Little Chiffon came over for treats, and she was so wonderfully sweet. She hopped in my lap like it was last year and made herself comfortable as she coiled up. After a while she wanted to explore the apartment and she found Jessica absolutely fascinating. I couldn’t blame her, she did present an interesting spectacle, sprawled out on the couch, snoring so loudly that it was occasionally unsettling. Little Chiffon jumped on the couch and then jumped onto Jessica and then did her best to apparently wake my sister up. Jessica didn’t move or acknowledge Little Chiffon, who was not at all amused by this lack of attention. She decided she had better things to do than waste her time being ignored, so she headed out the door.
I’ve never been able to eat pea soup without thinking of demonic possession. Do you know anybody who has ever been possessed by an unholy spirit? It happens so often in the movies and television that you’d think we’d all know of at least somebody. I’m in a coffeeshop right now back home, watching the rain fall — like in Mexico City, it won’t stop — and this idea has quite suddenly enraged me. Every week there’s some new show on the Travel Channel about some possessed child.
Mexico City was just as wonderful as when I’d left it, and all my feline friends were with me. I honestly couldn’t have been happier. But I could not sleep to save my life. It turns out Jessica snores at about the same decimal level as a fighter jet taking off. I don’t know how she slept through the racket she was causing. I certainly couldn’t, and you might remember that I’m deaf in one ear. Just imagine how awful it would have been with two functioning auditory nerves.
Since I left the airport last year, my soul has been aching to return. And finally I’m back and I can’t even begin to tell you how wonderful it is. Nothing has changed, if anything, Mexico is better. But I’m jumping ahead. I need to start at the very beginning. Hopefully — and I just learned in one of my university courses that that’s not an acceptable word but I don’t give a hoot — you’ve missed my lengthy reminisces of travel. As one of my long-dead heroines, Lady Lucie Duff-Gordon, an Englishwomen who gave herself completely to Egypt and died in Luxor, once said, “I long to bore you with traveler’s tales.” Let’s get started.
I couldn’t believe how fast time had flown by, how two weeks were gone and how I was about to go back to a place that I’d be fine never returning to. In the modern world we don’t always need proximity to our loved ones, we can just text or Facetime. Technology is a blessing, but I could never send Little Chiffon a text. I don’t know if she can read. And I doubt she has her own phone.
As soon as the sun set, I was on my way to that wonderland on the Avenida Insurgentes. It was dreamier than ever, but I suppose my nearness to departure caused me to romanticize every step of the way. Walmart was a wonder, reader. I stared lovingly at the laundry mat inside and the fast food options and the little cart that sold elote as soon as you came in from the parking garage.
I rounded the corner and there she was before me, the green light of the Olive Garden sign washed over me and I felt as if I were a pilgrim arriving in the holiest spot in all the world. I was giddy with excitement reader, and I veritably rushed for the escalator that would lead up to the doors of the blessed restaurant.
One life is hardly enough. I have no fear of death, but I really am irked that I only have a century here. And that is if I’m lucky. For a lot of people, more than I ever expected, a hundred years is plenty. People are tired and worn down and disinterested in life. I think there’s nothing more thrilling than being alive, seeing what’s around and learning about what has happened in the recent and distant past, so I will never understand this attitude. If I could live forever, I would pay whatever price. I’d make a deal with the Devil if that were a real thing.
I woke up gasping for air, wondering if the Grim Reaper had finally come. I didn’t really feel like dying, but I quickly rationalized that I’d led a life worth remembering, and I was fairly certain several people would host a funereal roast for me. So I accepted my mortal end. It was chic enough to die in Mexico City.
The point of travel is to learn about the world, not perpetuate your provincial and ethnocentric point of view around the world. You can do yourself no greater disservice than fail to attempt to appreciate the glorious world around us.
Anyway, I learned how to say ‘sack.’