Sunday, February 14, 2010

Back to reality!!
The girls enjoying the beach scenery

Ronni, Hank, Carol doing the quad ride

Sunset from Hanks veranda

Hanks finally meets Jesus

Taking a siesta, muchacos

Carol and Ronnis enjoying a beverage

Waterfall at the beginning of an arroyo

Riding the "Quad"
Be very aware of which way the waves are coming ashore!!

The lovely Veronica enjoying the kayak

Ronni and Carol sitting on Casa Darlington's veranda

Hank and I sitting on Casa Darlington's veranda. Evening temp dropped to 65 degrees, Thus the sweatshirts

Just got back from Cabo Mexico, more specifically Los Barittos, visiting Hank and Carol's Casa Darlington. What gracious and beautiful people they are. The five day visit went quickly filled with many activities. The trip from the airport to their Casa took about an hour. After the hard road of route 1 the other roads were gravel, sand and VERY bumpy. Good thing for super duty shocks on their SUV. The mode of travel for short distances was ATV's or quads as they are referred to by the people living in that area. A trip to the beginning of an arroyo was filled with scenic beauty, pictures of wild donkeys and a waterfall where the arroyo began. Unfortunately, a company built zip lines with platforms over the waterfall which disturbed the pristine beauty of the falls.
Hank introduced us to the joys of kayaking on the Sea of Cortez. When the water is flat it makes for smooth sailing. (pun intended). When the waves increased, it was better to watch from the patio of their home enjoying a drink. I was fortunate to do a solo trip of about 4 miles later in the week. However, my solo excursion started on an interesting note--see photo.
I was also able to get in a bike trip which reminded me of some of the mountain climbing we did in the cross country ride. While the incline was not especially severe, the views from the top of the mountain were spectacular. Good news: it was a fun ride. Bad news: for the first time I used clip pedals. Coming into town where roads were sand and gravel, I heard a pair of motorcycles behind me. I pulled over to let them pass and rode into a very deep sand pile. It was like those sandy thingies that stop out of control trucks coming down mountains. I slowed immediately. No problem I thought. I would just stop. Oops, forget about clips and fell like a fallen timber onto my side. Not much damage (ego excluded) except for road rash. All in all an excellent experience but I still won't ride in clips!!
Super bowl Sunday was spent at a house of friends of Hank and Carol. They seem to know just about everyone in the neighborhood everyone was friendly and courteous to us "outsiders".
Another one of our trips was a 7 mile quad ride to a somewhat remote hotel built, primarily, for people who fly their planes into the area. Those who come by other means travel on narrow, bumpy, and in some places hazardous conditions. But, the hotel is very nice. I learned a valuable lesson from that stop. In the bar area, we ordered drinks. I was going to order a shot of Cabo Yaba tequilla. Both Hank and the bar tender mocked me. I was informed that while it may be popular in the U.S., Cabo Yaba is like a yuppie drink and not well received by the locals in Mexico. I immediately changed my order to Patron which was an acceptable alternative and met with Hanks approval. Now, as Paul Harvey used to say, the rest of the story. Drinks were on me so after getting the "la quinta" I was shocked and amazed. The cost of my Patron, only one shot, in American dollars....are you ready for this?....$18.50 plus tip!!! Yes, I learned that one can get ripped off anywhere!! A great, yet expensive, lesson for the Gringo.
Now as much as I appreciate Hank and his hospitality, I must give kudos to Carol. She is a wonderful cook to the point that I suggested if she would ever open a restaurant I would be her first and most frequent customer. What she did with vegetables and combinations of fruit salads was truly remarkable. My palate waters as I write this!! (I know, I know, I just mixed my metaphor).
We had a great 5 days with great people. The sun, warm temperature, ocean air and relaxing atmosphere made the time to very quickly. By contrast, when I arrived back in Chicago I needed to shovel 10 inches of snow off my van before we could drive it. And, when we got back to central Illinois, the temperature was 8 degrees and I had to shovel 10 inches of snow off my driveway to get into my garage. WE MISS CABO. but back to reality. Enjoy the pics