Home: Riu Santa Fe All-Inclusive Resort
Breakfast was at an even more expansive buffet than dinner was. There were literally at least a dozen separate food counters, with 5-10 selections each. We spent the first 10 minutes just doing a lap of the place to scout out the options. Definitely some paradox-of-choice happening there.
Once it felt late enough to drink, it was time to fulfill Rett’s ultimate goal: getting a drink from a swim-up bar. We chose one of the small pools we’d seen last night that overlooks the (non-pool) water with an arresting view of the decaying rocks of the peninsula’s tip. Walking past the hundreds of laying-out chairs, we reached our target pool and grabbed an open booth (yes, there are literally tile-covered underwater seats with tile-covered tables standing out of the water in front of them), and Rett swam up (well, walked up, the water is about 4 feet deep) to the bar to get us some drinks. Ok, that was fun enough, but, now what? Well, luckily Krissy and Jeff took up residence in the booth next to us and we struck up a conversation. Vacationing from Omaha, and of a broadly-similar age as us, they were easy to talk to, and to drink with, and before I knew it we were out there long enough to get my shoulders sunburnt.
The main thing that finally got us out of the pool was our desire to get dinner at the fancy (non-buffet) steakhouse restaurant that was somehow “full” last night. So we got back to the room, dressed up, and actually waited in line to make sure we could get in this time. We were successful, but except for the more-romantic waiter-served table-for-two with my wife, gimme the mix-and-match choices of the buffet!
Afterward, Krissy and Jeff came by our room for a visit and we had more fun staying up too late. Being able to hang out with them is definitely making this “spending time at a resort” concept make more sense to me.
Our laziest day, we took our time getting to breakfast, and took more time getting to lunch. Krissy and Jeff had been nice enough to invite us to join them on a boat ride out to the rocks that had been in our view all day yesterday (and possibily a beach on the other side), but that sounded like a lot of work. Instead, when afternoon rolled on and the sun got nice, I cajoled Rett into taking a long walk on the beach.
See, our resort (well, technically a separate Riu resort, but one that flows seamlessly into ours) is right on the water. So from the pool we were sitting in yesterday, you can walk down a ramp and onto the sand, with the waves of that non-pool water crashing right in front of you. Right at the base of the ramp, there are some beach chairs, and a few guests, and guys trying to sell you cigars, weed, and blow (quickly upgrading from one to the next). But turn left and walk literally 50 yards, and it’s empty. Despite there being thousands of people, all searching for an open chair, up on the pedestal from which we’d just descended. I’m used to the extreme-crowd-dropoff that happens at big-name National Parks when you go just a quarter-mile down any trail, but these Cabo resort drones take it to a whole new level.
Because of course it was a gorgeous place to walk. Yet another different type of beach, here the sand sloped aggressively down to the water, and the churning seas were not shy about filling that bowl and flooding up the ramp. The waves were so angry that they would turn brown as they broke, expelling an amount of dug-up sand equal to the amount of white foam. Here at this point where the vast Pacific meets the narrow Sea of Cortez, there is clearly a battle between the waters that has been raging for millennia.
Most Cabo tourist brochures include a photo of the large, perfectly round natural arch near the end of the sea-stacks at the end of the peninsula. But it’s not actually visible from most of the land in the Cabo area, which is why Krissy and Jeff were going out on a boat. But my land-lubbing Google Maps research suggested that if you walked far enough east down the beach, you might be able to work an angle to a view. And yes, just before we were blocked by a rocky headland that brought an end to the beach, we turned back and could see the arch! Ha, no boat necessary!
On top of that, Rett discovered a perfect, lone, mermaid-rock near the edge of the water, so we did a photo-shoot there, constantly ready to start running up the beach if one of the unpredictable waves got too frisky!
Dinner was at the “Asian” restaurant, which is blessedly intimate, with only five buffet counters, and a tenth the number of tables as the other places. Presumably because “Asian” food is still a bit too out-there to attract a high volume of Cabo-visitors. And it was good, so double-win!
After a day’s reprieve from the Riu Party in our courtyard shaking the foundations of the building, the aural violence was back on today. Well, worse, it was back for tonight. While the previous party was an afternoon thing, tonight’s would go until 11:30pm. So that left us with “if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em”. Tonight’s theme was “White Party”, which thankfully did not mean “brown people not allowed”, but rather “wear white clothing”. Either one would be equally problematic for us, because as scuzzy bike tourers, we don’t own a single piece of white clothing between us. Of course, none of this actually matters, so I just went down to the pool with full ridiculousness: my yellow hooded rain jacket over my skinny bare white chest. There was a period when The North Face and Timberlands were key components of street/nightclub fashion, so who is to say that Arc’teryx is not the next phase of that? Oh, ok, everyone else at the party looking at me was the “who” to say that. Sorry Arc’teryx, despite your luxury price-point, you need a better brand-ambassador than I to trend yourself into fashion!
Anyway, Rett again got us double-fisted margaritas to get the juices flowing, we bellied up to a tile bar with a good view of the 2-foot-deep central pool, and got down to that music.
After some time dancing on our own like goofs, Jeff and Krissy joined us, and we closed down the White Party together. But that wasn’t enough for us kids, so we moved on to the “nightclub”, an indoor room humid with vomit vapors and actual kids having less fun than us old-folks. We completed the “reliving college-life experience” by hitting the one remaining “restaurant” still open, scrounging up two withered hot dogs on the rollers, and coated them with the only condiment left: nacho cheese. And then a wind-down back at the dorms, aka, Krissy and Jeff’s room. Now, will we be able to bounce back from all of that like college students? Doubtful!