I received a letter! That's right. An actual legitimate piece of personal correspondence from outside of Mexico. This may not seem like such a big deal until you consider that this is only the third international postal item that has been delivered to me in the four years that we have been living in Playa del Carmen. As I am sure you can imagine, this is a dramatic change from the volume of mail we used to receive on a daily basis back in New York. The holiday season would bring us the heaviest bundles, wrapped in thick rubber bands or twine. Often, I would open our front door to find a plastic mail crate full of Christmas Cards, holiday sale fliers, magazines and, of course, bills. I must have had half a dozen or so magazine subscriptions to look forward to on a monthly basis. In addition, L.L. Bean, Restoration Hardware, Williams Sonoma and Pottery Barn, among many others, made very certain that their beautiful glossy catalogues reached me, seemingly everyday!

Mail Service in Playa del Carmen

While I had certainly done my homework before we made the move to Mexico, mail delivery was not a topic that seemed to need investigation. Preoccupied with getting our necessary visas and finding schools for our children, I simply took it for granted that a developed area of Mexico like Playa del Carmen would have some sort of postal service. Every home has a proper and detailed address and I've seen the Post Office on Juarez so reason would dictate that regular and reliable mail delivery could be expected. Au contraire. Our utility bills for electricity and water are delivered by hand by individuals on scooters contracted to do so by CFE and CAPA, respectively. The banks, cable and phone companies do the same. Internet banking is just coming into it's own here and most of us simply make the trip to the appropriate service offices or designated payment places and pay our bills....in  person....in cash....every month. Many, many times the bill does not come, is delivered to the wrong place or mysteriously goes missing. This is no excuse and rather than risk immediate and indefinite interuption of your services, you must make the trip to the proper offices to make your payment.

Postal Service in Playa del Carmen

I have never received a store flier or a magazine and in four years, I have received two Christmas cards (thank you Erin for your persistence), each delivered by my Playacar security guard. When we moved across the highway into the Campestre this year, I was certain that I would never see another piece of correspondence again. Then, yesterday, Connor found an envelope jammed in between our front gate and the wall surrounding our yard. You could have knocked me over with a feather when I opened it to find a beautiful birth announcement and holiday greeting from my dear old friend Lauren in Louisville, Kentucky! As we have no security guards in this neighborhood, I was shocked that anyone (anyone not anticipating a generous Christmas gift) bothered to come all the way out here to deliver it. Perhaps Virginia, there IS a Santa Claus.

Postal Service in Playa del Carmen

Postal Service in Playa del Carmen

While I have been politely telling all of our friends and relatives back home to not waste their time and money on a Christmas card for the Kinnons, I am now emphatically recanting my statements. If Lauren's beautiful card made it all the way out here then maybe more will follow! Lauren's envelope had simply our names, the correct address, two 42 cent stamps and the words "Air Mail" written clearly across the front. She mailed it on December 4th, it was post stamped in the DF on December 9th, made it to Quintana Roo on December 13th and into my hands on December 17th. Along the way, someone knew that this address was once that of a primary school. That person, thoughtfully, marked the envelope "kinder" to help expedite the delivery! This my friends is a miracle of the highest order as, in years past, I have received Erin's Christmas cards in April of the following year. This is excellent progress, indeed. So bring on the cards and letters! We will treasure every one!