I’m a very forgiving person, especially at this time of the year. Here’s who and what I’m forgiving at this moment:
I forgive you, JFK Airport, and JetBlue, for not being prepared for a 5 a.m. onslaught of people, nearly all of whom missed their flights because it took over two hours just to check luggage. You admitted your guilt when you booked me on an 11 a.m. flight after making me miss the one at 7. You didn’t even charge me a change fee, although you did make me pay twice for extra-legroom seats. Trips one through thirteen were uneventful, allowing me to think I was a travel pro. Trip fourteen to Mérida has humbled me, for which I’m grateful.
I forgive the Olsen-twin-looking traveler who tried to con her way into the front of the line. She put up a good fight, look all adorable in her wool cap with the black pompom. Her puffed up lips were pointed down when she dragged her fashion-luggage to the back of the line. I also forgive the people who ventured behind the ticket counter, trying to beat a broken system. Hey, you gotta do what you gotta do to get from point A to point B.
I forgive Cancun airport for changing our arrival terminal on the day we arrived, throwing our driver for a loop. We paid for the luxury of getting picked up immediately at the airport, to be sped home for cocktails in Mérida. This was a luxury some bureaucrat deprived us of. I forgive you, but I do hope you choke just a little on your next cocktail.
I forgive Verizon Wireless for making my phone say “no service” when I arrived. I had talked to their agent three weeks before and it was made clear that my voice and data plan would make my coverage seamless. So I couldn’t even call anyone from the airport when our driver was missing. After about an hour, there he was, but his car was a 15-minute walk away. I forgive the ticket machine in his lot for entrapping him another half an hour. I forgive the airport Starbucks for not providing wifi as well.
I forgive the builders of the Mérida-Cancun highway for building such a tedious, boring highway. Wow, that’s rough. I also forgive Google Maps for allowing me to think the trip could be made in three hours if I avoided the Platino bus. That didn’t happen, even though at one point we did speed past a Platino.
I forgive Verizon again for keeping me in a chat window for a half an hour and on the line with a international specialist-type agent for another hour as we restarted my phone over and over and tampered with the settings. He said he had never seen anything like this, and he’d be turning over my case to an international body who might have it fixed in three days. Would the international body call my Mom and Dad for me so they’ll know I arrived safely, if not harried? No, of course not. That is not within the scope of this international body. I am grateful for the next agent I got when I tried again later that day. She was methodical, going through a prepared troubleshooting list, and on step four there was a thing about clicking off “automatic” and manually selecting your carrier. I was dubious, but it worked. There’s something to be said about men who wing it and women who read directions and maps. So I’m forgiving all the men out there, including me, who can’t even stand to read through a recipe until I’ve fouled up a dish the first time.
I forgive Chedraui Norte for selling me a box purported to contain a bottle of Scotch and two of mineral water. At home, I discovered the Scotch was missing. Somehow I forgot that in a supermarket, someone has to fetch liquor bottles from a secure area once the bar code is rung up at the register. The cashier forgot this too. We’re going back with a receipt with my ignorant-expat face to plead our case, but I’m not optimistic. I also forgive Chedraui for not stocking Magic Eraser or Swiffer cloths. The Internet said you had everything, guys!
I forgive the deranged rooster who lives adjacent to our master bedroom. He can’t articulate a simple “cockle-doodle-doo.” He actually sounds like a rewound recording of a sane rooster. He needs rooster lessons. I forgive whoever is playing carnaval or maybe Christmas display music on a very short loop, somewhere in the distance. The music sounds like a horror movie soundtrack by the time the sounds drift to our house. I’m sure the music is just simply lovely when you’re closer to the speaker.
I forgive Casa Nana for including so many things, but not someone cute who brings me coffee and breakfast like I used to enjoy when we were staying at guesthouses. This is my own home and I understand that as such, I have to serve myself or venture out, but still it doesn’t seem fair that someone handsome isn’t handing me a tray on my own terrace. I suppose that could be arranged, of course.
I forgive one of our largest goldfish, who resided in our center courtyard pond, for dying the day before we arrived. You couldn’t hang in there for just one more day, could ya buddy? And I forgive myself for being so grandiose as to forgive a dead goldfish.
And finally, I forgive all my friends for glazing over as I rant about my petty problems, while being surrounded by all that is good about Mérida at Christmas.