Arriving in Mexico

I am writing this from the Airbnb bedroom I am staying in for my first week on the road, a room in an apartment in Playa del Carmen in Quintana Roo. I got off the plane at the Cancun airport, exhausted from a flight that consisted of a large group of southern high schoolers and their parents going to a senior beach getaway in Cancun, discussing Snapchat and walking around the plane barefoot. After the flight and the horrible turbulence during landing, I was feeling sick and ready to get off the plane and go anywhere. After making it through customs to collect my checked bag, it was nowhere to be found. It turned out it had never left Charlotte, where my flight connection was. Trying to stay chill and not cry from a touristy combination of exhaustion and frustration, I calmly gave the airline staff my Airbnb information so that my bag could be dropped off there and proceeded to leave the airport. In my haze I did not notice any ATMs where I could withdraw cash, and suddenly I was outside the airport with no clear way back in. With the 200 pesos I had in my pocket saved from past family trips to Mexico, I bought a bus ticket to Playa del Carmen. I made it to Playa and after a little bit of wandering about managed to find the Airbnb, where the host was extremely accommodating. I rinsed off then set off to go find a bank and food before my internal battery ran out. I found two banks, but neither of my cards were accepted there for no clear reason. Panicking and exhausted, I stumbled around further looking for food (not always a simple task in a foreign city when you are vegan). Of course there were several hippie vegan spots in a town like Playa, but after not eating for 6 hours I was not feeling like kale juice with a kale salad and a side of kale. Eventually I found the beauty of all beauties–a hole in the wall falafel place, speaking to my heart and my stomach. I paid $3 (which was nearly all the money I had left) and then trekked back to the Airbnb (not in the center of town, I might add). Once home and after stuffing my face with falafel, there was still no definitive word on the status of my bag.
My bag came the next morning after I got a solid 12 hours of sleep. Not the greatest series of events to start my trip, but lying on a hot Mexican beach certainly has made up for some of the discomfort. More pictures on that to gawk at, coming soon.

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