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When I was in High School and College I didn’t know to go to a site, make a call or visit a place to get a travel warning. I travelled. It was that simple. I went to Hermosillo in the 80’s and played for a couple of weeks. I did a student exchange in a little pueblo known as Cumpas.
I saw China, among the first western travelers allowed behind the “iron curtain”, visiting a Shanghai that seems to no longer exist, and traveled up the Yangtze River. I saw Japan, and Korea. No one ever looked up whether or not it was safe to go.
At 20 something you don’t. You JUST GO. I am excited and ecstatic to report that while we as parents and “grown ups” are non- plussed about the activity of these twenty-somethings, they are flocking to Mexico for Spring Break!
Cancun and Acalpulco are reporting increased tourism, and it seems parents who might have researched travel warnings, which by the way, do not include such destinations as these or Cabo San Lucas, or Ixtapa, or Cozumel or Mazatlan for that matter, are not battling the Spring Breaker having the time of their lives on the beaches of beautiful, illustrious Mexico. They are in Mexico by the Thousands!!
Last year, at precisely this time, we faced the announcement of President Calderon of the outbreak of the Swine Flu, and the beaches and resorts saw little to no tourism. Kids were kept home, sent to Hawaii and or ski resorts or had “stay-cations”. This year, however, they are on the beaches in droves.
There are swimsuits everywhere! Beer bottles and plastic cups in abundance with the magic elixirs that erase inhibition. They dance on the beaches, and they swim in the ocean. They forget sunscreen and burn all day, turning various shades of pink and red, and they throw caution to the wind, slap on a little aloe, and dance all night long. They consume alcohol and they eat food, sleep in hotel rooms and rent cars. They pay for cocktails, they pay for trinkets and they spend money in the name of being young and free!
In truth, they give back jobs. They drive economy. They provide tips in pockets long overdue and to some who have children to feed and extended family to assist. They produce ECONOMY to a country in need of some LOVE. They are not always well received by locals, and they are frowned upon by many for the uninhibited freedom and behavior and their loud, obnoxious music, but they are also helping to pay bills and cover losses that might not otherwise be paid.
They are coming from Colorado, and Utah, Minnesota and Illinois. They flock from every Cold, wintery, snowy, muddy miserable campus, from dorm rooms and fraternity houses, and sororities the like. They are coming from months of miserable layers of sweaters, and shoveling mounds and mounds of cold white stuff. They are coming out from under laptops, putting away ipods and retiring their Kindle’s. They are pushing off finals and hardbacks, and thesis papers. They are stopping to breathe, be kids and enjoy their lives. They are putting aside fear, they are putting aside stress and they are putting away bias, and they are tasting the sweet nectar of youth, the freedom to simply “be”. They are socially interacting, having live conversations, dancing their hearts out, and enjoying the thing we all take for granted, and bemoan and wail. . . LIFE.