Sunday, July 04, 2010

Around the world: Mexico

Expatriate life in Hong Kong, and perhaps all over the world, typically includes a summer of travel back to one’s country of origin. Thus Hong Kong, and particularly the apartment building where we live which is populated by mostly expatriate families, begins to fill like a college town in summer in June. This summer we enjoyed much travel though not back to the states, except to catch a connecting flight.

This year we boldly journeyed around the world, basically going in a circle west from Hong Kong and returned from the east. Summer began early for us with a trip to Mexico for my brother’s wedding the first weekend of June. Everyone was excited about the wedding and thus in good spirits for the long travel day from Hong Kong to Mexico. We flew to San Francisco (with just a few minutes to go into the Cal/Stanford shop there) and on to Phoenix. Just when we all started to sag, we randomly ran into my brother and his wife to be in the Phoenix airport and caught a second wind. We powered on the rest of the way fueled by American ice cream (the non- red bean variety, which is a popular flavor in Hong Kong) and proximity to the bride and groom.

The wedding was lovely and right on the beach. The kids were thrilled with their roles as flower girls and ring boy and took this all very seriously. Adam worked out a series of signals with the man officiating over the ceremony just to make sure he would know when to bring up the ring. The reception afterwards was right in the villas where we all were staying. Enjoying ourselves, we kept the kids up and at the party until Royce disappeared and came back in her pajamas to wish us good night.

Ready to get out of dress clothes, the kids quickly zeroed in on para-sailing, where the participant wearing a parachute is towed behind a boat and pulled into the air. Phil negotiated with El Gato on the beach to get all three kids in the air for a somewhat fair price. We thought the twins would not go and we would take their turns. To our surprise, all three kids got airborne and loved it. Another day we all tried zip lining in the jungle canopy. I can’t really describe it except to say we zipped across lines strapped in a harness with the jungle hundreds of feet below us. Watching the kids, tear out of the zip line station ahead of me, their little beings suspended way above the ground, I think I went from being proud of the kids’ adventurous spirit to being afraid. Needless to say, my favorite part of the excursion was the slow mule ride up out of the canyon and their favorite part of the day was the zip line called Speedy Gonzalez.


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