On The Road: An American in Mexico – Part 1

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4.25.16

The title isn’t as romantic sounding as An American in Paris, but after my week in Tulum, I’d argue this location is more meant for lovers than any city. Phil and I didn’t go on a honeymoon right after the wedding last year.  Energy wise and financially, we just didn’t have it in us.  So we decided to wait a year and go somewhere with a lot of beach and sun, the perfect solution to when NYC can’t decide whether it wants to be 65 or 35….in April.

Our original plan was Hawaii, but it’s become incredibly expensive, and there is a lot of time lost traveling, so we tried to think a little more out of the box. We’d heard mention of Tulum through friends and started looking into the city and the location. Neither of us had been to Mexico, it was on the beach, and it wouldn’t break the bank, which were all the major boxes that needed to be checked.  As we started looking more intensely into it, it just made sense.  And so we booked a week in Tulum, and it was the best choice ever (maybe even better than getting married?! JK).

After a week in Mexico, specifically Tulum, I can’t recommend it enough, so I’ve decided to split up our trip into a few posts, along with some of the stellar wardrobe I purchased for the trip. I needed some summer wear anyway!

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So here’s 3 pieces of advice should you decide to go to Mexico, according to my experience.

LEARN A LITTLE SPANISH, PLEASE POR FAVOR:
Don’t try and become bilingual, you won’t do it.  It’ll become too overwhelming if you try and learn a whole language before you travel.  But for the love god, make a little effort to learn the basics of the language of the country you’re traveling to.  Nothing drives me more crazy then encountering tourists in NYC who just want you to speak their language, it’s happened more than you think. I’ve been SHOOED away from a table I was waiting on because I didn’t speak Spanish…..French…..etc.  This has happened more than once, and more than you’d like to think. Just learn how to say basic things, things you’ll use on a daily basis, ‘hello,’ ‘thank  you,’ ‘how much,’ ‘where is….’ ‘yes,’ ‘no,’ numbers (you’ll need to know them if you’re using a taxi), and a few other specialty things.  Phil and I used 
Duolingo and it was SO HELPFUL.  Things as basic as orange juice (which is hugo de narnja by the by), which I didn’t know how to say, and considering we received breakfast at out hotel every morning, it was a really helpful thing to learn. So be considerate of the culture you’re stepping into and don’t assume everyone speaks English because guess what, THEY DON’T. And they shouldn’t have to, you’re in goddamn Mexico. And everyone is so friendly away, if you make an effort to speak the language, the conversation becomes much easier.

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CHANGE YOUR DOLLARS INTO PESOS, ASAP!
Most places in Tulum are cash only so be aware! And I highly recommend using ATM’s in a real supermarket if you take out pesos as opposed to those along the hotel strip on the beach, a lot of those ATM’s get hacked.  If the rate isn’t crazy, change your money before you leave the US, otherwise change it as soon as you can. Most places in Tulum accept American dollars, however, because they’ll have to change it later, it will cost you more, there’s basically an added fee not mentioned tacked on to your total for anything if you want to pay in dollars. So if you pay in peso’s you’ll save yourself a good amount of money in the long run. Also, the dollar sign is also used for pesos, and surprise surprise, we stole it.  So when you see the $ in front of 200 for a Subway sandwich, relax, it’s pesos.

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GUESS HOW MUCH SUNSCREEN YOU NEED? WRONG!!!!! YOU NEED MORE:
I cannot emphasize enough how much sunscreen you need if you are super white (or muy blanca) like me.  You can’t expect to go from 0-160 without completely crashing. You gotta slowly step on the gas and work your way up to that beautiful sun kissed glow.  Or you’ll look like an idiot within the first 24 hours. I didn’t come back looking Hispanic, but I didn’t come back painfully burned.  I think I found a happy medium. But Phil and I went through almost 3 bottles of spray sunscreen (50 SPF!!) Take care of your skin!  If you start to feel the burn, either get out of the sun for a bit, which we did, and drink some beer or play cards in the shade. Or spray on some more.  Don’t forget the tops of your feet!!!! And on a side note, make sure to pack bug spray, bugs aren’t terrible, but like anywhere in the heat of the night they’ll get you.

This outfit was one the of more casual things I wore on the trip.  It was a jackpot score from Forever 21. This will not be the last you seen of these shorts.  I love them so hard.  They’re high waisted, make your tush look nice and are a material other than denim! These shorts can be dressed up with heels (which I plan on doing in the coming months) or thrown on with flip flops and a crop top, like I did hear.Mexico2-3

Can we also talk about this bag that Stitch Fix hooked me up with in my fix pre trip? I know for some people Stitch Fix can be touch and go, but I had one delivered right before the trip, specifically asking for vacation clothes for Mexico in my note the the stylist.  And it was a slam dunk.  Most of the items will be featured on here, but a few I didn’t catch a ton of pictures of,  will be showcased later.

But back to this bag.

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I used it the whole trip.  It was a great size to carry the camera around if we needed without being too obnoxious, and I love the mint color.  Summer bag = mission accomplished. You’ll see if in pictures throughout the whole trip.Mexico2-4

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Stay tuned, I still want to tell you the places we ate and the things we did!!!! And did I mention Rompers?! Cause that’s a thing too.

Forever 21 Striped Crop Top (similar) / Forever 21 High Wasted Navy Shorts (similar) / Stitch Fix Urban Expresions Bag (similar)

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