Mexico: The Upside

15th January 2009

All right, I’m feeling less murderous now. For those of you who mentioned that you’re never going to Mexico after hearing about our trip, consider that most of this could have happened anywhere. Mexico is gorgeous, and I don’t want you to skip it just because we had a run of bad luck. Plus, the water in Cabo produced no ill effects, despite many a blended drink. We only had problems when we were drinking spring/well water in a non-populous area. Seriously guys, they serve bowls of melted cheese in Mexico. You don’t want to miss that shit.

Though we didn’t have camera battery chargers, which meant I couldn’t use my fancy camera, my iPhone camera worked great. Also, the point-and-shoot battery kept chugging for almost the entire trip (nice!). The photos look like we had an entirely different vacation, which means that I can now begin to lie about our time in Mexico until I’ve effectively blocked out reality. Excellent.

More upsides:

  • Every place we stayed was amazing (water issues and double bookings notwithstanding). The hotel where we stayed for a single night due to the double booking was so good that I would consider going back.
  • What? I would!
  • Every single interaction we had was friendly. The woman at the Mexican Inn even called the airport and argued vehemently with them about our “lost” luggage.
  • Bryan and Libby are not complainers, so no one talked about the disaster unfolding until we were on the way home. This made everything oddly bearable.
  • The weather was balmy and perfect, and I got to wear sundresses and hunt for seashells in January. Dreamy.
  • Mexico did not run out of tequila while we were there.
  • Hank had a blast. He got to play in water every day, watched more movies than he’s usually allowed (due to the midnight wakeups), and had our undivided attention for a week, as he was the most entertaining thing for miles. Plus! There were roosters! Hank loves him some chickens.
  • We had guacamole every single day.
  • The night when we had to stay at a hotel because of the house booking issues, we had dinner by the water while Hank slept in his stroller. We woke to a sweeping view of the sea. Hank spent the next day floating his rubber duckie in the pool, while Libby and I gossiped over Margaritas with chips and salsa, and Bryan rented an ATV.
  • When Bryan collapsed in Cabo on New Year’s Eve, Libby and I abandoned him and hit the town. We eventually landed at a nearly empty Karaoke bar with a loyal clientele of serious singers. We drunkenly screeched our way through “Like a Virgin” as the other patrons studiously avoided eye contact. The DJ fell in lust with Libby (surprise), poured his drink into a plastic cup and tried to drag us back out on the town. When Libby demurred, he told us where the good “Mexican Parties” were, i.e., places where you didn’t have to pay a $60 cover. We took his advice and Salsa danced into the early morning hours wearing feathered party hats.
  • The next day we had a bowl of melted cheese for lunch.

    See now? That wasn’t so bad after all.

29 thoughts on “Mexico: The Upside

  1. greta

    this is sort of off-topic, but i wanted to tell you that i love that you still let hank have bottles. our 21-month-old still gets bottles too (one each morning and night if she wants them, and she usually does) and i know that some people seem to find that shocking. i don’t understand the big rush to eliminate the comfort of a bottle, unless your kid is sucking on it constantly. she’ll grow out of it soon enough, and if she doesn’t, well we can transition away from it at any time, right? anyway, i just wanted to say how nice it is to see that we’re not the only ones.

    sorry to hear about all your “adventures”, but it sounds like there was some fun in there too. i hope you have a chance to recover now that you’re home!

  2. Molly Chase

    Ohh, those bowls of melted cheese. When we were in San Diego a couple years ago, we had a couple of those bowls of melted cheese, strewn with roasted peppers and seared chorizo, served with a big basket of homemade tortillas. I can honestly say it’s the least healthy thing I’ve ever eaten that I have no regrets about.

  3. Gabby

    Dude, the picture where Hank is by the pool with Bryan, Hank totally looks like my little bro did when he was about 1-2ish…pacifier, clothing, hair and all. My brother’s name is Brian and he’s 12 now.
    I’m glad there was an up side to your Mexico trip. I love Mexico and would totally live there.

  4. Trish

    I went to Mexico for the first time last Fall, and promptly discovered and fell in love with those bowls of melted cheese. Freaking cheap, too, and so tasty with a cold Pacifico.

    Yay for seeing (and for there being) a bright side to your trip!

  5. Jennifer

    Maggie, I am so happy that you could find the positives out of your trip. Good for you! When bad things happen in succession like that to me, there comes a point when I just have to start laughing.

    Thanks for sharing!

  6. sarah von

    That bit about the singing and Mexican parties? More than a little envious, lady. I second the plan to use selective memory when recalling this trip.

  7. Dawn

    Hank is seriously the most adorable little boy in the world. How photogenic is he?

    P.S. Way to make the most of a challenging situation.

  8. Pamela

    Mmm… I love me some queso flameado. Yes, that’s the technical name for the melted cheese, but you knew that already. Glad to hear there was an upside!

  9. Berit

    There you go — that’s the vacation version you want to lock down in the memory bank. Thank god for cheese, tequila and positivity.

  10. Meg

    Maggie! Those pictures! They are increadable. I don’t know which one I love the most, but it might be you and Libby in the mirror. Lord. They are GOOOODDD.

    PS – Hank, I can understand your love of chickens. And, honestly, of your parents undivided attention.

  11. auntjone

    We loved Mexico when we went on our honeymoon in March 2007. My goodness, two years already? Where does time go!?! The only downside for us was a 6 hour delay at O’Hare on US AIRWAYS (they suck!), then their rude flight attendants and finally the stupid survey we had to fill out on the return flight. To top it all off the luggage handlers broke a foot off my big suitcase so now it won’t sit upright. Talk about seriously pissed! I will never fly that airline again. Never!

  12. Mau

    Yes, queso fundido and tortillas de harina are probably one of the best comfort foods you can have at any place, any time of the day.

    I am happy to hear “the upside” of your story and to know that even when at times your trip to Mexico felt like it was sucking really bad, it still prevailed as an awesome trip and u still feeling like going back.

  13. mari

    Gorgeous pictures, and from an iphone?! I’m on my way to get one.
    It’s not easy to find people who make the best of every situation. Glad to see you had a good time.

    Cool blog, by the way!

  14. Alison

    Wow, you had some bad things happen on your trip. I’ve been to Mexico 6 times and I can confirm the happy encounters and the feeling of being taken care of by strangers. It’s a close and relatively inexpensive way to get somewhere that is really different from the U.S. After what happened to you on this trip….I would still go back. ;^)

  15. KurtRoedeger

    I love the fish lips picture. When the Mrs. and I are feeling silly, we give each other fish lip kisses.

  16. annie

    I have to admit I’m one of those parents who thinks their kid is the cutest kid ever. But Hank is sure up there with him. I’m always yanking the paci out of Asa’s mouth before I snap a picture…but there are if I always did that, you’d think the kid was a sourpuss.

  17. Ella

    I’m still out on the whole Mexico thing. I’d rather go to Hawaii.
    Although sundresses in January—nice.
    I think summer is officially over here in the bay area as of today. Yikes it’s cold.

  18. Holly

    I am so very sorry you had a terrible trip.

    Here’s a tip from my time working abroad in places very remote, with no running water or electricity, in 100 degree heat, 7 months pregnant, with a toddler, for several weeks at a time….


    That’s it.

    I know it sounds extreme, but trust me. A clove or two of fresh garlic, chopped up and downed quickly. My favorite chaser is tea or coffee (cuts the garlic after-taste) but I’d happily do it with water if necessary. Kills all the nasties in your belly. Stay away from Immodium. Just go with the garlic.

    Your photographs from the trip are gorgeous!

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