Eschewed the beach, because it’s windy, and I wanted to take a break from The Routine and the relentless yellow oven in the sky. This means lunch at Helios instead of Poseidon. Oh no the order of things has been sundered

Which is fine. I remembered I had to finish a column, due tomorrow, so I went to the lobby bar of the TRS.

Because you can’t ever, ever be more than five feet from sugar, there is a wall of desserts, in the bar.

Quite fanciful.

There is also a stupid young couple who came in, sat close at the bar, and started watching videos on his phone, each of which had its own irritating sound. In my suddenly uncharitable state they were a perfect example of what’s WRONG WITH EVERYONE - the moronic slack-mouth half-smile over some kitten dancing, the noon beer, the plate of small donuts. I could continue to inwardly glower, or I could move. I moved.

Column is mostly finished, but needs a last line. I’ll probably do that at the other lobby-bar coffee session.

Did nothing last night. Well, dinner, the Thai place. It was good! For dessert I had the highlighted item.

How do you imagine this? An actual banana, in a dish of coconut milk perhaps solidified with tapioca, dusted with spices?


It was a baffling thing. Cake. It had no banana or coconut flavor. The red stuff on top might have been tapioca, but I’m not accustomed to tapioca in tiny-cube form. When the waiter came back we had a cross-purposes discussion about this mysterious object, which taxed the limits of his English, requiring a manager. The manager completely understood my inability to square the description with the object delivered, and said that ten people that evening had the same objection, and he was certainly going to have a talk with the dessert team. I expect it will be on the menu the next time we visit and its form and flavor will be unchanged.

After that we had an early night, even though the Village Party was . . .

Eighties Night! But wife was tired. She’d played a lot of tennis that day, in the tropical heat, and I felt no need to angle for convo and stay up late bonding with new resort friends I’d never see again.

Back to the room in the warm breezes, bossanova playing from the hidden speakers.










I swear, having a Butler makes me a better person. Every request is made with gratitude and assurances that no rush is needed, because the requests are all petty. It is true that they are not bringing enough peanuts. One packet per day is the instruction. But I had requested three, and this information had been received and passed along. Yet only one packet appeared today. The other day we asked for some beers, and when the fridge re-fillers did not comply, I made another request, in that “hate to bother you, no big deal, but just to have tomorrow stocked up, etc” and they sent up six in a silver bucket. I expect a box of 24 bags of peanuts will arrive in a bit.

Now, up to Gravity for the view and the cocktail. I may have a Mandarin Absolut. The dinner is Mexican tonight, which sounds fine, then perhaps the beach where the Chic performers are apparently doing something. Flailing and pouting. Lobster can be had at an additional price - it’s one of the few things for which they upcharge, the other being Tito’s. Heard a guy order a cranberry and Tito’s the other morning at 10:05, and upon being told it was an additional cost, he downgraded so fast my hair was ruffled.

Helios, by the way, was perfectly fine for lunch, but I prefer Poseidon with its millions of desserts. So I went there before the gym and had something small, which looked like its caloric weight was just what it would take to counterbalance with half an hour thudding through the wilds of Iceland. Well, there’s a reason I packed only fabric belts that have no holes.


Woke early to heed the clarion call of nature, and since I was in the deepest depths of dreamy sleep, I forgot my location and the way the lavatory was prefaced by a glass door. I did not break the door with my head, although I’m sure the resounding THONK might have given someone the impression that I would spend the rest of the day with a cartoon red throbbing bruise on my forehead. I did not get such a bruise.

I did, however, injure my finger at the gym, because some boor improperly racked a weight, and when I grabbed it it slipped off the rail and was yanked by gravity, with my finger stuck twixt weight and rail. Hard to describe without a picture, I suppose, but it’s enough to say I have a small cut on my forehead, a cut AND bruise on my index finger, and of course a Concord grape for a pedal extremity due to the beach mishap. I have covered the basics, I think.

High drama at dinner. We went to the Mexican place in TRS, only to be informed that no, we didn’t have a reservation. We had a reservation for La Adalita in the Village. Well, no, I swapped that two days ago. I found the text message where I’d asked our Butler to do that. He had come to the door to run through the dining reservations, and I’d written them down in my Notes app.

She apologized and said no, Adalita. If we wanted to eat here it would be 50 minutes. And of course they release your reservation after 10 minutes, so we had to hoof it to the Village. I told my wife to head out but keep her phone handy. Make for the Village! Tell them we are coming! Like it’s an old Western. Off she goes while I look through my Butler message, and AH. HAH. There it is: the reservation ticket, with the code. I have documentation on my side.

I return to the front desk and am once again told no, but a manager is summoned; I show him my paperwork, and he says of course we will seat you. One moment. I text wife, come back. Another manager, higher up, appears, apologizes profusely, looks at what the desk attendant was studying, and notes that she has the wrong date. We were right all along. She is mortified and the manager is not happy about this. When we are seated we are given two premium cocktails, mezcal and hibiscus, as way of redress.

And it was delicious.

I am pleased to report that Bingo has moved from the Naughty Cave to the Teatro, and it’s less pouty. Perhaps because there are children present. They didn’t seem to take the kids into account when they had the karaoke challenge part of the show include a song about some person suffering a breakup, and using the effenheimer in every other verse, so you have 12 grade-school kids on stage pretending to sing along with grown-up lyrics. The kids were cute the first time and absolute pests later, as they insisted on running up on the stage whenever any audience participation was solicited, and their guardian or parent or overseer of course thought it was ADORABLE and THEY’RE HAVING SO MUCH FUN and YOU’RE MEAN FOR WANTING TO SPOIL THEIR NIGHT and other sentences that would no doubt be lobbed if you said “Lady, can you keep ‘em in their seats for this one instead of going up there and grinding everything to a dead stop?”

We did not win. We were told that the grand prize for a card completely filled was a free week at the resort. It was not. It was $200. In resort-service credits.

That was last night. Thursday’s show in the Teatro was Mexican Night, where they dress in traditional costumes - or what the visitors think are traditional costumes - and strum guitars and sing the old songs that are unknown to me but somehow all familiar. I love that stuff. The big hats, the flashy outfits, the massed guitars, and, of course, a man doing lariat tricks while standing on a horse.

An actual horse.

It's a fine day that ends with lariat tricks performed atop a horse.

TOMORROW: The Canal Ride. And the end.