Friday, January 8, 2010

Dear Tequila Worm

Ah, sunny beaches, shrimp platters and a cold drink with an umbrella.

Dear Tequila Worm

Soon I am flying to Mazatlan on the western coast of sunny Mexico . Since, in my dream life, I secretly write advice columns for travelers to different parts of the known and unknown world, I share with you some of the most frequently asked questions from my “Mexico” column, written under the pseudonym of “Tequila Worm”.

Q: Dear TW:

My girlfriend and I are going south of the Border, down Mexico way. She insists I buy new trunks. I have my heart set on something sexy.

The problem is that she also demands to go shopping with me. How can I pick my own trunks?

Next Size Larger

A: Dear NSL:

Thank your Sweetie, preferably with flowers and wine, and perhaps a lovely piece of jewelry. Very few men over the age of four should appear on the beach in a Speedo. To paraphrase the poet Robbie Burns, we are unable to see ourselves as others see us.

Q: Dear TW:

What should I do when hounded by a pesky beach vendor who will not take no for an answer?

Souvenir Sally

A: Dear SS:

Go ahead and buy those oversized crepe paper flowers. Once you get back home all your envious friends will know you have been to Mexico .

Q: Dear TW:

When I go to Mexico I cannot resist buying sleeveless T-shirts printed with “One Tequila, Two Tequila, Three Tequila, Floor”.

However, once I return home, I would not be caught dead wearing the disgusting things. What can I do?

Red-faced in Renton

A: Dear R-f R:

What happens in Mexico , stays in Mexico .

Q: Dear TW:

We have noticed that people whom we deal with every day don’t seem to recognize us. We feel slighted. What should we do?

Jason and Jennifer in Pomona

A: Dear J&J:

We need to remember that to people of another culture, all of us from the United States look alike.

Q: Dear TW:

When I am on the beach lounging under the palapa hut, I offen cannot get the attention of the waiter when I want more beer. What should I do?

Restless Rick from Chicago

A: Dear RR:

In Mexico , as elsewhere, it is the custom to signal politely. It is not the custom to wave your arm, snap your fingers and yell, “Hey, Taco.”

Q: Dear TW:

Should I take my camera?


A: Dear S-B:

Be sensitive about what you photograph. When someone from Mexico comes to your town, would you want them to treat you like a curiosity at the other end of their lens? Scenery is good. But remember, when taking memory photos of your group, what happens in Mexico , stays in Mexico .

Q: Dear TW: When on vacation next month in a romantic Mexican resort , I hope to meet the true love of my life. How will I know if he is the real one:

Phyllis from Cleveland

A: Dear PfC:

If he is wearing Speedos and a Tequila shirt, look elsewhere. Good luck.

Q: Dear TW:

How do I get past the language barrier?

Lip Locked

A: Dear LL:

Learn Mexican Spanish. A phrase book is helpful. Speaking slowly and louder will not make you more easily understood. Remember that everybody is eager to please. When he says, “Si, si,” Or you say, “Yes, yes,” accompanied by vigorous head shaking, that does not guarantee either of you understand the other.

Q: Dear TW:

My friend says all the water in Mexico is bad, even for bathing. Is this true?


A: Dear P:

Not necessarily. If you want to be truly careful, boil the water or wash with beer.

Q: Dear TW:

How do I order food when I don’t understand the menu?

Starving Stella

A: Where there is no picture menu, remember, your trip is all in the spirit of adventure. What happens in Mexico , stays in Mexico .

Sondra Ashton

Home Again: Havre Daily News

Published October 29, 2009

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