Tuesday, October 14, 2008
We had most of Monday to just hang out, see the town, and get to know each other. Carol and I took a taxi into town for breakfast. First I tried Mama's Royale Café, which was supposed to have the breakfast in town. The taxi driver waved at the locked gate; they were closed. So I tried asking for another place, Felix's and the taxi driver just waved at the same place. I looked at the signs. Mama and Felix had a very close relationship. Undaunted, I tried door #3 - Pancho's, and thank goodness they were open. Pancho's was on my "margarita list" not my "huevos list" and it was way too early for margaritas.
In spite of the super "Mexican fiesta" theme party decor, and the fact that they are known for their tequila, Pancho's made the best chilaquiles I have ever eaten, bar none. Oh my God, I just want to climb up to the computer and lick this picture.
We wandered through the town, and I bought vanilla. Ever since I was a little girl, we never left TJ without a giant bottle of Mexican vanilla. We looked in trinket shops, and I fell back into bartering so easily it surprised me.
We wandered around the touristy harbor, and I paid a guy a few bucks to take the stupidest sucker photo ever, but I have come to love this picture of the iguana in a sombrero so much I put it on my new business cards. It may be the greatest picture I have ever taken. Of course, just as I'm being a total dork photographing an iguana stereotype we run into Rachel and Chris - small town. Chris and I toyed with the idea of buying tiny sombreros for the sea turtles to disguise them from predators.
Carol and I went to stare at the Dolphin Adventure and try to decide if we wanted to swim with dolphins or not. It looked kind of sad and really silly, plus you can't take pictures. You have to buy their pictures. It was also a 3 hour ordeal. I knew I wasn't allowed to take pictures, but as we were walking down the stairs after deciding against getting attacked by dolphins, I noticed the way the water flowed off of the tank and took a picture of that.
I was technically outside of the aquarium area. I was technically not photographing any aquatic mammals. So I wasn't really breaking any rules. But the hand of fate disagreed and slapped me down. I totally fell down the stairs. I hate falling down the stairs. What I hate even worse is the aftermath of falling down the stairs, when people rush over and try to coddle me. I don't care if I break my leg clean off, I refuse to show any pain and just want to pretend I'm fine and make the people go away. That macho attitude once made me walk for 2 hours on torn ligaments in New Orleans until my ankle was the size of a softball.
This injury was a little less severe
The pool had a swim-up bar, so we met our fellow travelers there for lunch and disproved the 1-hour swimming rule. I had a well-seasoned pounded steak sandwich. I don't know the cut, but was much more tender than carne asada. Resort bars aren't usually known for their food, but this place was fantastic - even their french fries were killer. It was hot as hell outside, and it was such a luxury to dine while up to our chests in cool water.
The palapa was the main feature of the swimming area
from inside it looked like a giant straw hat
Around 4 o'clock, we were picked up in vans for a long night at the ranch. It was beautiful.
There was a guest house next to an arroyo where Rene said they do a lot of bird-watching.
The Arroyo was kind of scary deep. Of course Lisa fearlessly sat right on the edge.
The main building was just steps away from the beach.
And then the fun really began...