Celestún Beach, Mexico

Entry to beach

Perfect Playa

Doesn’t this look like paradise?  Where are the people? Celestún is famous for the breeding grounds of flamingos and the area is a bio preserve.  This means that Celestún hasn’t developed as much as other places in Yucatan such as Cancun.  It was warm but very breezy as you can see from the waves.

After I walked along the beach, I investigated some of the streets close by.  First I saw a group of elderly ladies in various stages of ill health that had been to the local clinic.  I doubt their medical care was as extensive as mine but they were happily chattering as they walked home.  They had probably known each other from childhood and I looked at them in quiet envy.

Celestun village street

La Palapa Restaurant

There were a few restaurants and one was right on the beach.  I really needed a clean restroom but ordered a local beer and admired the view.  The restrooms were like most in the area – spotlessly clean, smelling of bleach with that fantastic foot pedal to flush the toilet.  There was also a clean wastebasket to put your toilet paper in.  The pipes are too narrow and the paper pollutes the pristine environment.  I thanked my hosts kindly and walked out.

Only in Mexico do you get a crucifix in the bar…

As I rounded the corner, reality struck me in the face.  An old sick dog was seizing in the road.  Her eyes were sunken and she was just hours or days from death.  I immediately went into triage mode.  How could I euthanize this dog, likely a stray?  I had left my tranquillizers at the hotel which I could have crushed into some tuna.  As I stopped and stared, I knew I could do nothing.  My rabies vaccinations are long since out of date.  The dog was not mine and it might not be culturally acceptable for me to be the angel of death.  In Cairo most people disapproved of animal euthanasia as it was God’s decision when we die.

I walked on with the knowledge that as much as I would like to, I couldn’t live in a poor rural country.  In Belize I snuck food out of the hotel to feed the starving dogs because there were no shops.  When I got back to the car, Angel, my driver, asked me what I thought of the village.  I told him truthfully that it was exquisite and charming.  Then I told him about the dog in halting Spanish – to my astonishment he seemed to truly understand my dilemma.  Ah, the yin and yang of life.

Cat Mural Celestun

Shades of blue

I have a busy work week and am traveling soon but after that we will return to Mexico. How many shades of blue can you see in the photograph? The blue green of the Caribbean is so lovely contrasted against the blue sky. This is the pier at Celestun, Mexico on a windy but warm day. There is no one on the beach behind me – a little piece of heaven. Despite my last post, my mood is not blue just reflective.

Puerto Vallarta

the-prow

Los Muertos Pier

Our Hacienda was located in the Zona Romantica and this beautiful pier was just a short walk down the hill to the beach.  The sands are almost white despite how they look in this shot.  I liked this area because you could see locals along with tourists enjoying the beaches which are all public.  Shouldn’t all beaches be public???  As you approach Puerto Vallarta by air you can see dense jungle and hillsides and suddenly the most beautiful coastline much of which is taken up by resorts.

The view right outside the Hacienda

The view right outside the Hacienda

I love this shot – it takes me straight back to Cairo.  Cobbled streets, flags across the street.  It was a curious mixture of a wool shop here, a gay nightclub there, beautiful small hotels, street food and exquisite small restaurants.  The mixture was tantalizing.  When I chose the Hacienda, I noticed it was aimed at the gay community but welcomed straight folks.  Even more intriguing… When I researched the area, the guides said it was particularly safe, with a strong police presence.  Teddy and I went out to a lovely little restaurant called Casa Naranjo.  I think we were the only straight couple there but we were all the same age.  My appetite had disappeared and the host went out of his way to cook some mashed potatoes and also some buttered home-made pasta just for me.

yellow-dog

Isn’t there always a little yellow dog wherever you visit?  There were many in Cairo and Istanbul.  This one resided at a restaurant and was well cared for.

Teddy and the cat

Teddy and the cat

…and then there are the cats.  This one was not a stray as you can see from her lovely red collar.  She looked just like Katniss.

Teddy and Bunny with funny hats

Teddy and Bunny with funny hats