Sunday, December 13, 2015
¡Hola! from Beach Headquarters
We went from the sleek, streamlined terminal in Sacramento to the utter chaos of perpetually-under-construction LAX to the poster child of disorganization in Manzanillo, all in a matter of a few hours. A note about our final stop: it was pouring rain when we landed in ZLO. The plane parked out on the tarmac and passengers walked from there to the terminal. Once inside there was a lot of milling around that eventually ended up in a long line of tired travelers waiting to have papers and documents scrutinized, stamped, and approved. Then on to the chaos ~ and I mean CHAOS ~ of the baggage claim. In this hall there are sniffer dogs roaming around looking for any sort of contraband ~ one sniffed at my carry-on and I had to dig around to find the plastic bag of crackers/peanuts I had, but I didn't have to surrender them. I forgot about the coffee but so did the dog. Meanwhile, luggage is s-l-o-w-l-y being loaded from the plane onto baggage trolleys and ferried, in the pouring rain, to a carousel outside where more rain was dousing it while dogs walk on top of each bag, sniffing and barking. The bags wend their way through the hall and, if unclaimed, out into the rain again. We were among the first passengers off the plane and through the documents check and among the last to claim our bags. Then once you get your bags you get into one of two or three haphazard lines to have your bags screened once again. These various and several lines must eventually form into one line and there is a lot of jockeying and glaring along the way. Mr. C picked up his thrice x-rayed bags and made it outside. I got stopped at the door by another gentleman looking for food. Again I produced the bag of crackers and had it promptly snatched away. This guy evidently went to a training class with more stringent "dangerous food" training. By the time we were out, there were still many people waiting for their bags, especially those who had gate-checked. What that airport needs badly is an efficiency expert who has traveled enough to have some idea of how these things should work.
But we made it home, thanks to Fernando, by about 6 PM through a heavy rain most of the way. The house has withstood whatever Hurricane Patricia could throw at it and looks wonderful. No cracks or water stains on the beautiful sala walls. The garden is lush and green but we did lose our huge philodendron on the upstairs terrazzo in the Patricia winds. There was dinner on the stove, the furniture all arranged, chotskies on display, and the bed made. Chuy knows this house ~ and where everything goes ~ better than I do. A delicious dinner and so to bed. We could hear the rain in the palms trees outside the window and the sounds of the surf; lovely lullabies for our first night.
This morning is still grey and cool and, occasionally, showery. First glass of fresh orange juice, my usual Sunday treat; not as sweet as it will be in a month or so but still mighty good. Now it's time to unpack and get the kitchen organized ~ where ARE the knives?? ~ and start a list for tomorrow's street market and first foray to the super. I guess we're here.