Thursday, December 21, 2006

Feliz Navidad 

At the airport in Mexico City your bags get searched before you check them. Between the line of people waiting to check in and the checkout counters there are folding tables manned by security guards. As you are called you put your luggage on the tables and they rummage through them.

Before I left for Mexico, I asked my friend who lives in Chiapas if he wanted anything from New York. As a matter of fact he did. Apparently in Mexico, being Catholic and all, good condoms are particularly hard to find. The seed shall not be spilt. So my friend asked if I could bring him a few boxes of a particular brand that is impossible to get there. It was an odd request, but I granted it nonetheless.

So of course, the cosmos being what it is, on my holiday season trip to the poorest state in the union, I was going to draw two women security guards and they were going to find several boxes of condoms in my bag when I put it on the table in front of the entire check-in staff and a long long line of holiday travelers. Clearly I´d come to their home to savagely exploit their most vulnerable women on the holiest day of their savior Jesus Christ.

What I didn´t expect was that they wouldn´t know or be able to discern what was in the boxes. So a great deal of confusion followed as I tried to explain it in my terrible Spanish. "Condom...condomas...condomos? Es por...el sexo?¨" Nothing worked. Meanwhile they're turning over the boxes in their hands, holding them up to the light, scrutinizing them from every possible angle.

Finally the guards decided to give up and ask a male coworker at the next table. As she was in motion, turning around and about to wave the box high over her head and yell something, I snatched one of the boxes out of her hand. I turned it over and pointed to the diagram depicting the unrolled condom on the back of the box. Somehow they´d missed it. "Mira!" I said. At which point they looked at the diagram and promptly collapsed into gales of laughter.

"Esta OK?" I asked, wanting to move on.

They nodded. I repacked my bag as quickly as possible, smiled, shrugged and parted with a very feeble, "Feliz Navidad."


This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?