This and that

elyssum
Sweet allysum and wet stone.

LET’S LOOK AT a bit of this and a tad of that, if you please.

The monsoon began a bit late this year, and it’s still getting its sea legs, so to speak. We like it when the rain starts, even though we dislike it by September when it’s outlived its welcome, and the mud is growing old.

A quite noticeable result of rainfall is the blooming of sweet alyssum, a ground cover that looks like snowfall. From January to June, it’s brown and appears dead, but give it a couple of days of rain, and this is what happens. Sweet,  huh?

In other news, City Hall opened our two main plazas downtown a few weeks back because it thought the incidence of Kung Flu was winding down. That lasted about a week until the plazas were taped off again, and that’s how it remains today.

When will this end? I’ve not experienced such a lousy year since 1995 when my last wife dumped me, and then 1997 when a romance with a lovely Latina ended by mutual insanity. You can read about that here if you wish.

lampI enjoy décor, and I like to take photos. Here is one I took yesterday when I found myself in the bedroom, looking at the scene, and with camera in hand. I’m so good at décor that you’d think I’d be gay, but I’m not.

I bought this lamp in the first few months after I moved to the mountaintop from the nearby state capital almost 20 years ago. It’s made locally, woven from a reed found in the area, if memory serves.

The lamp is almost two feet high.

It’s one of the few pieces of furniture we brought to the Hacienda from the two-story rental closer to downtown where I lived previously, two and a half years — one and a half solo and one more with my child bride.

Speaking of the state capital, we’ll be driving there today for a shopping expedition, a weekly event that gets us out of the house, and we might even eat lasagna.

The music man

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ABEL THE deadpan yardman came right on time, 10 a.m., yesterday to execute the yard’s weekly trim, which started late this year because the rain started late.

I used to mow the yard myself. Then I mowed half, and my child bride did the other half. Then we abandoned the chore completely and hired Abel who lives on the other side of the sex motel, which is very convenient for all involved.

At first, he mowed, and I continued edging with my weedeater, and I also swept the trash tossed on the Romance Sidewalk by the mower and weedeater. Then one year, I decided to let Abel do the edging too. He has his own weedeater, but I provide the gas. And just last year, I turned over the sweeping to him too, taking myself entirely out of the process, which a fellow of my vintage deserves.

Over the years, I’ve gradually increased his pay, and I did that again this year. I give him 250 pesos for about 90 minutes of work, which ain’t bad down here. If he does more than the basic trim and sweep, which he often does, I pay more.

Abel, who has a wife and kids, does not have a normal, fulltime job. What he is primarily is a trumpet player. He’s part of a musical group that once had an old bus of the Greyhound variety, which was parked on the street outside his house. But they sold it a few years back, probably because they couldn’t cover the maintenance costs.

Abel says they’ll be getting another, but I think that’s wishful thinking. It does provide a certain panache for a band to pull up to a gig in its own bus.

When he leaves, I flip the mower on its side down by the front gate, and hose the undercarriage which is jammed with grass gunk. I still do that part.

I then sat yesterday on a web chair on the yard patio, put my feet up, removed the straw hat which protects my snow-white cranium and breathed in the lovely day, which it was. The air was cool. The sky was blue. The lawn looked great.

And from the neighbors’ yard, I heard a rooster crow and a horse neigh.

Then it was silent.

And later we ate roasted chicken from a place down the way.

No porch pirates

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My latest delivery!

I’M A FUN-LOVING fellow, and last December I had Amazon send a gift to my last wife for her birthday. The fun-loving part is what I sent, a red MAGA cap because she is not a Trump fan in spite of being otherwise quite intelligent when we were married.

I never received any acknowledgement from her, so I do not know if the gift was seized by porch pirates, which I understand is a big problem above the border, or if she simply has lost her sense of humor, a widespread affliction of people who still vote Democrat.

(In Mexico, we don’t have porch pirates because few people have porches accessible from the street. We have high walls like God intended.)

I’m guessing it’s about a 50-50 tossup as to whether porch pirates grabbed my gift, or if she got it, scowled and threw it into the trash. We both were staunch Democrats during our almost two decades together, but I have wised up. I’m hoping to find her #WalkAway video on YouTube in the near future. So many Democrats have seen the light.

We Mexicans have our own version of Amazon — its warehouse is in Mexico City — but we also have Mercado Libre, which is sort of a Latin American Amazon. Both have tons of merchandise, and both offer speedy delivery. I got one this afternoon.


Fad or not?

I left a comment on another blog today, saying the gender-transitioning thing has become a fad. It’s not like hula-hoops or bell-bottom pants, of course, because those fads were harmless fun, but I think it’s a fad nonetheless, a sick, demented one.

News stories of people “transitioning,” which is a nice way of saying they take lots of drugs and have body parts sliced off, have ballooned in recent years. You even read of parents, especially celebrities, assisting their children in the madness.

This was almost unheard of 20 or 30 years ago, but not now. Has the percentage of people who actually feel they’re in the wrong body skyrocketed or is something else going on? Is it a “cool” thing to do, i.e. a fad? I think so.

There are so many nutty notions accepted in Western society these days, e.g. white privilege, ideas based on ignorance, that “transitioning” is just one in a long and growing line.

A woman responded on the other blog that my saying it’s a fad is “disgusting.” I think I am just stating the obvious. If it’s not a fad, what is it?

My Mexican mistakes

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Bougainvilleas I planted 17 years ago in error.

THERE ARE almost too many to count, my errors. And I committed most during my first two years here. I have since wised up or I’ve been corrected by hard knocks.

Where to start? How about where we constructed the Hacienda. Big mistake. It’s on the edge of what once was a separate village, one of numerous surrounding our huge lake. Being the closest to the “county seat,” we’ve been incorporated, and we’re now just another neighborhood (colonia) of our mountaintop town.

An acquaintance who works with the police once told my child bride that of all the villages surrounding the lake, ours causes the most problems.* In spite of that, we’ve never experienced a crime. I think that is due, in large part, to our being next door to the sex motel, which is open 24/7. It offers us cover, so to speak.

Getting downtown requires about a two-mile drive down a high-speed, two-lane highway with no bike lanes, no sidewalks and often no shoulder. This rules out bicycles, which we would have enjoyed. Rules out a motorbike too.

And then there’s the property, which is two adjoining lots that extend a full block from the street out front to the street out back, which is way too big.  I thought it was nifty when we bought it. I don’t think that any longer. The yard is almost constant maintenance which is why I’ve removed a number of trash-tossing plants/trees and covered part of the yard with stone and concrete, more of which I plan to do.

Let’s move on to the house itself. Again, way too large. I thought it was a great idea, but now it’s obvious that it’s not. I could never have afforded such a palatial home above the border, but it’s a housecleaning problem. We could hire a maid, but my wife opposes the idea for some reason. Perhaps she just enjoys complaining about the house size.

Looking at the plus side, you won’t suffer claustrophobia here.

And the details. My wife had the idea of “sinking” the living room a bit, so we did, but not much, just one step down. There is a step up to the dining room/kitchen and another step up to the hallway that continues to the bedroom and bath.

I have stumbled, but not fallen, on the step countless times, and that won’t get better as I age. My child bride sailed off the step a couple of years ago and broke her arm.

For such a large house, it has just one bedroom, which will be a problem if she ever wants to sell it. Don’t be your own architect. There is another huge space on the second floor, which serves as a second bedroom because there’s a closet and bathroom up there.

It’s good for guests, which we rarely have. In addition to having a queen bed, the top floor serves as a TV room, office and gym. And access to the spectacular upstairs terraza.

And there’s the railroad track behind the houses across the street. We did not notice that when we purchased the property. Trains pass in the night, and they rarely do it peacefully. The good news is that we are accustomed to it, and usually don’t wake up.

We could sell the Hacienda and move to our Downtown Casita, which is ideally located just a 10-minute walk from the main plaza. We could get bicycles. We could buy a four-wheeler. We’d have no yard to mess with. But, after 17 years in the Hacienda, I would feel cramped. There is only a one-car garage, and we want our two cars.

You never know. Maybe one day. But I’m used to living large.

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* At some point in the distant past, we were dubbed “The Village of the Damned.”