A funny thing happened on my shuttle ride from the Cancun Airport to my resort for the last two nights: Secrets Maroma on the Riviera Maya. I was bit by the Mexico Bug! I have been in the travel business for my entire career which spans about 24 years. In all that time, I have traveled to places that include China, Hong Kong (while it was still under British rule), Macau and throughout Europe & Scandinavia including British Isles (all of them – including most in the Caribbean), France, Switzerland, Italy, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Greenland & Iceland. I admit I have avoided Mexico. Well, I shouldn’t say I have never been to Mexico.. since I did walk over from San Diego to Tijuana when I was in college. But mostly I have picked other places over Mexico. Why, you ask? Just not my thing; not a big sun and beach fan. But maybe this tide of mine is turning.
The resorts I have seen these last two days during my Destination Wedding Training rival and beat the Jamaican ones- by a very long shot. The drive on my day of arrival in Cancun as we headed for Maroma was truly pleasant. On that ride two days ago, I didn’t pass multiple burnt out cars, homes that were a blight on the landscape, ematiated dogs scrounging for scraps, trash strewn winding roads. There was none of those remnants of memory from my trip to Jamaica this past September. Mind you there were some buildings along the way here that had evidence of disrepair, but they weren’t complete hovels. My heart of compassion went out to the Jamaican citizens, living in those conditions can’t be easy. But I think of relatives and even my mother at that, who although raised in poverty during the war, always had a sense of pride for her personal space. And, here in Mexico, at least so far, I see more evidence of that dignity than I did in Jamaica. But then, as they say, some love Jamaica and some hate Jamaica. There are generally very few people in between. For a vacation spot, defintely Mayan Riviera wins over Jamaica for me. And, as a selling agent, this will be my recommendation to clients seeking to escape the winter doldrums. A little piece of Mexico memory in the midst of the 30 to 40 below freezing temperatures which can be part of our season in Minnesota, will go far for many. Time to head out now- hitting five properties today. Wedding training and culinary samplings.. not a bad gig.