Goal checked: use my passport (again)

The last time I had to use my passport was when I went to visit my friend, Kristi, in Germany. That was 13 years ago (and somehow I haven’t aged since…). My passport had expired and Jason had never even had a passport before — remember when US citizens could go to Canada without a passport? In mid-2016 I was starting to feel an intense travel bug and I had started plotting out a multi-week road trip across Ireland (for me) and Scotland (for him).

So we both got new passports! When we started to look at the costs of that dream road trip, though, it was a little out of our budget. What could we do instead? We could plan a relaxing vacation to somewhere warm in the middle of a Minnesota winter. After debating several locations, we found a great deal for a resort near Cabo San Lucas.

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Both of us: “I’m all in. How soon can we go?”

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We went to Mexico at the end of February earlier this year. (No joke: I sent out a few postcards and most of them were received in the last couple of weeks. I guess that makes me feel less bad for having delayed sharing this trip’s story for so long?)

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I sort of connected to the airplane’s wifi and was able to see our location on my phone’s map — which entertains me a great deal during travel. I love knowing where I’m at when I’m going somewhere new or unfamiliar.

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Getting there was a breeze. We somehow scored a decently priced direct flight and didn’t have to wait long for our luggage. When we started to exit the airport, though, it was a little overwhelming. You do a sort of informal bag check (if you brought any food or whatever to the country), then you walk through a very crowded, very tiny-seeming room that’s full of people trying to get your attention. They all want to sell you timeshares or other vacation packages. I knew this but it was so startling to me that I almost got distracted! I don’t have any photos of this experience because (a) I was so flustered and (b) the goal is to keep walking fast and not make eye contact. It also took us a little bit of time to figure out where to find our rental car, but eventually got directed to the right spot and we were on our way!

Driving in Mexico: really not as intimidating as I expected. That said, we decided to find our resort first and feel a little more settled in… What. a. dream!

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We caught an initial glance of the magical place we’d be staying for the next four nights from the lobby, which had all of the doors open and a nice breeze floating through.

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We stayed at a Welk Resorts property, Sirena del Mar.

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Our room wasn’t ready for us, so we happily found a patio table where we ordered some food and margaritas. And watched the ocean. It was really the most perfect location!

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I could not get enough guacamole throughout the whole trip! It just tasted so much better than it usually does.

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When we got into our room, I was pretty excited to check it all out, but mostly… We were on the second floor of the third building with a private balcony overlooking the ocean. I had to see how good our view was!

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I was not disappointed. I only wish I could wake up to this every day!

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The larger of the two infinity pools had a nice view of possibly the most notable Cabo feature: El Arco.

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We mostly took it easy our first afternoon/evening, but we did venture over to Walmart to stock up on water, snacks, and other quick bites. We thought we had booked an all-inclusive resort but must have misread at some point in the booking process. It all worked out though: our room had a fully stocked kitchenette so we could make or store any food we wanted (to save our bank accounts a little bit) and since we weren’t held to any sort of dining schedule, we could go anywhere we wanted for “real” meals.

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It turns out that Mexico Walmart is the same as US Walmart: full of junk I don’t need but for some reason I still want to buy. Though it did have more of a beach-theme…

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The following morning, we took it pretty darn easy. Actually, we took it so easy and we enjoyed the warm sun and ocean breeze so much that Jason managed to get sunburned right away — oops!

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Luckily we were headed into town again later in the afternoon for a food tour, so we could get more sunscreen and stock up on aloe.

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Before that, though, I found my way down to the beach for a little ocean time. The waves were pretty intense here, even though they were somewhat protected in a sort of horseshoe inlet, but I put on my brave attitude and attempted to snorkel.

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And I did! That was my third attempt at snorkeling in the ocean and I actually really succeeded for the first time — the ocean and it’s critters give me a fair bit of anxiety. I paddled around and saw all kinds of fishes and coral… The next time we go (which is actually happening in November!) (and we’re actually staying at the same resort! We loved it there.) I’ll have to plan for a waterproof camera solution to show you the pretty!

Next post: details about that food tour I mentioned. Spoiler: I was sooooo fulllllll!