November 13, 2003

By Michael Strickland

Overpriced

Now that I've been here in Cabo San Lucas for four days, I feel I can start to draw some conclusions and form some opinions. First among them is what has been my biggest surprise: the cost. I'm certainly no Baja expert, but I've traveled in Mexico often enough (and have lived in Honduras, a somewhat comparable analog, for an entire year) to know where the prices should lie. I expected to eat like a king for under $10 per meal and to drink like a fish for a dollar a beer. But we might as well have been in Las Vegas or Palm Springs for the last four days.

Two nights ago, four of us had dinner in one of Cabo's old standards, El Faro Viejo, a.k.a. the "Trailer Park" restaurant. Granted, the food melted on my palate, but the cost of our pitcher of margaritas stuck in my craw. I've traveled a lot, but until now, I have never paid $48 for a pitcher of margaritas. One hundred and fifty bucks later, we finally made our escape. Sure, we ate well, but our wallets were as empty as our bellies were full.

We've been able to find some good deals with a little looking, but from all appearances, this resort town seems to have become Americanized to the point of exorbitance. In fact, tropical beach town that this is, Cabo seems to be trying to position itself as a Hawaiian or Caribbean resort, when—in my opinion—it really lacks the natural beauty and high-end service to match such destinations.

Some may consider me snobby for such an opinion, but Cabo really finds itself in a strange no-man's-land between quaint Baja beach town and exclusive luxury resort. Some of my compadres who have been here before testify to the town's massive development in recent years. Perhaps I have just encountered the resort town in the midst of its growing pains, when it neither offers the quaint Old Mexico experience nor justifies the top-shelf prices.

This is not to say I'm having a miserable time. Quite the contrary! Right now, I'm lying on a lounge chair on the beach, while the turquoise waters of the Sea of Cortez lap the beach ten feet away. To my side, several bottles of Dos Equis sit in an ice bucket. Songs from the 1980s blare from the speakers of the club behind me. I'm living one of those Corona beer commercials.

 

©2003 Michael Strickland ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

What is "The Daily Strick"?

I have long called myself a writer, but too often I don't do what a writer must do daily: write. So you, dear reader, are the beneficiary of my resolution to make a positive change in at least one area of my life. Every single day of this new year (almost), I will write something, anything, and post it here. It is my intention to use this daily exercise to jump-start my too-long-dormant creative energies, and perhaps generate some worthwhile material this year. Hopefully you will find at least an occasional amusement or insight in my daily musings.

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November Columns:

11/28: Family Willow
11/27: Thankful
11/24: Nuclear North Korea
11/21: All Jacko, All the Time
11/20: Mantrimony
11/19: Tutankhamen: Page One
11/18: The Dying Light
11/16: Back to the Grind
11/13: Overpriced
11/12: Land's End
11/11: Veterans' Day
11/10: Cabo Bound
11/9: Supercharged
11/8: Internet Buzz
11/7: Recharged?
11/5: Open Mouth, Insert Foot
11/4: No Wiggle Room
11/1: A Week Lost in Time
Previous months in The Archive

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