Thursday, July 31, 2014

Hasta Luego Cabo San Lucas!

Hello, we’re heading home. All of us are as brown as the local clay. I haven’t had this lazy of a vacation ever. The big events were going out to eat at a couple of fancy restaurants, and trying to figure out what time happy hour was at which pool.
Our first pool adventure was the Sky Pool. Pueblo Bonito is enormous and the Monte Cristo Estates are outside of the main complex, so getting a ride is a must. Little golf carts zip everywhere, all the time. You just call for one and off you go. So off we went to the Sky Pool. It has an infinity pool (all the pools seem to be infinity pools and they are usually double deckers). We repeated this one several times because the bartender was so great. His name is Zenon.
The other pool was just called the Main Pool, but it was enormous, and crowded . . . lots of kids. The cool part about the pool was the beach. The only way to access the beach was below the pool. There were cabanas on the sand with lawn chairs, and a security guard who made sure you didn’t step foot in the ocean.
When we first learned we couldn't get in the ocean because of rip-tides and under-toes we felt rebellion well up in our stubborn hearts. I’m a Californian. Born and raised on the ocean in northern California. I played in the freezing ocean when I was itty bitty. However, once I stood in front of the crashing waves, I decided it might not be a good beach to play in the water. It must be very steep immediately off the beach because the giant waves reached their peak right at the water line. It was amazing to see surfer’s waves looming over us and then slamming into the sand with a deafening roar. These weren’t pretty blue waves, they were full of sand. There’s no way you could get into that water without being crushed and then sucked out to sea.
So our next adventure was to go over to the Rose. The Rose is the sister hotel. We could get a shuttle, hang out at their pool, and charge things to our room.
And they had a beach. A beach you could get into the ocean from.
We wandered along the beach, after we got our saltwater fix, and found a little taco place called Omega. I had the best fish tacos I’ve ever had in Mexico. And ice cold beer too. Just a note to the beer lovers out there, Pueblo Bonito isn’t into ice cold beer, nor do they have a good variety of beer, and they always run out of whatever you have your heart set upon. So embrace Tecate and Corona, or bring your own.
Another gorgeous sister hotel next to ours, called Pacifico, has a great restaurant called Siempre. Expensive but good. The Pacifico is all inclusive, adult only, and is designed with a Zen-like d├ęcor. Everything is quiet. Peaceful. Little tinkling waterfalls welcome you to the lobby. All of the passages are cool and white. Obviously expensive, but they let us split a meal.
We went to La Frida’s on the last night. Joe saved his Frida’s T-shirt for that night, only to find out that collars are required. They loaned him a button up shirt to wear over his shirt (but the host liked the psychedelic skull design so much, he told Joe to leave the shirt unbuttoned so everyone could see it). We sat on the balcony, so we could watch the sun set. It was hot, but spectacular.
On the note of heat, the rainfall created an amazing amount of humidity. It was super-hot in Cabo. We were so thankful for our strong air-conditioner. It was pretty neat to see the valley below our room turn green in the week we were there.
Now I sit on a jet heading home, reminiscing about all the wine we drank. We will all go to Playa Del Carmen again in November for a week, and for the second week we haven’t decided yet . . . Cozumel, Isla Mujeres, Akumal? No sabemos!
Hasta Luego mis amigos, Heidi and Joe

Friday, July 25, 2014

Cabo San Lucas

Hi Everyone!
We’re on another dashing and bold adventure . . . well maybe not bold, but it is certainly dashing. This is our first trip to Cabo San Lucas. Our friends, Mark and Melissa, have a “time share” down here at Pueblo Bonito Sunset Beach on the Pacific side of the peninsula. Not sure how it works, but owners can use credits to upgrade from condos to the Monte Cristo Estates.
These are essentially two-story mansions twice the size of our house.
Private infinity pool, ocean view, three bedrooms with in-suite bathes and air controls, an outdoor BBQ, and a gourmet kitchen. A golf cart will zip over and take you anywhere you may want to go at the resort.The resort has 8 pools. A man comes over to our house every day to make sure everything is functioning properly.
Melissa arranged for a van to pick us up from the airport and take us to Costco on the way to the resort. We bought a week’s worth of food. The first night Joe barbequed chicken and Mark made a tasty chicken and fresh veggie pasta dish.
I woke up this morning to a weird rumbling sound and then the electricity went out. Laying there in the dark I could hear the pounding rain. What an amazing sight to see a torrential downpour in the desert from our porch. Lightening flashing continuously, rumbling thunder and the excitement of being here for such an important event as rain. The locals were so happy. The last time it had rained was eight months ago, and it was only a light rain.
Then Joe and I were off to the 90 minute sales pitch so we could get $250.00 in resort credits for food and drinks. We resisted the salesmen (Gilberto was a sweetheart), and left with the credits and a full stomach.
The rest of today was spent flopping back and forth between the pool and the lounge chairs. A black cat watched us suspiciously. The only thing missing is our best buds Dan and Denise, who couldn't make it in the last minute. It’s hard to not think of them with everything we do because for so long they planned to be here with us. (By the way, they are fine—probably drowning their sorrows with expensive wine at some little beach cottage on the California coast).

We’ll see what tomorrow brings . . . maybe we’ll get to see the desert bloom?

Sunday, July 6, 2014

San Francisco, Mixing Business with Pleasure!

I wanted to meet my editor, David Ruiz del Vizo, and he just so happens to live in San Francisco. Convenient huh? Joe and I decided to make a day of it. I know many of my readers have been to San Francisco multiple times, but about half of my readers have never even been to California, so I decided to snap some photos.

Instead of dealing with traffic in and out of the city, we went to Concord and parked for free. By 8:45 we were on BART heading for SF. For those of you have never been on a commuter train, you should try it. It’s fun. But those of you who are accustomed to subways and trains, you should try this route because it goes under the San Francisco Bay. Years ago I went into a recompression chamber for SCUBA divers. It was a similar feeling. Ears popping, increased humidity, warmer, and I admit a little scary.

We got off at the Embarcadero, and had a bombardment of senses. Mostly visual and audio. The sky scrapers tower above and the traffic is, well traffic. A bum escorted us several blocks, talking mostly to himself. Oddly he was wearing a jacket from Guanajuato, Mexico, one of our favorite cities in Mexico.

The usual street market was set up down the road leading to the Ferry Building, and we lucked out and got to go to the open weekend food market in front of the pier. I’ve been to a lot of markets over the years, but I’ve never seen such beautiful veggies. I’m serious . . . they were perfect. And there were flower stands too.

Starbucks hosted our meeting. It was great to be sitting on the edge of the San Francisco Bay sipping coffee and talking business. We weren’t the only ones who mixed business with Starbucks. About six Department of Homeland Security Officers were in line behind us. They posed for me, though the guy to the right made it clear that he was “not photogenic.” I thought that was adorable, and just goes to show policeman are regular people too.

We spent most of the day inside of the Ferry Building. Of course we stopped for a glass of wine at an Italian shop, and later at a Spanish shop.

Musicians set up anywhere and everywhere. One girl had her violin case in front of her with a sign saying “college fund’. A guy had a bunch of cans, and lids, and junk. He spent the entire day hammering away on them. The perfect touch was the band playing “Sitting by the Dock of the Bay”.
We split a bacon cheeseburger from Prather’s Ranch restaurant, and ate it with the seagulls watching us from two feet away. One seagull grabbed someone’s bag of French fries and dumped it out on the sidewalk. It then tried to eat it while keeping the other birds at bay.

I thought it was cool that they had a set-up in front of the Exploratorium for kids. There was even an obstacle course for wheelchairs. They’d put the kids in the wheelchair and then help them through the type of obstacles wheelchair bound people face every day. It looked pretty fun.

All-in-all it was a great day. David was a joy to meet and has high hopes for my second book, El Tiburon, which he’s taken under his wing. Let’s hope it gets published!

Next trip is Trinidad, CA.