Trip Report 2002, Installment Numero Uno

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Posted by Candice from ( on Thursday, January 31, 2002 at 21:11:34 :

Ha! I made the 24 hour deadline!
Cripes, this is only the first three days. Did someone say "full-length novel", Jerry?

Trip Report 2002, or Holy Guacamole, How Much Fun is a Person Allowed to Have?!

Part One--Days 1, 2 and 3: Troncones
Plane lands Friday afternoon exactly on time, after a painless flight in first class (thank you, Alaska Air Visa). We're already wearing shorts (Dick and I had changed out of our winter gear in LA). Bags arrive pronto. Get the Green Light. Approaching the glass wall, I spot a sign with my name on it! carried by a beaming Eduardo, sent to meet us by our Casa Ki hosts, Ed and Ellen Weston. He hustles us past the other cabbies to a waiting taxi-didn't even have to buy a ticket!-and introduces us to our driver, his son Roberto Velasco Pineda. A quick stop at the Comercial (my first time in there) for pesos at the ATM, a styro ice chest, and 2 six-packs. Roberto cleverly opens dos cervezas by using the bottle caps as tools, hands them to us in the back seat. We roll down the windows and sit back grinning. We're in Mexico now!

This is our first trip to Troncones. The town itself is tiny, with a rural feel-it's almost surprising to see the surf at its edge. Later, we will meet the village burros and piglets roaming the streets and the beach, hear the roosters bragging from dawn 'til noon. Roberto delivers us intact to Ed and Ellen, who meet us at the gate. We pay our friendly driver right there for the taxi trip, with tips for him and his dad. Ellen shows us Bungalow Verde, our casa pequeña tucked among palms and hibiscus, one of three on the property (there's a terrific 2-bedroom house, too). With its king size bed, tile bathroom, refrigerator, closet, its front porch with chairs, table and hammock, it has all we need and all we want. Throughout our stay, we are pleased by the beautiful and thoughtful details--artwork everywhere, hanging hooks in perfect places, candles with lighters, the meditation palapa and little library of books and games. Ellen, with her artist's eye, has created a gorgeous, gracious hideaway. Her husband-tall, rugged, handsome (are you reading this, Ed?) and with a machete-sharp wit--is the perfect host, and took it as a personal affront when the skies split open before dawn Sunday in a rare January thunderstorm. I stood on the porch in the dark, watching the palm fronds silhouetted by lightning flashes, listening to the thunder and rain competing for loudest drum solo. Morning broke gray and drizzly. Ed bustled around, collecting wet things to go in the dryer. The guests gathered, skirting puddles, in the breakfast palapa.
Here I must admit that normally the whole concept of bed-and-breakfast, of meeting strangers just out of bed, appeals to me about as much as a case of turista. But the big round table at Casa Ki, with hot strong coffee brewing, platters of fruit, fresh breads and jams and yogurts, and absolutely delightful fellow-guests, was a most congenial place to begin the day. On Sunday morning, we gathered wearing the airplane clothes we had planned not to see again quite so soon. It was cool, and there was general envy of Mary from Minnesota's fleece sweatshirt. Dick and I sat on our porch and made puppet prototypes for the workshop later in the week. Lots of reading and tea-brewing in the palapa that day. Most of the guests ended up at Atlantis Spa next door for dinner-a rowdy night with much laughter, eating, drinking, drinking, drinking, and talking with Patricia and Bill, the charming new owners who have big plans for the elegant stucco structure. I recommend stopping by for a meal and a visit.
Monday, Troncones was Mexico again instead of the Oregon coast. For the sake of time and laziness, we took a taxi to visit the Inn at Manzanillo Bay and Eden Hacienda. Had lunch at Eden (chilaquiles and guacamole), as we had skipped their Sunday 1-5 p.m. barbeque (which I think would be lots of fun) due to drizzle. Both spots are lovely. Had some sun time, then cabbed to Zihuatanejo that afternoon.

Other highpoints:
Dinner at Costa Brava, at which we were the only people except for the family gathered around the TV for the telenovella. Great little spot, fresh fish, nice people.
Burro Burracho--good food, fun place, I like the way it looks. Yummy tortilla soup (one of my favorite dishes) with crisp tortillas and lots of gooey melted cheese. That and their piping hot chicken soup hit the spot on the drizzly day. Lobster less expensive than in Zihua, but was only so-so. Excellent guacamole.
Tropic of Cancer--loved the ceviche in a tomato base during lunch by the pool. A pleasant spot to pass the afternoon. Had some good chats with Gail, who lives next door and runs the internet/lending library/boutique on the property. It was so nice to be able to email our son from there.

If you stay in Troncones, take small binoculars (there is so much to see, all the time), and a flashlight for walking the beach to dinner and back. When the sun sets, it gets really dark really fast. Which makes the star gazing unbelievable, especially stretched out on pillowed chaises in front of Casa Ki, with the family dogs at your feet, listening to the surf and the jungley sounds, and counting shooting stars as they boogie-board through the Mexico sky.

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