raised chicken coops, a view from our table at Yerbabuena
awkward itch/only picture/good size reference.
I'm full of awful(ly stupid) faces and poses on this awesome day. It's a good thing I don't take myself seriously.
arms up, second from right.
I think-- no I'm certain, this day was one of my favorite days. While I do enjoy the beach and the jungle, exploring a new "city" is always (always!) fun. We headed out to Valladolid on Saturday for their weekend market. We had already stocked up on plenty of produce so we didn't need much from the market, but it was still nice to walk around in an environment that felt familiar to us. Well, I'm not exactly sure if "familiar" is the right word-- you know, being that we were in a city surrounded by people we don't know, who speak a language we don't really speak, in a place we've never been to before, but it was "friendly" to us--- and felt familiar and comfortable enough.
The drive out to Valladolid from Tulum was nice. The weather was patchy, but the random clouds and sun showers were appreciated to keep us cool in the summer heat. We wandered up and down market isles, up and down town blocks, and in and out of tiny shops and all of the pretty churches. Without trying, we ran into the main cenote in the middle of the town. We weren't quite sure what to expect from it, but we paid the fee (maybe 2 USD) and headed down the steps. It was incredible, really. The pictures don't do it justice. We walked up and down the steps, admiring the beauty of this nature-made swimming pool. Our biggest problem in Valladolid was not having internet to research food options--- which of course, isn't actually a problem. We ended up wandering into a place called Yerbabuena. The food was cheap (really cheap), the place had vegan options, and the chia lemonade was super delicious. It hit just the spot.
After lunch, we packed back into our tiny car, I navigated us out of the city, and we headed east once again. Our drives were always nice together. The highway and roads made for nice little trips, different than the stress and congestion of highway driving here. We debated back and forth about making a second stop at the Coba Ruins. At the last minute, Alex chose "yes" and we darted southwest to a new adventure. Though it was a quick trip, since the park would be closing in a short hour, the unplanned stop was fun. With a lot of hesitation we decided to get a ride with one of the bike tourist men on "the limo of coba"--- as the bike man playfully described it. It was a good idea. We struggled at first with the language barrier. He wasn't sure what language to speak with us. After a bit of struggling, we asked him to speak spanish. He then explained to us that English was his third language, Spanish was his second, and his first was Mayan. In our short amount of time, we learned many things from Miguel. When we made it around to the biggest of the ruins, we jumped off the bike, and walked forward. I stared up, dizzy. I don't, in any way, have a fear of flights (I did jump out of an airplane once, after all), but the size and steepness of this structure mixed with my awareness of how clumsy I can be, made me nervous. I opted to stay close to mother earth and nervously watch Alex climb up (and look away as he climbed down).
We headed home that night, showered by candlelight (the power was still no bueno) and headed out for a nice meal. It was an easy and fun adventure day. A day I would like to relive a few times over again. A day that has inspired us to do more market days and outdoor exploration days back home---no matter how hot it is here. Because heat or no heat (or a hell of a lot more heat)--- everyday is a good day for an outdoor adventure.