Retired in Mexico: No Time for Rocking Chairs

Caleta Tankah in Tulum (Source: Linda Kurtzweil)

If you’re a regular reader of the blog, you might remember that Linda and I spent the holidays back in Florida. It was nice to see everyone, but to tell you the truth, I was bored quite a lot of the time.

At the time, I even commented to Linda that if we had stayed in the U.S. after we retired, I would have ended up going back to work just to have something to do — and of course to pay the bills because it’s more expensive there.

We’ve been back in Mexico for about a month now and I haven’t been bored once. In fact, we’ve been running non-stop since our return.

Readers often ask us what we do to stay busy. That’s a tough question to answer because it varies from day to day. Our standard response is something like: We socialize, travel, blog and basically live every day to the fullest.

I realize that that response doesn’t really answer the question, so I came up with the idea of giving our readers a better idea of what we do by just looking at the last seven days.

February 1

Linda woke up early and headed to yoga class. I decided to take a brisk two mile walk, followed by some light weight training.

We showered and then headed to Caleta Tankah with a group of friends. The weather was absolutely perfect and we stayed there until around 3:30 PM.

Caleta Tankah in Tulum (Source: Q-Roo Paul)

We headed home to take another shower before meeting a different group of friends for dinner on Akumal.

Akumal Bay at sunset (Source: Q-Roo Paul)

After dinner, we went back to a friend’s condo and we all sat around talking on the rooftop terrace.

February 2-4

As usual, Linda headed to yoga and I worked out on my own.

Afterwards, we showered, packed a suitcase and headed to the ferry in Playa del Carmen. A friend of ours invited us to stay at his place in Cozumel for the weekend.

The weekend was full of fun, sun, great food and cold beverages. On Sunday, we all headed to The Pub to watch the Super Bowl.

Here are a few pics from the weekend:

The view from our friend’s condo in Cozumel (Source: Q-Roo Paul)

Visiting our friend Eric, one of the owners of Dick’s Dive (Source: Q-Roo Paul)

Great live band playing at Dick’s Dive (Source: Q-Roo Paul)

Linda loves to snorkel at Buccanos in Cozumel (Source: Linda Kurtzweil)

Watching the sunset from the Money Bar (Source: Q-Roo Paul)

February 5

This was our administrative day for the week. We went grocery shopping, cleaned up around the condo, washed clothes and installed a couple of new ceiling fans.

We were still worn out from the weekend on Cozumel, so we ate at home and turned in early.

February 6

After a good night’s rest, we were back at it and headed to the beach to have lunch with a friend who was in town for a few days.

After enjoying some delicious Cochinita Pibil (Mayan pork dish), we headed to Tulum to pick up a neighbor who was dropping of her rental car and needed a ride home.

Akumal Bay at lunchtime (Source: Q-Roo Paul)

We got home in time for me to grab a 40 minute nap before we had to go out again.

A couple of our neighbors had just flown in from the U.S. and we all went to Playa del Carmen for dinner. We met up with a couple of more neighbors who were already in PDC for a doctor’s appointment.

Cráter de rib eye at Celia in PDC (Source: Q-Roo Paul)

February 7

By this point in the post, you may have noticed the pattern that our days are full of friends, food and fun. This day wasn’t any different, so I’ll spare you the details.

Let’s Wrap This Up

When we moved to Mexico, we didn’t know anyone here and Linda was concerned that we might end up feeling isolated. As for me, I had just retired from a 25-year career in law enforcement, so the idea of taking a break from people for a while sounded very appealing.

Within a week of arriving, Linda’s concerns vanished. We were lucky enough to end up in a very social community made up of both full and part time expats. It wasn’t long until we had dozens of friends and we were faced with a new challenge: finding the time to meet up with all of them.

So what do we do now if we need a little rest and relaxation? That’s easy, we take a trip to a place where we don’t know anyone. We have one of those planned for the end of this month.

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About the Author

Q-Roo Paul
Paul Kurtzweil (Q-Roo Paul) was a deputy sheriff in Florida for 25 years before retiring at the rank of lieutenant in 2015. He and his wife moved to Mexico looking to maximize their retirement income. They later started a blog called Two Expats Mexico (qroo.us) to share their experiences, as well as information about the logistical and legal aspects of retiring south of the border.

42 Comments on "Retired in Mexico: No Time for Rocking Chairs"

  1. Great article. Thanks

  2. Hi Paul and Linda, this is exactly what I am daydreaming about….right now I am at work going through a stack of paperwork wishing I was there. My house is almost done in Playa so just a few more months before I trade mounds of paperwork for sand and sun. Thanks so much for reminding me what I have to look forward to.

    • Hi Laura, can I ask what area of PDC you are building? House or condo, on beach or inland? We are starting to look around for retirement area and loved PDC! Just not sure we can afford there since we want to be as close to water as possible. I would appreciate any input. Thank you!

      • Hi Julie, a house in El Cielo about a mile from the beach. They have condo options in the same neighborhood as well:)

  3. Just curious there’s been a level 4 travel warning for most all of Mexico since January 18th the warning came out. Level 2 in Cabo San Lucas. We’ve been wondering about traveling at this time have not heard anything on the news about the travel warning. Even are travel agents admit it is not a good time to travel but they also say with spring break coming up they do not want to hurt business. What’s better the safety of people or making money? Anyway what is the consensus on travel in the state of Sinaloa Mexico at this time.

    • The country still has an overall rating of 2, and that includes our area. Mexico is a very large country, so it seems silly to classify entire states as dangerous because of a few bad areas. If we did that in the U.S., people would tell you to avoid Illinois instead of just the southside of Chicago.

      Things this year are as expected: better in many areas and not as good in some others.

      I’m not sure if you read this article we put out on the travel warnings:

      http://qroo.us/2018/01/18/maintaining-perspective-after-the-u-s-issues-a-do-not-travel-warning-for-5-mexican-states/

      As far as where we live, it is much safer here than where I worked as a cop in the U.S. I was in a fairly rural area of Florida and my agency has had two officer involved shootings this year already.

  4. susan mcmackin | February 8, 2018 at 12:44 pm |

    Can you smell the envy from here??? I am so jealous! Wish I could talk my banker husband into an adventure like this! As soon as I retire from my teaching job in 2 years, I’m gonna start trying to wear him down! Haha!

    • Tell him the worst thing that can happen is that he doesn’t like it and you move back.

      Good luck convincing him 🙂

  5. Hi Paul and Linda! Your days sound wonderful and we are hoping to share some stories like yours soon! We loved Celia when we visited PDC last Dec! Hoping to make a return trip this dec and spend some time visiting Tulum/Akumal a little more. So many great places it’s hard to pick where to retire! Thanks for all the great advice, stories and pictures! Maybe we’ll see you in December this year!

  6. Cathy Steele | February 8, 2018 at 12:55 pm |

    That is simply amazing!! I love reading your blogs and everything you and Linda are up to! Just really happy for you…Life is good (where you are)!
    Cathy Steele/PCSO FL

  7. Your description of your time back in Florida means, to me, that you have truly made Mexico your home now. That’s great – you clearly both enjoy each day to the fullest and make the most of every opportunity for fun and learning.

  8. My friend and I have a favorite saying: The answer is Mex. This post is the visual version of that saying.

  9. Hi Paul, Hubby and I are in Mexico enjoying our Feb CDN winter escape. While driving from PDC to Xcalak we stopped in Tulum for lunch and to grab groceries early afternoon. As I waundered around the Chedraui searching for items, I took a double look at a fellow who looked a lot like you. 1st thought, what are the odds? 2nd thought, looks kinda like Paul from the blog only shorter than I imagined LOL. After reading this article I see we were in Tulum on the day…guessing it was you. Sorry I didn’t say hello!

    • Hahaha, if you’re at the Chedraui in Tulum, the odds are pretty good that you might see me. But, I don’t know if I would call myself short…lol. I’m 5’10” 🙂

  10. Frank Little | February 8, 2018 at 1:39 pm |

    I have 6 years till current mortgage paid then buy around Talum. Is their a real estate agent you would recommend if I buy now and put in rental. Love your articles, so timely.Frank

    • Yes, we have some excellent real estate contacts. Just send us a request via the contact form at the top of the blog.

  11. Life is tough isn’t it? I am so jealous. Thanks for sharing. Maybe one day I can get there.

  12. Annette OBrien | February 8, 2018 at 2:13 pm |

    I am so jealous! You two are certainly very lucky to have retired in my most
    favorite part of the world! This is my dream!

  13. Patrick Haffey | February 8, 2018 at 2:32 pm |

    Life can be tough but somebody has to do it …right…..and you to are doing it great…enjoy.

  14. My husband has the same fears — that we will be bored and having nothing to do and not many friends. I keep telling him not to worry! That’s for addressing this.

  15. Roberta Strand | February 8, 2018 at 2:52 pm |

    I hate that question. Right now I am sitting on my terrace in Vallarta paying bills. There’s still like to live and everything to go along with it. It is just more fun when your responsibilities are handled.

  16. Love it! Thanks!

  17. Pamela Lord | February 8, 2018 at 3:58 pm |

    Perfecto!

  18. Sue Johnson | February 8, 2018 at 5:14 pm |

    I so very much enjoy your blog! My daughter lives and teaches in Playa, on her 5th year now! I need to get back to the Spanish for Retirees (it’s the easiest way to learn for me–I can pronounce most all words in Spanish, just have to figure out what they mean!) I’m hoping/planning on retiring there if things stay on course. Thanks for your great views and inspirations!

  19. Hey Paul. We are from Canada and just bought the unit A-5 in Peninsula Grand. I swear it looks like that picture was on our balcony.

  20. Lol. That was a good blog.

  21. Makes a very strong case that those of us who live here, love it and don’t ever plan to go back are no longer Expats; but Immigrants to a new land!

  22. Love this article and your blog! Isn’t retirement better than you could have hoped? Just retired October 2016 and I love it, we live in a 55+ community north of Houston. Starting to travel a bit and hope to visit Akumal this year. Sounds like you and Linda keep busy and have a fun life! Thanks so much for sharing your pics and your blog!!!

  23. Oh wow. I want that to be my life, and I want those toes with the cute turquoise nail polish to be my toes, floating in the peaceful beautiful water. This blog post gives me inspiration to keep up with my Spanish lessons, so when I retire in six years I will be ready for the expat life in the Riviera Maya. Gracias!

  24. Steve Martin, MED,LCDC | February 9, 2018 at 6:58 am |

    Long time reader, read your blogs in the early hours, always a pleasure. We are staring our hunt for relocation, starting with Costa Rica, our daughter is in Panama, we plan on checking there as well. And if course we plan on traveling to Rivera Maya in the future. I have learned a lot from reading your blogs and hope to use what I’ve learned in the near future. Thanks.

  25. Linda does yoga? Too cool! You should too!

  26. Sounds like you are spending your time wisely. I would like to add that if you have any special interests you will most like find some like minded people to form a group – card games, book clubs/exchanges, dance classes. If you can’t find it – start one and you will find lots of friends. We have lived in Mexico for over 10 years now, and I don’t know how there was ever time to work!

  27. You mentioned about a place called Buccaneers on Cozumel that Linda likes snorkeling at. Is this a public beach? We où love to go over there to try it out. Is the water calm there and how early should one go?

    • It’s a beach club. We went for breakfast around 9 and stayed to enjoy the facilities. (Buccanos)

  28. Christy Caldwell | February 12, 2018 at 6:21 pm |

    Love your blog Paul and Linda…I lived 23 years in Orlando now in Pompano waiting to retire soon. I’ve been to Mexico 6 times and been exploring the mountain towns for retirement— so far Queretaro, Guanajuato, San Miguel de Allende, Leon and Ajijic,You are doing a great service for us…just wanted to say thanks!

    • You’re welcome, Christy. Good luck on your search for the perfect Mexican retirement destination.

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