Mexico City (Part 3): Going Home via JFK

I went into a magazine store at the airport and almost bought a book. “Killing Yourself to Live” by Chuck Klosterman, who I’ve been wanting to read but can’t commit to. I held the book for a while, read a few pages and then put it back: “I could write this. I’ve seen all I need to see.” Am I totally presumptious and arrogant to look at something for two seconds and get everything I need to know about it? Or does it mean I have an extra sensory ability to scan and absorb our ADD’d culture at impressive speeds?

I am always surprised by the USA, by its familiar smell of melted process cheese and hot dogs. If I had to choose a preference between Mexico and the US, I would take Mexico in a heartbeat. I know I go on about it, but wow the image States projects has gone to sh*t. Everything sucks, people gennerally hate their existence and therefore dump that self-loathing onto others. In Mexico City, people are resigned to the conditions of their life: not the extremely poor people. I didn’t meet or even see them (except for one 8 year old boy literally in tattered clothing who panhandled with such confidence Murray and I were both convinced for a second that he was right) so I can’t comment much on the dispatiry. There’s a lot Murray and I missed on this visit and we definitely want to go back. But that’s another thing. Just the service and quality of work in Mexico blows the States away. Mexicans take pride in themselves and their job. It might take longer but having a job done thoroughly and with courtesy is worth the wait. For example, the promoters hired a driver, Ariel, who took us around during our stay. He was incredible. If I opened the door or tried to get out of the van myself, he would be there before I knew it to help me. I felt like a real lady! I mean what is so difficult about courtesy?

Aside: I previously said that Heathrow was the worst airport ever…well I think JFK has taken the honours. The tarmac is at best third world, with a shortage of gates and passengers deplaning directly onto the runway. Its probably because its the hub for Delta, a reliably unreliable airline. We waited out a three hour delay in an overcrowded terminal, 50-year old adults sitting on the floor as if at a Sleater-Kinney concert, with at least two sometimes three overlapping announcements blaring from above. You might be getting paged for your flight, but you would never know. Then the PA switches back to the loop of adult contemp tracks, Keane, Maroon 5, Elton John, ad neauseum. We’ve heard the whole loop and they’ve started back at Keane again.

The departure board is a joke. They should state the ticketed departure time at the “suggested departure time.” What’s the point of arriving two hours in advance so you can wait for four? I just have to remember that I’ve gotten what I paid for. Is this worth the extra $200 per ticket we could have paid for the direct flight? When booking the money is important, but when an eight hour travel day turns into eighteen, $200 is chump change. And Murray and I miss Neptune terribly. This is torture. This is my life. Killing myself to live.


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