Grant McWilliams

Mexico 2006 - Day 1

The trip down was rather uneventful. The plane out of Seattle was a Boeing 757 which I had to work a bit to get us on. The cheapest flight was on MD super 80s which don’t have movies or food. The lack of food isn’t that much of a problem anymore because American Airlines doesn’t serve free food on domestic flights anymore anyway. They do however sell a 50 cent snack pack for 3 dollars which very few people purchase. I figure that if they don’t mind us bringing on our own food we might as well include a barbecue pit in our carry-on luggage bag. Considering the number of people that carry on bags that barely fit in the overhead compartments sideways I don’t think AA would notice.

 

We got to Dallas in the early afternoon and I’m always amazed at how easy Dallas/Ft Worth airport is to get around in. They now have a rubber tire train that takes you between terminals in a similar fashion to the airtrain at JFK. The skytrain isn’t that fast but does keep you from having to carry your luggage between terminals. We had a few hours to kill so we circumnavigated the airport on the train just for fun. It doesn’t have a driver so Piper and Jade sat in front so they could feel like they were driving.

 

I’ve never known what if feels like to be a minority until we showed up at our departure gate to Mexico City. In Europe everyone basically looks and acts similar to us outside of speaking a foreign language. Here we are definitely different. There was about 200 people on our plane and 6 or so of us were white. The crew spoke both languages of course so it was ok.

I planned the layover in Dallas for one reason - I wanted to fly into Mexico City at night and I’m glad we did. This is an amazing city from the air. The lights go as far as you can see and there are mountains in the middle of it where it’s completely devoid of lights at night giving you a bit of an eerie feeling that there’s something lurking there blocking out the light. I can’t say enough about how beautiful Mexico City is from the air at night. This is also by far the largest city I’ve ever been to. I think London, Paris, New York and Istanbul are about half it’s size.

After arriving we got through immigration which wasn’t too bad. I’ve been carrying around a notarized paper from my ex saying I’m allowed to take my kids to Mexico and I’ve been here twice and nobody’s ever asked for it. Oh well, better safe than sorry. We got an authorized taxi for about $20 to our hotel. Our taxi driver spoke little English but we still conversed a bit. He says Oaxaca is beautiful so that makes me excited about going there next week. We didn’t know how safe it was to be outside but we were hungry after checking in so we ventured out anyway and found a KFC one block away that was still open. The lady at the counter spoke NO English but I pointed to a monstrous sized bucket of chicken and she said something and pointed to the chicken under the warmer and I said yes and I guess the deal was done as she loaded up the bucket, threw in mashed potatoes, biscuits and cole slaw and I paid her $159 which is roughly equivalent to $13 American. We were only able to eat half of it. Thirteen dollars for a huge bucket of KFC chicken is darn cheap. I mentioned to our taxi driver that we have been to Cozumel and he said if something in Cozumel costs $20 it costs $10 in Mexico City. I think he’s right.