There was an unsettling Wall-E feeling at the Westin time-share in Puerto Vallarta. I was the only person running on the treadmills - everyone else was walking. And most of the cheerful Americans lay by the pools ordering super-sized bland meals from English-speaking waiters, listening to new-age pan pipe music. Much as there was twisted satisfaction in being slim and fit by comparison - it isn't real... I'm still an over-the-hill chubby back-of-the-packer. And the "Rhythm of the Night" show we saw was such a smaltzy tourist fabrication - we hated it. Outside of the security gate, the people hawking timeshares and tourist tat were obnoxious. This isn't Mexico! So we ran away.
We found an idyllic small town, Yelapa, at the head of a small river, on a grainy beach, about an hour's water taxi ride away from Puerto Vallarta. The Lagunita Hotel was perfect, with individual palapas on the beach, and a nice little restaurant. It just had a genuine Mexican beach resort feel - friendly and relaxed. I wish we could have spent the whole week here instead of in the timeshare!
Billy walked up the river while I had a massage. OK, the sound of the surf was a bit loud for sleeping but the feel of the place was just right, and we loved it.Rising early, we explored the village—a maze of adobe walls and red-tile roofs criss-crossed by cobblestone lanes climbing impossibly steeply. There are no cars or motorcycles in Yelapa - just mules, water taxis and lots of dogs. Everyone greeted us with Buenos Dias, and left us alone on the beach. It was hard to leave to go back to PV!
But it is time to go back to work. OK, one last stop at the Cheeky Monkey for cheap Margaritas!
Saturday, January 31, 2009