Lockdown

We are on whatever day of the official lockdown. There are no cases in our area but we decided to be cautious. But first supplies.

Our neighbours, Garry and Pattie, needed groceries as well as meds so we took Garry to town with the intention of stocking us both households up. Pattie has a bad cold so we are staying clear of her just in case.

We went to ‘Super Hawaii’ where I headed for the essentials and snagged ten litres on white wine. Rosalie wasn’t far behind and grabbed a few bottles for herself. Of course, I drink from tetra packs while she has the more expensive bottled wine. But that’s okay, that what love’s all about. (sigh!)

Garry had phoned an order in, but for some reason, it had been delivered to the wrong place. The order was paid for by the recipient so  Alex at Hawaii wasn’t too concerned. Garry was a bit pissed off but gathered together his missing order and we eventually made it home. But only after adhering to all antivirus protocols; we sprayed ourselves in alcohol from head to foot, gargled with tequila (swallowing, because that’s mandatory) and avoided making eye contact with anyone.

They are putting solar hot water heating in our unit and we were told that the guys would arrive at 11 am. When we got back at 3 pm they still weren’t there. They eventually showed up at about 4 pm. Raquel, the owner of the place was with them and not in the least put out by their tardiness. I thought that they needed a good telling off.

While she was waiting for the guy to give her a list of supplies, Raquel took Rosalie on a tour of the ranch and showed her some more fruit trees. So now, we can add bananas and limes to our list. One of our papayas is getting ripe and we hope to have that soon. The breadfruit is intriguing, as we have no idea when they will be ready or what to do with them. Apparently, they are delicious. Omar, hopefully,  will help us out.

Rosalie’s feeling the strain.

With nothing better to do, I washed the car. It sits under a huge tree that seems to spit on it during the night. It’s a kind of sap but fortunately is water-soluble and washes off easily. I can see this happening on a daily basis just to keep me busy. If I get bored I can always go out and dust the fruit trees. I would skim the leaves off the pool but don’t want to do Omar out of a job, and besides Garry seems to enjoy doing it.

We have done a lot of sitting around and reading our books. You know just like you’re supposed to do when retired. The weather is still hot; 31c during the day but only 17c at night. I sometimes feel that I need to put on my woolies. For those of you who may be concerned, our alcohol supply is holding out but bending just a little. The next time we need supplies we will order in.

I have wine so feeling fine.

We have arranged with Gerry (not Garry) to take us to PV when the time comes as we really don’t want to sit in a possibly infected bus for four hours. I think this whole thing is making us extremely paranoid about catching something. Before all this happened we would have happily licked our tray on the plane to make them clean. Now we won’t even go on a bus.

TRUMP

I don’t like to get involved with politics but have to say a few things about the so-called leader of the free world south of us. Because our future depends on some of the decisions he makes.

After being elected by the Russians who must be rolling on the ground laughing, this person continues to baffle the rest of the world. Foreign leaders have no idea how to deal with a person who acts like and has the mentality of a five-year-old.

Donald Trump has no moral compass. In fact, he has no compass what so ever. He has no idea Where he is, How he got here, Where he’s going or What he will do when he gets there.

His ‘advisors’ are afraid to try to lead him into any direction but his own as they know he will get into a hissy fit, stamp his feet and start bad mouthing them on twitter. Which may not be all bad as he can’t spell anyway. He may have called someone stooped instead of stupid, which isn’t quite as bad, as being older has its benefits.

I know that a lot of people think he’s the greatest thing since sliced salami and they are of course entitled to their opinions. But so am I. We know of several people who are “Trumpers” and they are entitled to support whoever they want. However, I’m fed up tiptoeing around these people and trying not to offend them. I wouldn’t try to change their mind as I know they’re as entrenched in their opinion as I am.

I think that Trump may say one thing out of many that resonates with a person, then, that person jumps on board because it’s personal to him or her.  If one of our politicians said he was going to raise our pensions by 50 %, I would be on board immediately. But perhaps I should stop and look at all the other things this guy is saying. Is he going to make cuts to lower-income families or cuts to the health care system to pay to get a few more votes from seniors? Will he still have a security service who can work with him?  Will other countries still respect and work with him?  We do, but shouldn’t, look at this on a personal basis. We need to look at the whole picture and do some serious thinking.

We watched Michael Moore’s documentary 11/9 (not 9/11) and I have just finished reading ‘Fear’ by Bob Woodward. If this isn’t enough to scare the crap out of anybody then I don’t know what is. But not to worry, it’s all fake news anyway. Even Bob Woodward, famous for the Watergate expose’ is only a second rate hack reporter. (according to…) This contributed to the downfall of the Washington Post by earning it the Pulitzer Prize for journalism. (Just a hint of sarcasm.)

Trump likes to tell a few porky pies (lies) too. Over 16,000 so far. But of course, that’s not true, it’s all concocted by the Democrats and the media. Nothing is his fault and as the true narcissist he is, he doesn’t have the courage to admit when he’s wrong. But then, of course, he never is.

I can only hope that the educated people who mistakenly voted for him last election wake up and see the damage he’s doing. More importantly, I hope they get out there and vote.

America is a beautiful country and most people are great. I don’t agree with a lot of the things about the states, but I’m sure they feel the same about Canada or England. However, they have the greatest opportunity to make positive changes in the world, and I hope they do. But they can’t do it with that fool in power.

End of rant. On to more fun stuff.

Total confusion

Two days ago we booked our flights home on West Jet for the 22nd April. Today we found out that they are likely canceled. We didn’t get a formal notification from west Jet but found out on Facebook.

I checked our itinerary and only found the flight from Calgary to Comox on there. Okay, so now I have to cancel the trip and start again in May. When I finally did manage to cancel,  it appears that only the flight from Calgary to Comox was credited. Now I’m a bit pissed off.

Later in the day, we found out, again on Facebook, that someone had been able to talk to the airline and had been advised to wait as their flight may still go. As I said “total confusion” As of now we have no flight from Calgary to Comox and maybe a flight from PV to Calgary.

I’m confused

Update. 

We got an official cancellation notice late last night. When I got on WestJet’s site today I managed to go through the process and re-booked our flight for 6th May. It was really quite easy and now we have to wait to see if it’s real. Interestingly, when I did seat selection, they were all selected with a space between each seat. So it looks as though the plane will be half empty. I think that’s why they cancelled the last flight as that seating arrangement had every seat full.

So we may see you in a while, plus two weeks.

We’s bad?

We are still being bombarded by information about the covid 19 virus. All are well-meaning but some are on the lines of the ‘sky is falling in’ and some are contradictory, a few completely erroneous.

There is Canadian news down here, you’ve probably heard of the internet. We probably get the same news that you do. This is Mexico, not the moon. So we are ignoring everything else and making up our own minds. Rosalie has been scared more than once by somebody sending false information. When we check it out we find it’s nonsense.

For instance, we were told that all air passengers going into Canada had to be quarantined for two weeks in a hotel. This turned out to be untrue. Anyone with symptoms yes. That we can understand.

As for local conditions: most locals are being cautious. We often see people use sanitizers after handling money and there are dispensers in the banks. although the government has been slow to act, the general population hasn’t. We don’t see nearly as many people on the street as usual. We’re coming up to Easter and Mexican tourists might be starting to come into town. We’ll have to see how that pans out.

Our home here is out of town and we go out as little as possible, especially now. There are no cases locally at the moment. Despite what some people say, fresh air, sunshine and higher temperatures are some of the better deterrents and we have that in abundance where we are.

We are aware that this could spread to our area and we are taking all precautions. There has been criticism that “we would be taking a hospital bed away from a local Mexican.” From what we have read, not everybody ends up in hospital anyway, as well as the fact we have no symptoms and are both very healthy. Also, we contribute thousands of dollars a year to the local economy. By staying another month we have helped to feed several families as well as helping out the local shop keepers with our purchases.

As an instance; we have a washing machine but decided to take our laundry into town so that Cuca, our favourite laundress, would still get some income. Every little helps.

We have been bombarded with criticism, ‘useful hints’, fake news, appeals to come home and occasionally good information. As I said earlier “we aren’t on the moon”, just a few thousand kilometers away and from our point of view, have less chance of catching it than you do. Of course, this thinking could be wrong but we are entitled to our opinions too.

So, thank you to all those people who are supporting us and sending positive comments. Most of the info we get is well-meant but we have to make our own decisions, as you do. We are living here and see it from a different perspective, so please think twice before criticizing us.

Ben Trovato and other stuff

I not only write a blog but subscribe to others. My favourite is Ben Trovato.
He writes from South Africa and is as eloquent and funny as I can only hope to be.
As he is in S.A. a lot of what he writes is about things, politics and people I don’t know. He is still, however, very funny and entertaining. You can read his blog at this link

I’ve noticed that my blog is being read by a lot more people lately. I put this down to the boredom of being locked in at home.  I think people get bored with reading the instructions on the back of all those hoarded toilet roll packages and turn to the blog in desperation.

Michelle asked if we miss our rooster in this location. Well, we do get a dawn chorus of roosters trying to outdo the local dogs. Fortunately for us, it’s all in the distance and not a problem. We have a lot of birds here. and they can be noisy, especially in the morning, but are comforting at the same time.

Mike warned us that we would have more mosquitos here and he was right. We just keep ourselves sprayed with bug juice and light the mossie coils and that mostly takes care of the problem. It only seems to be for a while in the evening anyway.

We just got a notice from Expedia that our flight home has been canceled. I took a brief look for other flights and found none. It looks like we are here for the duration. Not a bad place to be stuck.

Update!! I took another look and was able to book a flight on 22nd April with WestJet. We think the intercity buses may not be running so we may have to hire a taxi. There are also a few other options we’re looking into.

Our biggest challenge is getting home from the airport in Comox. So with the help of good friends Art and Linda, we have a plan. We will re-insure the car online and they will pick up the papers. Then, they will take the car to Comox and hide the keys somewhere so that when we get in at midnight we will have transportation.

This all sounds very clandestine. As I’m reading John la Carre’s biography it only adds to the feeling. Maybe I should have them leave a chalk mark somewhere that we can go to a dropbox and find instructions for the keys. (We have to get out of here my mind’s going silly.)

We have a new neighbour in the ranch. Garry and Pattie (last name same as ours but no relation). They were staying in the same location as Rosalie’s sisters. When everybody else went home they were by themselves. The owners of the place brought their kids and all their grandkids, as well as another family to the place. Apparently, the noise was horrendous and continued until late at night.

They contacted us and we made arrangements with Raquel the owner of the ranch for them to stay in the other bungalow for the next three weeks. We took the car and picked them up today. So ends our bout of skinny dipping as they are on the same flight back as us. 

 

Skinny Dipping

Yes, that’s what I said. “Skinny dipping”

We were getting into the pool the other day when I noticed that nobody could see us. Yipee, off with the swimsuits and go commando. How freeing! It’s amazing what we found that could float that we hadn’t thought of before.

Once we got out, we could walk back to the casa ‘au naturel’. We don’t do that though, as we have to maintain some sense of decorum.  We do have to watch out for mossies though as they have no idea what they are biting into.

Yuck! you might say. How gross, two old farts getting naked and cavorting in the pool. Hey! Don’t knock it until you’ve tried it. What’s the difference between being naked in the bedroom to being naked in the pool? Besides, we are getting a nice overall tan, you don’t get that in the bedroom.

On a more serious note: we got all the paperwork for the condo sale today. We had a problem with this as the local notaries wanted everything translated to Spanish, a very expensive proposition. However, our fantastic notary in Nanaimo found a way around this and everything is now on track.

We had to go to a computer outlet to get our docs printed and then back again after signing to get them scanned. After we sent them back via email we had to send some info to Peter (remember him) as he was helping us out. It only took about five attempts before I managed to get them to him.

While we were in the computer place we noticed that every time they touched the money they used sanitizer. The Mexicans are taking this whole thing seriously and so are we.

Our pool boy Omar and our cleaner, Rubi are happy as we have given them at least one more month of work. It’s important because as soon as the Nortenos have left, the place is like a ghost town and a lot of people are out of work.

They say that one of the best ways of combating the virus is to sip some sort of liquid every ten minutes to wash the virus away. My choices are tequila and wine. Rosalie not so much so I’ve decided to stay clear of her for a while just in case. Regardless of the skinny dipping.

Omar has been under the weather for the last few days but he showed up today and did his chores with the pool and set up the sprinklers for the lawn.    Then he went home. Several hours later we realized that the sprinklers were still on. I turned them off and decided to give Omar a good British thrashing next time I saw him. Yea, as if!

Hammock problems

I was laying in the hammock a while back when I felt more than heard a string break. I checked it out and found that the sharp edges on the stretcher bar were wearing out the support strings.

I wasn’t happy with the thought of something giving way and my head smacking on the tile floor. I’m sure the image of this brings a smile to a few faces.  I was prepared to toss it out but our friend Valerie, who was staying with us at the time, suggested that it could be repaired. Needing something to do, I agreed. But first I had to get the guilty look off of my face as the local guy at the market tried to sell me another one.

First I needed some cord so off to the hardware store I went. I told the gentleman what I wanted and he brought out a huge roll of the stuff. Not planning ahead, I had no idea how much I wanted so I told him one hundred metres. He looked at the roll looked at me and said that he was not sure if there was enough on the roll.

I asked how much for the roll and he did a quick calculation and said 110 pesos, about seven bucks. I took it. When I got home I looked at the bottom of the roll and it was clearly marked 75 metres. After a quick calculate I found out that he had charged the exact correct amount. Who’d a knew? Mexicans are mostly so honest.

The next part was tricky. I had to calculate the various lengths of the strings. Having done this, I cut the strings to their correct sizes and started in with my best string tying techniques.

I knotted all the pieces together only to find that I had left out a pair of strings in one set. I had to unpick it and start again. It’s lucky that I have nothing but time here. By the way, I only used about twenty metres of cord.

What to do about the sharp edges on the stretcher bar? I didn’t have the necessary tools so went to the obvious place, Elaine our neighbour. She has a far move extensive tool kit than me, I’m embarrassed to say. I borrowed a drill set and used the half-inch bit to round the edges. So far not bad.

When I finally finished I thought that Rosalie would be happy to try it out. She wasn’t! I was a bit disappointed but could see her point. She’s such a wussy. At worst she would have only got a bit of a headache. So, I decided to be the hero and slowly lowered myself into it and after a few hicks, bumps, burps and farts it settled down. I still didn’t trust it though. I think it’s just waiting for the right moment to test out how hard my noggin is.

At first, it took a bit of an adjustment time as the cords kept stretching and had to be readjusted. I’m writing this four months later and the darn thing is still hanging in there. Did you get it hanging in there?  Not one of my best but it is hot here and my brain’s not working right.