It's only the fifth day of the new year and I'm already struck with a bad case of cabin fever. We were successful in clearing out all the Christmas decorations right away, and the tree is out at the curb as I type this. I'm eager for 2009 to be a more active year than 2008, but it's hard to warm the body up to run when it's 8 degrees outside.
One of the things we've been doing to pass the time is think about how to use an airline voucher that we have. It's the result of canceling our Las Vegas trip in December since I was too fat, achy and under-trained to run in the Las Vegas Half Marathon like I did the year before. We have to book something by April.
Book what? We both want to go somewhere warmer than Chicago, that's for sure. Well, one thing led to another and I started looking at last-minute deals for all-inclusive resorts in Mexico. The idea of flying in and living in a hermetically sealed tourist bubble for 4 or 5 nights, lying on the beach and soaking in rum, sounds pretty good right now. We've never done anything like that before.
Then I saw a video teaser for the new season of No Reservations. My celebrity lookalike and travel hero Anthony Bourdain visits Mexico in the first episode, and here he is eating fresh tacos from a street vendor:
Dang. I can't have adventures among the street vendors if I'm shacked up at some resort, now, can I? I do know that I want beach if I go to Mexico, and I won't be visiting any place like Mexico City. So I started looking around at smaller places near Playa del Carmen and Tulum, and found a bunch of places that look like perfect tropical hideaways, complete with thatched roofs, white sand beaches, mosquito netting over the beds and food cooked from the local catch.
MizBubs has a birthday coming up at the end of February, and I wanted to time a trip around that. Now I'm learning all I can about Mexican tourism. Right now my choice is this:
1) Be a typical American tourist and stay in an all-inclusive resort, eating, lounging in the sun and boozing it up for one pre-paid price, or
2) Be a slightly less typical American tourist and stay somewhere a little less developed, ignore my total lack of Spanish language skills, and rely on my innate ability to find good food and booze in local shacks and dives.
In the meantime I'm going to stretch some more, ice up my lower back again, and try a short run before I go to work this afternoon.