Dear Mom and Dad,
I know by the time you get this letter you will probably have already heard a lot about what’s going on. The Mexican prison system does its best to prioritize communication between inmates and their families, but there are still a couple of hiccups with carrier cockroaches. I’m sure you’ll be glad to hear I’m doing well, I feel like I’m in a really good place mentally, and that it wasn’t my fault.
I’m certain by now my attorney has filled you in on most of the so-called ‘details’ of what happened. Let’s say hypothetically that I had been considering my options for spring break when I was invited to go to Cancun by my friends. In this completely hypothetical scenario, can you see how a young, naïve twenty-something may have been lured by the promise of romance, adventure and tequila shooters? What little girl didn’t dream of meeting a handsome prince and being whisked away to magical municipality of Benito Juárez, where all your dreams come true, even the freaky acid ones where that pregnant turtle is trying to feed you oatmeal?
Mom and Dad, surely you can see how I may or may not have been intrigued. You may also imagine how my interest would have been diminished only by the fact that you had once made a very specific point of illustrating the dangers of spring break in Mexico in a long, explicit lecture (worst birthday party ever), and forbidden me to go. In that case, you can understand why, faced with peer pressure and a total lack of respect for you, I might have lied when I said I was going to visit Aunt Lindsay in Richmond. And how I might have been less than upfront when I asked for $8000 to take the super secret, extra-educational VIP tour of Williamsburg that may or may not exist. And how I might have instead made the unfortunate decision to book a plane ticket with Air Fiesta Desnudo and jetted off for a week of all-expense paid, sun soaked debauchery on the Yucatan Peninsula. Not that I did.
Now I know if you thought any of this was true, you would still wonder how it was that your stellar daughter could have caused all this trouble. But what you have to understand is that Spring Break isn’t a choice. It’s like turning into a werewolf. Legend has it that in March, when the waves become rad and the babes bodacious, by the chug of a Blue Moon, mild-mannered college kids will transform into unrestrained, unapologetic monsters of priviledge. That girl stumbling around the beach with a fruity beverage in her hand sharing the details of her complicated relationship with everyone like she’s the Barefoot Contessa (Well, bare-foot might not be the standout feature)? She’s going to be a doctor and a mother of two. That guy in the banana suit who figured out a convenient use for his outfit when he couldn’t find a bathroom? Public policy major. He wants to be your president! Spring Break is like Chuck-E-Cheese for adults, right down the copious amount of pizza and barf. It’s the best chance for kids just coming in to the cold reality of adulthood to have fun without restraints and worries of being a grown person with responsibilities.
And that’s why it was perfectly within reason if I downed a bunch of mystery drinks in rainbow order, dragged the minibar from my room down to the beach, was informed by the hotel that it was only the contents of the minibar that were complimentary, slapped a concierge in the face, got kicked out of my hotel, spent all my money entering a surfing contest to impress a boy, lost all my money in the surfing contest, slapped the boy in the face, bet my last dollar on a cockfight to recoup my losses, realized a cockfight was actually roosters killing each other (I know, right? Not what I was thinking of!), jumped into the ring and saved a prize winning rooster, was chased into the El Rey by an angry mob, declared myself king of the Mayan civilization and the rooster my queen, passed out in the Temple of the Scorpion and resisted arrest for desecrating a national treasure while reenacting the end of the movie ‘Scarface’ with finger guns and going ‘Pew pew pew!’ Which I didn’t.
Huh. Putting that into writing, something has kind of occurred to me. Spring Break is short, but repercussions are not. It may be the perfect time to kick back, but reality, unfortunately, is never far away. Next year, I’m thinking a couple days of YouTube on the couch may be safer and saner than, er…Richmond. Hope you’re well, all my love to Grandma, and can I borrow $100? I’ll send you a picture of my cellmate later (she’s nicknamed me ‘French Fry’. Looks like I’m fitting in!)
See you in court!