My little adventures south of the border.

Adios, Isla…until next time…but it might be awhile…

This will be my last post on this trip to Isla.  As usual…it’s a little lengthy, but I didn’t want to divide it into two posts because my trip was kind of random so there wasn’t much of a subject matter.  I was just about to post it on the Isla Chatter Board when I read rnwendyl’s post that one of the brothers who plays at Minino’s stabbed the other for tips.  How incredibly sad.  I have sat there many times listening to them.  These people must truly be desperate to survive.   I wonder what will happen to them now.

So, on that sad note, I will continue with what I was going to post…here are a couple of panoramics I took this time…several pictures stitched together.  (You can click on them to get the full effect.)

I always like going through the market next to the loncherias.  Lots of peppers…

And beef…

And chicken…

And beets??  Turnips??  What are these?  Although I consider myself a pretty good cook, I’ve never used either, so that’s probably why I’m not sure what these are.

Out on Hidalgo, I could definitely see one of these on my front porch.  Would have been kind of a hassle carrying it on the plane, though.

Colorful little characters…

Shells…

These little guys were hanging out at Bally Hoo.  Look at that face on the left…I can just imagine what kind of character he is at home.

A long distance shot from Bally Hoo.  Love the color of the boat against the blue sea.  It’s usually “parked” at Picus.

Pier…

This is a deserted place along the malecon.  Too bad…this would be a great location for a little loncheria or taqueria.

Laundry day next door…

So, one of the reasons I love Isla is seeing the regulars sitting out on their stoops.  I took this as I was leaving the Maria Leticia on my way to the ferry.

I took this picture in September of 2006…my first time to Isla.  It was one of my favorite photos of this same fellow…and still is.

And this one I took just around the corner from the hotel…another regular…

Same gentleman from the other direction in May of 2007…

And the rib guy.  I’m glad they’re all still there.

Just some random shots as I bid adieu to the island…

One of my favorite shots catching the wind in a doorway…

This was new to me…didn’t check it out…

La Lomita has definitely freshened up their entryway…

A fixer-upper…contact Jim…

Door…with step…

Gotta love that red against the blue…

This graffiti has been here since 2006…I take a picture every time I’m on the island.  Do you know where it is?

So, I checked out the Rooster Cafe on my last day for lunch.

I wanted the roast beef sandwich, but they were all out, so I had the veggie sandwich.  Here it is…

Looks attractive with the colorful bread, but I was disappointed.  I know this place has gotten rave reviews on the chatter board, but maybe I just made the wrong choice.  It was extremely heavy and just kind of mushy in the middle…

The little side salad was good, though.  I liked the touch of pecans and blueberries…that was nice.

And for my final restaurant review…Zazil Ha has reopened.  I checked them out with a friend on my last night.

Chiles Rellenos.  It was okay.  The sauce seemed too “Italian” as opposed to Mexican.  I know it seems like I’m too picky, but it was pretty pricey, and to tell you the truth…

I preferred my own version of La Lomita’s recipe that I tried at home.

I hate to disappoint my viewers, but I will have to say that Isla is losing its appeal to me.  It seems that more and more foreigners are owning the restaurants there which, to me, takes away from the Mexican appeal.  When a friend introduced me to Isla back in 2006, I was mesmerized and just wanted to come back again and again because of its charm.  As more resorts overtake the island and it becomes more of a metropolitan meeting place rather than a Mexican fishing village, it saddens me and I don’t feel the connection I once did.   And I’ve only been going there since 2006!  I can’t imagine how I’d feel if I had seen it when all the streets were sand.  But I wish I could have experienced it then.  And then when I hear that an 80+ year-old man is stabbed by his brother for tips…how horrible is that?  I know that crime happens everywhere…but I think we all hope that it doesn’t happen on Isla.

On that note, I will be moving on to some other adventures on my next trip.  Not because of this crime, but because I guess I have a little bit (or a lot) of wunderlust and I need to see some new places.  I suppose I got it from my dad who packed up my mom, me, and my three older brothers for a road trip through Mexico in 1960.  Yeah…this is me after the spoils of a bullfight at four years old…

And I’m the sad one here.  I think I must have thought this was a permanent situation…haha!

When I was in Merida during this trip, I ran into an American guy on the street who helped me with directions.  We got to talking and he told me that he had been an engineer in the United States.  After a board meeting one day, he left, said “that’s it”…and moved to Mexico.  He lives in a small town outside of Merida and loves it…and would never move back.  He was taking pictures of doorways in Merida to help him decide on what kind of door to put on the house he was building.  After my post on doorways in Merida, I realized he had a lot to choose from.  I told him that I had been to Mexico nine times in the past six years and he said it’s time to move and threatened to take my passport…haha!  Hmmm…maybe he’s right, though.

Anyway, Isla is a wonderful place and it will always hold a special place in my heart.  It certainly has its share of beautiful sunsets…these were taken from Zazil Ha.

But it’s time for me to move on.  Adios, Isla…and viva Mexico…

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17 responses

  1. Ann

    Great report & photos as always! I understand what you mean about Isla, though I think we will continue to go….We are committed for a few more years of helping our student & it’s nice to get to see her & her family. There are many places in the world I’d love to see or return to & I’m hoping once Alan retires we will see some of them!

    May 8, 2011 at 11:22 am

  2. Deb, as I understand it, one brother stabbed the other one in a fight between them over the tips. And that is so sad. One went to the hospital — one to jail. We were at the same point you were in 2008, but we’re back. After our trip to Bucerias and Yelapa last year, we decided we still prefer Isla because we never got into the water on the other side. Too murky and cold! But we’ll be adding other destinations to our travel since Craig’s now retired. I’ve had the same experience with Rooster’s. I tried it last year and the omelet and bread were extremely dry. This year I ordered pancakes and they were the worst I’ve ever had. Great post!

    May 8, 2011 at 11:41 am

  3. carl/debbie

    I sure am going to miss your Isla posts:-(( You take really great pics, like the wind blowing the curtain in the doorway. I ask myself, who woulda thought to take a pic of that? Turned out great!! And a personal thank you, for the fun pics of the Bimbo Dogs! haha

    May 9, 2011 at 12:30 am

  4. Vee

    I’ll also miss your photos of Isla, but I’m sure I’ll enjoy your reports wherever you go.

    May 9, 2011 at 1:31 pm

  5. Marla

    While I respect your right to share your opinions and your sadness, it concerns me to see it publicized as the Isleños take it very personally (one whom I am personally committed to and reading this with me.) They worry about all negative press and how it impacts their livelihood. While they also are saddened by the commercialized growth, they appreciate the work it brings to their families. I hope that your love for the island is more evident to your readers than the negative press as I’m sure it was not your intent. My first trip was also in 2006, now I live here with ‘my islander’ of many generations, very happily.

    May 10, 2011 at 1:36 am

  6. Thanks, everyone…I’ll keep posting on my adventures here and there. And, Carl…it was my pleasure to do the Bimbo Dog post.

    May 10, 2011 at 1:50 am

  7. Nancy

    Those are beets, by the way :-) A funny story from my last trip…while chatting with one of the produce vendors at the mercado on Isla, the lady asked if we had the same items in the U.S. “Do you have these, and these, even these?” She was surprised that we have access to most of the same fruits & vegetables, since we’re always taking pictures of them, LOL!

    I’m looking forward to reading all about your travels.

    May 10, 2011 at 1:52 pm

  8. Jane

    Great photos and commentary Deb. As a long-time Isla lover, I appreciate your courage to state the truth. And I know many locals who share our view–and are sad to see authentic Isla turning into Cancun/Playa del Carmen/Ibiza. Looking forward to seeing where you go next.

    May 11, 2011 at 3:00 pm

  9. Nancy – I know what you mean…they must think we don’t have peppers or mangoes in the U.S…ha! Sometimes when I’m taking those pictures, I think to myself, “Why am I taking these…we have jalapenos at home!”

    Jane – Thanks for your comment. I have heard the same comments from locals as well. I don’t like seeing Isla becoming a mini Playa del Carmen, but I think it’s inevitable…that’s “progress”. Since my post, I’ve received private e-mails from people who feel the same way.

    May 12, 2011 at 12:34 am

  10. Jane

    The Mexican’s flourishing artistry is so apparent in the way they display boldly-colored fruits and vegetables. And it’s wonderful to see through another’s eyes, all the things I’ve missed.

    May 12, 2011 at 9:18 pm

  11. Nancy

    I agree. I enjoy re-experiencing my vacation again (and others, like Deb and her beautiful photography). I always tell them that I want to remember every bit of my vacation because I love it so much there. I bet they do shake their heads and roll their eyes a bit as they see us arranging our plates and drinks and fiddling with our cameras to get that perfect food porn shot :-) From the simplest taco to the fanciest seafood plate, hubby & I took pictures of it this year.

    May 12, 2011 at 10:43 pm

  12. Thanks, Jane and Nancy, for the very nice compliments. I will have to see about what I can do about other locations in Mexico. Stay tuned!

    May 13, 2011 at 2:07 am

  13. Helen

    Deb, I’ve been visiting Isla for almost 10 years and your posts and pictures have been the most enjoyable of all I’ve seen. My favorite is still the shoreline picture from the Bally Hoo dock. I tried to duplicate it on my last trip and it was woefully lacking. I totally understand your sentiments on the rapid change in the past couple of years but after traveling other places, I still want to return to Isla. It just seems like home. Keep sharing your artistic flair! It will be cool to see where you land next.

    May 18, 2011 at 1:07 am

  14. Thanks so much for your comment, Helen. It’s not so much that I don’t want to go back to Isla…I just want to see other places. Today I had a long talk with one of our professors who is from Monterrey. We discussed the many pros and cons of life in the U.S. and life in Mexico. We came to the conclusion that if you could put some aspects of the U.S. into Mexico…and/or some aspects from Mexico into the U.S., we’d have a perfect world. Since I’d like to eventually move to Mexico one day, I need to explore my options since I know I wouldn’t want to live on Isla year round. Life is an adventure.

    May 18, 2011 at 11:25 pm

  15. Leslie Woodbridge

    Great blog, the house fixer upper you posted above we just bought! We love Isla and feel at home here…hope you come back!

    March 29, 2012 at 10:19 pm

    • Thanks for the comment, Leslie. That’s funny that you bought the “fixer-upper”…good for you! Being a big fan of HGTV, I always wonder how I could fix up those fixer-uppers. It’s been just over a year since I’ve been to Mexico and I’m missing it a lot. Hope to get back down there this summer so I can update my blog. Thanks again for visiting!

      March 30, 2012 at 1:20 am

  16. Helen

    Are you ever going to post again? Hope you are doing some other traveling and would love to see your pictures. Sure have missed your blog. I’ve checked my bookmark several times to check!

    May 1, 2012 at 1:52 am

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