Back to reality — but not for long!

Boulder Winterscape

Well, I’m back in Boulder now for almost two weeks and my eco-turista experience all seems like a dream. I arrived from the tropics to 9 degrees at the airport, then the temperature plummeted to 12 below. Quite an adjustment, but I was so happy to be home I didn’t care. I could drink the tap water and brush my teeth with it, flush toilet paper down the toilet and not worry that every dish I used was going to give me Montezuma’s Revenge or worse. I’m still checking my clothes for scorpions, although during my entire stay I saw only one scorpion, casually ambling down the sidewalk one night.

The Lone Scorpion

After the exuberance of arriving home I checked my mail the next day and still no contact lens. I called my eye doctor and he didn’t have it either. He had sent it by UPS to Mexico on November 11th and now it was December 7th. I tracked the package online with my UPS number and found that my lens was still in Mexico City! Furthermore it looked like they were holding it for ransom again with all of the same red tape to send it out of the country as they had to accept it into the country! This was sheer madness.

After a month of patience and polite exchange, I now sent an angry e-mail to the Mexico UPS lady telling her I had done everything she requested, paid to have the lens returned, and had had it with them and their ridiculous regulations and to SEND THE LENS!!!!!!!!! Next, I called the local UPS office, which transferred me to the national and then international office. I explained my predicament, telling the whole sad story, and asked for their help. Some nice young man in Kentucky named David promised me he’d get it back for me.

Well, he did it. My lens just arrived this past Monday, Dec. 14, a month and three days after my doctor first sent it. Actually, it first went back to my doctor who then sent it regular first-class mail back to me. The Mexican UPS couldn’t handle any type of change of address. It had traveled round-trip to Mexico City at a cost of almost $100, spending most of the time sitting in some Mexico City warehouse while bureaucrats had a heyday holding it for ransom.

One-eyed kayak patrol on Akumal Bay

I had spent my whole time at the Eco-center like a cyclops wearing my left lens in my right eye. My left eye has nerve damage, so my right eye is dominant. But naturally, I had lost the right lens — Murphy’s Law. It was a little disorienting, but actually worked pretty well. I needed it for my bay patrol duties of snorkeling and kayaking.

So now in a few days I’m heading to Abaco, an island in the Bahamas, to spend Christmas with my son and daughter-in-law, whose parents have a place there. It’s a bit schizophrenic going back and forth from the tropics to arctic weather in my attempt to escape winter. Nothing much has changed in Boulder since I left, except the self-checkout software at King Soopers. My cats all survived my absence and I spent a week frenetically cleaning to restore cleanliness to my life and recover from Mexico’s buggy and bacterial experience.

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