Mexican life

Bougainvillea butchery

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THAT’S ABEL the deadpan yardman cutting the bougainvillea down to size, or at least less large, last Saturday.

He also mowed the lawn. It probably was the final mow of the season because it has stopped raining. In the summer it rains every day, every freaking day.

November is our loveliest month, incomparable. The sky is blue. The air is cool. The mountains are green. The birds sing. You really cannot beat November in these parts.

No later than January, we’ll be taking out the grass to the left of the sidewalk, part of a project to eliminate all grass except in the middle semicircle. The green-and-yellow maguey you see on the left will be removed and trashed. All the area beyond the sidewalk will become stone and concrete.

The grass at the bottom right of the photo will remain. It’s part of the semicircle in the middle of the lawn.

That maguey’s removal will be the final one. We had five. Three were of the sort you see in the photo, which grow to monster size. The other two were smaller tequila magueys. I planted them all when they were little, thinking they were cute. They became a colossal nuisance. I am to blame.

We have others that are confined in planters. You see one there in the middle of the photo. Word to the wise: Never let a maguey escape from a planter. It will turn on you.

It will not show you love.

But November is here, and it is beautiful.

Mexican life

Front & fruit

LAST EVENING, the wind blew, the wind chimes sang, and this morning dawned clear, beautiful and 65 degrees.

A front passed though, I think, but without rain.

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Guayaba

The wind also added to my morning fruit sweep. Curses! Every wind, it seems, brings an evil element.

I stepped outside around 8:30 a.m. and saw the grass littered with fallen fruit, more than usual due to the winds.

Big, fat pears all over the place. On the other side, tunas from the towering nopal tree littered the grass. Back to the other end, a new addition from the neighbors, guayabas.

They’ve long had an apple tree extending over the wall. It dumps apples, but not last night.

A guayaba tree now pokes over into our yard, tossing litter. There were scads of guayabas to be scooped up.

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Lots of care must be taken with the nopal tunas. They are covered with tiny spines that, in your skin, take days to remove. So, leather gloves with the tunas. I wonder why they’re named tunas. There’s nothing fishy about them except their attitudes.

Missing, thank the Goddess, were those apples, lowquats (not quite ripe) and sour orange. They stayed on their limbs.

All the fruit filled a big bucket, which I lugged heavily down the street and heaved into the deep ravine between the roadway and the railroad track.

That done, I could enjoy the lovely morning in peace.

Mexican life

Hacienda doings

BEEN QUIET of late, so here’s what’s happening.

As I write this around 9 a.m. Saturday, I’m waiting for Abel the Deadpan Yardman to arrive for the weekly lawn trim. For a few days it looked like the rainy season had wound down, but Thursday we were deluged with torrents and hail.

Enough already!

* * * *

Soon, for a few days, we’ll be in Mexico City tending to chores related to having an apartment there, dusting, sweeping, paying bills. The visit will end the longest spell we’ve not done this since we “moved in” over a decade ago.

Eight months of absence.

We were planning, as usual, to visit the first week of September, but we held off for some reason I don’t recall. This was fortunate because we would have been sleeping in our fourth-floor bedroom when the first quake hit.

Let’s wait a month, we decided.  Then, two weeks later, the larger quake hit. Growing more apprehensive, we delayed again. So, in a few days more … with our fingers crossed.

If we don’t survive, know that I’ve enjoyed interacting with you — well, some of you. Most remain mum — these 12 years.

* * * *

I have a tip regarding the internet.

I’ve used all the major browsers and some lesser-known ones too. I like to experiment, plus I have all the free time in the world. You know the biggies, Chrome, Explorer, Firefox and Safari. Opera’s fairly big too, used mostly by Europeans.

Opera is excellent, by the way.

serveimageI’ve also tried Brave, Yandex, Vivaldi and others that I’ve forgotten. But recently I hit the jackpot with a browser I’d never heard off. I found it on a list of ten-best for 2017. It was right there in the middle.

Maxthon.

Had it been my list, I would have put it at the top. It is clean, logical, fast and good-looking (looks count!). There is a fast-responding user forum if you need it.

Copying photos off the web requires one click! Maxthon is full of fun surprises, and it’s superior to all the biggies.

One particular item I like is its password saver. Most browsers include their own password saver, but they don’t seem serious about it. Maxthon’s is locked tighter than the proverbial drum, but is also incredibly easy to use. This means you don’t have to mess with Dashlane, Lastpass and their ilk.

Maxthon was born in 2003, and it’s the brainchild of Chinamen. Now it’s headquartered in San Francisco, California, not China.

No charge for this tip.

(An internet amiga is still using Netscape!)

* * *  *

My child bride began the process last Tuesday of getting four tooth implants. A few weeks ago, I ended the same process with only one implant. She is something of a dental sissy, and we’ve had lots of drama since Tuesday.

The immediate aftereffects of having four posts pushed into her jaws have calmed a bit by this morning, and we’re both happy for that. She returns to the dentist next Thursday. I don’t know what for, and neither does she.

A checkup, one imagines.

Usually, a three-month wait follows the post insertions. Then the new teeth are screwed into the posts. Currently, her posts sport temporary teeth.

My temp tooth fell off twice in the first month, so I just passed the next two months looking like a Caribbean pirate.

Modern dental technology is amazing and, of course, it costs far less here than it does above the Rio Bravo.

Another great reason to live in Mexico.

* * * *

And that’s all the news for this morning.

Mexican life

The oval walk

AS I MENTIONED a couple of days ago, it feels like fall.

This morning was another glorious example on our mountaintop, so I clicked on the Canon and took a little stroll because I’m a sharing sort of fellow.

Around 10 a.m., it was just under 70 cool degrees. The birds were singing, and the wind chimes were binging.