name!!!! DEVON! I just thought it was someone speaking Spanish again as there is some phrase people always use that sounds like they’re sayin Devon so I’ve ignored it. She found out I was heading south and we shared the cab to the bus station but that’s when her quick tongue beat my ear.
A few minutes later, she looked at me

 and said you’re being kidnapped. 

(Is he drunk behind us?)

I was taken to playa Del Carmen where we joined her bf who was my dive master a few weeks ago getting his instructor certification. He was with friends, musicians. We all sat around and chilled and listened to great music. And being as cool as I am, I slept the rest of the night in this home that became a hostel of sorts for kidnapped friends of friends. They all went out and I heard them come in at night but 10 hrs of sleep was oh so nice.
We hung out in the morning with coffee which quickly turned to beer and played more music. They begged me to play the saxophone which I had there at his place but it has been 15 years since I picked up that thing. 

Yes, I was in the marching band in HS. Take that!
All of a sudden we were all leaving, time to go. Time to grab a collectivo van which is like a very tight fitting can similar to a clown car with people jumping in and out as you go.
It was also commonly called Pecera. Spanish for “fishtank.”
It was here that I realized in the rush, I didn’t grab something that I got for Andre. I am devastated. So much thought and energy went into it and it was quickly left in the middle of the yucantan. So sad:( I may be able to get those lovely musicians to send but…who knows.
So I arrived finally thru a couple transfers and $40 pesos later (just over $2), to tulum where I made my way to hostel sheck which came recommended and the website looked like an oasis. I should have known better. I am in that “make it look better than it really is,” industry. Especially with the model industry. Only so much I can do til I resort to photoshop. “She wants to be a model?” Ohhhhh, I get it, you’re just using her to make more money from her and not from clients. Fucking LA. Sometimes it’s more like a quota like a sorority than it is a modeling agency.
The room smelled of mold and mildew. I camp so this comes with the territory. But I started sneezing and the smell was so strong that I thought I stuck my nose inside a box that hadn’t been opened in 30 years that sat in the rain. It actually may have been a bunk that was exactly that.
I roamed the town of tulum looking for the perfect dive shop which no one really had any suggestions for. Even divers from only 20 miles away. Weird.
Dive shops are crucial in my book. I like family style but medium sized with fun character and also obviously safety.
It’s between 3. I have two days of diving before Leaving
Fuck. So here’s the drama. Two Mexican dudes who were hitting on me when I switched hostels last night sat on their private room balcony and was observing the surroundings. They went around late last night and even stole up to an entire backpack of a man traveling for a yer who is only left with a passport and the clothes on his back. The worst part…his journal is gone.
Laptop from a room, phones charging from rooms. Bags, etc. And I just realized, there was a hole in my screen next to bed in 6 person dorm. He put his arm in to move the curtain and was surprised that my face was right there. Must have been surveying the room. I told him to leave. He looked shock. He cleaned house last night with his little bitch of a friend.

 Goes to show. Don’t trust anyone. The hostel actually didn’t even make him give a passport or ID and the front desk guy was also drunk.!
This is the conversation I had with dre. I’ve become a different person. It’s been an internal struggle of not enjoying the long backpack trips as much anymore. I will be officially be gone 5 weeks when I return this Friday. It’s one week too long. These people that leave for a year, I couldn’t do it. Mostly cause I don’t like to. I actually like to work. I like rest between adventures. Even hostels urk me now. I was spoiled at isla cause I was in an all girl dorm that majority coming in and out were respectful. When I went back to the mildew hole last night to grab my bags, there was a 50 something year old guy that moved into the bed only 5 ft away. Heavier set man and very muscular. I felt relieved to relocate another heavily recommended hostel that apparently had no security, drunks, and theft.
Goes to show. Don’t trust anyone when traveling. I went to a house of people I did not know in playa. But it was of mutual friends of people I trusted. It’s rare these days I just jump around to people I have no clue about. This isn’t even a bitter taste left from Cuba. It’s just being a smart traveler
But back to my point, I like that after as hard as I work, to have finer things in life. Backpacking grounds me, but I don’t like to push it to prove anything. I didn’t do that on this trip but I def stayed too long mostly to get over being sick. I have nightmares of beans and hot sauce. I went from everything going thru me within an hour, to nothing going thru me for days, to the opposite again. Mildew, theft, being lost, covered in salt, ant infestations and sexual harassment.
But give me a fucking good steak which I’ll chew slowly enjoying every bite, a mani pedi, a beautiful bathroom and a bed that I am not concerned that I may be gambling with bed bugs. I will continue to backpack in the future, but for this trip… Get me my dives & get me back to my Venice family so I can meet my soon to be niece and nephews.
And obviously the man.
I’ll catch up on dives later. Off for a bike ride which I will take my valuables with pepper spray in my pocket…
*SIDE NOTE: I just saw the first black female backpacker this entire trip just walk by me. I never even thought about it til now. There has not been a single description of that kind of traveler til now. Weird how you notice things randomly.