Monday, November 30, 2015

A Day In Our Lives

All our guests have left and we are back to our normal lives.  I thought I would give you a glimpse into an ordinary day for us old retired people.

Time to swim some laps.
 We awoke to a cool 78 degree morning so it was time to swim some laps before it got to warm.  I'm just getting started so I was happy with 18 laps this morning.  As I was swimming Terri went to volunteer at Amigos de los Animales (Humane Society).  She walked dogs for two hours and put on her first 4 miles for the day.  Her favorite dog for the day was a young female pit bull that she said was a "sweet heart."

After getting cleaned up we hopped on an air conditioned bus (10 pesos) for a ride into El Centro to complete a list of errands.  The first task was to have lunch at our favorite 3 table café upstairs in the Market.

Our "usual" lunch.... 4 tacos and three sopas.
The owner/cook/waitress greeted us and asked if we wanted the "usual" lunch?  She knows us too well.  The lunch was so good I forgot to take the picture until we were half done. Lunch for two and 2 real bottles of Coke was 110 pesos ($6.66 US).

All three tables were busy today so the 3 ladies were busy cooking.  It all happens in one room.... cooking, dining and dish washing.  You get to see it all.

Our next task was to go to the Angela Peralta Theatre to purchase tickets for two December performances.  We are going to see our first ballet.  We think it is time to add a little class to our lives.  I'm not sure it will work but ballet is a big deal here in Mazatlán so we should join in and get a little culture.

Last year we went to the Gala Navidad presented by the Sinaloa Symphony.  It was an evening of Christmas music that was presented in mostly English.  We loved it, so we are going back again this year.

On the walk to our next stop we dropped into the popsicle store.  These are not the normal popsicles we Americans know from our youth.  They are made with real fruit.  What a concept.  Terri had pina and I had fresa.  They may not be life changing, but very close.

Real fruit equals real good.
Our next task was to find ribbon to decorate our Christmas tree.  We found 9 meters of silver ribbon for 45 pesos ($2.72US).  The next stop was the kitchen gadget store where we spent 107 pesos ($6.49) on three kitchen tools we needed.

Terri covered 7 miles today.  That made me so tired that I needed a siesta when we got home from town.

I got up in time to shoot a photo of our red indoor and outdoor trees with a matching red sunset.

Now it's time to cook dinner.  A husbands work is never done.

Life is good.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Cabana Construction

It was time to repair the four cabanas that provide shade around our pool.  The monsoons and sun had taken their toll on the palm fronds that cover the bamboo huts.

I'm supervising from the sixth floor.
Under my excellent supervision the 5 men will complete the project in two days.  They were hard at work this morning when I drug myself out of bed before sunrise.  And they were working hard last night after dark.  My supervision is getting results.

Their first task was to strip all the old palms off the structures.

Next they sew and tie one leaf at a time onto the bamboo frame.

The view from inside.
Hanging on by their toes for 13 hours a day.
There are usually four guys above and one guy on the ground throwing the bundles of leafs up.  They tie the dried palms with a green palm strand.

Inside a finished cabana.

These two guys are tying the round palm cone that goes on the top of one of the small round cabanas.

I'll be sure to keep the guys working until they finish tonight.  Sundown doesn't mean it is quitting time.  I'll be up on my sixth floor deck with a cold drink in my hand, doing my part.

Here was last nights early till later sunset.

Life is good...... I'm working very hard.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Sunny with No Snow

Several people are reporting snow around the Pacific Northwest.  So in the interest of helping those individuals I'll show you the conditions here in Mazatlán.  I am a kind person, willing to share with you.

I think I can hear a collective "Shut Up".

It will be sunny and 88 degrees the next two day and mid 80's all week.
Flowers are blooming everywhere.

We started our Sunday morning by going to breakfast at the Looney Bean.  We shared a cinnamon roll before the meal came.

After breakfast it was time for a beach walk and dog run at Playa Bruja.  It's Eva's favorite day of the week.

That blur going by Sara is Eva.
I once again apologize to all my friends in the snow.  I know it is not nice to show you pictures like this.  But I can't help myself.

Life is good..... I deserve the "Shut Up".  It's only 10:30 am..... time for a siesta.

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Buen Fin

We continue our warm sunny weather here in Mazatlán.  The next two days will be in the high 80's.  Sister Sara has been staying with us this week before she goes to Pueblo Bonito in a few days.

Yesterday began the three days of Buen Fin.  It would be similar to "Black Friday" in the states.  All Mexicans that work in the formal sector are given a Christmas bonus that is equal to one months pay.  It is a federal law.  The stores are ready to help them spend their bonus money, thus Buen Fin is the biggest spending days of the year.

We wanted to do our part for the economy so we went to the Galleries Mall.

The mall is already decorated for Christmas.
It was time to buy a real TV after owning the condo for 7 years.  We aren't much for TV watching but Terri misses football and the US news.  We were one of the first people through the doors to take advantage of the 40% off sales at Liverpool (like Macy's).

We are now the proud owners of a 43" LG TV.  Now all we have to do is learn how to hook it up to Shaw (Canadian cable) and how to program and hook-up the HDMI.  We don't have a teenager to help us.

We are enjoying the last few weeks of all the November guests by eating our way through the 100's of restaurants with them.

11 of us out at Bruja Restaurant.

The family is framed.  Sara's 60th birthday.
Walt and Cathy went home yesterday.  Tom and Dianna leave today.  But daughter Charity and two friends arrive next week.  The party will continue.

Dinner at Roy's.
Rib night at Roy's means a full rack of pork ribs for 99 pesos.  That's a little less than $6.00 for a full dinner.  They cook the ribs over an open grill out in front of the restaurant.  It's very good.

With the new TV in place we had to rearrange furniture.  As you can tell, I like my blown glass.

Instead of closing with a sunset, here is a strange display at the mall.  I sort of liked it.

Life is good.

Monday, November 9, 2015

Family and Friends

It was another fine week here in Mazatlán.  My cousin, Sandi McMillion, finished her time with us and flew back home on Saturday.  We had a great week together and we hope she enjoyed her time with us.

Ranger cousins - Russ, Sandi and Dave.
Sandi and I did the monthly ArtWalk which gave her a chance to wander around Centro after dark.  The old part of Mazatlán looks different after sundown.  The old street lamps give it a warm glow as you walk the small cobblestone streets.

We stopped and had dinner at a small café, Cucina Pauleena.  The polo enchiladas were great.  We forgot to take the picture until after we had eaten part of the dinner.  As always food is reasonably priced, a dinner was 100 pesos ($5.95 US Dollars).  The exchange rate this week is 16.737 pesos per US Dollar

My sister Sara arrives tomorrow and will be spending a week with us in our condo before she goes to her hotel for the next week.  In town right now are: Dave & Jamie, Tom & Dianna, Walt & Cathy, Roy and Micki.   Each year we seem to have more people come down to Mazatlán during the month of November.  Family and friends make our time here even better.

Life is good with family and friends.  Come on down and visit..... you'll enjoy the sun.

Monday, November 2, 2015

Being Dead Is Fun

The happy couple.
Some may say I've never looked better than being dead.  This year we decided to paint-up and join the locals in celebrating Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead).  We ventured into the plaza in El Centro for the parade and celebration.

Terri in her prom dress and paint.
Never looked better than when I'm dead.

After a nice dinner at Los Zarape nine of us hopped into the back of a red pick-up truck for the ride to the plaza. We joined several thousand people in Mazatlán's party. 

All todays photos were shot by our friend Walt Hughson.  He is a much better photographer than I am, so enjoy the pictures from the celebration.

Part of the reason for the happiness is that there are several beer carts in the parade that are giving free beer to any out stretched hand.  Someone asked me how old you must be to get free beer, my answer was, "about 5 foot 2".

The longest reach gets the beer.

Loud drumming to accompany the fire juggler.

You've gotta appreciate the combination of flying fire and a crowded street. In Mexico it seems normal.  After ten or eleven years of coming to Mazatlán nothing should surprise me.  It's all good.

Happy wife, happy life.
As you can see..... life is good.