Monday, January 23, 2012

My love and hate relationship with Mexico

Last night, my hubby told me the news about a Canadian woman who was beaten at a Mexican resort (Riu Emerald Bay in Mazatlan, MX). As much as I love, love, love Mexico, this news may have just done it for me. I am officially terrified. I have defended Mexico from the first time we heard the news of the slain couple in the Riveria Maya. When the random shootings or beatings were happening, I always blamed the cross border cities but now, it's happening at resorts. Resorts that we may have one day planned to stay at. The last two incidents (this one where the woman was found in the resort elevator bleeding to death and the one where a couple was found burnt and buried on the beach in Huatulco) have got me thinking whether or not I would ever go back to Mexico. While these two incidents happened on the West coast, who is to say that it won't start happening on the east coast - Riveria Maya and Cancun? Sure, there are hundreds of resorts but I wouldn't want to be in that one resort where something bad happens. How would I feel if I came across a bloody body just steps away from my hotel room? I would be shitting my pants (excuse my language). But then again, this could happen at a hotel in NYC, Miami, Vegas, even my hometown. What bothers me is that going to beach resorts use to be my go-to happy place, now I don't think I can be happy if I have to constantly watch over my shoulder.

I am aware that violence is around us every day and we shouldn't have to live in fear but when I take time off work and spend my hard earned money (don't even get me started on how expensive all-inclusive vacation are becoming) on a vacation, I want to enjoy myself, feel safe and be able to relax. Right now, I don't think I can find it in Mexico.

I know right now if my travel agent is reading this, she will be shaking her head. She will disagree with me. Mexico is her favorite place in the world. While I can share her sentiments - I love the food, the beach, etc - my heart belongs to Punta Cana, Dominican Republic. For now, I can keep my fingers crossed and only hope that my beloved island remains a safe haven so that I can continue to go there and feel like I am at home. I may have stop my dreaming of a vacation in Mexico and just remember the times I went and how much I enjoyed it.

What are your thoughts? Have you been to Mexico? Would you return with all the violence that is going on?










Anonymous said...

we went to mexico once and while the resort we stayed at was nice, we didn't enjoy our time there as much as other places. i don't think i would go again... esp not since reading your post!! eeek!

lisa said...

I've never been to a Mexican resort, but I used to date a Mexican guy, and while we were dating, I ended up going to Mexico three different times. The first time I was there for 5 weeks, and the next two visits lasted a week each. My stays were in Mexico City primarily, but I also ventured to Guanajuato, San Miguel de Allende, Puerta Vallarta, and beaches all over Oaxaca. (I actually spent a week camped out on a beach in Oaxaca along with a tour group of other Mexicans.)

My first visit coincided with a teachers' strike in Oaxaca which shut down the capital city, and political unrest in Mexico City following the presidential election. Afterward, my ex said "Actually, it was kind of a dangerous time for you to be in Mexico." What's more, Mexico City has always had a reputation as a very dangerous place. But nothing happened to me while I was in these places, and I have a treasure trove of memories from all my travels there.

Violence happens. It doesn't just happen in Mexico, it could occur in any other city or country that a lot of people happen to vacation in. And while a story about a foreign tourist getting slain in a resort shines vividly in the day's headlines, think of how many tourists--domestic and foreign--vacation in these resort towns year in and year out without incident. How you feel about Mexico is up to you and your feelings are perfectly valid. Personally, I'm yearning to return at some point in time.

Mrs. Parker said...

My family & I have been going to Puerto Vallarta every year for the past 10 years & have never had any incident happen while we've been there. We all love it so much that we've even considered moving there! PV may be a bit different than some other destinations in that it's protected by the mountains & the ocean/bay. But I think traveling any where carries risks. You just have to be aware & mindful.

inHERshoes said...

i've never been to the resort towns of mexico, but i hear it's really pretty. i am such a cultural traveler that i will probably push my limits, plus, i know i will blend in and i can speak spanish (as long as they don't talk too fast, hahaa). i used to road trip in college to tijuana (border of cali and mexico), that's pretty dangerous and really sleezy but it was the fun times with my friends that i remember the most.

Girlie Blogger said...

No never been to Mexico. Very sad news though. I think everyone needs to be careful during travels though.

Joanne said...

I love Mexico too! It really really sucks that these bad things are happening. I'm hoping there'd be police officers at every corner of all the resorts there.

Joanne said...

I love Mexico! It really sucks these bad things are happening. Im hoping they'll do something about it and put lots of police officers at every corner of the resort.

Elaine A (TOBeautyReviews) said...

I was at that resort one week BEFORE that couple was murdered. It didn't bother me, but we stayed away from Mexico for a long time now out of courtesy to our parents so they wouldn't be worried. I guess I have a love/hate too. It was seriously my all time favorite place too but it just seems so corrupt. And with so many Canadians spending their $ their they should get their act together and ensure that it is safe.

I went to Punta Cana too as you know and loved it, so I think we will be returning there a few times before going back to Mexico.

Kasey Lynne said...

I've always been skeptical of Mexico. It is gorgeous and I'm sure the food is amazing..but I don't know if I would take the chance. There's SO many other places that I would choose before going there.

I mean, violence can happen anywhere. But the stories that I've heard about Mexico will diminish any thought or desire I have to go there and visit. NO THANKS!