Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Weekend in Cancun (or How We All Survived Four Days Without Our Cell Phones)

Honey and I woke up at 4:45 on Friday morning to be at the airport by 6:15 to catch a 7:40 flight. In our little town, 6:15 is way too early to arrive for a 7:40 flight, but I was getting a little nervous about customs, and passports, and getting the Fiber one cereal I'd carefully measured and packed into Mexico. So Honey humored me, and we got to the check-in desk around 6:25.

That's when we found out our flight had been delayed until 9:35. And we wished we'd known this little bit of information at 4:45 that morning.

We decided to embrace our 3 hour wait with some Starbucks and some problem solving on behalf of the quickly disintegrating Big 12 conference. Once I was satisfied with the plan we'd come up with for all of the Big 12 teams, I called my parents one last time to check in on the kids.

I don't know what rumors you've heard, but even in this age of advanced technology, American cell phones don't work in Mexico . . . unless you add the international package to your plan. And even after purchasing the package, you can't text or Facebook. The international plan I purchased only allows you to talk . . . for $.59 a minute.

These facts convinced me that my cell phone usage would be severely limited while in Cancun. Honey didn't even bring his cell phone. He hates it and is counting the days until he can upgrade, so we only added the international stuff to my number.

I'm not what you would call an excited traveler. Most forms of transportation give me motion sickness. Both of our flights were smooth and uneventful, and our peaceful spirits as we arrived in Mexico were only slightly dampened as we realized that the bag with ALL of our clothes in it didn't make it to Cancun.

Actually, Honey's peaceful spirit was only slightly dampened. My peaceful spirit was completely washed away and replaced with anxiety-ridden, I-knew-this-was-too-good-to-be-true kind of feelings. I was so wound up that Honey wanted me to wait on the bench while he spoke in broken Spanish to the airline representative that spoke back to him in broken English.

We arrived at the hotel, checked in, endured many jokes about not needing clothes in Cancun anyway, and called the kids.

I think it was about 5:00 when we got our missing bag. I'm guessing here because the clock in our room wasn't set right. It was about 2 hours and 20 minutes off, and to be honest, making that conversion is a little too much math for me while on vacation.

Honey knows quite a bit of Spanish, but not enough to figure out how to reset the clock. So we spent the whole weekend saying things like, "I think it's somewhere in the 5:00 hour." And somewhere in the dark recesses of my mind I found 11th and 12th grade and remembered the phrase, "Que hora es?" from my Spanish class days.

It was kind of fun to watch everyone wander around lost without a cell phone clipped to their hip. I can't remember how many times I heard someone say, "I have no idea where my wife is. I can't call her. She said she would meet me as soon as she finished getting ready."

It was kind of important to know the time though. We were on an all-inclusive plan at the resort, and breakfast was a buffet from 7 am to noon. Then at noon lunch started along with drinks. Drinks, of course, included alcohol, but also sodas and WATER . . . bottled water. It was pretty easy to see when the clock struck noon because everyone started swimming up to the bar and carrying away a pina colada or a bottle of water, or both.

The first full day we were there, Honey and I took a bus to Playa Tortuga (turtle) and went para sailing. We had to get on a little, bitty motor boat that took us to the somewhat bigger ski-type boat where the para sailing rig was. If the water had been clearer that day we would have been able to watch sea turtles (hence the name of the marina) from the air, but we were told the water was a little rough to see them that day. It was still an amazing experience.

Lucky for me, we were pretty close to the dock when they reeled us in and we didn't have to get back on the tiny boat to make it to shore. We decided to walk home instead of taking the bus because my head and stomach needed a chance to catch up with each other from all the non-land movement they had experienced over the last hour.

It was HOT. And HUMID. And when we finally made it back to our room some time during the 11:00 hour, I discovered a use for my cell phone that didn't cost money . . . a temperature converter. And let me just say that 21.8 degrees Celsius is the perfect place for the thermostat when it is HOT and HUMID.

We did venture out again to do some shopping, but for the most part we stayed in or near the water. Because it was much cooler in or near the water than anywhere else.

At one point during the weekend, Honey was able to use his limited Spanish to learn from ESPN Deportes that Universidad de Tejas and Texas Tech had, in fact, announced their departure from the Big 12. And we caught the very end of Karate Kid 3 with the Spanish dubbed over the English, and somehow Ralph Macchio was able to win the life and death fight at the end. Again. Wearing Guess jeans and a silk bath robe.

Starbucks is Starbucks . . . even in Spanish. And they have air conditioning.

We had lots of fun hanging out with friends that live in Chicago. Aren't they cute? They're getting married next month. Honey and S get to see each other a few times a year for work, but L and I have only met a couple of times at the yearly sales meetings.

L is a much more adventurous eater than I. This is a sea food salad she had as an appetizer one evening. I like shrimp, but that purple stuff is octopus. I can't handle that. I would need several more pina coladas before I could handle octopus.

By Monday morning we were ready to go home. I wish I could say that the trip home was as smooth as the trip over, but I can't. It was full of turbulence, and wind sheers, and flying around storms, and racing through customs in 4o minutes to barely make our connecting flight. And by the time we made it home an hour late, my nerves were shot. But . . . both of our bags made it, and we got to hug and kiss on the kids.

It feels so good to be home. The temperatures are hot, but they are recorded in Fahrenheit. The drinking water is abundant, the clocks are only 5 minutes fast, and the Big 12 is still hanging on after all. But I sure do miss the views.


Shelly@Sweet Journey said...

Ah...that looks beautiful! Glad you had a relaxing trip and are home safe and sound! We are looking forward to a few days in Denver just the two of us in July.

Larissa said...

Your blogs are always so funny! Glad ya'll had a good time.

Kathy Lynn said...

I love reading what you write. Sounds like you had a blast... And I can SOOO empathize with you on the motion sickness. I'd never made it on the para-sailing. Way to go. Glad you had fun on your trip.

Gayle @ thewestiecrew said...

Oh my goodness, this made me miss Costa Rica. Mark and I went in April and it was SOOOO amazing.

I'm glad you guys had a great time!! I swear, every couple should get the chance to get away with NO cell phone access to a tropical location at least once.

Su said...

Oh, Jenni, this made me laugh! Airports and cell phones have not made modern life any better, I have decided. :)

The parasailing looks like fun, but I hear you on the motion sickness. I probably would have had to lie on the sand for an hour before I could think of walking home!

I'm jealous you got to go to Mexico, though.

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