Throughout much of 2004, The
Orphan and The Boot had faced a number of woes -- pet degeneration, ant
invasions, personal difficulties, family worries and friends waffling.
The “…woes…” began with the
aging dog beast, Susie -- who was nearing her seventeenth birthday. She lived
a slower life, into which -- according to The Boot -- had arrived the maladies
of old age -- confusion, near blindness, limping, stumbling up stairs,
unpredictable incontinence, and mournful moaning when alone.
Only rarely did Susie, as a
former “Jubilant Delinquent,” run up and down the hall with glee and great
good humor as she had done so many times while in her prime. But she was
still mostly cheerful and responsive -- said the defending Boot (“…but only with
The Boot…” observed The Orphan).
The Orphan decided this
failing behavior was really just being rude and punishing about The Boot ever
being out of her sight and smell. The rudeness included tearing napkins and
Kleenexes to shreds (not a malady of old age but a lifelong rude behavior,
noted the defending Boot).
The now seventy-year-old
Orphan reviewed these symptoms of the dog beast as defined by The Boot with
care -- and alarm -- and had been checking daily in his mirror -- and
otherwise -- for any personal confusion, near blindness, limping, stumbling up
stairs, unpredictable incontinence, or mournful moaning when alone.
So far The Orphan’s mirror
had assured him that he was still “…the fairest in the land…” and the other
symptoms had not appeared -- or not much. (The Boot would debate the mournful
moaning part.) But The Orphan did decide to do daily stretching
exercises, strength workouts and walking, and monitor his drinking and diet.
The Boot’s solution to the
aging of the dog beast had been to travel only in The Grand Arvee so the dog
beast could see and care for as well as be seen and cared for by her loved and
loving human, The Boot.
No longer did The Orphan and
The Boot take two- and three-week vacations to exotic lands while the dog
beast languished in dog jail (the boarding pen at the animal hospital).
The result of this “humane”
decision by The Boot was The Orphan driving his ass off in The Grand Arvee --
as can be seen by
RV Southwest and
RV Washington under
(The Orphan, to be sure,
would have driven his ass off in his new Grand Arvee anyway without this
provocation, observed the Boot.)
The Orphan and The Boot also
found themselves engaged in The Great Ant War and combating the invasion of
Odious Odorous House Ants over a long time span, not realizing that every
battle “seemingly” won with Raid Ant Spray only lengthened the war, since the
ant queens quickly produced more armies, sending scouts to invade the house
from all accesses.
The Great Ant War finally
escalated into a visit to the experts at Do-It-Yourself Pest Control and the
purchase of heavy-duty armaments including sweet irresistible poisonous ant
bait -- that workers would take back to the queens -- to annihilate this
odious odiferous enemy.
As a result, major battles
in The Great Ant War had been won and the invasions were abating -- somewhat.
Light at the end of the Great Ant War tunnel was finally faintly glowing -- so
The Orphan and The Boot could leave home for a time, fairly sure that they
would not return to a giant anthill replacing their orderly abode.
Another woe -- a major woe
-- was The Orphan and The Boot unhappily redefining their “…happy-hour…” to
be an “…unhappy hour…” by being rude, fussy and contentious with each other --
causing periods of sullen silence and other things.
And as faced by all parents,
the needs of their five combined offspring plagued the two with rotating
family issues -- issues that included health, behavior, conflicts, jobs,
finances -- and other things. (It is good that the young do not have the
foresight -- or judgment -- to see down the road lest the human race become
To top it off, back in early
2004 -- before the decision to pardon the dog beast from dog jail -- The
Orphan and The Boot had planned a two-week Mexican Mixing in Mazatlan for late
2004 -- and had invited the indecisive Thug and his consort, Resourceful
Robin, for one of the weeks. The Thug and Resourceful Robin were redefining
the word “…waffling…” as they were going to Mazatlan one day and the
next day were not going -- finally deciding not to go --
and deciding late.
So, with the daily “…unhappy
hour…,” the aging dog beast, the ant armies, the offspring, and the companions
“…canceling…,” The Orphan and The Boot precipitously -- and sullenly --
canceled the Mazatlan trip, eating $537.00 in reservation fees for all three
The Orphan was pissed off --
and surly. The Boot hid in her office for days at a time.
The Orphan and The Boot knew
they had the best deal in their world, so they continued to work on the
melding of their two powerful and different personalities -- and were making
continual -- though slow -- improvements.
The Orphan still had a lot
of trouble minding -- and The Boot said he had no trouble at all minding -- he
minded everything -- a lot.
So the woes continued, in spite of improvements to
recover “…happy hour…,” some good travels in The Grand Arvee and a nice
week-long ski trip with some of the offspring to icy Mt. Bachelor in Oregon (see
Christmas 2004 on
The Boot's Website).
And finally, The Boot’s
computer coughed repeatedly and died in early February 2005.
* * * * *
Suddenly, The Boot flounced
upstairs to The Orphan and declared that a sun break was needed.
The Boot had decided they
were going to Mexico for two weeks -- and were going right now.
The Orphan was elated as he liked extemporaneousness in all things --
but was cautious.
The Boot then started a
search through RCI for two consecutive timeshare weeks in either Cabo San
Lucas or Mazatlan. A few days later the search found two weeks at Playa
Grande Resort in Cabo San Lucas (where they had previously stayed in December
of 2001) from February 27 to March 13, 2005.
The Boot immediately booked
two Alaska Airline tickets -- and then quickly ordered updated Cabo San Lucas
travel books from Amazon and went to the nearby AAA branch to obtain a Baja California map and
The Boot likes to be prepared -- well prepared.
Then The Boot called the
Bellevue Animal Hospital and made reservations for Susie for two long weeks.
On the Saturday before
departure, Susie the dog beast was sentenced to sixteen days in dog jail and
incarcerated quickly -- with no forewarning.
The next day, Sunday,
February 27, The Orphan and The Boot departed Soggy Seattle for two weeks in
the warm sun and sand of the beach in Cabo San Lucas.
* * * * *
The Orphan and The Boot sat
in one of the spacious exit rows on an uneventful Alaska Airlines nonstop
flight to sunny Baja California, Mexico. They deplaned in the pleasant warm
sun and entered the Los Cabos Airport.
After standing in line for
immigration, claiming their baggage and getting the green “Go” light at
Mexican customs, the experienced travelers elbowed and shoved their way
through the phalanx of timeshare salesmen, con men, liars and leeches between
them and the shuttle ticket counter -- saying “…dejama en paz…” (leave
me in peace!) and boarded a van headed for the Playa Grande Resort in Cabo San
Lucas, about twenty miles away.
Playa Grande Resort is
located at “Land’s End,” on a quiet stretch of beach on the southern tip where the Pacific Ocean
meets the Gulf of California (still commonly called the Sea of Cortez).
Because riptides and undertows make the waters too dangerous for swimming, the
beach is uncrowded, with no hordes of harassing silver vendors or heavily
In addition, the resort is
within easy walking distance of the marina, shops and restaurants in the town
of Cabo San Lucas.
The Orphan and The Boot
entered the grand entrance of The Playa Grande Resort and walked to the
check-in desk, where they met the Registration Desk Manager, Agent Angel -- a
very serious young man who was, nonetheless, very helpful -- and checked them
into unit 1302.
The Orphan and The Boot
requested that they stay in the same room for the whole two weeks and not have
to move to another unit for the second week. Agent Angel promised to look
into it and told The Orphan and The Boot to check back in a few days.
Then they were sent to the
desk of Darling Dulce, their favorite concierge, whom they had met during
their stay back in December of 2001, when the resort was only half built.
Darling Dulce was a
diminutive, intelligent, confident, well-curved 31-year-old with two children.
Darling Dulce always handled
The Orphan with aplomb and was totally and competently helpful. She gave The
Orphan and The Boot brochures and information about the resort, along with
four tickets for free welcome drinks.
Then The Orphan and The Boot
found unit 1302 -- a spacious one-bedroom unit on the fourth floor with two
bathrooms and kitchen, and a large double balcony overlooking the pools and
courtyards. The unit was located far from the beach, but thankfully up high
for a distant view of the ocean, so they unpacked, although the room was not
as perfect as The Boot had hoped.
That same night, The Orphan
and The Boot started the adventure with dinner at the on-site Brigantine
Restaurant -- where they met a new group of people, notably Host Homero, the
captain, and Pleasing Porfirio, the waiter.
Pleasing Porfirio quickly
became an expert at mixing The Orphan and Boot’s favorite martini:
“…One part Grey Goose Vodka, one part Bombay Sapphire Gin, dry -- no Vermouth
at all -- icy cold, up and in a large glass full to the top -- with olives on
The Orphan and The Boot also
renewed acquaintances with Easy Emilio Camino -- the same piano player they
had met on their earlier vacation -- while they were still “…courting…” and
who still remembered -- and played -- their favorite songs, including
Later, The Boot bought Easy
Emilio’s CD and Easy Emilio gifted her with an audiocassette as well.
After a dinner for two of
fish, beef, lobster and vegetables warmed over a flame in a tabletop cooker,
the two returned to their unit high above the courtyard.
That night The Orphan and
The Boot left the drapes and the sliding doors open -- except for the screens
-- for fresh air.
They heard every loud
drunken reveler -- and there were a lot -- until 4:00 a.m., as all sounds were
funneled into their room from all areas of the central courtyard three floors
below. Lights from the other buildings shone into the room all night. The
noises resumed at 6:00 a.m. with pile drivers and jackhammers from the
construction of new units on the rocks above and behind their building.
The next day, on Monday, The
Orphan and The Boot decided to tell Agent Angel to withdraw their request for
two weeks in the same unit. Since units were assigned in advance, they asked
Agent Angel what the unit assignment was to be for the following week. The
Boot had already walked completely around the resort to understand the
numbering system, and when Agent Angel said,
“…you have unit 1273…”
The Boot could hardly
contain her delight, having learned already that units in the 70s were
oceanfront units above the quiet beach with a 180° view of the ocean with
whales … and sea lions … and fish … and rays …
The Orphan and The Boot
returned to unit 1302 content, knowing that they would move to an oceanfront
unit for the second week, and secretly plotted imaginary ways to make the
current residents of 1273 decide to leave early -- which of course did not
On Monday afternoon, the
adventure really began when The Orphan and The Boot started on
“…two-for-the-price-of-one happy hour…” margaritas near the pool and facing
the ocean. (There was clearly no shortage of tequila at Playa Grande --
although there might have been a shortage of margarita mix.)
Relaxing on lounge chairs in
the courtyard, they watched whales and saw a huge group of dolphins jumping
from the sea into the air as they passed by.
As known by those who know
him well -- sober or otherwise, The Orphan knows no strangers. While relaxing
and overlooking the ocean, The Orphan and The Boot met new friends,
Darkly-tanned Don and Lovely Lauren from Lynnwood, Washington, and Eager Ed
and Chatty Kathy from Vermont.
Even an elevator is a social
setting -- particularly after a plethora of margaritas -- where The Orphan and
The Boot met two more couples from Minnesota and Arizona who owned units next
door and down the hall, and all six people engaged in conversation for a half
hour after exiting the elevator.
Then the Orphan and The Boot
wobbled to El Calima, the open-air restaurant in the courtyard, for
Monday Night Fiesta. When they ordered red wine, the waiter could only bring
them pink wine, which The Orphan drank anyway.
Then they wobbled back to
their room -- after dancing in the courtyard to the music of salsa and
merengue as they departed from the fiesta.
That night and from then on,
The Boot closed the sliding balcony doors of unit 1302 -- by both the living
room and bedroom -- and drew the thick lightproof drapes, shutting out the
lights and noise from below. The peace and quiet improved greatly.
The remaining initial days
were spent relaxing by reading, walking every day, drinking and eating --
except for one abortive attempt to take a Salsa and Merengue Dance Class and a
Stretching Class from Serious Sergio. (The stiff Orphan does not stretch
without popping noises and creaks and The Boot can already put one of her toes
in her ear -- so does not need to stretch anymore lest she resemble an al
dente spaghetti noodle).
On Wednesday night, The
Orphan and The Boot decided to visit the Galeon, an Italian Ristorante
a short walk away, where Regaling Ronaldo Valentino played the piano. The
Boot had already bought both of his CDs after hearing his music played
at breakfast in the restaurant El Calima.
There were always “standard”
martinis available from The Orphan’s private stash of Grey Goose and Bombay
Sapphire in the room to prepare for the rigors of another evening.
After more martinis at the Galeon (made like those by Pleasing Porfirio, except half the
quantity), the two ordered an antipasto plate, followed by entrees of freshly
caught fish of Cabo and the ubiquitous lobster. Afterward, The Boot ordered
Mexican coffee, served in a flaming display of lighted tequila and brandy and
Kahlua poured from one vessel to another while the lights were turned down.
Even from the distant
balcony of unit 1302, during the first week The Boot was in ecstasy as she saw
gray whales migrating and humpback whales breaching, always followed by a
flotilla of boats filled with whale watchers.
The Orphan had previously
accused the Boot of being a “…tree-hugger…” – a lot The Orphan still did not
know! (Gale Norton, enemy of the earth, beware!)
The Orphan knew that
cleansing was occurring when, early in the second week, while basking
poolside, the demure Boot turned, batted her eyes, and said softly,
“…Let’s finish these drinks and go up to the room … … …”
The Orphan immediately
closed his book, folded the towels while gulping his drink and stumbling over
a beach chair, and started toward the room. The (somewhat) smug Boot asked The
Orphan’s receding back if there was any hurry. Smart-booted she is -- but
Things were becoming so nice
that The Boot even gave The Orphan a haircut -- eat your heart out, Joe!
For breakfast, there was
either a buffet at El Calima in the courtyard, served by Optimist Omar
the Jubilant -- an expectant father -- or many choices at Mama’s Royal Café in
Mama’s served excellent and
tasty breakfasts that lasted until dinnertime.
At Mama’s, The Boot
discovered Huevos Divorciados -- similar to Huevos Rancheros --
tortillas topped with ham slices topped with gently fried eggs, then covered
with green and red sauces and melted cheese and many accompanying salsas, sour
cream and guacamole and spicy beans -- all of which she washed down with tall
mimosas made with freshly squeezed orange juice.
Since The Boot had insisted
on bottled water in the room and at all restaurants, Montezuma’s revenge was
kept to a minimum -- not exorcised completely but somewhat tamed -- but
at all times!
The Orphan and The Boot were
happy and relaxed and the calming was working.
* * * * *
Suddenly a new adventure
appeared on the horizon.
On Thursday, while checking
to see if The Orphan and The Boot were pleased with their accommodations and
thinking they were owners at Playa Grande, a sales manager named Noble Neto
showed up to see if all their needs were met and if any more units could be
sold to them.
Noble Neto found that The
Orphan and The Boot were well-pleased with their current accommodations and
needed no additions to the eight weeks a year of timeshares they already owned
(“…nine is better…” say all timeshare salesmen until The Orphan explains that
nein means no in German).
Noble Neto then showed them
photographs of people in small boats next to whales, and invited them to join
a whale petting trip to Bahia Magdalena.
This involved a 540-mile
round trip by bus to San Carlos and an overnight stay in a Mexican hotel.
The bus would leave Thursday midday and return on Friday night of the second week -- and for only
$500.00 American -- plus about $150.00 American for meals! (Noble Neto’s whale trip
accomplices were Radiant Rafael -- whom we would meet later -- and Just Juan).
The Boot immediately
“…Yes! We will go!…”
The Orphan asked what whale
petting was. When told that baby whales liked to come to the gunwales of the
boats and stick their heads up to be petted, he thought,
“…when pigs fly…”
(Remember this cynicism for
a later humiliation and a crow dinner.)
This added a delicious
anticipatory time period as The Boot feverishly reread her Field Guide to
the Gray Whale which she had optimistically brought along, as well as every travel book in reach.
She located Bahia Magdalena
and San Carlos on her AAA Baja California map, and anticipated the trip while waiting with barely bated
As the move to the second
unit neared, The Orphan and The Boot met Rigorous Rodrigo at the Registration
Desk. Rigorous Rodrigo -- with slicked-back hair and a dimple -- was even
more helpful than Agent Angel – and obviously intelligent -- as he even
laughed at The Orphan’s jokes! Rigorous Rodrigo made the move to the new unit
easy and efficient.
The second week at Playa
Grande was in the beachfront unit that met all of The Boot’s expectations.
Unit 1273 was on the third floor and overlooked the ocean, with glorious 180°
views of the open beach and the huge rocks at Land’s End. At night the drapes
and sliding doors were again left open to feel the fresh air and hear the
crashing of waves. No lights shone in.
looking west from the balcony of unit 1273
The remaining days continued
to be spent relaxing by reading, walking, drinking and eating -- with a little
The Orphan bought two
lightweight shirts -- guayaberas -- and The Boot bought a new splashy
bathing suit set with pants and coverup. But The Orphan adamantly
refused to buy a hat for the whale trip, even under pressure from The Boot to
protect his head from the sun.
* * * * *
Finally Thursday arrived,
and at 1:30 p.m., a comfortable air-conditioned bus -- with video monitors and
a bathroom -- departed for San Carlos, a small town at the edge of Bahia
The bus trip included a driver with no name, Noble Neto and Radiant
Rafael -- the two guides -- and ten couples.
The ten couples represented
many states: from Alaska -- Charming Chip and Happy Holly; from California --
Positive Pete and Delightful Debi; and from New Mexico -- Kindly Karen the
White Haired and Mild Marilyn.
But the trip also included
four Disdainful Disapprovers: from North Carolina -- Big Bluto the Bully with
his wife the Southern Sour; and from somewhere -- The Junkyard Dog with his wife
Others were one couple from
Rhode Island, one from New Jersey, two more couples from California, and The
Orphan and The Boot from Washington (The State of Taxes).
AAA map, showing southern Baja California and the route of the 270-mile trip
from Cabo San Lucas at the southern tip north to Bahia Magdalena where the
whales were, with stops at Todos Santos and La Paz
The bus trip to San Carlos
included serious and impassioned lectures on Mexico as well as innumerable
jokes by Radiant Rafael. The guides provided soft drinks, water, beer and
snacks on the way.
The bus made a twenty-minute
stop for margaritas at The Hotel California in the town of Todos Santos -- at
The Tropic of Cancer -- where every blank space on every wall and counter and
chair and table was filled with signatures of people who wanted to record
their presence at the Tropic of Cancer.
Hotel California, located in Todos Santos on the Tropic of Cancer, has
signatures everywhere on everything
Everyone had special large
margaritas made by Mr. Margarita in the bar and enhanced with the Mexican liqueur Damiana,
made from the herb damiana, reputed to be an aphrodisiac. All the while the song words “…welcome to the Hotel California…” played
in the background.
At the stop, the Disdainful
Disapprovers made their attitudes first known.
The two from North Carolina
were unsmiling and unresponsive when conversation was attempted, and a man later to be known as
The Junkyard Dog fussed when all the margaritas just made were claimed by
those at the bar (where he wasn’t), and grudgingly ordered more. His claim to
fame was that he “…owned a Boeing…” which turned out to be an old Stearman bi-plane.
The bus stopped again in La
Paz, and again people ordered margaritas -- but not nearly as tasty -- at the
bar in The
Hotel Los Arcos, which posted photos of famous visitors like Clark Gable, from
the days when the cape area was a playground for the rich and famous who flew
in because the first paved highway down Baja California was not completed
After the stop in La Paz,
the guides played movie videos (including a movie with Nick Nolte screaming
out foul language continuously).
The Orphan and The Boot sat
in the rear of the bus.
Also in the back of the bus
were Positive Pete and Delightful Debi from California and Kindly Karen the
White Haired (Kindly Karen had hair as white as The Orphan’s hair) and Mild
Marilyn -- schoolteachers from New Mexico -- all of whom were as nice as nice
These four and The Orphan
and The Boot had a merry time during the drive.
Just in front of The Orphan
and The Boot sat two of the Disdainful Disapprovers, while the other two sat
in front of Positive Pete and Delightful Debi.
The bus voyage was
interrupted by a warning light on the bus that said it was thirsty --
leading to many of the precious bottles of pure water assuaging the bus’s
thirst while on the road.
While the bus was stopped
for water, and with the engine noise gone, the blaring volume from the Nasty
Nolte movie was deafening, especially at the back of the bus, where the effect
was approaching agony. At Positive Pete and Delightful Debi’s request, The
Orphan bravely walked to the front of the bus and asked Noble Neto to reduce
the volume -- to the cheering approval of seven of the couples.
The Orphan returned
triumphantly to his seat and continued regaling Positive Pete, Delightful
Debi, Kindly Karen The White Haired and Mild Marilyn.
Suddenly, one of the
Disdainful Disapprovers (The Junkyard Dog) yapped,
“…You got the volume low so why don’t you shut up so we can at least hear the
movie -- and besides you have been obnoxious all day…”
The startled Orphan replied,
“…Well, obnoxious is better than being an asshole…”
and Positive Pete joined in,
back at The Junkyard Dog,
don’t think he was being obnoxious at all…”
Yippy, the wife of The
Junkyard Dog, stood up, turned and began,
But before she could speak,
The Orphan commanded,
“…You turn around and stay out of this…” at which point, she turned and stayed
Now remember the other two
Disdainful Disapprovers (Big Bluto the Bully and the Southern Sour), who were
seated directly in front of The Orphan and The Boot.
Big Bluto the Bully stood
up, turned around, and started looming with as much intimidating hulk as he
The Orphan lost his temper
-- which can be seen by those who know him well when The Orphan becomes icy
cold and deliberate -- and said to Big Bluto the Bully,
“…You are out of your league. Back off and turn around…”
Big Bluto the Bully said,
“…So I am out of your league…”
The Orphan began to rise up,
ready to poke Big Bluto in the eyes with stiffened fingers if necessary and
said -- very ominously,
“…Yes, you are way out of your league. Turn around right now, sit down
and back off…”
The Orphan felt the calming
hand of The Boot on his leg as a plea for The Orphan to also please sit down.
Big Bluto the Bully, who had
looked into the depths of The Orphan’s eyes and had seen in there his
potential doom, turned around, also sat down and shut up. (Remember
The Bully Rule.)
Shame on the Disdainful
Disapprovers of the world, who dim the mood of others around them. These four
had managed to cast a pall over a happy group of adventurers eager to see
whales up close.
Happily, there were no
further overt problems with the Disdainful Disapprovers for the rest of the
trip, although it was clear that few sought their company.
The bus got another long
drink at a Pemex station in
Ciudad Constitucion (Constitution City).
The bus trip to San Carlos,
with all the stops, took about eight hours -- to an awful dinner in the
seediest hotel The Orphan had ever seen (The Boot observed that this may have
been a four-star rural Mexican hotel) -- with the worst bed in the world and
a flooded bathroom floor from a misaligned toilet. It was named Hotel
The Orphan and The Boot
arose at 7:00 a.m. on Friday from the miniscule lumpy bed in the seedy hovel
with the flooded bathroom to find that the breakfast matched the previous
night’s dinner and the seedy hotel perfectly. The Orphan and The Boot
satisfied themselves with only cafe y hugo de naranja (coffee and
orange juice to you gringos).
When everyone boarded the
bus to go to the boats, it was gratifying to see that the Disdainful
Disapprovers had moved to the front of the bus (and even funnier to see later,
for the long return trip, several couples previously in the front moved to the
back -- where the fun was).
The bus journeyed to a sandy
beach where four open boats were awaiting the group.
Everyone hung around in small groups, trying to avoid any boat which might
contain the unsmiling Disdainful Disapprovers.
Finally Rafael pointed
Delightful Debi and Positive Pete toward the Disdainful Disapprovers to make
six in the boat.
Delightful Debi pointed to
The Orphan and The Boot and replied,
want to go with them …”
Kindly Karen and Mild
Marilyn finally joined The Disdainful Disapprovers (“…we are there to balance
their mood…” said Karen). Radiant Rafael also boarded The Disdainful
Disapprovers’ boat “to lighten them up.”
So The Orphan and The Boot
boarded the Daniela, a open green and white boat with an outboard motor, along with
Delightful Debi and Positive Pete, plus a single Mexican gentleman. They
began a wild ride with Captain Daniel (who learned his excellent English in
Arkansas) for a long distance to search for baby whales.
The weather was cold and
cloudy at first -- especially with a wind chill factor seemingly from the
North Pole -- as the boat’s motor geared up to full speed to find whale
gatherings. Even the Boot, wearing everything she brought along in layers but
with only sandals on her feet, froze her gorgeous reason for being named The
Boot. The Orphan merely froze everything.
Soon they found the gray
whales, and when Radiant Rafael told everyone to wiggle their hands in the
water, the whales and their babies would stick their heads way up out of the
water and go under the boats to come up again on the other side. They arched
their backs and exhaled within reach. Everyone reached out to touch them
while being careful not to capsize the boats as people rushed from side to
wiggling hands call in friendly gray whales right
next to the boat
So, on the morning of
Friday, March 11, 2005, The Orphan petted a baby whale that stuck its head up
right next to the boat. Baby whales have soft smooth satiny skin --
especially before the barnacles and other sea parasites ride through life on
them. The feeling is akin to stroking a fresh cucumber in the produce market
-- only softer.
The Orphan and his friend the baby whale
a friendly whale lifts its head way out of
the water to be petted
The Orphan looked
assiduously for any flying pigs and ate his crow with a light heart.
The miseries of the trip
faded away as the sun came out and The Orphan thawed from the heat and the
feeling for his new friends, the baby whales.
After leaving the whales,
the group ate lunch in a small outdoor beachside restaurant named Mira Mar --
in an island village named Bahia Magdalena on Magdalena Bay (also named Bahia
They ate clams in their
shells garnished with ham and cheese, fresh yellowfin tuna (cooked very
well-done), salsa, frijoles and tortillas -- all of which were followed by
all of the fresh broiled garlic-buttered lobster that anyone could eat. Positive Pete ate
five and even diminutive Delightful Debi ate four.* The
Orphan and The Boot had eaten many clams and a large tuna portion and could
only eat one lobster each -- but they were delicious.
*Not that anyone's counting,
but Positive Pete and Delightful Debi have corrected and approved these
Then followed one more wild
ride in the Daniela back to the mainland and the bus while The Orphan
held a life jacket over his chest as a windbreak. The Orphan suffered but
The long and tedious bus
ride back to Cabo included another movie starring Mel Gibson before he reached
puberty -- he didn’t have a single wrinkle -- but because there were no stops,
the return ride took only six hours.
The Orphan read a book. The
Boot read The DaVinci Code, the subversive book that questions the
Catholic Church’s control of history (banned by the Pope lest any Catholics be
exposed to any unauthorized thinking), and finished it just before arrival
back in Cabo San Lucas late Friday evening.
The exhausted but happy
whale viewers collapsed in bed.
* * * * *
Saturday, the last day in
Cabo San Lucas, was spent resting
from the whale adventure and the long bus trek.
The Orphan and The Boot
decided to end their trip with a final farewell
dinner by returning to the Galeon Ristorante.
After dinner The Boot --
having monitored The Orphan’s martinis closely that evening by explaining that
she would like conscious company for once on the walk back to the room --
again had flaming Mexican Coffee, made in a dramatic display with the lights
The Orphan just continued to somewhat
sullenly sip his red wine -- which, with an insufficient amount of martinis,
was awful -- but came with the dinner. It should be noted that The Boot did
not finish her wine.
It was a good farewell
sunset from Playa Grande
* * * * *
Sunday, The Orphan and The
Boot boarded an Alaska Airlines airplane for an uneventful flight to customs
in San Diego before journeying on to Seattle for a 9:30 p.m. arrival and a
ride back home with their favorite car service, “One Airport Only.”
The next morning the dog
beast Susie, when released from dog jail, refused to look at The Boot or show
any sign of recognition. The Boot was concerned at the deterioration (“…the
punishment is working…” thought The Orphan).
The Orphan noted no
difference in the dog beast’s behavior toward The Orphan as the dog beast had
always considered The Orphan to be a temporary annoyance who would eventually
It was several days before
the dog beast knew who and where she was, and, confusion aside (“…punishment
finished…” The Orphan thought), returned to her former cheerful and responsive
self at home.
The Great Ant War was mostly
won as there were now only weak forays where the scouts always found “bait” to
take back to assassinate their queens.
The Boot’s new computer with
fast thinking and huge memory was loaded and working -- along with some
updated software of the latest style for photography editing and web design. (It
would take at least a few days before this new software would be obsolete --
which turned out to be the case because just after The Boot upgraded her
Photoshop program to CS, another Photoshop upgrade was announced, CS2.)
The offspring were
And best of all, “…happy
hours…” were again “…happy…”
The trip to calming Cabo had
worked, and all was well again with the cleansed Orphan and The Boot.