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All She Wants to do is Dance, Dance
Aug 24th, 2011 by Les

Live for Today….Plan for Tomorrow….Party Tonight.  I think this was written by someone here in Ajijic!!

“At every party there are two kinds of people – those who want to go home and those who don’t.  The trouble is, they are usually married to each other.”  Ann Landers – American Journalist and Writer

I’ve decided to allow the “white highlights” in my blond hair to shine through.  It was not a decision taken or arrived at lightly.  It was something prompted by a conversation I had with my daughter just recently.

Her comment went something like: mum, I think you might have to actually age a bit because if you continue at the rate you are going I would have had to have been born when you were approximately two years old.  I think that would border on a miracle and might have to be approved by someone like the Pope an Archbishop somewhere or at the very least Steven Colbert.  She’s a stitch and I love her to death.  It’s been easy, thus far, for me to remain young as my daughter is 5’2”, weighs in somewhere around 100 lbs and looks too young to have three primary school children.  There’s also the fact that my energy level is somewhere in the stratus sphere – something for which I’m eternally grateful.  Oh, and my vision is such that I haven’t had to wear glasses and, therefore, when I look in the mirror I see someone else.  That helps!!

Speaking of youthful people, David and I had been invited to a party over the past weekend.  It was a combination birthday (no gifts please) and welcome to Ajijic party attended by many.  There is no doubt about it, people like to party hardy here. 

By the time David, camera in hand, and I arrived the party was in full swing.  One of our hostesses grabbed David by the arm and immediately introduced him as an internationally known photographer (which he is) to guests seated around a table nearby.  That gave me the opportunity to try to melt into the background – something I think I’m pretty good at.  That is if I don’t drop, spill, bump into or knock over someone in the process.

Many of the people at the party dance.  They love to dance.  They have “dancing shoes”.  Who knew?  I never realized there were dancing shoes though I’d heard the phrase “put your dancing shoes on” throughout my life.  One lady apparently carries her dancing shoes with her (you never know when one might be moved to cha cha around the room) and she showed them to me.

I have to say, dancing does keep people fit and looking much younger then their chronological years.  The women, in particular, age wonderfully gracefully.  For example, one attendee of the aforementioned party who is in her early 60’s, looks like she isn’t a day over 40 while our two hostesses for the evening look like they have led pampered lives (which they have not) as you could never guess their ages.  All are not merely beautiful on the outside, but beautiful within as well.  And all, apparently, couldn’t sit still for long even if their lives depended on it.  Why walk when you can rumba!  Trust me none have the personality of a tree stump.  All are chock full of major character, energy, intelligence with a pinch of pizzazz and a boat load of heart.

I used to love to dance now, however, I’m more like a Weeble…you remember Weebles…Weebles wobble but they don’t fall down.  Opps, I do fall down and we’ve already established my inability to remain upright in my many references to Elaine from Seinfeld and how my dancing mimics her movements…to be kind.  It got me to contemplating the obvious parallels between my life and the crapper.  No offense, just watching the muy muy grande energy these women exhibit makes me tired.

If I tried to tango, for instance, I’d look like a flagitious floozy.  Notorious for dancing like my toes are numb all the while channeling my inner lunatic – hence the Elaine comment above.

The thing is people connect here.  Quickly.  You can meet people while walking down the street and become instant friends.  Invitations to do almost anything are shared instantaneously upon meeting someone.  You can virtually see brains ticking away thinking what group would this person fit in and out pops the invite.

It is not to say there aren’t volunteer opportunities galore, educational opportunities, exercise venues, groups representing all the various lands from which many have journeyed prior to arriving in our little village and dancing lessons, etc.  They exist by the oodles.

However, getting together to share stories, sustenance, laughter and life is important no matter where you are and is not merely a pop psychology panacea – it is lived and breathed here to the nth degree.  The ex-pats that live in this area as well as the nationals know how to make people feel welcome.  Is it any wonder more and more people from all over the world are finding Mexico’s climate and characters a primo destination?!  Viva Mexico!

P.S.  The guys look great too!  What guy wouldn’t when surround by a bevy of beauties!

Below are a few photographs (taken by David, naturally) of the get-together.  The last photo is taken from one of the several porches in the home where the party was held.  Most homes on the mountain side of the carretera (highway) have beautiful views of the lake and surrounding mountains.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cleverly Disguised Responsible Adult
Aug 17th, 2011 by Les

“My life at the moment is like my wardrobe.  Organized chaos.”  David Whenham

“It is a mistake to think you can solve any major problems with potatoes.”  Douglas Adams

Pedestrians do not have the right away here.  For that matter, cars don’t have the right away either.  It is what I would call a free-for-all.  I am fully aware potatoes are not going to solve much less mediate this problem.

Let’s say we all arrive at the corner at the same time.  Some of us are on foot, some in cars, some in all terrain vehicles, some on mopeds or motorcycles, some on golf carts, some on bicycles, some on horseback with the variable of a burro thrown in to make up-coming events even more worthy of note.

One must also consider, again a variable, the sidewalk…some have no curbs, some have a slight curb, some have really, really high curbs, some have steps down the curb and others simply have broken cement.  And, dear readers, where does this all lead to….you guessed it I’m sure… my beloved cobblestones.

It is my contention the object reaching the corner first – it doesn’t matter what it is – has the slightest edge on the chaos.  I believe there are, however, mitigating factors that transcend the obvious – bigger rules the roost.  How puerile that thought would be!

I mean think about it there have been peace conferences (I say this in the sense that all who attended thought their ideas in regard to stop and go lights actually having lights that aren’t burned out, street signs that meant what they said and were not perceived as merely a suggestion, numbers on the various buildings having some rhyme or reason ad nausea) generated by the masses to give a hint to perhaps, if not a law, how a rule of thumb might help in these situations.  Heck just like the Munich Agreement.  Eleven months later Nazi tanks rolled into Warsaw.  Thank goodness there are no tanks here…a few Hummers…but no tanks so far and only one hover craft (thank you R2D2) in residence.

Then there is the male/female thing – men are very much in charge here and respect for the phenomenon is important.  Let’s say, for the sake of argument, the men involved in the stand still on the street corner were in touch with their inner Odysseus and were actually able to look the other way and not be the first to enter the street exhibiting their strength and quest for adventure.  Probably wouldn’t happen but we live in hope.

I’ve also forgotten to mention the Lollipop Guild – Nino’s of Ajijic’s.  Most have learned, at a very tender age; hang onto mum or papa’s hand, skirt, pants whatever you can hang onto because once we begin to move we move quickly and together.

Again I digress, here we all are assembled in mass on a street corner in Ajijic, Jalisco, Mexico in the Lake Chapala area – I’m merely trying to allow you, dear readers, to understand the depth of feeling that goes into making it across the street without having a heart attack.

My observation has been the most assertive person in the bunch usually sets the pace.  Often that person is one of the elderly women of the village.  They’ve been there.  They’ve seen it all and they move forward with determination and an absolutely astounding ability to not make eye contact with anyone.  Making eye contact, hesitating, sneezing for that matter, reduces your change of taking charge of the situation by a nano-second and thereby renders you lost in the chaos again.

So now, the elderly ladies have entered the street and mo-bile traffic comes to a halt.  If you are smart you plummet yourself into the street immediately after the senioras making hay while the sun shines as the non-mechanical vehicles of transport follow suit and, quite frankly, after that you do not turn your head back to see what happens next because you are: #1 congratulating yourself for making it across in one piece and #2 looking ahead to yet another street corner in the distance where yet another puzzle palace resides.  You must, after all, regain your strength for yet another encounter of man versus machine, versus animals, versus cobblestones….ya da, ya da, ya da.

I leave you with this thought: pretending to be normal is soooo exhausting.  Consequently, it will probably never happen here whilst writing this blog!  Viva Mexico!

Below are some of David’s pedestrian (meaning people – not “pedestrian” meaning run-of-the-mill for he has none of those) photographs.  After his photographs lies a special surprise!

 

Gringo’s preparing to cross…or not!

 

Tomorrow, August 18th, is David’s birthday.  If you’d like to send him a greeting please feel free to do so at hiredavid61@yahoo.com
 
 

Love is the language our hearts use to speak to one another.  For you, David, my heart sings.  Your smile is my sunshine.  Your kiss is my sunset. May the year ahead bring you more joy than you could realize with a touch of humor, a dash of the absurd (my job in a nutshell), good health and the knowledge that your brilliant mind, kind heart and caring ways have touched many and will continue to do so until forever.   Happy Birthday my beloved!

Straight Talk – No Equivocating
Aug 15th, 2011 by Les

One of the quotes I live by is “When in doubt, make a fool of yourself.  There is a microscopically thin line between being brilliantly creative and acting like the most  gigantic idiot on earth.  So what the hell, leap!”  Cynthia Heimel, American Author

“Perhaps I’m old and tired, but I always think that the chances of finding out what really is going on are so absurdly remote that the only thing to do is to say hang the sense of it and just keep yourself occupied.”  Douglas Adams, Author of Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy

There are times when I think I might just be a cosmic collection agent.  Life really seems to overtake me – especially here in our small Mexican village.  Truth be told, anywhere is perfect for me to suddenly burst into song, dance, etc for no apparent reason.

This morning I decided to use up the bananas that were turning black.  Yes, bananas turn black even here in beautiful Mexico.  Why is it that there are times when we can’t seem to get enough bananas and others when they just sit there taunting us?  Yes folks I can bake.  I’m not saying good baking, mind you.  I do take pleasure in the fact that what I start out making usually does look just like the picture…taste is a whole other thing.  Suffice it to say David is not wasting away at the moment.

Any who, here I am making scratch banana bread and suddenly without warning the urge to sing – nothing in particular just a bunch of silly words in what I consider musical fashion bursting from my lips ( la kooka roachca, la kooka roachca) I danced around the kitchen.  As I’ve mentioned, my dancing strongly mimics Elaine of Seinfeld fame (something similar to the herky jerky).

I’m gyrating around the room when out of no where comes our young male cat, Frodo, MoJo, JoJo (don’t ask its too complicated to go into). Frodo had been in a fight, couldn’t walk on his hind leg and was battered and bleeding when we found him – we nursed him back to health, took him to the vet, had his wilder yearnings quelled. Now he is a wonderful part of our household…well, maybe that’s a stretch as my old cat Mandy and another rescued female, Gattita aren’t exactly thrilled with him…but, as usual I digress.  Let’s see, where was I… Frodo came flying into the room.  Our old colonial Mexican abode has tile floors.  One usually slides on tile floors.  Cats too.  Our kitchen is fairly large so I’m gyrating and the cat flies between my feet – no easy chore – and slides right into the stove – BAM!  Huge eyes staring up at me he begins to meow loudly…at least I think that is what he was going for.

Of course, all the doors and windows are open, screens in place and our Mexican neighbors – there aren’t many gringos in our part of the hood – are now probably thinking extraño americano (weird American)!  I know that is something like what David might have been thinking…although ever tactful he remained smilingly quiet having heard and witnessed it all before!

Astoundingly jejune phrase, nah-ahh, critics everywhere even of the feline persuasion.  Which brings me to my point…I know…I said no equivocating…but come on did you really think moi could hit the nail on the head on first try!!

People who live here are accepting – the nationals and internationals as well.  Picture our small village in the center of Mexico on its largest lake –Lake Chapala.  Palm trees blowing in the gentle summer breeze.  Sunshine, wispy clouds, mountains, waterfalls, tropical forests and the lists goes on.  And in this tiny village reside its Mexican natives and people from all over the world!

An eclectic, adventure-some, enthusiastic, askew of the norm, fun-loving, insightful, accepting and – okay – slightly crazy group of bohemian-in-nature crop of wonderful people.  Open to new ideas yet bringing with them their own culture and sharing it with anyone who well, quite simply, wants to know.

We started a group that is now called the “Meet and Greet” crowd.  It started with just David and I, two of our friends – Jan and Joe – and some wonderful people – Mark and Emmie – who wanted to get to know ex-pats from the area and were Boomers Blog readers.

The group has grown into well over 30 people.  I welcome anyone who reads this blog to email me if they are coming to visit – its lots of fun – don’t be afraid – and let me know when you’ll be here as we will get together and welcome you to our midst.

I’ve often heard people who live here say – the only question we get asked when we say we are moving to or living  in Mexico is: “are you crazy?”  What this group does is answer that question, share why they are here, share the good and some of the difficulties living here, share the names of vendors that have been most helpful, share how they handle this or that, share why they love it here and are still here and on, and on, and on.

Oh yes, they also share laughter…lots of laughter!

If you are ever in our neighborhood – please let me know, les@boomerstomexico.com .  I promise you won’t regret doing so as no one comes away from these Meet and Greets without a smile affixed to their beaming faces.

Viva Mexico and Viva the Expats and Nationals that Live Here!

The Girls are Not Thrilled with the Boy

 
 
 
 
 

Another Day Ends on the Malecon

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