Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Finances and Food

This morning we went and paid our property taxes. All 237 pesos (20.00 CDN) worth. The low cost never ceases to amaze us! After we paid, the cashier gave us a small form to fill out but we had no idea what we were supposed to do with it. So I handed it back to her and said, "Por favor?" She filled it in and handed it back to us, telling us to go put it in a box at the back of the room. We only figured that out because she was pointing to So we went to put the form in the box but there was no opening. An elderly gentleman showed us how to slide the small cover back. Ah ha! As far as we can tell, the form seems to be for some sort of draw, though we haven't a clue for what. The cashier probably told us but my Spanish still isn't strong enough to understand a lot. We don't have a phone so we couldn't fill in our phone number and the form didn't ask for an email address so, even if we win, I'm not expecting to hear about it.

Then it was off to the bank to replenish funds. The ATM usually spits out 500 peso bills so it's always been a challenge coming up with small money for shopping, bus fare and tips. I finally got smart this trip. After hitting up the ATM, I go to the teller and exchange some of the big bills for a bunch of smaller ones. I've also started using 20 peso bills to pay for bus fare on occasion, instead of always trying to scrounge up enough coins. These two changes have made life so much easier.

Groceries was next on the agenda. As we were leaving the store, one of the baggers came up to us and wanted to check our bags. I use a couple of large, insulated zippered bags from Sobey's. I had to unzip them so she could look. She wanted to see if we had Coke bottles, which we didn't. And then she checked our bags again after we were outside the store. We have no idea what the issue was but I couldn't help but be glad we didn't have any Coke in the bags. After we got home, I realized I had forgotten to tip the person who bagged our groceries. Jeepers!

El Faro has all-you-can-eat-ribs on Tuesdays so a bunch of us from the complex went tonight. I'm not really big on ribs but these were good. I quite liked the potato salad, too.

I forgot to post that we went to their all-you-can-eat fish and chips on Friday. I never order fish and chips back home because there's always twice as much batter as there is fish but the batter the other night was thin. There was more fish than batter. And their fries are really, really good.

After supper tonight, we stopped for tea and lime pie at the home of one of the couples. As we were getting back to our unit, our neighbours invited us in for a drink, so we enjoyed a lovely evening visiting with several very nice people.

Monday, March 17, 2014

I'm No Longer a Virgin

A Zumba virgin, that is!

Mary, a Canadian who lives just a couple of blocks from the complex, hosts Zumba on Monday and Wednesday mornings from 8:30 to 9:30. She's not the instructor, she simply provides her backyard for the class.

There are several ladies from the complex who attend regularly and I joined them this morning, for my first ever Zumba class.

Oh my gosh. What a hoot! I love to dance but my moves were so uncoordinated and not very Latin looking, at About the time I figured out what to do, the instructors would change things up. I spent most of the class about 3 steps But I had a ball!

I can't wait for Wednesday.

And when we get home, I'm going to get our granddaughter, who's been in dance for 7 or 8 years, to show me how to do a couple of those moves that I just couldn't figure out.

Friday, March 14, 2014

A Very Busy Day

This morning I went with friends Bindi and Debi to the Bamboo Beach restaurant in Chicxulub for the Muelle Market that's held once a month. Lots of great things to purchase. Some are made by Mexicans and some by expats. I picked up some homemade lunch meat, pickles and salmon dip. I took my camera but I was so busy looking at all the cool stuff that I forgot to take any pictures!

Afterwards, we stopped at a fruit and vegetable market and picked up a few things. Bindi headed home and I went with Debi to her hair appointment to help her discuss a hair colour service that she'd like to receive next week. Today she just got a cut.

I love watching other hairdressers see how they do things. We all have our own way of doing things and we all learn from each other. She told me about the colouring technique she's going to use on Debi's hair. I had never heard of doing it this way so I can't wait to see the end result.

A group of folks from the condo go down to Barlaventos, a restaurant downtown, quite regularly, usually on cruise ship day. Today was one of those days and Sr. B and Bindi's husband had gone with them while Bindi and I were out. We joined them later.

We were seated at tables on the sidewalk and a young fellow was standing nearby, singing and playing his saxophone. Way too loudly. People were yelling to be heard above his music and above the sounds of everyone else talking so loudly. I was getting a headache, so I headed home.

Later, we went to Owen and Bindi's for supper and then played a board game that's kind of a cross between Chinese checkers, Trouble and Skip-bo. I lost the first round and won the second. I never caught the name of the game but it was a lot of fun.

It was a busy and noise-filled day. Quite overwhelming for my introverted self. I'm enjoying the peace and quiet of now being home.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Knitting Group

There is a lady, several blocks up the street, who hosts a Stitch and B*tch every Wed morning from 10 to noon. I know lots of groups like to call themselves by that name but I can't say I'm a fan of it. It sounds so negative. Luckily, they all seem like nice folks and there wasn't any b*tching. Just a group of like-minded gals spending time together. I really enjoyed myself and I'm sorry that I'll only be able to meet with them once more before we head back north.

This group collects caps for the cancer kids in Merida. I had brought some down in November but wasn't able to get in contact with anyone to drop them off to. I made a few more to bring down this trip, hoping to get in touch with someone. And that someone is the above mentioned lady. Yay!!

Here is the first batch I made.

And here's the second batch that I brought down this trip.

I've been knitting up a storm while we've been here. I thought I had brought enough yarn but I'm going to run out. I might have to go shopping. Gosh

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

We Have Internet...Sorta

Sr. B figured out if we move the laptop into the bedroom, we get a better internet connection than in the dining room. Not fantastic, but quite a bit better. I'm hoping to make daily posts now.

We haven't been up to too much exciting. A group of us went for supper at a cool little restaurant called La Casa del Faro in Chicxulub. On Tuesdays, they offer all you can eat ribs and on Fridays, all you can eat fish and chips. We went on Saturday so missed out on both offers but we're planning on checking this out at some point.

This morning we had a couple of errands to run. We were standing at a corner, waiting to cross the street, when a little girl who looked to be about a year and half to two years old stumbled and fell, landing at my feet. I tried to catch her but she fell faster than my old joints could react. She looked up at me with a wounded look on her face. That look that says, "Why did you do that to me?" That look that says she blamed me. Oh dear. Poor baby didn't know it wasn't my fault. I just happened to be the first person she saw when she looked up. Luckily, she wasn't hurt. Good thing those little folks come rubberized.

Last night, before I went to bed, I noticed 4 !!! mosquitoes in our bedroom. Waaaaaay up on the 9 foot ceiling where we couldn't reach them. Rotters! So we both sprayed down with bugspray so we wouldn't get chewed during the night. I felt like I was camping. That Autan is fantastic at repelling mosquitoes but, egads! The stuff is practically toxic. You definitely don't want to breathe it in while you're spraying.

This afternoon was spent at the pool and the evening with neighbours Bindi and Owen.

Friday, March 7, 2014

We Made It!

Once again we have a really crappy internet connection so daily posts may not happen. We're considering getting our own cable once we're down here for the whole winter. But for now, we'll make do.

Our flight was mostly uneventful. We were supposed to leave our home airport at 6am but, once we were all loaded, a fuel discrepancy was noticed. Apparently the computer didn't match up with something else so they had to do a manual check. So we had to wait for that. Because of that, we lost our place in line for take off. And then we had to de-ice. So our 6am flight didn't leave until 8am. There were quite a few folks who had a tight connection in Houston. Not everyone made them.

Lucky for us, our flight to Merida doesn't leave until later in the day, so we were fine. Our flight out of Houston is normally at 7:30pm but this time it was at 5:30 which meant we were at the condo by 9:30 instead of 11:30. Can't complain about that!

Gustavo, the taxi driver who gets a lot of business from the complex, always asks us if we want to stop and pick up a few things. So we hit up an OXXO to get bread and eggs for breakfast. And while we were there, we met up with the local gentleman we had met on the plane. We saw each other at the same time and did that, "Heeeyyy!!!!" and chatted a bit more.

The weather is just soooooo fantastic! It's been a long, cold winter and we're glad to be out of that.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Some Quickie Catch-up News

Well, here I am, after a long absence. Shame on me!

Last trip down our internet was so spotty it made it hard to post so I had planned on doing that when we got back, but I haven't even kept up on reading my blog list for the past month or more.

We'll be arriving in Progreso on March 6th and staying until the 24th. Just a quick trip this time because our daughter is expecting her second child on April 2nd. Hopefully Baby waits until we get back so we don't miss the show.

Sr B's rotator cuff surgery has left him with limited mobility. Not because of the rotator cuff issue itself but because he has so much arthritis in the joint. The surgeon did a debridement and Sr B thinks that by clearing out the junk, it caused his joint to shift. He can raise his hand to head level but no higher. The surgeon said he would eventually need a shoulder replacement. He's already had both hips done. When we got married, I had no idea I was marrying the future bionic man! He says when they dig up his bones, 1000 years from now, they're going to wonder about the robots we had way back

RED LETTER DAY One year from today, Sr B will be retired. He can't wait. He's been with the same company for 34 years and, while the pay has provided us a decent lifestyle and he'll have a great pension, he's getting tired of the bureaucracy of a big corporation.

If March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb, then I'm expecting, no...demanding...that the end of March be downright tropical. Old Man Winter has been especially cruel to Canada this year. The past few nights, and for a couple more upcoming, night time temps are in the -38C/-36F range with windchills of -47C/-53F. The whole winter has been colder than usual and has made us even more enthusiastic about being snowbirds.

I guess that's all. Looking forward to leaving the cold behind and seeing everyone in Mexico again.