She was sitting across from the man, staring out at the planes landing and taking off. He observed her in between checking his email, an intriguing diversion from the drudgery of catching up with a week’s worth of business.
She was sunburnt head to toe, glowing a deep orange/red. Her hair swept back from her forehead in cornrows to an arc as if she had a headband on, but she didn’t. From there her hair fell in tight, sharp waves to her shoulders. Her top plunged low, revealing a long expanse of skin, mottled and pealing. It had that rich deep tone that said she’d spent many a day in the sun. There was the faintest view of a tanline at the edge of the blouse, but even that area was dark, as if she had taken her straps down every time she had laid out to sun.
She had on a colorful print top, bright blue jeans rolled up halfway up her calves. Her calves were well defined and she had on a new pair of running shoes. She sat upright but not stiff, holding her purse as it nestled on top of a woven basket bag that she had obviously bought while in Mexico.
She caught him looking at her at one point. She smiled and said, “You look trustworthy. Would you mind watching my stuff while I go to the bathroom?”
He responded with a smile and a nod, saying, “Actually, I am an international thief. But you are lucky, my forte isn’t stealing suitcases in airports so you are safe. I will watch your stuff.”
She took her purse and went off. He did his best to not go back to looking at his phone, wanting to actually pay attention, just in case someone did try to steal her suitcase and bag. Instead he looked around at all the tourists. He noticed a lot of bright clashing colors on a gaggle of middle aged women gathered around the tequila bar. He enjoyed seeing the the young man, a perfect specimen of male studliness, except for the sock tan line mid way up his calves. He was deeply tanned above, and white as a sheet below. A young woman walked up to the stud and kissed him on the lips, then handed him a Starbucks cup. She was wearing shorts and a bikini top. He couldn’t help but wonder if she would be cold on her flight home. He hoped she had a sweater.
The sunburnt woman came back and handed him a water. She said, “Thanks, I figured you might be thirsty from the hard work of watching my bags so I got you a water.”
He said, “Thanks, I am thirsty so it’s perfect timing.”
He introduced himself as Paul, she laughed and introduced herself as Paulina. He said, “Really, No joke?”
She said, “Yep, really named Paulina. Named after my Grandmother who came from Slovakia.”
Paul and Paulina started talking about the usual things; where they stayed in Puerto Vallarta, how long they had been there, what they had done while they were in town, where they lived back home.
She had come to Puerto Vallarta alone, had spent 8 days at a small boutique hotel on the beach north of the city, and now was headed home. Her home was in Minnesota where it was currently -7º. She was not happy about returning but she was happy she had missed a week where the temperatures had been even worse. Her mom had told her in a Skype call that it hadn’t got about above -10º for 3 days in a row. They had 25″ of snow in the past 2 weeks that had really started to affect the salon’s business she said.
He meanwhile told her about his trip. He had actually not been on a vacation per se. He was down in Mexico looking for a vacation home. He had spent 5 days looking at villas north of Puerto Vallarta near the small town of Sayulita. Turns out she had actually visited Sayulita during her stay, going with another woman she had met at the hotel on a day trip. Mostly they had shopped but they also got massages on the beach. It was one of the highlights of her trip she said.
He asked, “The massage was that good?”
She said, “No, it wasn’t good at all actually. The masseuse was fine but my friend, who I just met the day before, turned out to be a moaner while getting her massage. She was laying right next to me and I was afraid she was going to have some sort of Mexico beach massage orgasm right then and there. It freaked me out so much I couldn’t relax at all. But it was also so funny I couldn’t forget it. I told my mom about it when we Skyped the next day and we laughed so hard we cried.”
He cracked up saying, “That would do the same thing to me. I would probably have told her to shut up!”
She said, “Part of me wanted to, but part of me felt like it was her massage and if she wanted to moan, who’s business was it of mine to tell her not to, right? Plus I barely knew her!”
She told him she had loved the little town though it did seem a bit overrun with tourists the day she was there. He agreed saying he liked being close to it, but not too close. He had found a house just north of Sayulita, on the way to the even smaller town of San Francisco, where there were fewer tourists. He had bought the house and was now returning home. His home was Chicago, where he owned his own business doing IT consulting for mid-sized companies wanting to expand their capabilities.
Right then the flight was called to be boarded. They both got up and realized they were on the same flight to Chicago, where she would transfer to another flight to Minneapolis. They finagled a change in seats with the stud couple and sat next to each other. By the time they landed Paul had pretty much decided she was the one. She had decided he was as well. A week later he drove to Minneapolis to visit her. She came to Chicago 2 weeks after that. Within 2 months she had moved to Chicago, gotten a job a PR firm and they were a couple. A year later they had a destination wedding in Sayulita with 5 members of her family and 5 of his in attendance.
They lived at their villa in Sayulita for a month every winter, even after they started to have kids. They had 3 and they all learned Spanish fluently. He eventually sold his business, making a killing and bought a larger villa, big enough for both their families to visit at the same time. The moved to Mexico for good and she did PR consulting for hotels in the area. He became a stay at home dad and started a bilingual blog that became a world wide hit in the mommy and daddy blogosphere.