Thursday, December 30, 2021

Something Has Felt Off

I have been looking for an "Ah Ha" moment of realization, a bit of inspiration if you will indulge me. No, not some ridiculous, "oh look at that amazing sunset, the world is awesome" cliche. Word of note, the adjective "awesome" is absolutely the most overused word on Planet English. I have been wandering around Yucatan, Mexico, but something feels off. The tacos are delicious. The people are genuine. The culture is something that must be seen and enjoyed, warts and all. (No, an all inclusive do not count). The language, the madness, the history, national pride and cheap delicious golden lager embraces me like a warm fire on a cold winter's night. However, something is a miss.

Global Covid Madness (GCM from now on) has taken the flow out of every day life and the glorious edge of exploration. This is not going to be post about my theories on GCM. However you can see that it is taking a toll on every day life. Here in Mexico, masks are mandatory everywhere including walking in the street. Many tourists, myself included, do not wear their mask in the street but are put on when entering a store or restaurant, myself included. Now try and speak with someone without wearing  a mask. Holy Shit. Their eyes widen, they walk backwards and sometimes cover their eyes. Yes you read that right, they cover their eyes. This borders on the fear that they are talking to a contagious leper.  People are really scared to death by the drama that they are fed by the governments and the news. Well OK, I do have an opinion in this post about GCM. Now if the only thing separating me from anything is a silly little black cotton mask then so be it. However, when masks start to become fashion statements you have "jumped the shark"

No, this issue rests entirely on my shoulders, my "Ah Ha Moment if you would. I came to the Yucatan with uneven expectations. I know Cancun and where to get mouth watering street tacos for about .50 Cents. Valladolid was over rated but enjoyable. It was in Merida and Progreso that I have spent most of my time. It is Mexico in every way and there is value to thinking about moving here permanently. I just can not get past the fact that it feels like Florida, but cheaper and Spanish speaking.

The majority of Expats roam the streets like they own the place. It is almost a subtle superiority complex. They have found a place where their dollar goes a bit further and with that there seems to be an "arrogance of implied wealth" that they did not have from where ever they came from, mostly Canada and The United States. Do not misunderstand me. I have not been mistreated by anyone. My Expat interactions have been pleasant. Nice conversations that inevitably turn to either health care (Canadians) or politics (USA). A basis for all retirement communities I would imagine.

North Merida could be any city in Canada or the United States. Big Box Stores, Fast Food Chains, wide busy streets with mostly new automobiles and gas at .20 pesos a litre, about $1.24 Canadian. Cool for older Expats who want to retire surrounded by familiarity and lower costs. Merida being cheaper and safer than Florida hits the mark. Progreso is nice enough. There are other coastal towns such as Chelem or Chicxlub (named after the meteor that hit here and killed the dinosaurs) to name just a few. You would need a car if you were to live here full time as well. That presents a whole new series of issues and costs. None the less, I realized that I approached Merida and Progreso as a retirement option, not a travel option. This may have distorted by ability to be open minded about it and just embrace it for what it is. 

I just do not think the whole "spend my winters in Mexico" or "retired to Merida" hits the mark for me, yet. Most people are older than me and moved to Mexico because "it is cheap." . Now, as with all things I did say Yet. This is an excellent option in a few years but I still have quite a bit of Wanderlust in me. That being said, prices are climbing here for the same reason they are in Canada and the USA. People from Mexico City, Puebla, Guadalajara and other large cities and selling their home and moving to be cash positive with remote working a huge draw. So, do I put some money together and build or buy a place now to rent out and move here when the time is right. I am certainly not Benjamin Buttons and time is relentless.

Buddha said "The trouble is you think you have time". Well shit Buddha, thanks a lot dude.