Wednesday, April 19, 2006


Greetings again from Cozumel, Mexico. On my first contract on Cruise Ship X, we used to come here quite often. It´s very popular with crew- easy and cheap to get around, nice beaches, lots of amenities, and a heavy party vibe. Then Hurricane Wilma hit, and pummeled the place, and I haven´t been back since. I think we in the US had hit disaster fatigue from Katrina (well, that and we´re pretty damned myopic), so it didn´t get too much press, and what it did get focused on the tourists stuck in Cancun. (see aforementioned American mypoia) So here I am. Time and money constraints will keep me from downtown, but I can tell you what I see.

Coming back is a testament both to the power of the storm and the resiliance of the islanders. There used to be six-plus cruise ship ports, and a three block long duty-free shop as you came in. Now, there´s one makeshift port (my ship is using tender boats to get people to the island), and all that´s left of the du-free is bits of the foundation snapped off like twigs and sticking out of the ocean. There are thick palm trees that had their whole upper halfs snapped off everywhere. I could go on, but I what´s equally amazing to me is how much is here. There are still a lot of shops, bars and restaraunts at the port, and there is construction everywhere. And as always, there´s somebody selling you something everywhere you look. I know it´s entirely a tourist town, so I understand that all of this comes from necessity, but it´s still something to see. And this place is a loooong way from back together yet.

That said, hurricane season starts in July- keep your fingers crossed.

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