My time here began with a warm welcome at Mexico City's airport. After having my bags and language skills questioned, I was let into a Mexico with a rowdy welcome. I was greeted by a mob of hundreds, some wearing sombreros, some screaming, and none of them for me. I found my ride, weakly holding a company sign after being there 12 hours of Hens on Ice pick ups. I woke her up and picked her off the floor while we waited for one more hen.
Thirsty and ready to try some of Mexico's famous bottles water, I braved the terminal's closet-sized 7-Eleven. I was also eager to try out my new credit card, which was my first to offer no foreign transaction fee. Who needs an actual peso with such a deal? But soon, the cashier and half of Mexico wished I had pesos. The swipe of my card froze the computer. I stared in horror at the poor clerk who spoke no English, and I hadn't spoken a Spanish word in 2 years. I tried my best to cluck out dusty Spanish words to her, causing her to cough. She insisted the card would work whenever the machine unfroze. I stood hot and nervous, smiling stupidly at her as the line behind me rolled out of the cramped space and well into the terminal. The woman behind me barged in front of me, slammed pesos down on the counter, and yelled in telenovela-style Spanish about paying for her gum.
receipt and the water only cost me 220 pesos, or about 16 dollars. Wait... what kind of water did I buy? Apparently it was the kind of water that also includes the previous customer's 200 peso calling card. Bienvenidos a Mexico.