We began receiving calls about the kidnapping as soon as we arrived home from Cabo San Lucas. Our travel agent, an old schoolmate who had arranged our early departure from Mexico City on December 30th 1996, aborting our enticing and exciting "New Year’s Eve in the capitol" plans, had alerted other mutual friends to the news. We had also contacted my mother and our respective assistants at work, who needed to be aware of our correct itineraries in case professional emergencies arose during our vacation.
What they learned was we had been abducted in a taxi cab outside a restaurant in the Polanco section of Mexico City on the evening of December 29th, held blindfolded overnight in a house at gun, knife and icepick point, and badly beaten.
Everyone was shocked, of course, and we were still in shock, although the 8 or 9 days we then spent in Baja (at Caroline's wise insistence) were very helpful and restorative. We had been guests at Twin Dolphin several times previously and, having been apprised of our situation, the hotel took excellent and sensitive care of us. The governor of Baja had also recently been kidnapped and very badly injured in Mexico City and our situation, while highly regrettable (I had cartoonish lumps on my skull where I had been struck with the blackjack and black-and-blue marks covering my body, which were as close as I’ve ever come to wearing tattoo motifs), wasn’t unique or, sadly, even uncommon.
Our New York City and Los Angeles friends (our work and personal conversations revolved around these two cities) were also naturally inquisitive and we tried to oblige each of them by providing as detailed a narrative of events as possible upon request, which was sometimes painful and difficult to do.
On the one hand, we felt so lucky and blessed to be alive, to have survived the assault and imprisonment. During the many long hours we were held, we both felt that we were pretty certain to die.
On the other hand, however, various everyday New York City experiences (such as even seeing, let alone riding in, taxi cabs) often reduced me to shakes, shudders and tears. (Fifteen years later, I still have vivid dreams about icepicks, blackjacks and blindfolds, as well as visions of the last image I captured in our camera earlier that afternoon, which was of a pretty, but prematurely old-looking Mexican/Indian woman selling colorful wares in a street off the Zocalo.)
Link: Being Kidnapped (2)