Tuesday, January 13, 2009

A Strange Welcome

Ibis started working at the hotel a year ago, and many of the guests who come every winter have started to return. There are several people who stay for one or two months, and we got to know them last year during their stay. By the time they left to return home, they all wished us well and said while they hoped they'd see us next year, they really hoped they wouldn't.

If you recall, we thought we'd be out of here by now. When we wished farewell to those who planned to return this year, they knew our hopes to leave and wished us the best. Now that they're arriving for their two-month stay in paradise, we're met with a combination of joy and sadness. Yesterday I picked up one such guest at the airport - someone I'd hung out with a little last winter - and while she was thrilled to see me and gave me a big hug, her face immediately showed her dismay that I was there. Instead of talking about the things she was looking forward to about her stay and how excited she was to be back in Zihua, we talked about the latest in our immigration wait and the few things that have happened with our case since I last saw her.

Ibis and I are touched that the guests, so many of whom are strangers when they arrive, care so much about our well being. I feel guilty talking to them about why we want to leave when they choose to come here every year, but I think they understand. My hope is that we'll be in their position someday - looking forward to a vacation in Zihua each winter.

22 comments:

Allen said...

There is a sense of love when people place their own joy (seeing you when they expected you to be in the States) behind the passions of others. It could be the temporary residents of your town may become your permanent friends for generations.

Some of the more temporary relationships I experienced became lifelong friends to me and my family.

I hope this happens to y'all.

Allen

momcat said...

It's really difficult to be positive when you are feeling stuck but always believe that you are in a particular place or situation for a reason and be at peace with that.

Janna Qualman said...

Theirs is a bittersweet but special kind of support, I'd guess.

Melanie Avila said...

Allen, we've already become friends with some of the guests (a couple I've even friended on Facebook, lol). Since there's a chance we'll end up in Canada, we've made sure to keep in touch with the people we've met from Vancouver - and there are a lot!

Melanie Avila said...

Momcat, we try hard not to focus on the negative. We have very little control over our situation right now so we don't dwell on it. I wouldn't have any hair left if we did.

Melanie Avila said...

Janna, that's very true.

ac said...

Why Canada?

Nadine said...

I love seeing a friendly familiar face in an unfamiliar place, but I can understand the bitter sweetness of it.

It's a nice feeling that so many people are wishing the best for you. Everyone is routing for you guys!

PS: If you do go to Canada, I have a really good friend in Vancouver that I'll introduce to you.

Melanie Avila said...

AC, the short answer is it's a country close to home with a living standard similar to what we're accustomed to, including the fact that they speak English.

Melanie Avila said...

Nadine, it is nice to know so many people are crossing their fingers for us!

I'll keep your friends in mind if we end up there. :)

spyscribbler said...

That is so sweet! And sad. I have my fingers totally crossed for you guys.

Choice is definitely key. Even if I was staying in the most beautiful place in the world, if I couldn't bring my husband home with me to visit my family, I would not be happy with it. I pray you are unstuck soon!

Melanie Avila said...

Spy, I was just explaining that to my dad yesterday. Of course he understands, but I like to repeat myself. :P Choosing to live a retirement lifestyle when you are of retirement age and have money is completely different than what we're doing.

The majority of people our age that have moved here are all missionaries. We'd hang out with them but they only associate with people of their faiths (Jehova's Witnesses or Mormons) so we're SOL.

Penguin said...

Take heart my little Mel......

Don't feel bad that you want to leave when they love to visit.
Remember the last part..VISIT.
If they had to live there they might want to leave also. It is fine to leave paradise, because as you know growing up in a tourist trap, paradise is not always paradise to the people who live there.
And people like to get to know people better, most always in places they love to visit. Do you remember how many people I got to know in Summit County? And you know I don't like meeting new people. But the mountains in Colorado are someplace I love and would like to get to know people there.

Turkey Lurkey said...

That would make an interesting greeting, for sure. I think it is a blessing that you have these friends as windows into the life you would like to have, and to have so much support come from someone who you've only met a year ago. Maybe one day the two of you can spend some time together... when you are BOTH on vacation. :)

Robin said...

I can see how that would be sort of awkward, but I'm sure they understand. What do they do for a month in your town? From your description, and the pictures, there's a gorgeous beach, a market, and ?. Am I being retarded here?

colbymarshall said...

It has got to be hard to have no control over the situation...I'd be batty, and I'm sure you're just ready for it to all work out. I applaud your good attitude through it all though!

Melanie Avila said...

Penguin, that's a good point. And you're right, I don't know if I could go back to living in Grand Haven either. Do you still go back to CO?

Melanie Avila said...

Turkey, that's what I've been telling me best friend when she gets sad that she may never come back here. I tell her we can BOTH come back for vacation!

Melanie Avila said...

Robin, you've hit the nail on the head - there's NOTHING to do here. Breakfast, beach, dinner, drink, maybe dance at the one place with music (that actually plays salsa), pass out. Repeat...

Melanie Avila said...

Thanks Colby. I try not to whine too much.

Penguin said...

I haven't gotten back out there in a while.
I sure do miss it.

Melanie Avila said...

I told the woman who I picked up from the airport about that trip because her flight was delayed a full day. If you remember, mine was too.