Sunsets are a beautiful time of most days in Tulum, when the sun has been shining all day, with various clouds; cumulus – the puffy imaginative ones; cirrus – the long wispy ones way up high above everything, and what a fantastic backdrop it was for my drive from the airport in Cancun back to Tulum last week.
I knew that Tulum had become a municipality last year, and that brought an influx of tax dollars and permit fees directly to the coffers and hands of the new municipal government in Tulum and with that the town seemed to be exploding from the last time I came through.
Since I watched Playa Del Carmen blossum from a seedling int he late nineties to a fullscale city of late; I know all the tell-tale signs of a town on the edge of a massive popularity explosion.
What were customarily lazy roundabouts dotted along the main highway, in which usually only one direction had any trafffic to speak of, have become intersections filled with tourists, Mayans, ex-pats and tradesmen all hurrying from one place to another, with fully uniformed police now directing traffic where we know traffic lights are on order and will shortly force those young men and women to other jobs in the police force.
I was welcomed to the town with various degrees of “topes” those wonderfully horrific speed bumps of varying heights and visibility, leading up to a funnel effect of traffic creeping slowly past brand newly-constructed police kioks, with police in shiney new uniforms surveying every license plate and vehicle contents hour after hour.
Once on the main strip, I turned down the volume on my CD player to absorb the sounds of the city – police whistles, songs of tradespeople selling their wares from custom-designed tricycles, honking from slightly exasperated taxi and collectivo drivers, music blaring from shop keepers enticing buyers either to or away from their stores as the case may be, or the tinkle tinkle from rented bike bells avoiding carousing gangs of friendly street dogs – it was Mexican music to my ears.
I just love being back in Tulum, and I just love watching this town begin its journey to being a beach town with an energy to be enjoyed and indulged in!