On Wednesday evening, the 18th, Andrew and I made our way to Cancun, the (in)famous resort city best known for Spring Break debauchery. In addition to being a hotspot for big-dollar beach tourism, it is also the site of the principal airport in the region, where Andrew and I were flying out from. We made the best of it, linking up with some other backpackers who were looking to do their business (either arriving or exiting via the airport) and get out of Dodge. We went out on Wednesday night to the Zona Hotelera (Hotel Zone) and sat on the beach together for a few hours, which was enough for me. There was no denying that the beach was beautiful, though the sand was course and rough on the feet and ended as it reached the water. It seemed somewhat dangerous to spend much time in the water, given that, in the water, just beyond the sand, was irregular, slightly jagged stone. We had a good time, though. Good company is good company, even in the strangest of circumstances.
The whole scene in Cancun was bizarre: Huge highrise hotels, massive chain restaurants from the US and elsewhere, enormous shopping centers, and nightclubs on every side. Teenagers, barely out of high school, if that old, roamed the streets, and the public bus system, with beer in their hands, wearing what looked like prom dresses (for the girls) and polo gear (for the boys). It seems that many parents give their children a trip to Cancun as a high school graduation gift. There were adults there, too - many of them bringing their children. Cancun is certainly a place where reality takes a vacation.
We went to the aiport as soon as we got up the next morning, not really wanting to hang around any more than necessary in the city, but we found that the airport was even stranger - and more expensive! We were greeted by six-dollar bottles of water in a facility where there were no drinking fountains, not to mention what we paid for breakfast. Andrew and I had the distinct sense of being fish in a barrel. I think we'll need a pretty good reason if we decide to fly via Cancun again; and we certainly won't plan on hanging out at the airport before our flight.
We flew back to the United States - me to Pittsburg and Andrew to Wichita - parting ways in Dallas. The whole Dallas airport was backed up, so both of our flights were delayed, and I got in to Pittsburg at about 12.30am. I was supposed to meet up with folks at the airport, but I didn't know what they looked like, and we were not able to link up (I did find out this morning that they were there, and I feel awful that they drove up to give me a ride only for us to fail to connect). I eventually gave up and took a cab to a hotel near the airport. I'll be hitching a ride with a carload of folks coming from Eastern Pennsylvania this afternoon, with whom I will make the hour and a half ride from Pittsburg to Barnsville, Ohio, where I will be attending the Ohio Yearly Meeting Gathering of Conservative Friends this weekend, followed by Quaker Camp the following week. I am excited to meet with Conservative Friends at Barnsville, and am looking foward to the second year of Quaker Camp.