Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Tuesday 30th October 2012…where did the month go??

‘Chutzpah’ is a Yiddish word meaning gall, brazen nerve, effrontery, sheer guts plus arrogance; it's Yiddish and, as Leo Rosten wrote, "No other word and no other language can do it justice."

Read the story below the picture and then you will understand.



A little old lady sold pretzels on a street corner for 25 cents each.

Every day a young man would leave his office building at lunch time and as he passed the pretzel stand, he would leave her a quarter, but never take a pretzel.

This went on for more than 3 years. The two of them never spoke.

One day, as the young man passed the old lady's stand and left his quarter as usual, the pretzel lady spoke to him.

Without blinking an eye she said: "They're 35 cents now

Thanks Annie for sending this one to me…



Carolyn sent me this one!!!

No English dictionary has been able to adequately explain the difference between COMPLETE and FINISHED. However, in a recent linguistic conference held in London, England, and attended by some of the best linguists in the world: Samsundar Balgobin, a Guyanese, was the clear winner.

His final challenge was this: Some say there is no difference between COMPLETE and FINISHED. Please explain the difference between COMPLETE and FINISHED in a way that is easy to understand.

Here is his astute answer: "When you marry the right woman, you are COMPLETE. But, when you marry the wrong woman, you are FINISHED. And when the right one catches you with the wrong one, you are COMPLETELY FINISHED!"

Tuesday morning so two hours of tennis which goes without saying I really enjoyed….then it was straight to pick up Paola and take her to the dentist to have two fillings fixed…..Paola was bright and happy and she was good in the chair.


Dr.Laura is very gentle and she filled the cavities without freezing and no problems and she charged me 200 pesos about 17 dollars.


I dropped Paola back home as she had to get ready for school.

I then went to Casa Hogar as I had an appointment to see the coordinator there….I have not talked too much about Casa Hogar and the changes there with three new Madres coming in and my friend Robin no longer involved with CH but I had some concerns that I wanted to address.

I met with Barbara and it was a good meeting and I was told that the girls have Seminary classes every third Saturday of the month and the Madres wanted to spend time to get to know and talk with the girls so I have been given permission to have Daniela every second and fourth Saturday of the month…..which is great because now I can make plans and can have Paola too so we can do some outings together….I have also asked if I can have her on Mondays for 2 hours before English class and will be informed about that later…so it was a productive meeting.

On the way home I saw this parade of vehicles…I do not want to get into the moral, ethical, humane debate about circus animals but I do want to say the faces and eyes of the kids on the side of the road that will probably never see these kinds of animals again was priceless!!!



I came home and relaxed outside for a while before coming inside to cook myself some nice pork chops and mashed potatoes for supper…then homework time and now ready for bed.

Tomorrow is the start of the Day of the Dead Celebrations and the next few days are going to be really busy!!!!

Honoring Dead Relatives ... It’s Fun!

To many Westerners, a holiday honoring dead relatives sounds sad, even lugubrious, and the idea of creating an altar exotic and witchy. But in Mexico, the spirited and spiritually imbued Day of the Dead holiday is a pleasant time of fond remembrances.

The Christian holiday was actually superimposed on the pagan holiday Samhain, marking the end of summer and the “death” of the year. The tradition was brought to Mexico with the conquistadors. Like other imported traditions, it absorbed local culture and products, morphing into something unique.

November 2 is All Souls’ Day in Mexico. On this day adults who have passed on are remembered at home altars and in graveyard vigils. Pagan and Christian calendars alike mark November 1 as All Saints’ Day. Mexicans dedicate November 1st to children who have died, calling it “El Día de los Angelitos,” or “Day of the Little Angels.” “Hallow’een,” October 31, ushers in this holiday period just as Christmas Eve ushers in Christmas the following day.

In preparation for October 31, families clean graves and tombs, painting headstones and pulling weeds. Flower ladies set up stalls outside the cemetery with enormous buckets of flowers for sale. The most traditional, the marigold, or cempasuchil, is used throughout Mexico.

The composition of altars varies by region, but they do have some commonalities. Symbols and iconography stem from a blend of indigenous, pagan, and Christian traditions.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Monday 29th October 2012…….grey skies today for a change!!

Went to class at 9am and it is a lot better with the time change not so cool in the mornings now…..this week in Mexico is very important it is the day of the dead and I will tell you more about this at the week goes by but in school they prepared a table as a tribute to people who have passed away!!!


Enjoyed class but finding it hard to take in all the information but I do know a lot more than I did 7 days ago.

I came home after school and did some house chores and then later in the afternoon took some more stuff over to my casita……let me tell you more about the area it is in a campo called Duan Diego, which means a small Mexican village out in the country…it is like a small community there is a school, two small stores and many homes……the roads are dirt and are not good hopefully they will be graded and some of the pot holes filled but it is not too bad on the scooter…..when I was leaving today I saw an amazing sight…about 30 women with garbage bags spread out across the track and they were all picking up garbage and working their way along the tracks.  Also saw this little guy on the road


this was taken from my deck, my closest neighbor!!!


I spent some time cleaning the drawers and cupboards and it is beginning to take shape I am sure with Carolyn’s help it will be fabulous ……it is 8km to the tennis court so really not far at all and I love the open air and the views from the roof top terrace wonderful!!!

Tonight the skies clouded over and I thought a storm may be coming…a quiet night watching some TV and I may do some homework!!!

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Sunday 28th October 2012…on the go all day!!!

You are going to think I stay home all day and watch tele!!!!!!!(British word).

Well I did get up and have breakfast watching one of the best soccer games I have ever seen from England this is the reason they call it the beautiful game!!!


I had to skip out on the last 5 minutes as I had arranged to join a hiking group and they were meeting at the Mega grocery store at 9.30am.

There I met the group leader Zoe, Dr.Linda who I knew from taking some Spanish classes a couple of years ago and Juan Manuel, a local guide.

We travelled a few miles out of town to the Campo Dona Juana where we started the trek…



This where we started and after about 10 minutes


we were in the boonies!!!


and the mine was our destination.


Our guide, leader and a font of knowledge about everything on the trail!!!!


I wonder what they are thinking??


Very beautiful landscapes.


DSCF6388The mine is located behind those brown rocks.

Juan would  stop and pick up a plant and explain what it was and still  used by the local people…





These yellow flowers are used to stop stomach problems….


Lots of animals…



We stopped after about 45 minutes and Linda waited behind whilst the three of us continued up the steeper slopes…..Zoe then waited whilst Juan and I went to the entrance of the mine it was a fairly steep hike…


You have to remember we are in the middle of nowhere…


The entrance to the silver mine unfortunately the entrance was flooded so we were not able to go inside….


We returned down the mountain and picked up the ladies and after lunch began our trek back.

Juan was a great guide and I learned so much from him…..when we got back to the village Juan was talking to this man and I asked permission to take his photo….he is 90 years old and lived here all his life and as a kid used to go to the mine and go down about 400 yards….


These kids were playing and enjoyed the gum I gave them!!!


It was just a wonderful time, the people I met were kind and funny and I did enjoy being out in the countryside and also learning about the plants and the lives of the local inhabitants.

I just back into town in time to go meet a lady, Carol, who has been an ardent follower of my blog for about two years and she herself just moved to SMA in March…we had arranged to meet at Hecho’s and we had a wonderful time exchanging stories.  Carol is very interesting and seems to have settled well into the SMA lifestyle, another friend in SMA for me.

Came home and hit the books….I had neglected my homework over the weekend so spent the time and finished it and still had time to watch the end of the baseball game and congratulations to the Giants on the title…


Yahsi Koshi

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Saturday 27th October 2012..a bit of a sporty day!!!

Today my Dad would have been 93 years of age


This is one of the last photos of Dad with his pride and joy his Great Grand son Tom!!!


Going into the archives for this one…Mum and Dad in Bermuda around 1975 when I was the bodyguard for the American Consul general and he invited my parents to his house for tea!!!

Miss you Dad and thanks for everything you did for me!!

Saturday morning so two hours of great tennis  at 9am..I do enjoy the mornings that I have tennis the sun shines but it is not over hot and the games are very competitive and the players fun and good company!!

After tennis I went to a garage sale and I think I did really well I spent 1600 pesos about 120 dollars and got the following…

DSCF6360Two Mexican bedside tables…


A nice black coffee table with a glass top..


Also got the items on the table too..


and finally a nice hanging mirror………I think they will look nice in the casita!!!

I came home for lunch and watched a live soccer game from England….and at 1.30pm took the car and went to pick up Paola…saw her Mum and she was really nice and sent Paola with me with her new back pack…


We went to La Gruta which is a beautiful hot springs with four different pools one with a tunnel  leading to a natural cave…Paola really likes it here when I first brought her a few years ago she would not put her head under the water now she is fearless and we spent some time with me teaching her the breast stroke and the leg movement for the crawl she did really well…




I think this photo is one of the best I have taken of Paola!!!


Is she not beautiful???

We spent two hours in the water and then it was time to leave and Paola had shampoo and soap in her bag and she enjoyed combing her hair which smelled lovely …


I just so enjoyed my time with her she is bright and inquisitive and lovely…I went to a small local store for a drink and some cookies and it came to veinticinco and I looked at Paola and she said right away 25..she is bright.

Dropped her home and spoke to her Mum with my new Spanish and confirmed that I would pick her up tuesday for the dentist.

I just had a wonderful time with her she is great company and makes me feel proud to have her in my life!!!!!

I then went back to the garage sale house and picked up my stuff and delivered it to the casita and I think it looks great.

Came home and now watching Baseball and even eating hot dogs!!!!!

Yashi Koshi!!!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Friday 26th October 2012…..TGIF!!!!!!

Well a busy day but let me start by wishing my special friend Carolyn a very Happy Birthday   …hope you enjoyed your day by the river in Puerto Vallarta!!!!

IMG_8519_thumb[2]Carolyn and Dani in Ramona last Winter!!!

Also a very happy Birthday to my favorite future tennis star Ashley!!!!!!  Hope you have a great 13th birthday!!!!!



9 am class and I actually enjoyed this class..it has been a hard week but I am slowly beginning to learn something and have some knowledge so now I need to practice often and do my homework ready for classes next week!!!!

After class came home for a short while before I went over in the car taking some of my stuff to my new casita…I paid the rent and got the keys!!!!  So over the next two weeks I shall start taking my stuff over and when Carolyn gets back she is going to help me decorate and get it looking wonderful!!!!

I came back home and read an e mail from Casa Hogar saying that all the girls were in Seminary class this weekend and I could not take her out..this is two weekends in a row….I realize that I am a guest in this country and that the culture and rules are different but taking her out for a couple of hours seems such a small thing….I did write an e mail to my contact at CH informing them of my thoughts.

I then went and washed the scooter and the car and then thought I better go to see Daniela at her English class and explain to her that I would not see her tomorrow.

She was working hard in class…



After class with Daniela I asked Gloria the teacher to explain to her about tomorrow and she did…..I hope I get to see her on Monday and then next weekend.

The scooter is popular with the girls!!!


Came home and had supper and showered and now just relaxing after a long and busy week.  I am glad I am in school and I want to improve my Spanish……I wish you all a great weekend…..Blessings Les

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Thursday 25th October 2012..a little road trip!!

As a change I took the car to tennis this morning as I had to go afterwards to pick up the plant pot that I bought a couple of days ago.

As usual the tennis was wonderful and I think the pot and stand is a bargain for 75 pesos!!!



When I came home a few cows and goats were going by the end of the road!!!


I fixed and put to cook my crock pot dinner it will be ready tonight!!


I then drove to Celaya about 45 minutes

Map picture

I first went to Home depot where I bought the light bulbs for my flea market lamps…they look good I think!!


I then went to Costco and bought a couple of things and then to Wal-Mart where I bought a few things including a toaster oven, could not find a microwave that I liked….

I love the way they brighten up the entrance to the small towns…


Not a  clear photo but this was a huge flock of birds!!


This is the Presa and the bottom of the hill and the same one that I have a great view from my new casita!!


The flowers are so vibrant this time of the year here are a few shots on the road leading to the house…




The crock pot dinner was very enjoyable and the homework is done…it is a bit hard for me to remember some of the things I have to learn but I do feel I am beginning to understand the theory….

Modern technology is amazing…Carolyn called me on Skype from her condo in PV and with her I pad she showed me the sunset outside her deck…it was lovely to see the ocean!!

All cleaned up and enjoying tea and perhaps a cookie or three and the baseball game!!!

Thursday 5 th January 2023…it was a great run!!!

 This was my first ever blog post back in November of 2006!!! With just a couple of days off I have written a blog every day since and I hav...