Nov. 1st, 2009

The trip to Las Vegas itself was great: shows, concert, Grand Canyon, drinks... Lots of fun, in a way that was very different from other trips, especially since we spent most of it hanging out inside hotels we weren't even staying at. AND I got to hang out with [ profile] boomtownrat , even if only for part of the length of my Charlotte layover!

Pictures: LV night skyline, The Claw, The Grand Canyon x2, lions at the MGM Grand x2 )

A couple of days before I left, my mom told me that one of her students (a very rich lady who's married to an even richer man) had given her a name and phone number for me to call about a possible job. Apparently one of her husband's many business ventures includes a very fancy beach club where tourists on cruises that dock at Cozumel* spend the day. Since this was a couple of days before my trip, I figured I'd call them when I got back. The night before I left, my mom said her student had told her "they were expecting my phone call".

*Cozumel is an island to which you get on a 30-minute ferry boat from Playa del Carmen, which is a town about 40 min. south of Cancun.

I called from the airport, and apparently, they had been putting off other people's interviews because the lady had put in such a good word in for me, and they really hoped I could go to Cozumel as soon as possible for an interview. I explained that I was about to leave the country, but that I would be in Cancun on Tuesday, and that seeing how I was just taking time off work, it would be great if I could come in for an interview that same day.

During the trip I looked into what making it home on Tuesday would entail: flying into Cancun at 10:30 after an overnight flight; then an hour long bus ride to Playa, then 30 minutes on the ferry... the most convenient bus back home from Playa left at 3:45pm, meaning I'd have to be done with the interview and preferably back on the boat at 3pm at the latest. The guy had assured me if I called them as soon as I got on the ferry boat, they'd have someone waiting for me at the dock, and even said he'd tell the interviewer to ignore my lack of interview-appropriate attire. Still, I knew it would be really tight, and probably stressful.

It was a short trip, so I was taking my little suitcase as a carry-on, but wanted to check it for the flight back since a friend had gotten me a framed print as an early Christmas gift; besides, I had bought some make-up remover and a metal manicure tool. Thinking about the time I'd waste waiting at baggage claim, plus the hassle it'd be to carry the print all the way to Cozumel and back, I had a bright idea: I'd mail the print, the make-up remover and the file to myself, since whatever it would cost to do it would be about as much as US Airways would charge for the checked bag, plus the convenience of not carrying it all over the Yucatan peninsula.

But post offices are harder to find in Vegas than you'd think, so again, for the sake of convenience, I used the Tropicana business center desk to have it FedExed.

Complicated enough so far? It gets better.

After an overnight flight and a 3-hour layover, I got to Cancun with one phone dead and the other one dying (yeah, I have two cellphones). Which one died? The one that had the beach club's number on it, of course. I called my mom and asked her to please ask her student for it so I could call them from the boat as I'd been told. She said she'd call me back, as I bought a bus ticket to Playa and waited forever for it to leave. 20 minutes into the trip, my mom calls.

"Uh, where are you?"
"On the bus to Playa"
"Oh, you're on the bus already..."
"... yes, why?"
"Well, [the lady] told me both her husband and the person who was supposed to interview you are away on business, so there's nobody at the club who can interview you"

So there I was, with about three hours to kill at one of the most beautiful beaches in the world, with a suitcase full of sweaters and not even a pair of flip flops.

I took a cab to this awesome little bagel place my sister and I love and ate bagels and drank pineapple juice like it was the end of the world. Then, bitter about being literally feet away from the beach in 90-degree weather in sneakers, I went to the bus station and waited two hours there for my bus to leave.

Operation job interview: Utter failure.

A couple of days later, the FedEx man arrived with my oddly-shaped package. The print was there, the make-up remover and the manicure tool were not. Enraged, I called FedEx. The lady who took my call said that, while it's not unusual for Mexican custom agents to confiscate items, there was no confiscation notice on my package's tracking record, meaning they're not really sure what happened to my stuff. Another CSR called me later to ask me to email him a detailed description and pictures of my items, which I did right away. He said he'd get back to me that day (Thursday) or the next. I never heard back. I called on Saturday, and was told someone would probably call me on Tuesday.

Needless to say, other than the Vegas trip, I can't say my week went all that well before Friday. I can't say I took it well either. Exhaustion, frustration, helplessness, all three combined? After my first FedEx call on Thursday I cried and cried about all that shit having been in vain, then took a nap and went to work. You know you're having a really crappy day when work actually helps you take your mind off it.

Unbelievably (or not), this isn't even the whole story, but I guess this is whiny, ranting and rambling enough. I think right now I'm at a place where I'm not as ready to track down the customs agent who went through my package and TPing their house as I was on Thursday, so I guess that's progress?

The weekend was good too, so that helped. More on that later.



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