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“The time has come,” the Walrus said,”To talk of many things:”-the Walrus and the Carpenter

I’m tired of the Ugly American

Rarely do I rant. I’m tired of hearing about the ugly American. Tired of reading tirades against expats who socialize with expats. I am not talking about Mexicans ragging on expats but other expats or wannabe expats criticizing others because they fall below some unspoken double standard. These same people would never dream of speaking out against foreigners NOB. The common complaints are that “they only socialize with their own kind”and “they don’t integrate”. There are always pioneers who break ground. However most people are enticed by letters written home and want to live near the letter writers. In our modern world, those letters are more likely to be blogs like this one, magazines/websites like International Living or TV shows like House Hunters International. The readers settle near the letter writers. Eventually, an enclave forms China Town, Greek Town, North Beach or  Gringo Gulch (I dislike the word gringo, it is too much like spic,chink,polack and other appellations bestowed on ...

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Stitching in Mexico

This is mostly a sewing post, consider yourself warned. It’s been awhile since I joined the Vintage Pattern Lending Library’s 1912 project. January 4,2012 to be exact, I did a tiny blog post about it. Today, I received my first pattern, # E0336!! It’s a princess line slip. Mexico is a great place for the budding seamstress, there are fabric stores and notion stores but patterns like we are used to NOB are few and far between. There are however pattern magazine, Telas Parasina even sells their own version. In the streets near the mercado you can buy  Patrones ,there is even a Patrones Niños.If you are really fashion forward, Dantes and Sanbornes sell the European sewing magazine Revista Burda or Burda style, it’s usually a few months out of date,but still very fashion forward for Merida. Minimal sewing directions is the rule, it’s assumed that you know how to sew. No step by step directions. I like that, I ...

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Credit Union vs Big Banks,

Conflict and complaining are not my thing. When I have to complain,it makes me crabby and I want to make it as effective as possible. Our credit union merged, was consumed or conquered by another credit union. I assume the other CU won because now we bank with First Tech. I wrote about previous problems here. This year they started charging us a 1% international banking fee. That means on top of the fees we have to pay to the banks whose ATMs we use, there is an new additional charge. Husband inquired about the fee via email. The response he got was that VISA was levying the charge since there is a VISA logo on our ATM/debit card. Husband then requested new debit cards sans the VISA logo since we only use the VISA option when paying for SKYPE. First Tech said that they could send us a those cards but the fee would still be assessed. Hmmm, so ...

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How do I spend my time?

Naming my blog was easy. Often when people learn that we live full time in a foreign country, they ask “What do you do all day?”. It seems like most people have this concept of retirement as a boring existence without the stimulus that work provides. Maybe these people have jobs that they loved, getting up every morning excited and eager looking forward to their day. While I have seldom had jobs that I hated, I don’t remember being eager to head off to work. Having had craft businesses, I decided that I’d rather work  to provide money to fund my hobbies. I have too many interests and hobbies to want to just do one thing forever. That way I could dabble, makes hats , crochet or sew for awhile then do something new. My list of hobbies is legion, it’s easier to say “I don’t tat” than to list what I do. However, much of my daily life in ...

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Eating and socializing,the expat life

After the IWC meeting, BK and I went to out to lunch. Having a short window of time, BK suggested BK (Burger King). Even though she eats more SAD (standard American diet) foods than me, BK is thin and healthy looking. We ended up at MacDonalds on Paseo in the Chedraui plaza, because we wanted to check out the costume store nearby.I’m always overwhelmed by the menu in those fast food places. It’s been a long time since I’ve eaten fast food NOB, but the restaurants here just feature combos on those giant menu boards. I didn’t want soda or a full package of fries. So I did something totally against my nature. I asked the counter person if I could get just a burger and a bottle of water? Receiving an affirmative answer further emboldened me. I asked if it was possible to get a Big Mac without bread? Adding with a smile, “I know it’s a bit odd. ...

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I’m tap dancing as fast as I can

When I get emails from friends asking if I accidently dropped my computer into the washing machine, I know I need to post something. I’ve taken a leave from writing. Nothing bad, just been busy doing other stuff. My daughter, La Primera, had another baby girl. I will be going later in the year to visit. The new baby is beautiful, but that is to be expected. I learned a new Spanish word, neumólogo, which means pulmonologist. Even after living here for more than eight years, I find it freaking amazing that I can call a specialist´s office for an appointment and be asked if I want to come in that very day. Our situation was a little different, but the quality of care and caring is exactly like Jonna wrote about recently. Husband is feeling much better, life is good again. Getting rid of stuff in our house has been going well. Debi mentioned in her blog that she ...

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Phone laundering service

I washed another cell phone today. Though it may already have been toast before I did it. I blame last night’s deluge. I got soaked to the skin while running around on the roof making sure drains weren’t clogged. Entering the house, I stripped off my clothes and left them in a pile on the tile. This morning I threw the still soaking wet clothes in the washer. After the machine ran for a few minutes, it occurred to me that I hadn’t seen my cell phone today. Now the cell is sitting in a bowl of rice hopefully recuperating. I just put two hundred pesos of credit on my phone yesterday.

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looking forward to 2012

Making New Year’s resolutions is not my thing. I’m more of a five year plan kind of girl. When things are bad, I tell myself, I’ll just do this for five years, then I’ll reevaluate. Five years just seems like the largest chunk of time that I can imagine staying the same. Admittedly one day at a time has been my byword many times in my life too. Anyway, back to the point, I have goals for this year. Number one on my list is to continue getting rid of stuff. I’m mulling over the feasibility of a yard sale. Maybe I can get together with a couple of friends? Paring down my possessions is a  goal, but I haven’t really formulated by how much. I have some kitchen stuff, including a kitchen aid mixer that I hardly ever use. I also have a set of dishes just taking up space. Hand in hand with getting rid of stuff is ...

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illiterate in two languages

My friend, Jonna, sometimes jokes that she is illiterate in two languages. I am beginning to think that I can’t spell in two languages. I’ve always been good at spelling. One of my first real non-babysitting jobs was correcting papers for a sixth grade teacher. Staring at the spellcheck underlined word, I couldn’t understand what I had done wrong.I try to correct spellings first before depending on spellcheck. Spellcheck and I don’t  always agree. Our vocabularies are usually quite dissimilar and it’s guesses can change my sentences in a bizarre way when I let autocorrect function automatically.Therefore, I try to figure out my errors on my own, correcting  without relying on the computer.  Sounding the word out, doesn’t help anymore, I seem to be using Spanish phonetics rather than English in my orthography. “F” replaces “ph” as in foto or farmacy. I have consistently been using “e” instead of “i” and vice versa. For example,the word that was causing me ...

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The morning after.

Mr. Dog, Husband and I are all in a stupor today. Mr. Dog is sleeping off a plate of salami, several meatballs with tomato sauce and heaping helping of cochinita. Husband and I are crashing from a sugar high. Meal planning for the next week is going to be simple, there is at least a kilo and a half of meat balls and the same amount of cochinita left over from Christmas day. I  going to freeze the one without sauce and we’ll eat the ones with tomato sauce over the next couple of days. Mulling over the idea of putting up my decorations,there are still eleven more days of Christmas. Giving it up as a bad idea, I decide that I have other things to do. I may stop in at Miguels Fantasia and buy some stuff for next year while the sales are good, however. Right now that doesn’t sound even vaguely interesting. Eric C sent me some ...

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