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the rambling fanatic
On the road again--heading to Dallas 
5th-Aug-2009 08:20 pm
travel--suitcase
Next Saturday my college roommate is getting married in Mexico of all crazy places. A five hour drive from Mexico City. I was supposed to go but I'm not. And, to top it all off, I've yet to receive my passport.

Having never flown before, the original plan was for me to fly up this Saturday to Ft. Worth, where she lives, and then we fly down to Mexico City together on Sunday. We were to fly down a full week before the wedding. Back in April when she suggested this she got a round trip flight from DFW to Mexico City for just over $200. Throw in another $200 for my flight up to DFW for a total under $500 and that seemed reasonable to me.

I didn't want to book a non-refundable flight without a passport but I dawdled. My parents weren't exactly thrilled with the idea, my mom especially and she's Mexican. I sent out the passport application in late June before we left for Colorado but nothing yet. Unfortunately, as flights tend to do, the cost went up considerably since April. Now a flight up to DFW would cost $400 round trip and the flight into Mexico City cost $800. Yep, that's not doable.

Our fingers crossed that my passport would arrive before this Saturday we started researching other avenues. This included my flying into Houston and then to Mexico City. The price was still too high and again, having never flown before I wasn't crazy about the idea. Then it dawned on me, "Hey! I live on the U.S./Mexico border. How about a flight from Mexico to Mexico?"

Out of Nuevo Laredo or Reynosa it's $240 roundtrip to Mexico City. Perfect! There were flight times that arrived within 30 minutes of my friend. I had reservations because both Nuevo Laredo and Reynosa have had their share of drug cartel violence and kidnappings. People still go to see the doctor or get medications but for the most part no one in the U.S. goes to Mexico. I haven't been in 6 years.

Yet I really wanted to go. I suggested to my parents that I'd stay with my grandmother in Reynosa and have a family member take me to the airport. That was a no go. Vehicles with Texas plates are a target even though my grandmother lives in a very secure part of the city. So then I suggested that they take me to the border crossing checkpoint, I walk across and a relative picks me up so that I could go to the airport. That appealed to them somewhat but they still had major reservations.

We called an uncle of mine who lives in the city and asked him if he'd consider taking me. He said he would but he wasn't the biggest fan of the idea and recommended that I not do it. By that point, everyone, including me was pretty much onboard with my not going to Mexico for the wedding.

I was being pretty naive about the whole thing and in retrospect I'm surprised by how naive. Maria, my former roommate, is one of my closest friends. We did some pretty crazy and out there things in college. I think it was the whole, "We're young and invincible" mentality. Nothing dangerous but we were very lucky.

A million and one things could go wrong with my flying to Mexico. The site of the wedding is five hours away from Mexico City. We'd have to take a shuttle. What if it left late or broke down or something, causing me to miss my flight? Or what if my flight got delayed and I was left to navigate a back up in a foreign county. Not good.

So plan B is in effect. I still want visit my friend before her walk down the aisle. I'm leaving tonight or rather this morning (2am) for Dallas and coming back on Saturday. I looked into flights but they're almost $500 roundtrip. I spent a lot of money on the Colorado trip so I'm cutting back on expenses for a while. I'm going Greyhound, my old mainstay from my college years. $80 roundtrip and an 8 hour bus ride.

My gen_ficathon  story is due next week. It's almost done but i'm still tweaking it. My oldschoolfic story has been outlined and I've made some nice progress but it's time I kick it into high gear. And then there's my scifibigbang  story...I think 16 total hours on a bus between now and Saturday should get the creative juices flowing.

It's too bad about the wedding, though. I had this great dress. My cousin is getting married at the end of the month. I guess I'm all set for his wedding.

Later, all. Back this weekend.
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