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I Look Forward to a Dull Evening
Jan 25th, 2011 by Les

Sir Winston Churchill, British leader,  once said: “Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing ever happened.”

“We could probably slow the aging process down if it had to work its way through Congress.”  Will Rogers, American Humorist

David actually looks forward to a dull evening often but, alas, being married to me has put a crimp in that dream…so to speak.

First of all, he should have known several minutes into our first date, things would not be any where near what one could justifiably call a “normal” existence.  Short story…we were strolling in downtown Dallas headed toward the Dallas Museum of Art on a lovely spring afternoon.  Out of the blue, as he headed toward the entrance at what I was later to learn his usual lope, I ended up “ass over tea kettle” on the well trodden sidewalk.  Rushing to my aid he was met with the “hand”.  Stopping short, he watched in amazement as I, now laughing uncontrollably…accompanied by snorts and gasping for breath in a very un-lady-like manner…..managed to right myself within seconds of the unfortunate incident.  Barreling ahead, trying to reinstate the laughable idea that he was with this sophisticated, charming, lovely, erudite and graceful woman I jettisoned myself through the museum doors.  Once enshrined in the beauty of the building I tried to gracefully look up into his eyes only to find I had lost him in the crowd.  Obviously, after a little searching, I found him stunned but smiling and thankfully ready to continue the date.

Nothing has changed.  He knew from the get go my immediate area of study in the field of psychology was and is sexual attitude reassessment.  Intrigued, as are most people, he has lived with my slightly askew of center attitude toward sex and its many variations within the human condition for a long time now.  A mix of interest and humor as well as a modicum of astonishment and a dash of the truly ridiculous has helped him deal with the fact there probably will never be a dull evening.  Halleluiah!

For instance, this morning over his cup of coffee he mentioned, in passing, there was an article in the New York Times entitled “Lack of Sex Among Grapes Tangles a Family Vine”, which you may want to read.  I kid you not.  Here’s the link if you’d like to read more: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/25/science/25wine.html?nl=todaysheadlines&emc=tha210

Overlooking Life

To the right is a picture David recently took of our two Adirondack chairs.  What very popular commercial does this picture conjure up?  I’ll let you masticate on that for a while.

Any who, we are in this lovely village of Ajijic and, while time does not stand still, it is also not herding us toward this or that accomplishment.  The Mexican culture invites time for rest and relaxation during the course of the day.  Siestas are common and many businesses are closed in mid afternoon re-opening in late afternoon.  Ah, what to do with your time.

One of the wonderful benefits of a slower lifestyle is rediscovering ourselves and, if we are lucky, that special someone in our lives.  Whether one has been with their partner for years and years with much history,or if one has been blessed with a new significant other later in life, living a slower lifestyle gives you the opportunity to explore that relationship and see it in a whole new light.

Let’s face it, snowmen fell from heaven unassembled.  We need to nurture all aspects of what makes us…well us.  A guy, who shall go unnamed, once said to me: “My wife has sex with me for one purpose.  Last night it was to time an egg.”

Consistency is the final refuge of the unimaginative.  Having time to explore this beautiful, diverse and, admittedly, passionate country is a wonderful gift for those of us that live here.  However, in the process, let us not loose sight of what is right in front of us, if we are lucky enough to have a special someone in our lives.

I leave you with this thought.  You know how most packages say “open here”.  What is the protocol of the package that says, “open somewhere else”?  Be ready to embrace not only the allure of Mexico but allow yourselves to go somewhere else and open that package that is making this journey with you.  Be ready for the excitement of that discovery, as well!

Viva Mexico! 

Came but for friendship, and took away love.

Visit the BoomerstoMexico Photo Store at http://boomerstomexico.com/mexico-photos/ , to see more of the beauty of Ajijic Mexico in David’s photos. 

If you are in the Lake Chapala area now, please visit Gallery in Paradise located at Hidalgo #10 in Ajijic to see more of David’s photography as well as fellow artists Nancy Gray and Judy Katz.

A walk down the street.

Unusual house scuplture.

Another look at the house sculpture.

Sunlight catchers outside a neighbor's home.

In Theory Everything Works
Jan 17th, 2011 by Les

“I watched something in Spanish last night and I enjoyed reading the subtitles, until I realized it was in English and I had the “mute” button pushed!” David Perry Lawrence, American photographer.
 
Albert Einstein, German physicist, was heard to say “Once you accept the universe as matter expanding into nothing that is something, wearing stripes with plaids is nothing.”

Maynard G. Krebs

In the immortal words of Maynard G. Krebs:

Shall Remain Unknown

 “WORK”!  Maynard (shown here on the left and precursor to the 70’s version of the “shall reamain unknown” person on the right) was a character, played by Bob Denver on The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis, a TV show that was on from 1959 to 1963.  An explanation of the Maynard G. Krebs (the “G” stood for Walter) character depicted his abhorrence of conventional social forms which was signified by his comical reactions to the three words: “work”, “marriage”, and “police”. For example, whenever the word “work” was mentioned, even in passing, he would yelp “Work?!” and jump with fear or even faint.

What brought this on you query?  We were standing in line waiting to talk to someone about IMSS (Mexican insurance) at the LCS (Lake Chapala Society) last week

As we are standing there and because we, well at the very least I, get bored easily we began reading the wall.  Various ancient articles are posted all over the wall outside the little office housing the IMSS experts.

One of the larger articles represented looked like it is from the 1950’s.  It’s an article from “Look” magazine with pictures.  The headline caught my eye.  It went something like “Yanks Arrive and Don’t Go Home”.  The print is pretty faded but the pictures are of the “bohemians” who had begun to inhabit the Lake Chapala area bringing with them their free spirits (a picture of a young man and woman swimming in a pond) a guy with a huge telescope and an artist sitting among her art…so to speak.

The definition I found for a bohemian lifestyle is: a person, as an artist or writer, who lives and acts free of regard for conventional rules and practices.  Hence, the Maynard G. Krebs reference.

I would venture to say two thirds of the Lake Chapala gringo population is artistic.  That leaves the remaining one third of us who either, as one artist explained to me as she watched me help carry and set up David’s art show display, you are what, in the business, is called a schlepper.  There are several definitions for the word schlepper however mine is “carry things to and fro”.  And, of course, we can enjoy all of the unbridled artistic enthusiasm, insight and, yes folks, some wonderful looneyness, as well.  In theory, everything does work.

I’ve always had this romantic vision of what a bohemian lifestyle might be like and it has long intrigued me.  We’ve been down here over a year now and we’ve met many people.  The majority of the people we meet are truly enjoying their new way of life.  Dare I say it, truly something stylishly bohemian.  Gone are the demands of life having been replaced by the dreams of life.  The Mexican lifestyle, particularly in the villages and towns outside the booming metropolises of Mexico City and Guadalajara, move at a much slower pace.

To see people pursuing the arts that were only hobbies in their stateside life is great.  Add to that the utter enjoyment of the weather, the sheer abandonment of “should of(s)”, “would of(s)”, and “could of(s)” and the grab each moment by the kite tail and fly, baby, fly is wonderfully exhilarating and freeing.  Yes, there are many free spirits here, maybe for the first time in their lives they are actually pursuing some of the craziness of youth…their youth.  You can wake up in the morning and simply decide to be indecisive.  How awesome is that?!

Embracing a new lifestyle with panache, I offer, as an example, some friends of ours.  They picked us up on their way to a day in Chapala several weeks ago.  Walking on the malecon, visiting the various shops, taking in the beauty of Lake Chapala and dining at one of the areas many Mexican restaurants.

As we parked the car they placed an angel on the dashboard…well…most of an angel.  When we asked what and why we got this wonderful and ditzy (I can say ditzy as I am a blonde and have lived with it all my life therefore can spot a ditz whenever they are in my vicinity) response.  Somehow the angel lost her heard at some point during their travels here and it rolled into the vents hugging the dashboard window.  They, now, religiously, place the angel on their dashboard whenever they park their car thinking that it sends an ominous message of the “bad ass” dominions to everyone who might look in their car.  Let heads roll where they may, this one is protecting this car.  Viva Mexico and Viva Their Free Spirit!

David has joined artists Nancy Gray and Judy Katz in their new “Gallery in Paradise”.  Located on Hidalgo 10 in Ajijic in front of the restaurant “60’s in Paradise”, it will be opening soon.  If you are in the area or planning on visiting, please be sure to stop in and see their work.

 Visit the BoomerstoMexico Photo Store at http://boomerstomexico.com/mexico-photos/ , to see more of the beauty of Ajijic Mexico in David’s photos. 

The photographs below were taken as we journeyed home after our morning at the LCS.  Enjoy.

Doorway Statue in LCS.

Masks

Guardian Angel

Bird on a Log

Lake Chapala

Restaurant on the Malecon in Ajijic

Bird overlooking Lake Chapala

The Probability of Forgetting Something…..
Jan 4th, 2011 by Les

Roger Angell has said: “Whatever it is that hits the fan will not be evenly distributed.”  Roger calls this his “Law of Probability Dispersal” (the New York Times chief fiction editor for many years)

“The probability of someone laughing at you is proportional to the stupidity of your actions.”  Oddly, no one seems to want to take credit for this quote….now what is the probability of that?!

is directly proportional to…to…uh…okay moving on.  The probability of many things in Mexico is certain.  The complexity of that certainty is the hour upon which it (whatever it is) will arrive, be done, be started or be finished, for that matter.

I believe being able to find the unobtainable answer to “Mexican time” and other inherently Mexican happenings is directly related to Riemann’s zeta function.  That is to say zeta is the core of Riemann’s hypothesis which is arguably the biggest unsolved problem in mathematics.  The mathematical problem zeta proposes is about describing the frequency and distribution of all prime numbers to infinity.

The probability of solving Riemann’s zeta function is arguably the same as solving the “Mexican time” dilemma or other uniquely Mexican oddities.  In other words folks, get used to it.

I’d also suggest , if you are prone to accomplishing tasks, setting time frames, organizing dinner parties to the minute, etc perhaps you need to re-think living in Mexico.  Learning to go with the flow is essential to retaining one’s sanity, not blowing a gasket and not being known as the resident curmudgeon of thus-and-so village or town.

We’ve been down here over a year now.  One of the many benefits of living in Mexico, as we see it, is being able to go with the flow.  Our blood pressure no longer reaches epic proportions when told we’ll, let us say, have your new toilet installed in a couple of days.  (Note: that was two weeks ago but whose counting.)

Then there is the interesting…for the most part….”rules of the road”.  First thing you learn, there aren’t any rules of the road anyone seems to follow.  Second thing you learn, much to my amazement, is a red sign with the word “Alto” on it, one would think, would mean “stop” as it does in the US.  I’m going for the obvious universal sign for “stop” here so please bear with me.  However if you look up the word “alto” in Spanish you learn the first definition is “high” or “tall”.

I rest my case.  If you see a sign with “alto” on it you will not see anyone trying to figure out what “tall” has to do with anything at this particular intersection.  You will also not see many people actually “stop” as, apparently, it means different things to different people.  Some people slow down and others speed up.  So, to be safe watch the flow of traffic and, as I’ve admonished before, go with the flow….literally.

The same holds true for one-way streets.  First, in our small village of Ajijic, the arrows showing which directions it is suggested you travel on any given street are on the various buildings at any given corner.  At this point it might be prudent for me to mention often people have spruced up their building and painted over the arrows.  Looking down the street to see what direction the cars are parked does not help.  Here is why, cars are parked going both directions on both sides of the street regardless of whether the street is a one way or a two way.  ALSO, even if it is a two way usually only one car can get through at a time.  Making it even more confusing is, as I’ve mentioned before, the drivers here are very creative.  If the street is a one way going the opposite direction they’d like to go they simply back down the street.  SOOOOO, now you’ve got people going up and down and others backing up or down…as the case may be.

Here folks is my own probability definition: It is highly probable when someone first arrives in our village they will be hell bent on following the rules of the road.  After a while their sense of humor (if they have any) will take over and they will do like the rest of us…pull over and let the cars go by no matter what direction they are traveling.

My motto: when you are in Mexico and see the light at the end of the tunnel…get the heck out of the way as it’s probably a train!!  Viva Mexico!

Below you will see photographs of a parade that took place on New Years Day just outside our door.  We had a few friends over for a late lunch and we all had to stop what we were doing and join in the festivities!

Just Adorable!

Cute

Confetti is often a part of any parade.

Quite the Characters!

Happy New Year!

I'll let you figure this one out!

Our resident celebrity burro.

One of our guests decided to join the parade. She did find her way back after adding a dash of the US to the Mexican festivities!

Visit the BoomerstoMexico Photo Store at http://boomerstomexico.com/mexico-photos/ , to see more of the beauty of Ajijic Mexico in David’s photos.  Several of David’s pieces are now exhibiting at the Ajijic Cultural Center and can be seen on the stores website.

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© Copyright 2009-2011 David and Les Lawrence, Ajijic, Mexico