This is a travel log (it will attempt to be at least..and I promise to be sorta short).
I decided on a whim after my last birthday that I would do somethings immediately on my life's bucket list. Those being : a) not give a shit anymore and b ) travel internationally solo.
While still working on A , I put my plan for B in action. I had no time to wait on a guy in my life so I could have some romantic get away. Nor did I have time to wait on my girls to coordinate schedules. Nope...I was going during my spring break.
I called a girlfriend who was a travel agent and she booked a moderately priced , all inclusive trip for my spring break for 4 days. Destination .... Playa del Carmen, Mexico. About an hour's drive from Cancun and situated along the Mayan Riviera. I was taking 1 single suitcase....and a positive attitude.
Day 1: Black Dot in White Milk
It all started at the airport...
I hate to fly. I truly do. It texted everyone possible to send up prayer. I had to go get a pre-flight drink (Vodka and OJ is my poison)....I was good to go... See...
After a pretty smooth flight (ok so I got drunk on the plane and went to sleep...), I land in Cancun. The bag porters were like"Pretty lady? You alone? No man? Where is your man?" Uhm...no man..here..take this $5 and shut up. Then I get to a little coupon/tour area and the man goes "Coupons for you and your man?" I said "Nope. No man...." and he goes "WHAT WHY??" ...I shake my head and go..."Yeah...Imma go now"...I get to my airport shuttle....and the man looks at me puzzled. He looks around and goes "Just you?" I said.."Yep" He goes."But why? Why you come to Cancun alone? No man? " I let out an exasperated *sigh*..... I guess women don't go around solo. I just want to relax. I hopped in the passenger van and to my surprise there was one black woman....with an SUPER old white sugar daddy type. Eh...oh well.I didn't peep any rings....trust me I looked. I smiled but she wasn't freindly. We just dropped her off at her fancy, smancy resort.
After an hours drive, I get to the resort....and I look around. Hmmm...there are NO black people. Just me....I am like "well..maybe they are in honeymoon mode". Nope...there were NO black people....just me (wait..there was a Cuban-American sales dude). I check in and the woman was puzzled that I was alone....and said "No husband? But why? You so pretty? Just want to relax? How old are you?" *sigh*... I just said "Nope...now please just book my spa for tomorrow"...My room was near the pool and beach....totally ideal. I put down my bags.....went out to the beach....had a drink....a mojito...and took in the scenes. Gorgeous.....
Later that night, I went to a dinner theater that had traditional Mexican food and folklore dancing. Again...the only black person. I had to find a seat with a German couple. I smiled...they smiled...and then I heard the lady say "schones Schwartzer" (which means pretty black girl). So here I was...the Schwarzer (I might as well had been the n*gger).... Nevertheless...I had a good time....enjoyed the dancing and food...tasted some exotic tequilas...bought some gifts from street vendors....and called it a night.
Day 2: The "Exotic" In an Exotic Land
The next day, I woke up to the sound of this rat-like creature called a sereque scratching at my patio door.. I took some time, enjoyed the rain shower head, and chilled for a minute, looking at the sun finally rising. I quickly put on my swimsuit, coverup and and flip flops. I headed to breakfast...and had a good time. I sat alone, and took in the scenery. IT was a gorgeous, romantic morning. IT was 7:30 am......and I was taking it all in.
After that...I hit the beach w/ cerveza and books in hand....and enjoyed my time soaking in the sun. Let me tell you all something...Europeans could give a DAMN about how they look in swimsuits. While I was so self conscious of my thick thighs and stomach, I saw it all: fat keg bellies, wrinkled skin, sagging boobs, bodies to die for, and bodies nearing death. Men really didn't care as they had on Speedos and flip flops. I was like...such confidence. Which made me in turn easily want to shed my layers of cover up. Besides...who was going to see me?? I felt free....freer than I had in a long time. enjoyed my beer(s) and book. I read for class..then started to read this Best Black Erotica 2 book. (I don't know WHY i did that....because the scenery was really doing something to me). The sand on my body reminded me of hands...the sun reminded me of kisses...not to mention...I kept peeking at those cabana beds....
After I had gotten really nice and tan, I took a shower and got ready for dinner. I thought I'd dine in the Italian spot. The hostess was like "Just you?" I said..."Yes". She frowned, and showed me to a table in the back. I was like..Hmmmm... I ordered some fantastic food. And I looked nice. The waiter was kind enough to snap of pic of me at dinner.
I enjoyed my food and enjoyed listening to the waves..... After dinner I went to the beach at night. I sat on a cabana bed and listened to the waves, jotting down some lines of poetry. Then I heard a "Hmmmm" and an "ooooh". I peek over to the bed next to me and a couple were in the throws of passion. I was kind of startled...but snickered....got my things and left. I understood completely...the place was very romantic.
I went to my room and looked at some pics of my friends and loved ones, wished they were here, kissed pics in my Iphone and went to bed. (Yeah...corny right)
Day 3: Chocolate Sisters and Sales Pitches
The next day, I signed up to do the little "sales tour", where one of the folks was going to try and lure me into getting one of these spots as a vacation property. I only did it because I wanted the 900 peso credit for the Spa. The woman who booked it touched my hair. saying she liked it. I winched. I hated feeling so "othered".
Sales Dude was a hick from Georgia and had breakfast with me...and ate too fast...and said too much. I wasn't paying attention after a while...he took me through all of the motions...and I just nodded and finally said "You do realize I am not buying anything..I am in education and do not make $200,000 to plop down on a vacation property". HE was like "Maybe next time you can bring your boyfriend?" I rolled my eyes....He got the hint and laid off of that. HE still had to do the sales pitch, bringing in other dudes...and another dude. Finally, I just got my spa credit and left....
I went to the spa, credit in hand, and booked a chocolate body massage and scrub, that included real cocoa beans and real Mexican chocolate. This time I had a guy who looked more like Nacho Libre than Enrique Iglasias.....and he was "most happy to be at service" (his words).
He took me to a secluded room where aromatherapy was pumped in followed by some Enya. He said.."Chocolate scrub?" I said yes....he giggled and said "Chocolate scrub for the chocolate girl?" I raised my eyebrow like "Uhm...really dude??" He was firm in his application and touch. First he scrubbed me down with cocoa beans.....and I noticed he lingered a long time on my thighs, stomach and under my breasts. At first I thought t was just a coincidence. Once the scrub was done, he applied the chocolate, which was warm and had me smelling like Nutella. He rubbed and rubbed...and moaned. I looked at him with a raised eyebrow. I showered and he rubbed me down with oil...and said "Now...all done. chocolate for the chocolate girl". Now I was not only "Schwartzer". I was "chocolate girl."
Afterwards, I went to the beach...and I took off my tunic, ordered something fruity with an umbrella, and decided to walk along the coast. I had my camera in hand and a white guy (Italian I presume) stopped and said "Photo?" pointing at my camera. I said "Thanks!". He took a picture.....then stopped....and put on his glasses and took another pic.... "Hmm..perfecto!". I looked at the pic and realized he just zoomed in on my boobs more. I said "Thanks..." and kept walking, soaking up sun and letting my feet get tan. I spied lovers kissing on the sand, some frolicking in the water.
Once my time was up on the beach,I was about 5 shades darker, and the sun was setting, I decided to shower and dress for my final dinner before I was to leave in the morning. I went to another private dining area and decided to splurge and have lobster. The waiters seated me and smiled and looked me up and down. I think my dress had a little too much cleavage, I pulled my hair in front and sat down. The waiter asked my name and I told him. Apparently there is a famous Mexican singer with the same name. Then he asked.."Where is your man? No boyfriend?" I said.."No....just me". He looked me up and down....and said "Too bad". He brought out some champagne (which I didn't ask for). He said "For you." I smiled and said thanks and continued to read the book I brought. They brought the lobster and indulged in the night air one last time. The waiters were overly friendly....I guess cleavage goes a long way.
I heard the Mariachi band playing on the beach....I went down, grabbed a mojito from the bar, and enjoyed the band one last time. I saw couples swaying and hips not really on beat (lol). I sat on the edge of a a beach chair and listened. I really had enjoyed myself...but part of me knew not to come to a place so romantic alone again. It wasn't that I was lonely. I just hated having my peace disturbed by people who have no concept of traveling solo or women not having a man...
Day 4: Adios! Mexico!
I woke up with a raging sinus headache, I'm sure brought on by the night air and the air conditioning not being regulated. One minute too cold. The next too warm. I got up wearily and ate breakfast. This time, I had a different waiter. He was all smiles and said "You alone?" I said "Actually...my boyfriend couldn't make it this time..." and smiled. He was like "And he LET you come alone?" I looked Mr. Machismo in the eye and said "No one LETS me do anything...." He said "Ah I see..." He coulda spit in my coffee for all I know....but I had had it. I just wanted to enjoy my deep fried bacon and its salty goodness in peace.
I checked out and then the front desk clerk rang up my damages (for all I did w/ the spa and lobster, I only spent like $150 USD extra). He smiled and handed me my bill and I signed it. He goes.."Thank you for coming. Next time...you bring "friend"?" At this point I was hoping his allusion and lingering on the word "friend" he meant a girlfriend....not a guy.
The driver came to get me...and again asked me "No man?" This time I didn't bother to answer.. Dude...you were the SAME guy who picked me up the first time. I just put on my shades and squeezed next to a fat Mario Betalli look alike. The 80s tunes blasted and no one really said a word...that is until Whitney Houston came on. Then the ladies decided to talk loud about "poor Whitney". I didn't chime in (which I am sure they were hoping I would)....I closed my eyes and prayed my headache would cease along the way.
I got my tickets which were pretty easy....took about an hour though. I decided to pick up some liquor at the duty free. I NEEDED some real deal tequila. When I asked to check on a price, the woman let out a nasty sigh. Yep...this trip needed to come to a close.
When I boarded the plane (again the only black person in First class), I looked up and the entire flight crew was black (except the pilots). Yep....I was heading home to the ATL. I squeezed next to an elderly white woman who decided to talk my head off.....I just nodded politely.
Then she did it......
She reached her hand out and touched my hair and said "Ive aways wondered how you do that....". At this point my blood was boiling and my headache was raging. I snatched my hair out her hands and said "It just grows...." and turned over, tried to play Words with Friends via the Wifi... and went to sleep.
So here were are, after navigating the maze of customs and delayed trains home, I, a chick FINALLY with a stamp in her passport, is at home now with a fever of 102. (LOL)..but I loved my vacation. Being the only black woman in certain situations was interesting...being single on top of that was a bit too much.
But I'd do it again.....in a heartbeat.
Next time...I'm going to Jamaica.......(maybe the Dexters and Winstons will be sympathetic about a mid-30's Puma traveling solo)