June 19, 2009

Is that a tourist? Where? No, that's a local.

Casa Rolandi, lunch at 2pm. Is that a tourist? Where? Down there. Nah...
How about over there? It might be a day tripper. Nope, she's got tortillas.
Ground Zero in the tourist slump. Isla Mujeres is in survival mode. As I ate lunch at Rolandi's, inside a group planning resources for tourism was meeting. At the same time, my companion and I counted 12 day trippers mostly not stopping to buy anything. Yes, we are in a tourism crisis!


MD in Texas said...

We will be there on the 3rd to help! We promise to do our share.

Islagringo said...

While sitting in front of our favorite coffee shop lately we are lucky if we see a tourist walk by. Mostly the only people we see are the ones redoing the streets. Hard times are assuredly here.

Anonymous said...

The old adage "Live by tourism, die by tourism" is certainly rearing it's ugly head in the Yucatan these days. I was amazed to watch the people on Holbox put their island back together after Wilma. But instead of concentrating on finding sources of income outside of tourism, they went crazy building even more posadas and buying even more huge boats for whale sharks. The government built new roads to make it easier to get to the island and gave the islanders buckets and buckets of brown and white paint to make their houses look like whale sharks, declaring the island 'The Magic Island'.

Now, here we are again - empty hotels, empty restaurants, empty whale shark boats. Last year 25 boats a day went out. This year 5 or 6 is a big day.

So, the fisherman are starting to fish again to feed their families. Those few who invested in small businesses both on the mainland and on the island that are not tied to tourism are faring a bit better. I guess it's a good lesson for the younger generation - those who don't remember what it was like before the 'tourism boom'. Tourists are capricious, not to be relied upon. It's best to keep to the basics of everyday living. Computers, cell phones, new golf carts every year, etc. are not the important things.

Life's a Beach! said...

Zina, thanks for the photos. A picture's worth a thousand words. Hopefully, it'll pick back up to normal levels again. What's scary is that normal would still be the slow season. We'll be there end of October! Can't wait!

The economy in our area seems to be getting a little better. More people are in stores, restaurants, etc.... And houses are beginning to sell again. And builders are building. But the layoffs continue and unemployment has gotten worse.

I heard something last night about the U.S. starting to come out of the recession by October, but I was half asleep. So I may have been dreaming.

cozzie laura said...

Wow! And I was just telling Fab Husband how much busier we seem here in Cozumel now!