Then and now


The Hacienda is 10 years old this month. I’ve never lived anywhere longer.

When we moved in, the upstairs terraza was green. Now it’s yellow. The bathtub was Colonial tile. Now it’s some fancy plastic. Then there were shower curtains in the tub downstairs and the stall upstairs. Now there are sliding doors.

Then we slept on a queen bed. Now we sleep on a king. Then the living room furniture was beige. Now it’s red. Then the columns supporting the tile roof on the upstairs terraza were wood. Now they are brick.

Then there were scant plants in the yard. Now, well, look at the photo. Then I mowed the yard. Now Abel the deadpan neighbor mows it.

Then the street out back was dirt. Now it’s cobblestone. Then the street out front was potholed. Now it’s smooth, plus there’s a sidewalk. Then there were no bats living in the downstairs terraza tiles. Now there are.

Then we had no way to water the yard. Now we have two water tanks and two pumps for that. Then we had one car. Now we have two. Then the service patio was white. Now it’s green and partially roofed to boot.

Then the windows leaked when it rained. They still do, but not so much as then. Then I was young. Now I’m not.

Then there was no municipal water supply. Now there is. Then the lot next door was a pasture with a cow. Now it’s a sex motel.

Then two lots across the street were vacant. Now there are two snazzy houses. Then our underground cistern was plastic. Now it’s concrete.

Then I was a Gringo. Now I’m a Mexican who looks like a Gringo. Then I was not an internet whizbang. Now I am.

Then my Spanish was dicey. Now it’s much better. Then my child bride was young and beautiful. Now she still is. Then I did not much like living in Mexico. Now I do. Then I voted Democrat. Now I don’t.

Then I visited the Old Country every year. Now I don’t, ever.

I could go on, but you’re starting to nod off.

It’s been the best decade of all.

23 thoughts on “Then and now

  1. Change. It is what keeps us young. And, paradoxically, it is what will eventually kill off the mortal flesh that transports who we are from place to place.


  2. I like digging through the old photos that show the changes. You can’t go back but you can visit a bit.


    1. Norm: Photography was a fine invention.

      As for the house, I took lots of photos during the construction process that would have been, for me at least, very interesting now. All digital. Stupidly, I backed up none. They were on a hard drive that committed suicide one day. Poof! All gone.


    1. Tancho: My personal upkeep and maintenance is scarcely different than a decade ago. I must have good genes.

      As for the house, there are two albañiles here working at this very moment. The ceramic tile we had installed just two years ago on the upstairs terraza buckled in one section like two tectonic plates doing battle. They finished that repair a few minutes ago, and are now in the bathroom behind me doing some cosmetic work.


  3. Felipe’s Hide-Away is quite a project. We need projects to keep us going and the best is yet to come. If you can perceive it you can achieve it.


    1. Peter: Yes, it is, and I brag about it on a regular basis. When I was married to my first wife, about 200 years ago, I used to design Spanish-style houses on paper, places I wanted to build for us. We never did, of course, and the designs were nothing like what I have now, but I find it interesting that even then, in my early 20s, I was inclined in this direction.


  4. You have a lovely home, señor. As far as water, I have discovered that I like having tanks and pumps that function well. I never thought about water on tap in the States. Here, it is practically an art and an obsession with me to get the system to work properly.


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