Fish and Flies

April 26, 2013

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I have only been in Tulum for less than two days now but already I’m beginning to forget what life is like when you’re not wearing a scarf as a shirt, doing yoga on the beach, and eating an entire whole fish for dinner.

After a day of a little bit of work and laying in the sun, Claire and I rented bikes and found our way to little boutiques stocked with linen kaftans and custom perfumes designed for a clientele out of my league. We treated ourselves to dinner at Hartwood. A man who looked like Cheech took our drink order and asked to touch my hair. We decided on a jicama salad and a whole snapper from the daily changing menu. I found myself mesmerized by the open air kitchen and hypnotized by the rosemary hanging from the ceiling. When our fish came out in a hot cast iron pan about a million flies began to swarm around us. A bus boy burned what smelled like cedar wood at our feet and bathed us in smoke to keep the flies away, but it hardly did the trick. That’s when the chef, a tattooed boy from Brooklyn – without missing a beat – came to our table with a pair of sturdy tongs and informed us that the flies were attracted to the head of the fish. And just like that he removed the head and the flies mostly disappeared. It was probably one of the single most beautiful and honest eating experiences I’ve had in my life.

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