Friday, January 29, 2010

Two If By Sea

Yesterday Ibis and I spent the afternoon at the beach -- something I really don't do as often as I should, considering where we live -- because I wanted to see the TWO cruise ships in the bay. Two! This has happened before but I was out of town or something, so this was a first for me.

We had planned to go to Playa la Ropa (the biggest beach on Zihuatanejo Bay) but stopped at the hotel where Ibis used to work to see which beach some friends were at. They were settled in front of the hotel, so we decided to stay there. (I swear this gets more interesting...)

About an hour after we sat down, Ibis was running up and down the beach, Owen yipping at his heels, when he stopped to talk to a family of four. Ibis talks to everyone and Owen is absolutely adorable, so I didn't pay much attention to what they were doing until they approached where we were sitting.

"Melanie?" the woman asked, rushing ahead of her family.

"Yes." I stood and took a step forward, smiling as she neared. Like I said, Ibis talks to everyone so it's not uncommon for people I don't know to come up to me and say hello.

"I read your blog!"

This is where I about fell over.

"I'm [xxx]. I wrote to you a couple weeks ago."

Ah yes, [xxx]. She was concerned about the violence here in Zihua and had written to ask if I thought it was still safe for her to come. I wrote back that as long as they used common sense I was sure they wouldn't have any problems, like I do whenever people inquire about the risks.

"Hi!" I said. By now her family, Ibis, and Owen had joined us, so we all shook hands and talked for a good ten minutes.

They'd been in town for three days but because their hotel is SO nice, this was the first day they'd ventured into town. (I do NOT blame them. The hotel is awesome.) They were on their way back when she noticed Owen racing across the beach. She told her husband that she thought it was Owen, to which he -- obviously -- replied that she was crazy. (Yes, I'm paraphrasing here.)

She was sure of it, then she thought she recognized Ibis, and just as her husband and tired children had almost convinced her to keep walking, she heard Ibis call Owen's name. That's when she went up to him and asked "Is that Owen?"

(Ibis told me afterwards he thought they were going to try to buy Owen, but they weren't worried about a mere dog. They wanted the blogger! Ha!)

Ibis confirmed that Owen was Owen, and then she asked "Is your wife Melanie?"

Fortunately Ibis is aware of my blog so knew right away how she would know all this. He pointed out where I was sitting and that's when we met.

The craziest part is that we NEVER go to that beach (Playa Madera). Sure, Ibis runs with Owen on the beach sometimes, and she remembered reading that on my blog, but never there. CRA-ZEE.

Once they left, I turned to one of the people we'd been sitting with. "I feel like a celebrity."

He laughed. "You ARE a celebrity!"

Does this mean I have arrived?


(Here's another shot of the boat, zoomed in so you can see a bit more.)


Gary Hooyenga said...

Wow, small world. See connections are everywhere.

Pam said...

This confirms it -- you ARE a celebrity! Owen is, too.

Great story, Melanie :)

Erica Orloff said...

HOLY CRAP!!! Talk about small worlds. Not only are YOU a celebrity . . . Owen is too. LOL!

Melanie Avila said...

Isn't this crazy? I still can't quite believe it. We were joking afterwards that other people on the beach were probably like "who's that Melanie person?"

Stacey Graham said...

Crazy! Now you need a t-shirt saying, "Yes, I'm THAT Melanie." ;)

Melanie Avila said...

Ha, I love it!

Hey Ab.....

Natasha Fondren said...

That is the COOLEST! :-) Of course they recognized Owen! Hah! I think that's the cutest!

Okay, stupid question: how do people get off the boat and onto land? Is there a dock I can't see? A boat that ferries them?

Melanie Avila said...

I know, that's the funniest part (about Owen!)

Cruise ships use their lifeboats to shuttle people to the pier. The colorful boats that stretch around the middle of the ship? That's them. Some ports have piers large enough to accommodate ships, and then you step right onto the pier.

Adam said...


I have yet to be recognised. Possibly because I only venture out of the house to throw shoes at the young 'uns.


Janna Qualman said...

*grinning big* That is SO cool! Did you walk with a bounce in your step the rest of the day? I would love to be recognized in public, just from my online presence. *hails*

Jewel/Pink Ink said...

How cool!! You know, you ought to consider doing a Mexican travel show, or something :-)

Angie said...

Can I, like, have your autograph and stuff? Don't personalize it, though - I want to, like, sell it on eBay and stuff. :P

Melanie Avila said...

Adam, I thought YOU were the youngin'? Ah, perspective... :P

Janna, it was pretty cool! I looked extra cool in front of the people we were hanging out with. They didn't know they knew a celebrity!

Jewel, that would be fun. :)

Angie, it's all yours.

mary said...

Very cool!!

JLC said...

What a great experience! Yay Mel!

Erica said...

That's awesome. What a great story of serendipity! That looks like the ship I was on when I was 18! Enjoy that celebrity, I see a lot more coming your way and Owen's ;o)

Penguin said...

Good to see the boats are back, that will help with the local economy a little. And who knows it might be a trend to more boats, and more of a boost for the locals.

And why shouldn't you be a celebrity?

I think of you as one.

Pat Baker said...

Or, maybe a tee shirt that says, "I am OWEN'S Melanie"...?

Great story. :D

Nadine said...

Ha! This is great!

Yes, you have arrived! In one week, freelance writer and celebrity!

I love the t-shirt idea. You could even sell them, "I met Melanie."

What a fun coincidence!!

Melanie Avila said...

Mar & JLC, is was!

Erica, we get a lot of Carnival ships, which is the one cruise I've been on.

Penguin, it's definitely helped. After so many months of nothing, things have perked up again downtown. And thanks. :)

Pat, cute!!

Nadine, even funnier! Yes, it's been a busy week for me!

Anonymous said...

Dear Sir/Madam,

As Owen's publicist I must request in the most strenuous of terms that you cease and desist your repeated attempts to benefit from his celebrity. You should be ashamed.

All My Lurve,

Melanie Avila said...


beyondtourism said...

Melanie that is so awesome.

gypsyscarlett said...

That's such a great story! :)

Robin said...

That is so cool! I think it's funny that Ibis' first thought was that they were trying to buy Owen. Hahahaha!

You were always a celebrity to me! :)

june said...

That is really cool! To think... I knew you when you were just a little Hoo :) You will remember me when you're famous. Si? ;)

Melanie Avila said...

Definitely a cool story. I hope she comments when she reads this (hint, hint...).

Robin, I don't think he told them that, lol.

*hikes up pink jammies* Of course!

alisha said...

That's great! I've never had a stranger tell me they read my blog on a beach, but I'm still always pleasantly surprised when someone tells me they read my blog in general. Very exciting!

Aimless Writer said...

You're FAMOUS!
Blogger international!
But who is the bigger celebrity? You or Owen?

Melanie Avila said...

Alisha, I'm with you. I'm still surprised when people email me from my blog. You mean people READ this?

Aimless, I think it might be Owen...