By Adrienne Brendtro, age 13

Over spring break, I was fortunate enough to spend two weeks in Mexico. While there, I began to see how other people live and the kinds of things they do. We stayed in a resort on the Yucutan Peninsula close to the salt flats. People lived by them in these really run down houses. Some of them didn’t even have roofs! When they ran out of room to build, they would knock over a building into the salt flats and build another one right on top of it!

We also looked around in shops in Merida and Progresso, two towns nearby. Almost every shop has hammocks! Since it’s a poorer country, they all sleep in hammocks instead of real beds.  They don’t really understand that Americans don’t need hammocks, so they try to sell you every single one in their shop! It is pretty funny.

We swam in cenotes as well. A cenote is a large, natural hole in the ground filled with freshwater. There are cenotes all over Mexico connected by an underground river system. The one we swam in was so clear, you could see all the way to the bottom, thirty feet below. There’s also cute little fish that nibble at your feet! I was drying off and a Canadian tourist screamed as the fish started touching her feet, which was pretty funny.

At the Mayan ruins we went to, we saw a Mayan basketball court! Their version of basketball was much different than the game we play today. The ball was made of solid rubber. The players couldn’t touch it with their hands, but instead had to bat it with their hips and head! The captain of each team ran up and down a six foot ledge on each side of the court, trying to hit the ball into a small hoop 40 feet above the ground! The captain of the winning team was sacrificed because in their culture, being sacrificed was an honor! You got to go straight to their version of Heaven.

Overall, it was a life changing experience. To see how Mexicans live really makes you grateful for what you have. I really enjoyed it, and I definitely encourage you to go!


Written by Melissa Brendtro