Saturday, February 23, 2013

Sun in Slow Motion

So, in the midst of the mildly-important aka earth-shattering news of this week, I have neglected to write a much-deserved post about our trip to Mexico. I think I have to write this post because, in my heart, I feel that Zihua played a part in this baby coming to be. Hmm. After I wrote that sentence I realized I mean it in two ways. First of all, I believe that being there, being relaxed, happy and just.......the zenlike person I am in Mexico contributed a big part of why this cycle was successful when the others weren't. (Although I keep laughing that the joke is on the baby because when she decided to burrow in for implantation, I may have falsely advertised the calming soothing environment of my womb and she'll be in for a rude awakening now that she meets my-womb-in-LA). But aside from my superstitious beliefs that Mexico aided in implantation, I also think that the little town of Zihuatanejo has brought my husband and I to where we are now.

You see, we originally went to Zihua for our Honeymoon in 2005. A year and a half later, we went back "recommit" to our marriage. The first year hadn't gone so well (*insert long, painful story here) and we ended up geographically separated to give ourselves some distance. Coming back to Zihua was a sign for us. Then, in 2011, we went back with our two best friends. We were walking along Playa La Ropa at sunset and witnessing the moment they got in engaged. Also, although it has nothing to do with my relationship with my husband, the last time I went was to take my mother for her 60th birthday, along with my sister and my aunt. A trip for las mujeres. So yeah. Zihuatanejo is dear to my heart.

So, here's a quick little trip report for you. If you're interested in reading about babies and pregnancy, then you can just gloss on through and look at pictures of sunsets to keep your mind occupied...because this post will be purely Mexico infused.

We boarded the plane on Thursday morning, still in husband checking his software that was supposed to Demo while we were gone and sending emails to his employees, me checking blogs and FF. The almost 3 hour flight slowly eased us away from stress and turmoil, and when we unloaded off the plane onto the hot tarmac and into the muggy air, I was stripping off clothing and stress without a thought. We breezed through Immigration with a Buenas Tardes and a smile. Grabbed our luggage, greenlighted through customs (I am NOT allowed to press the button, I always get a red light), and jumped into a taxi.

The taxi driver was a funny little man who was confused by why this white girl in his car could speak Spanish and wanted to have a conversation about Obama and immigration reform. I indulged him and tried later to translate for my husband. Random.

And then we arrived at our hotel. Oh. My. God. Amuleto is a little pearl of a hotel perched up above the bay, south of town, so that the beaches, palm trees, and sailboats look like a painting of real life. The hotel only has six rooms and each is a mini-paradise. We were greeted with margaritas and guacamole (the best I've ever tasted) in our room and then left to sink into decadent bliss. We spent the first afternoon lounging in our in-room plunge pool and then watched the sunset from our private balcony up above our room. We felt like looking Down onto Heaven. I feel like the cadence of our speech was slowing and our voices were becoming gentler. In Mexico, the Moment intensifies and everything else seems inconsequential.

We then wandered down to have a 5-course Valentine's Day dinner. Seriously? When we got back into our room, the bed was turned down, rose petals were scattered, and the mosquito netting was tucked in. What can I say? It was Valentine's Day. We "enjoyed."

The next day we literally did nothing ALL day. Unless you count an amazing massage by a woman who not only gave a Hawaiian-style massage, but also reflexology and cupping. In our room. Wow. We debated going down to the beach, and normally I would feel pressure to "do something" or "make the trip count," but instead I just burrowed into my book and made friends with the sunshine on our balcony.

The following day we spent repeating the first, minus the massage and plus an intense few games of chess (and by intense I mean I quickly lost in bewilderment). And then we wandered downtown for dinner. I love downtown Zihua. It really hasn't changed since our first visit in 2005, except the addition of some cute tile roofs over the little stores. Locals walk around on dates, overdressed for the hot weather (by my standards), with the girls highly-feminine and curvy and the boys looking like they just won the lottery. Old men sit around and just.....well, sit and watch. People sit in shops and seem to demonstrate that you can work in your shop, but still have a life. I mean, work doesn't have to be so much work, does it? Why not braid your friend's hair or hold a sleeping child while you do it? I always marvel at the size of some of the stores. As in, you just need a tiny cubicle in which to sell 5 purses, 16 bracelets and a smattering of keychains and BOOM, there you go, you have a business. The streets downtown are hot and thick, different than the breeze above the bay. The air smells......ripe and pungent in a way that you don't want to breathe too deeply and yet it makes you feel alive and lets you know yes, you ARE in Mexico. And the music from the plaza is just a bit too loud and the announcer screaming to the crowd is oh-so-cheesy, in a small-town-forgotten kind of way. I walk around with a cheesy grin on my face the entire time.

When we got downtown, I was on a mission. Last time I had wandered away from the touristy Aristan's market and found a place that sold bubble glass and talavera for half the price. I had found this place on El Viaje de Las Mujeres and so me, my mom, my sister and my aunt wandered into this huge store (belying the tiny cubicles mentioned earlier) and found dusty shelves of everything you could imagine. An awkward boy of about 14 nervously waited on us and mumbled about his mother "being back soon." He blushed at everything I said to him, but by the end of the trip was practicing his English with me. This time, i was determined to go back because my cat had broken two of the glasses I brought back. Damn cat. My husband wandered after me, complaining as I drug him farther and farther into darkened streets that had been torn up for some construction project and never put back together. But then.....I found it. just the same. The boy was there. And so was his mother. Oh my god. This woman. As soon as she found I spoke Spanish, she decided to give me philosophical life lessons on everything from marriage to prostitution to parenting. Yep. She even wrote down a little dicho for me to use with my clients. She seriously spoke to me for about 30 minutes and responded to everything I said with "école!!", which translates to somewhere around "Exactly!! Damn right!" in my Gringo-understanding. Finally, after a moist hug, she let us go.

We had an enormous dinner of pozole and parilla and then headed back up to our room where a large Spanish (or Argentinian?) group was having a late dinner, playing guitar, and singing love songs. Some one set off fireworks for a wedding somewhere and we watched from our balcony. Is this for real?

Our last day was more of the same, except in reverse. I could feel myself gearing up to leave and rolling up the barriers around myself so I could go back to the real world. I wish I could bring a piece of that back with me (and I try) to be the person I am there. I don't have to practice mindfulness when I'm there, I just live it.

Anyhow, have I rambled enough in my over-the-top prose? Well, you get the picture. I freakin' love this town.

I will leave you with some more pictures......


  1. Wow sounds like an amazing vacation and your pictures are so beautiful. What a great view you guys had!! I totally believe in signs and the significance of places. This will be a great story to tell your baby when she arrives :)

    p.s. what happens when you get the red light? I was kinda freaking out last time but I thankfully got the green light

    1. If you get redlighted, they search through everything in your bag. This can be embarrassing if you are going on your Honeymoon and you happen to be bringing *ahem* adult toys. (Sigh)

  2. I'm glad it was such an awesome vacation for you. I've only been to Mexico on missionary work, not for leisure, but it's been beautiful all of the times I've been. What a great way to kick off your pregnancy!

  3. WOW! It sounds like a completely amazing trip!!

  4. You totally had me there in my mind. And now I want to go for real!

  5. Oh I am so happy it was so calm and blissful. Zihuatanejo is beautiful and I have so many memories there (several family vacations, a 2nd honeymoon, our end-of-high-school trip...)
    Bubble glass is beautiful I adore our set of jar + glasses (it is the kind that has dots of every color scattered around). And I am glad you found the same lady.
    And it is just so happy that your baby nested in such a significant place for you.
    Now you made me crave guacamole.
    I hope you will be able to keep a bit of your Mexico state of mind with you :)

  6. Amazing!!
    And thanks for the comment on my blog! :-) Wishing you the best! I'll be following along!

  7. Sounds delightful and amazing. I am so happy you were able to get away and deserved it. Perhaps one day I'll make the trek there! Thank you for sharing xo


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