A few years back, my step-dad was recovering from the flu and asked if I had ever “puked and shit simultaneously.” I laughed so hard he hung up the phone in embarrassment. Karma remembered that conversation and paid me back with norovirus in Cabo.
Welcome to Cabo San Lucas
In April of this year, Danial and I spent five days in Cabo San Lucas celebrating our favorite person: ME! When we arrived, we were immediately put-off because of the transportation options at the airport. The drive into Cabo is about 40 minutes, and private vehicles charge $80 for the fare. My cheap ass refused to pay such an outlandish price for privacy and chose to share a van with 8 others for $20 (per person). We were the 5th stop on the road to paradise, and looking back, my joy and excitement escaped the van at stop 2.
Already riddled with disappointment, I had no idea within hours one of us would fall victim to norovirus in Cabo. Naïve little Meg.
An hour and a half later, we arrived at the gorgeous ME Cabo Resort. They greeted us with mango mimosas and called Danial by my last name, which tickled me in all the right places. While the woman at the front desk was checking us in, we peered off the grand balcony and onto the lavish pool deck that doubles as a nightclub (we would later find out). It was gorgeous, and at a whopping $500 a night, that shit better be spectacular!
Until it wasn’t.
Our first night in the deadly desert oasis was spent at an authentic seafood restaurant recommended to us by the front desk. We ordered ceviche and margaritas, as one does in Cabo, and they were terrific! We were enjoying ourselves so much that the memory of the smoking airport van had become a distant memory. Things were looking up!
Until the bartender poisoned me.
I’m not saying this with certainty, just a mild assumption. I had ONE margarita at the restaurant and grabbed a second to-go (because it’s Mexico LOL) and drank a quarter of it. That 1.25 margaritas in my happy belly.
For those of you not familiar with my drinking habits, your girl can put away tequila, so 1+ some margaritas is not a problem. Unless they are poisoned. Shortly after sipping the second drink, I was a stumbling, McDonald’s craving, mess. Thankfully Danial had the right mind to get me back to the hotel, and I passed out at 5 p.m. I later woke up around 9 p.m. and was so drunk, I couldn’t talk. Between the spins, excessive vomiting, and a severe zombie state, I’d say some bitch Cosby’d my ass.
Although I have no proof the bartender spiked my drink, I do know my tolerance, and something was off that night. Perhaps, I had just fallen victim to tainted Mexican liquor. It happens. Regardless, that was my last margarita in Cabo.
Don’t Eat Warm Seafood, Dan
I was bedridden the entire following day, which was extra awful considering it was my birthday. When I was eventually able to see straight, we decided to try to salvage the night with a romantic dinner at the empty hotel restaurant, Blue Marlin Ibiza. (Emptiness it typically a good indicator that something is wrong with the restaurant.) They had an excellent (looking) breakfast selection, which leads us to believe dinner would be the same. Cue the biggest mistake of our year: dinner at Blue Marlin Ibiza.
We had a $100 gift card and thought it would be fun to order a little of everything, considering it was on the house. We ordered octopus, pasta, vegetables, French fries, and sashimi (slices of raw fish). The octopus was a literal arm with tentacles (see above). It cut and chewed like an overcooked sausage. The pasta was trash, and the fries were cold. The veggies were too mushy for my liking, but Danial was indifferent and ate the entire bowl. That leaves the sashimi. It was uncomfortably warm, and he immediately mentioned that after his first bite. Thankfully that tidbit deterred me, and as the vegetables, he finished the plate himself.
Norovirus Strikes in Cabo
We agreed that dinner was terrible and huffed and puffed until we fell asleep around 11 p.m. An hour later, I woke to the sound of vomiting and figured he drank a sour beer or ingested water while brushing his teeth. My sweet Danial has a stomach of steel and can eat cardboard without a single tummy bubble. It is truly remarkable how resilient he is. So, I assumed he’d mosey on back to bed after a good hurl, and that would be the end of it.
Every hour, from 12 a.m. to 3 p.m. the next day, he threw up. Around 6 a.m., he had expelled all solids from his gut and was vomiting bile, which reeks, by the way. Solids: the entire bowl of vegetables he had consumed hours prior. Have you ever shared a toilet with someone that continues to throw up asparagus? It’s traumatizing.
As one does in Mexico, Danial had officially contracted norovirus in Cabo.
What is norovirus, you ask? According to the Mayo Clinic
“Norovirus infection can cause a sudden onset of severe vomiting and diarrhea. The virus is highly contagious and commonly spread through food or water that is contaminated during preparation or contaminated surfaces. You can also be infected through close contact with an infected person.”
Essentially, norovirus is an extreme and highly contagious strain of the flu. The virus lives on surfaces longer than the flu, and most household disinfectants aren’t strong enough to kill it. Do you remember hearing about entire cruise ships becoming infected with a virus and having to head back to the dock? That’s norovirus. It spreads like wildfire and fucks you up in isolated locations like cruise ships and resorts. Scary, huh?
With Danial quarantined to the room, I was left to entertain myself. All my big plans for the day (ATV excursion, ziplining, boom-boom) were shot to hell. Norovirus had taken out my
photographer partner, and I was feelin’ the loss.
In an attempt to salvage the day, I tried to tan my cheeks at the beach, but the peddlers were relentlessly pressuring me to buy their goods. Although they were very polite, one can only purchase so many damn bracelets and ponchos.
Afraid to face more savvy businessmen, I lounged at ME Cabo’s pool and drank micheladas until I wanted to throw up. I literally did that all day. No exploring. No stories. No nothin’. Just beer and sun.
I Came to Cabo to Snorkel, Damnit!
Thankfully he was feeling a bit better the following day, so we decided to explore a bit. We left the hotel at noon and cluelessly walked a mile to find a trustworthy peddler to book an excursion with.
*The only reason we chose to vacation in Cabo was that it was the closest and cheapest place for snorkeling. WHAT. A. MISTAKE.
The man convinced us that if we upgraded to a bigger boat, there would be fewer people, more time to snorkel at a better location, and an open bar. AYE OH! Count me in!
Just like guys in high school, he said everything I wanted to hear.
Sadly, he played us. Our boat, Cabo Blue, was a 15 person vessel with 34 people on board. There was no available seating, so old people and children were sitting on the deck, bouncing and holding onto ropes as the captain flew through the choppy water. At one point, I kid you not, Danial caught an elderly man as he was falling face-first onto the floor. It was hell. When we eventually got to “the best place in Cabo to snorkel,” I wanted to tie weights to my feet and jump overboard.
There were four other boats in the lagoon, all of which blaring the same Miley Cyrus song. I don’t know how familiar you are with exotic fish, but believe me, they do not like Miley. How do I know? Because they left! I was strapped with goggles, fins, and a snorkel; Ideal fish-finding gear and you know what I found? 10. GRAY. FISH. The salesman bamboozled me! That was not “the best place in Cabo to snorkel.” It was, in fact, the worst place in Cabo to snorkel.
We hopped back on the boat, began our hour trek back to the city, and tried to find the silver lining in the vacation from hell.
Update: we’re still looking.
Norovirus Claims Another Victim in Cabo
The following day was finally time to leave, and we were elated. As you can imagine, we were at our wit’s end and just wanted to be home. While packing up, I asked Danial to “please grab my pillow and swap my old dingy pillowcase (from home) with a new crisp white one (from the hotel)?” That’s stealing. I know. I felt like they owed me, though, okay? Danial, NOT THINKING, grabbed HIS NOROVIRUS PILLOWCASE and put it ON MY PILLOW! Neither of us realized this at the time.
24 hours later, I was also simultaneously vomiting and shitting (just like my dad when he had the flu. Karma.). My immune system is equivalent to that of a caterpillar, so my norovirus lasted a week, and I lost 7lbs. I looked great after-the-fact, but damn, the pain was real. It was literally the sickest I can recall being in my life. I laid in bed for two days straight and could barely open my eyes at times. Contracting norovirus in Cabo was one of the lowest and most unattractive points in life.
But my come-back body was fire! AYE!
Let’s Recap our Time in Cabo
Day 1. Meg is poisoned and passes out early.
Day 2. Meg thinks she’s dying and only leaves the hotel for dinner where Danial unknowingly eats poop. Thus becoming overwhelmed with norovirus in Cabo San Freaking Lucas!
Day 3. Danial is alive, stays on the toilet all day, and Meg gets a tan.
Day 4. Danial finds the strength to leave the hotel, and we FINALLY explore Cabo.
Day 5. Danial gives Meg norovirus before the flight home.
Day 6-13. Meg has mother fuckin’ norovirus but looks bomb AF.
Do I Blame Mexico?
Yeah, a little. One of your bartenders poisoned me, and a chef fed my innocent fiancé human feces. I understand that the majority of people love Cabo and what I experienced was a fluke, but there’s no room for redemption. Being infected with norovirus in Cabo goes down as the worst vacation I’ve ever had. So, y’all keep enjoying Cabo and don’t complain to me when you’re shitting yourself in front of your spouse. You’ve been warned.
Bonus complaints: the sand was coarse, and the water murky. There were too many kids, and the majority of the water wasn’t swimmable.
Bonus hoorays: Although I’ll never revisit Cabo, I would love to see Cancun, Cozumel, and Tulum. I have even planned my future visit so maybe I’m not that mad: The Best Things To Do in Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula.