Yesterday’s makeover did nothing for my driving skills.  Yup – my first international accident.  And to make it even more A&U (Awkward & Uncomfortable), I knew the owners of the car I hit.

Yesterday was El Dia de los Ninos – The Day of the Child.  It is a big day here in Mexico.  A special day at school – special food, events, no uniforms  – and a special day at all the stores, malls, parks etc.  A bunch of the parents invited me to bring H&J to a party – they had rented out a mini-golf place. Another new friend, Alma, had me follow her there after school.  We had a really nice day and I met a more lovely people.

So how do I repay them for the kind invitation and lovely day?  As I was leaving, I backed into Alma’s car.  Ugh. Ugh. Ugh.

Nobody was in her car and we were fine. A panel popped out of our Volvo and I crumpled their fender. They were incredibly gracious and understanding about it, but I just felt rotten.  We had plenty of time to get to know each other as we waited for the insurance adjusters (the law here, they must come out or they may not belive you about the cause of the accident).  They joked that it was my way to get better known in Merida.Everyone told me to forget about it and “don’t look back”.  I said if I had, maybe I wouldn’t be in this situation. 

While I was dealing with paperwork, our friends Maite & Alberto amazingly arranged to take the girls back to their house with other kids.  They said I should go home and relax and they would bring them home later. As they are driving away, I realize there are 6 kids, including mine, loose in the back of a compact car driving away and waving goodbye. The only way I could calm myself was to remind myself that I survived the 70s being transported that way. Telling myself that it is legal in Mexico just wasn’t working.

I guarantee that of all of you reading this, the person cringing most is my college roommate Jessica.  She’s not cringing at the lack of seatbelts.  She’s cringing because she knows exactly what it is like to have me say “I just hit your car”.  She’s cringing because she knows exactly what it is like to try to be comforting to me while simultaneously wanting to punch me in the teeth. She is wondering right now if Alma will also have to drive around a crappy blue Chevy as a loaner car while her nice car is being repaired.  Jess & I survived our friendship – hopefully Alma and I will too.  I wonder if she likes M&Ms like Jess?

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