Early bird gets the gas

YESTERDAY MORNING, still partially in pajamas, and still dark outside at just before 7 a.m., I headed out the gate in the Honda, hunting gasoline.

thFor those who don’t know, our new president has severely reduced gasoline supplies to much of the nation in an impossible-to-comprehend tactic to end pipeline theft.

I passed one Pemex station, which was dark. Farther, I passed another Pemex station, which was also dark. I continued and hung a right on the ring road. There in the distance, on the right side, I saw a parked car with blinkers flashing. Bingo!

I knew there was a gas station there, but people waiting does not mean the station is open, and I couldn’t even see how long the line was just yet. Sometimes, they’re half-a-mile long or more.

I drew closer. I was the fifth customer in line, and the station was open for business! It was a G500 station, one of the new brands that have entered Mexico over the past few years. The wait was no more than five minutes because all the pumps were working.

The previous fill-up was done Dec. 31 when I got wind of a gasoline shortage in the state capital. I immediately leaped into the Honda, found a station and filled ‘er up. It was definitely full because I watched the pump turn off automatically. Three times.

On sitting in the car, I was surprised to see the tank read 3/4ths full.  The gauge was malfunctioning. What a time to do so! It remained on 3/4ths for the next two weeks, not budging a centimeter.

By Sunday, I was getting edgy about the remaining gas. If the motor stops, so does the power steering and power brakes. You don’t want that to happen all at once while barreling down the highway.

But the Goddess loves me. When I filled up yesterday morning, the gas gauge corrected itself and moved to the full position.

What really surprised me was that I drove for two weeks and had used only one-fourth of the tank. I was sure I was in the bottom fourth, not the top.

So I’m good for another month or more. The Goddess willing, the new president will have turned on the gas taps again to full.

What’s next? He’ll turn off our water?

Later yesterday, the two of us drove the 50 kilometers to the state capital for shopping at Costco and Walmart. We were severely low on high-end vitttles. But now we’ve restocked and can resume normal life.

And I still have way over three-fourths of a tank of gas.

51 thoughts on “Early bird gets the gas

    1. Ms. Shoes: Got no clue whatsoever, but it’s obviously more than I reckoned. As I write this, a little after 6 a.m., I’m preparing to head out again with my wife’s car to do, I hope, the same thing. I have a route planned that will take me past six stations. My fingers are crossed.

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    2. Ms. Shoes, P.S.: The Goddess is with me. I arrived at the same station as yesterday, after passing two closed ones, and was the first in line, getting ushered right in. When I left, there was a line of about five cars. It was still dark out. I feel like I live in Venezuela.

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      1. Mini Romaine lettuce? Do you have to buy it in case lots from Costco? I have a faint recall of buying four little Romaine lettuce hearts at our non-bulk lot grocery store a good while back. We’re going tomorrow to our Costco and I’ll have to look at the produce while there.

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        1. Carole: It comes in a plastic box (very non-ecological) with eight of the little buggers. I buy two boxes each week. We’ve tried other lettuce types from Costco, but that one holds up best.

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  1. Isn’t this the plan of socialists? Get rid of the middle class and make everyone, more or less, poor and dependent on the state for crumbs? And once you get used to crumbs you’re grateful for them. Enjoy your bagels and croissants.

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  2. I hear the crumbs in Denmark are quite delicious, willingly enjoyed by the middle class majority in that democratic socialist country consistently ranked in the top few countries on the happiness index. The other happiest countries also share their system of government. Stupid plan!

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  3. Oh, Felipe, I think you are exaggerating a bit. Lots? I really don’t believe that is the truth. A few? Of course. There are always some people that aren’t content with anything. There are probably some in heaven that complain it’s too boring and wish they’d been sent in the other direction.

    BTW did you know they have rich people in Denmark? Yep! There’s enough crumbs for happy millionaires! And even some delighted billionaires!

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  4. You sir are a “venture” capitalist.

    Good thing. I don’t think Denmark’s climate would suit you, although the crumbs there are no doubt better than your low-end vittles.

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  5. Boy, you got that right! No cold weather climes for this Mexicano! I’m happy eating my beans and tortillas in the glorious Mexican sun! And all of those avocados that won’t make the Stupor Bowl parties will soon flood the local market at a price even us pobres peones can afford! You know they used to be cheap, cheap, cheap. Do you know what the slang term for aguacate was before the Gringos started importing them?

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  6. A lot of the success of the socialism of the Nordic countries is due to the North Sea oil field. Without it, I don’t think it would fly. Their systems work for all, whereas ours takes from those who work to support those who will not work. It sets up a parasitic relationship.

    It seems there is another fifteen thousand in the next caravan. They will get here just about the time that the food stamp program runs out of funds.

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    1. Actually, Norway is the only Scandinavian country with a significant oil revenues. Denmark’s oil revenue as a percentage of their GDP is less than one half of one percent. Finland and Sweden is zilch.

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      1. If the Blond Bomber wanted a wall he’d offer something of value in exchange for it, or at least try to. He doesn’t want a wall, he wants to fight about the wall. There’s nothing more to it than that.

        Walls and fences are semi-effective in some places, for some things. We already have walls or fences in those places. People who can dig a tunnel a km long and come up in Chapo’s shower stall inside a supermax prison — or people who can fly drones — laugh at the Blond Bomber’s wall.

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        1. Creigh: I think the Blond Bomber does want a wall, and sensibly so. At least more walls and more effective walls than already exist because lots of walls already are installed along the U.S. border. Walls can be quite effective. Ask the Israelis. Ask the Pope. Ask Obama. Ask George Clooney, all safe behind walls. And Chapo was not in a supermax prison because there are no supermax prisons in Mexico. All that’s required to get out of a Mexican prison is a certain amount of cash. I’m surprised he was in the slammer as long as he was, and even there he lived like royalty.

          Mexico also needs a wall along its southern border with Guatemala. Walls are great things. They make for good neighbors.

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          1. It’s an artificial cure for an artificial illness that may calm the nerves some of your fellow citizens are suffering.

            Yes, indeed! Just $5 billion!

            And for only another $19.95 can you get two walls. Don’t dilly dally! Pick up the phone! Operators are waiting to take your calls. But that’s not all! The first 100 callers will receive one free gallon of dehydrated water.

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            1. Gerard: Ratcheting up the humor level. I like that.

              Now open your front door wide tonight, and leave it that way. Every night. Any passer-by should have the right to come on in. Be open-minded. No?

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              1. Since Il Douche has stated over and over that Mexico will pay for his wet dream, why don’t you open your pocketbook? I’ll open my door when you open your pocketbook.

                See? That’s called a deal. Something your hero is supposed to be good at, ‘cept he ain’t.

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          2. I will admit that the US paying Mexico to build a wall at the Guatemalan border would make a lot more sense than a wall at our southern border, but let’s be real. Neither one is going to happen.

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            1. Creigh: There is already a good bit of wall along the southern U.S. border. There just needs to be a lot more. And maybe a deep moat behind it. Perhaps some hungry gators. Trump needs to be imaginative.

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        2. Creigh, P.S.: After a moment of additional investigation, I see there is one “supermax” prison in Mexico, just one. It’s called Penal de Altiplano. In contrast, in the U.S. there are dozens of them, either full or partial.

          In any event, knowing how things work in Mexico fairly well, I’d wager that a supermax in the U.S. is far more super and max than Penal de Altiplano.

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  7. Felipe, once again I am unable to use the reply function to your post. As Elmer Fudd said: “thewe’s something scwewy going on awound here”.

    In regards to Il Douche saying that Mexico was gonna foot the bill for the wall was something “silly,” I just had to chuckle. Which is good, thank you. A good chuckle is better for your health than organic krill oil, ashtanga yoga and CBD put together!

    So I looked up the word lie in my thesaurus and unsurprisingly look what showed up:

    Synonyms of lie

    fable, fabrication, fairy tale, falsehood, falsity, fib, mendacity, prevarication, silly story, tale, taradiddle (or tarradiddle), untruth, whopper.

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    1. Gerard: There is a limit to how many replies can trail down a comment. That’s to keep replies from getting narrower and narrower. Nuttin’ scwewy. You can always start another thread, which is what you did.

      As for lies, I like taradiddle (or tarradiddle) quite a bit. Thesauruses are fun.

      Speaking of fun, see this below. The Blond Bomber threw a monkey wrench into Pelosi’s planned overseas, taxpayer-funded, “fact-finding” vacation.

      https://waa.ai/ol0u

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      1. Yeah I like that taradiddle, too!

        Makes a great name for a band. Diddling Donnie and his Taradiddles! They could headline at the Trump Casino in Jersey.

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  8. Ok, I’ve read through your last few posts about gasoline, and the associated comments. And it astonishes me that no one seems to have considered that you can’t exactly operate on an active pipeline. Right? The thieves, in cahoots with Pemex, over the years installed taps on pipelines when they were closed for “maintenance.” Now they have to be shut down and drained so that the illegal taps can be removed, and the holes welded over. Who in their right mind would try to weld an operational gasoline pipeline running at hundreds of PSI? Yes, this probably could have been done more over time. But AMLO clearly wanted an early win, and so did it all at once.

    This action cuts to the root of the very deep corruption in Mexico. Before this is all over, AMLO will hopefully have jailed some very rich and powerful people and set an entirely different tone for his sexenio.

    As a fan of law and order I’m quite surprised to see you in favor of keeping the old corruption in place simply for the sake of short term convenience.

    Here in Ajijic, it has been a total pain in the ass, but I’m very much looking forward to seeing these corrupt plutocrats behind bars and the first green shoots of the rule of law poking up through the heavy concrete of corruption that has covered too much of this hard-working country.

    Saludos,

    Kim G
    Ajijic, JAL
    Where we see some green shoots sprouting in our own life.

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    1. Kim: Of course, I’m not in favor of keeping corruption in place for the sake of short-term convenience. I am, however, in favor of short-term convenience as it applies to keeping gas in my car. As you seem to have realized over there where you are, it’s a real pain. In many aspects, it brings life to a screeching halt to a great degree. If the current situation continues, it will bring the economy to its knees.

      I think you are an optimist if you think AMLO is going to change Mexico where corruption and practicality have coexisted for a very long time. I do not think he can do it. I think he thinks he can do it. He genuinely believes that he’s Mexico’s Savior, a Jesus Christ walking here on earth with his arms outspread. He is not right in the head.

      But those practical aspects of stealing from pipelines had not occurred to me, but you make perfect sense. I think they have not occurred to many people. I had wondered how it was possible to do what was done. So thanks for that. You are a sharp guy. Alas, you and your mother landed down here at a very difficult moment.

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      1. I guess I’ll just say that I always think that trying to solve a problem is always better than the alternative. I’m wishing AMLO all the success possible because Mexico deserves better than the pack of “rateros” who have been running things for far too long.

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        1. Kim: President Calderón took on the narcos, and it backfired enormously. Total failure. AMLO thinks he can take on gas thieves. I don’t give him much hope for success either. And he’ll create bigger problems than Calderón did. Hold onto your hat.

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          1. We shall see. The fuel thieves are more closely connected to, and more dependent on the establishment than are the narcos. As you surely know, the government is busy doing some auditing work to make sure that gasoline stations are not selling more gasoline than they have purchased from Pemex. And similar financial sleuthing is going on elsewhere. I’m optimistic, but of course, could be wrong. We shall see. Saludos!

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              1. I rather doubt they’ll remain closed. More likely fined or forfeited to more honest operators. By the way, those guys are probably the same folks ripping off customers at the pump by charging for more gas than what was delivered.

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