“Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered weak and weary...”

~ Edgar Allen Poe

(This post belongs to a series, “Crossing Borders”- Family Road Trip Costa Rica.)

Longing to stay, but required to leave, heavenly Tenacatita, we find accommodations instead at a drab beach town called Cuyutlan.

Drab and dreary

I'm sure our mood is more at fault than the environment, but everything seems dreary.

The dark gray sand blends with the colorless sea and the ashy sky until it's difficult to differentiate one from the other.

We check into a shabby shorefront hotel.

Unloading our belongings, I'm fatigued by the filth - wet seats, bits of food, leftover meals, lost toys, marker lids, broken crayons - all the result of endless attempts to entertain our young children during hours of driving time.

On top of that we've got piles of laundry to be washed, not to mention bodies.

I could really go for an all-inclusive resort right now.

The dismal lodgings don't help to lift my mood. Weary and worn, we don't even visit the beach or town.

Instead we veg in front of the tube before crashing.

The next morning our mood has improved a little. We're determined to find a nice place to stay where we can really spoil ourselves.

Skipping the beach (it just didn't seem all that appealing), we stop in town so my hubby can work at the internet cafe.

This slide has seen better days

The kids and I pass the time in a dilapidated (and almost dangerous) playground.

I'm amused at the contrast between it and the uber regulated playgrounds of suburbia where we used to live, with the excessive HOA mandates.

Although I'm cautious for my children's safety - helping them to avoid sharp, rusted edges at the bottom of the slide and broken swing chains -they enjoy themselves regardless of the decrepitude.

Daddy's soon done, and we're headed southbound in the car once again.

1. Be Awed

The road winds back and forth, over the tops of bluffs that provide incredible vistas of the ocean far below.

Miles of magnificence

I'm amazed by the miles and miles of gorgeous yet undeveloped beaches, unused by all except a few local villages.

We continue to twist and turn, back and forth. It's more apparent now that we've left 'tourist' Mexico- the roads are narrower, and we pass villages without cars, running water, and sometimes electricity.

I'm fascinated with this view of a world I've never known before. What would it be like to be one of these people?

What life experiences have they had? What thoughts do they think? How do they view the world?

The further we drive, and the more that we see, it seems that I'm adding to a puzzle in my brain. Piece by piece I make it a little larger, and gain a better view of the 'big picture'.

Allowing myself to be filled with awe and gratitude for this experience and the blessings I've had in my life, the weariness begins to lift.

2. Spoil Yourselves

Due to a rough past few days, between sickies big and small, filth build up, and 'cabin fever', we decided we could use a little pampering.

An all-inclusive resort seemed like just the cure. We could stuff ourselves, get our clothes laundered, clean out our car, and relax in the pool.

Just what the travel doctor ordered.

3. Laugh a Little

The Tesoro

We pick the Tesoro hotel in Ixtapa, a tourist locale for locals.

The guard at the station asks us in Spanish if we have reservations. My husband, in one of his moods, replies without a flinch in perfect Spanish,

"Soy el dueño." (I'm the owner)

The innocent young guard gets a look of panic on his face and moves hastily to open the gate for us.

My hubby wasn't going to let it go that far, so with a hearty laugh he stops him and tells him he is joking.

It provides a nice chuckle for us all the way to our hotel room though.

Properly stuffing ourselves

4. Have Some 'Home Cookin'

Hungry as usual, we do some minimal unpacking, then decide we'd explore the 'all-you-can-eat-all-inclusive' buffet.

While the authentic Mexican meals we'd enjoyed so far on our journey were oh so delicious, we are a little excited to enjoy some familiar favorites like spaghetti and pizza.

Sometimes a little 'taste of home' is just what you need to get you back in the saddle again.

5. Don't See the Sights, Just Relax

Ahhh, full bellies, and happy happy family.

Now it's time to just relax. We watch a little T.V. (Backyardigans in Spanish), then put on our suits for a swim in the pool.

Greg loves beach volleyball

I lounge with the baby and absorb the sun while daddy and the kids splash in the refreshingly cool water.

You can feel the weariness floating away.

Four year old Kyah makes a new friend who teaches her how to swim.

In just a few minutes she's underwater paddling by herself to daddy and back to the wall.

I'm utterly amazed at how quickly that happened. No lessons, no adult assistance, and just like that she's swims like a fish.

I take a turn with the kids while daddy goes to the beach to play some sand volleyball.

Feeling better already

We sit at the bar on underwater stools and order virgin piña coladas and strawberry daiquiris (all included of course).

Ahhh, yes. Weariness has definitely departed.

(This post belongs to a series, “Crossing Borders”- Family Road Trip Costa Rica.)




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