Hey Flores… we need to talk
I love you Flores but seriously… we really need to have ourselves a little chat.
We have a couple of sayings in Australia, which basically mean the same thing. I feel as though they are relevant and hopefully constructive criticisms that will help you going forward, so I’m going to tell you a few of them.
Flores, you couldn’t organize a piss up in a brewery.
Flores, you couldn’t tee up a root in a brothel.
Flores, you couldn’t find your own arse with both hands.
Do you get what I’m saying, Flores? You are disorganized. It’s kind of a big issue.
My first order of business upon arriving on your beautiful island town was to produce my reservation slip at the hostel only to be told that they had not honoured our reservation and had given our beds away. Fair play, I’ve worked in hostels before and that’s fairly common practice. After a bit of deliberation the manager managed (which is what all good managers do) to find us a couple of beds that they usually don’t let out to people because they are so terrible.
“We’ll take ‘em!”
You are such a cool place that I don’t mind sleeping in a terrible bed. You are a tiny island on a cool lake in central Guatemala. I feel petty complaining about sleeping arrangements. So let’s go ahead and move on.
Second order of business was to get my laundry done. Could I do it myself? Sure I could, but I chose not to, OK? I’m the type of guy who takes the most convenient option. At least, I try to.
“When will I get it back?”
“First thing in the morning”
So when the morning rolls around I ask about my laundry. Surprise, surprise… It isn’t ready. Not only is it not ready, they haven’t even started washing it yet.
“When will it be ready?”
“It’ll be ready by this afternoon”
Ok. No problem. I can deal with that.
So when I come back at 4 o’clock in the afternoon to collect my laundry, it’s definitely ready, yeah?
They haven’t started yet.
“When will it be ready?”
“First thing in the morning”
So when the next morning rolls around, again I ask about my laundry. When they tell me that they haven’t started it yet I am super tempted to take it back and do it myself but my faith in my fellow man/laziness urges me to give them one last chance. I tell them to start washing my clothes immediately and have them ready by the afternoon otherwise I will be upset. Perhaps I should have said this from the beginning because sure enough, by about 7pm my clothes were cleanish and almost dry.
Again, this is not a big deal, Flores. Both of these things are minor annoyances. But they add up. They add up quickly.
My favourite restaurant in Flores is a cute little Japanese place that manages to sell fresh and authentic sushi despite being 5 hours from the nearest ocean. I was looking forward to eating there but I couldn’t find it. I asked around and apparently it is now only open once a week and on no specific day.
Our 40Q ‘all-inclusive’ boat trip to the zoo didn’t include the 40Q entry fee to the zoo. That is not all inclusive. The waterslide at the zoo had no water in it. THAT MEANS IT ISN’T A WATERSLIDE. It is just a dirty concrete ramp.
Our 4:30am trip to Tikal to see the sunrise collected us at 4:45am and then proceeded to play 3 card monte with passengers, shuffling us around seemingly at random before taking us all to the exact same place. We missed the sunrise. We didn’t leave Flores until 6:30am. I could have used the extra 2 hours sleep.
You couldn’t even organize decent weather. Your sunsets are amazing because the water gets lit up by the giant orange sun as it drops down below the skyline. But not when it’s cloudy and rainy.
And you want to know the worst part? It’s contagious. I don’t even have any decent photos of you because I became too disorganized! Maybe if I wasn’t chasing laundry, sleeping in a crappy bed, looking for phantom Japanese restaurants, waking up for delayed tours and over paying at zoos I would have spent more time with my camera in hand! But no. I barely have a decent photo to show for my time with you. Take a look my zoo trip…
What was the saving grace? Well Flores, I have to admit that my trip to the Tikal ruins was pretty awesome. I mean, sure we missed the sunrise, but to be honest, I’ve been to Tikal 3 times and I’ve seen the sunrise before. This trip to Tikal was different for 2 reasons. Firstly there was a girl who had no shoes on. She had lost them one week ago and she hadn’t organized a new pair yet (maybe she’d caught your disease). Why is that worthy of being mentioned? Because her last name was, without a word of a lie, wait for it….. Her last name was Barefoot! The girl with no shoes… her last name was Barefoot. You can’t make that stuff up!
That immediately put me in a great mood. Secondly, I discovered that there was something that I didn’t experience in my previous trips to Tikal.
There’s something about flying through the treetops in the jungle attached to a metal cord that just makes everything feel a little bit better.
It should come as no surprise to you that I’m leaving, Flores. I love you. You are awesome. I’ll be back, Flores, you can count on it. I just hope that you take my criticisms in the manner in which they are intended. I’m not trying to be mean or harsh, I’m just telling it like it is. You boast some impressive stuff but I feel like you’ve gotten lazy in your presentation and delivery of your assets. Please don’t rely on your looks alone. You don’t want to be like a dumb supermodel. Please don’t rely on the assets that you were born with. You don’t have to be a trust fund baby. Put in some effort and present yourself as the best Flores that you can possibly be and I’m sure that you’ll be a lot happier, as will the droves of people that come to visit you.
Oh, and next time I come back can you please try to turn up the heat and switch off the rain for me?
Damn, I’m out of time… Disorganization really is contagious!
I’m off to Belize now. By the time you read this I’ll already be gone.