I've been trying to come up with the best way of telling my Mexico story and I think I should just start at the beginning. Odd concept, I know.
My brother came and picked me up at 8am last Saturday morning. As we're driving to the airport, his wife suggested getting breakfast since we had lots of time before I had to be at the airport. I said that my stomach was too full of butterflies to cram any food into it. I was a bit nervous and really excited to start my trip.
At the airport, I took some pictures:
And then I started waiting for my flight. I bought a notebook so that I could write a journal and have all the blog fodder ready for publishing. Not quite. I filled up a page of my notebook and then started chatting up a couple a few seats down.
After awhile, I had to go to the bathroom, and being alone meant that I had to take all my stuff with me. When I came back, I'd lost my seat. I found one down at the end, still close to the window so I could watch my plane. You know, to make sure it didn't take off without me.
A couple sat down next to me; at some point not too long after, the lady turned and asked if I was flying alone, where I was going etc. Turns out, we were going to the same resort. She was blown away when I said that I was going there alone and said that we should have dinner or something when we get there. Yeah, I'm sure we will.
We boarded the plane, I found my seat. My seat mates found theirs and we started chatting. They asked if I was flying alone, where I was going etc. Turns out, we were going to the same resort. They were blown away when I said that I was going there alone and said that we should have dinner or something when we get there. Yeah, I'm sure we will.
The plane ride was uneventful, until we hit turbulence. For a rookie flyer, it's not very reassuring when the flight attendants have to stop service in order to strap themselves in. I was very aware of the fact that I was 10,000m in the air.
I was scared. I was sweating, I felt nauseous and I was pretty sure I was going to die. My seat mates were calmly watching their movie. I had to put mine on pause because I just couldn't handle it. For some odd reason, seeing everybody in the cabin looking calm did not reassure me either. Not only was I convinced that I was going to die, but I also felt terribly alone in the ordeal. We're going to die and I'm the only one that knows.
That's when I saw her. She was in the next isle, one row up. And she looked terrified. Her husband was in the seat behind her and his knee was getting crushed by her death grip. I felt better knowing that someone else was as scared as I was. It didn't take her long to notice me. Every time we got scared we would look at each other for support. And every time the turbulence subsided, we'd look at each other as if to say "We made it!".
Eventually, I made it to Puerto Vallarta airport. I was surprised at how we got off the plane.
We walked down some stairs straight onto the tarmac. It was nice to walk out into the open air. I was hoping to exit on a big yellow slide, but stairs worked too. A bus was nearby to shuttle us from the plane to the airport.
Eventually, I made it through customs and the airport and found my shuttle to the resort. At check-in, I was given a map, a key and a wristband. I had to try and find my room. Despite the fact that I had asked more than one person where my block was and despite the fact that I had a map, I found myself at the ocean instead of my hotel block. And not because I was "just drawn to it"; I was lost.
I asked another employee where my block was, once there, I found a staircase up to the second floor and quickly realized that I was far away from my room number. I figured the second floor would wind it's way around and I would eventually come to my room. I figured wrong. I went back down to the first floor. All the while dragging two, now very heavy, bags.
I found another employee and asked where my specific room was. He grabbed my bags and told me to follow him. I did.
Room found, bags put away, I left in search of food. I promptly came across a restaurant. I went "inside" and started looking at what the buffet had to offer. I was quickly approached and told that this was an a la carte restaurant and I needed reservations. I just wanted some food. He pointed me in the vague direction of another restaurant.
There I was: stumbling around this resort, in the dark, in a whole other country, feeling hungry and feeling lost. I had a brief moment of panic. How on Earth did I manage to convince myself this is something I can do... I don't know what I'm doing; I don't know where I'm going; I don't even know anybody.
Just at that moment, Christle & Bill came around the corner. They're the pair that sat down next to me at the airport. Christle had been to this resort before and knew exactly where to find the buffet - but we had to hurry because they were closing in 15 minutes. If it wasn't for them, I wouldn't have eaten that night.
We proceeded to eat, drink and get to know each other. We drank until the bar closed at 1am and then made our way back to our rooms. Turns out, we were staying in the same block, so I didn't have to worry about finding my room again. Praise Jebus.
Stay tuned for Part 2.