I went to Puerto Rico a few years back with the Masshole and a few friends. The beaches were amazing, the mofongo was delicious, the beer was cheap, the casinos were lucky and the fear of human trafficking was abundant (at least in my small group of travellers).
One night we ventured to a casino a few miles from our hotel. MTV was there the same night shooting a video for a famous reggaeton singer (that’s not why we went). There were long lines of young lasses and lads eager to get plucked into fame as extras for this video. This means girls dressed in skirts shorter than the stems of their heels. My friends and I weren’t necessarily dressed for a night on the town as the casino was a last-minute decision after a relaxing dinner. Therefore, I was dressed in my translation of Puerto Rico casual.
Being the only gambler in the bunch, I quickly ditched everyone and made my way to the tables. I found a spot at the craps table and left after losing $100 in 5 minutes. I resigned myself to the blackjack table and got lucky, so I was there for quite a while. Feeling guilty, I set off to find my friends to apologize for taking so long. Once I found them, they told me we had to leave immediately. They met a man who worked for Homeland Security. He was in Puerto Rico studying the issue of human trafficking. He told them the beach we were at earlier in the day was a hot bed of activity and kidnappings. However, their paranoia grew and they began thinking this man could be lying to them and actually trying to kidnap them because he bought them a few rounds of drinks (their general mistrust of men was somewhat shocking). I blew off the absurdity. To avoid being locked into the buddy system for the rest of the trip, I had to bring them back down to reality. What I told them went something like this, “You (pointing at worrier A) have a Justin Bieber, lesbian haircut. Nobody wants you. She (the Masshole) is greying and a week away from looking like Paulie Walnuts. I’m wearing a roomy, size 10 pair of Old Navy capris that are 6 years old. Nobody wants me. They may take her (worrier B) because she’s blonde-haired, blue-eyed and has a healthy ass. I mean we are in Puerto Rico.” I pointed to the hoards of young girls waiting in the lines for MTV so they could see what potential kidnappers want, versus, well, us. I’m confident we wouldn’t yield much money; therefore, not worth the kidnapping effort. Surprisingly this didn’t calm their fears as I hoped.
The rest of the trip the Masshole and I pointed out places that looked like good spots to “keep the bodies”.