Directions from a stranger

A few months ago now, something interesting happened.  Driving through the state of San Luis Potosi in eastern Mexico, we were waved to stop at a normal police checkpoint.  We stopped, rolled down the driver side window and addressed the police officer outside.

The police officer asked us in perfect English where we were going to and we told him.  In surprise the officer asked, “You’re not going to Media Luna?”  This was the first time we’d heard of the place and we responded politely that no, we weren’t going there.

The officer told us we must go to Media Luna, to miss it would be a travesty.  At first we just nodded and smiled, I for one intending to completely ignore the police man’s suggestion.

The more the officer talked to us, the more Media Luna sounded nice.  It was a cenote I learned, a giant limestone tube full of water, a vertical cave.  My skepticism began to melt.  The officer kindly drew us a map on a napkin with his pen.  We decided by the time we drove away that we must visit Media Luna.

We visited Media Luna and it was everything it was said to be, a beautiful pool of water where you could rent snorkels and life vests.  Lilly pads covered the far half of the pool and a deep hole drilled into darkness in the center.  The water, fed by a warm spring was a pleasantly warm temperature.  We snorkelled.  I swam into the lily pads and was surprised by a fish that jumped onto the top of the pads, flopping to stay high on the plants, several times in a row.  I figured it must be an adaptation to escape predators in the water below.  Everything was beautiful.  The water was clear and blue.

We ate food sold at stalls nearby and it was delicious.  We talked to a cook working the stalls about her family back in the US.

The next day I considered returning to Media Luna for a SCUBA trip; there is said to be the skull of a mammoth in the bottom of the pool along with indigenous offerings.  The day was booked, we considered staying another day for a SCUBA trip but in the end decided against it.

Media Luna was everything the police officer told us it would be.  I hope I’ll return someday.

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