Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Back to reality

We got back from Mexico very late Friday night, or maybe it was actually Saturday morning by then. The flights both ways left something to be desired. The flight to Mexico left at 6:30 a.m., and since that meant that we would have had to get up at something like 3:30, we opted to stay at a hotel near the airport Thursday night. I took Thursday off and spent it doing laundry, running errands, and packing, and I felt very rushed because I had a deadline -- Bob's dad was picking us up at 7:00.

Normally I have all night to pack and obsess, and I usually use every bit of it. So when I sat down in the hotel that night to knit a little bit on my sock, and discovered that I didn't have a crochet hook, I wasn't really surprised. I also forgot to take an alarm clock (we ended up setting an alarm on my cell phone), and forgot to put some kind of hair product in my toilet kit. I remembered shampoo and conditioner, of course, but I usually use some kind of leave-in conditioner or something (I have several kinds), but none of them made it into the bag.

I also didn't take enough books. I had one that I was reading, and I put two more in the suitcase, then I decided that was silly, that I surely wouldn't read more than two books, but I don't know what I was thinking. I finished the one I was reading on the plane down, and I finished the one that I took with me mid-week. Fortunately there was a donated pile of books in the hotel that people had left, and I was able to find two in there that I hadn't read, which was a huge relief. The hotel gift shop and the newstand at the San Jose airport had had the same dozen or so best-sellers, and nothing that I either wanted to read, or hadn't yet read.

So on my list for next year is MORE BOOKS.

I didn't feel like I took many pictures this time; there are only so many photos of palm trees and beaches that you can take before they all start to look exactly alike. And this time there seemed to be something about the light that made some of the pictures look odd to me -- some of them came out kind of posterized, and there was a whole series I took that came out almost completely washed out. But if it sounds like I'm complaining about the sun, I'm not.

We went to Los Cabos this time, and I was a little worried, since it's further to the north than we've gone in previous years. And when we got there, it was cold. Well, cold is probably a little strong, and, of course, it's all relative, but having to wear sweatshirts on the beach wasn't what we were hoping for.

After two chilly days, it finally warmed up on Sunday, and by mid-week it was in the 80's and lovely.

Bob, John and Craig look out to sea:

After I asked them to turn around:

The hotel was nice. We were originally disappointed when we checked in and went to the room -- the balcony looked out over a construction area -- they're building a new hotel next door. I opened the drapes and said, "Great view," and immediately shut them again. Oh well. You can't have everything.

Then the phone rang, and it was someone from the front desk saying that they were going to move us to a different room. She didn't explain why, so I just said okay, and pretty soon she came in with a bellhop and they took our suitcases and strode off. She didn't say anything, but there was the language barrier anyway, so we just trailed behind her.

The new room was basically the same, but with a wonderful ocean view:

We were never sure exactly what happened, but we were the first ones to check in, and after we took off for the room, Leslie and John were checking in and asked that we all have rooms near each other. So it may have just been that they had three rooms together on that side of the hotel, and it was just coincidental, but whatever it was, we were very grateful.

Cabo is more of a desert area than we were used to. The courtyard had a cactus garden:

There was the skull of something worked into one of the cacti:

I'm not sure what that was all about. Funny, though.

The guys went out fishing in a boat one day, and fished from the shore most of the other days, while the other girls and I lounged around on the beach or around the pool, and played cards. I frankly would have been content just to do that every day, but we went into two a couple of days. Los Cabos is literally, I guess, "The Cabos," or "The Capes," and it encompasses two towns -- Cabo San Lucas and San Jose del Cabo. Our hotel was in San Jose, so we thought the town was pretty close. It was, I guess, relatively. It was hot and sunny, and a much longer walk than I had anticipated.

At one point Bob said, "I guess you didn't anticipate the Bataan Death March, huh?"

Once we finally got to town, we started looking for a restaurant, but I wasn't feeling very well -- I was having one of what I've learned are low blood sugar moments -- and I stopped off at a drugstore and bought a candy bar. Of course, we found a restaurant almost immediately after that, and had a nice lunch in the shade.

Once we'd eaten, we visited a few shops (I bought a silver bracelet and a new silver wedding band for Bob), looked at a lovely old church, then got a bus back to the hotel!

The next day, we went the other direction, to Cabo San Lucas. This time we just walked a few blocks to a bus stop, and took a bus in. It turned out that we'd gotten the wrong bus, though -- we should have waited for an "express" bus. The one we caught was the local, and stopped basically any time someone flagged it down. But it was kind of a nice, leisurely ride anyway. We finally got off and caught a cab to where we really wanted to go, and did a bit of shopping while the guys held down the fort at an outdoor bar.

We also looked at the marina.

We found a wonderful Sergio Bustamante sculpture of a mermaid (one of the bronzes on the Puerto Vallarta Malecon is his, too):

I wasn't feeling very well that day, either (although I bought another silver bracelet). I wasn't feeling like I had food poisoning, exactly, but my stomach was hurting. I begged off on dinner that night and spent the evening in our room, reading and dozing. Bob came back from dinner with Sprite and saltines for me, and in the morning after breakfast (I stayed away from that, too), he brought John back to the room with him.

It's always comforting to know that we're traveling with a physician when we go out of the country. He felt my stomach, asked me some questions, and said that by the way I was describing the pain, and where it was, it sounded like diverticulitis. I'd been eating a lot of granola, fruit, and nuts for breakfast -- maybe I had overdone it. He and Bob walked to the Mega Mart and bought me some antibiotics (always funny to think you can just walk into a Wal-Mart-like store and buy medicine like that), and I was feeling better by the next day.

More pictures:

It was a good trip. Even though I didn't feel well toward the end, it wasn't debilitating, and since I didn't have to be doing anything, laying around in the hotel room with the balcony door open so I could hear the ocean wasn't bad at all.

On the flight home, Bob started getting sick, apparently (we're guessing) from something he ate in the airport. Probably the pepperoni pizza in San Jose. We may have gotten a little blasé . . .

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