Long-john day

mornn
The kitchen view at 7:15 a.m.

OTHER PEOPLE in Mexico give you sunrises over beaches and palm trees. Not me. I give you a sunrise through the kitchen window.

But that’s not the topic for today. It’s just decoration. The topic is long johns. I normally live through winter with thermal long johns under my jeans. I only take them off to bathe and switch to clean ones when needed. I have many pairs.

I do this because there is no reliable heat in the house. I never wore long johns in Houston where it gets colder than here, but I had central AC/heat there.

The date on which I don my long johns varies widely. I have pulled them up in December some years. That I’ve waited almost till February this year is a good sign. We’ve had only two light freezes so far. Knock on wood. I just did. My desk.

Part of my impetus is that I am fighting off a light cold that began about three days ago with that itchy feeling in the nose. I started overdosing on Vitamin C, which always seems to help if you catch it early. My kind reader named Creigh recommended zinc tablets. I ordered them about six weeks ago, and they’re still in transit.

They do me no good in transit. Alas, I ordered them from a Mexican firm that imports them from the United States when you order them. Better a Mexican firm that has them in stock. That’s what I will do in the future.

I also do a routine you may have heard of. Take a glass of warm salty water and snort it up your nose and out your mouth. Sounds gross, but it’s very satisfying. And it helps. A doctor told my mother decades ago that it was a useful thing to do.

Perhaps if I’d donned my long johns earlier, I would not be facing this problem.

Life lessons.

Beautiful day

new-image
Side dish of orchid* with morning croissants.

VALENTINE’S DAY is one of our anniversaries. It marks the day we began living together, and that was in my child bride’s condo in Mexico City in 2002.

We made it legal a bit more than two months later, a civil ceremony held in the interior patio of her sister’s coffee shop here on the mountaintop.

While February is normally one of the coldest months hereabouts, this year so far is an exception. We have not had one freeze. A bit of frost last month, but that was it.

We aren’t out of the woods, and we can’t see the light at the tunnel’s end, but I detect a candle glow down there.

Just this morning, I finished the culling of dead plants from the yard, stuff nailed by those January frosts. It all rests in a greenish pile in the Garden Patio, and I’ll hire Abel the Deadpan Neighbor to haul it away very soon.

My lovely wife seems finally to be recovering from a nasty cold caused by her being phoned at 1 a.m. last Thursday as the wake for our nephew began. Yes, 1 a.m. Who starts a wake at 1 a.m.? Mexicans do. Sometimes.

The wake was held on the street with bonfires outside the nephew’s humble home. It was cold and smoky.

She had not slept the previous night either due to spending it at the nephew’s hospital bedside in the state capital. She was mostly awake for 48 hours. Who wouldn’t get sick?

But today things appear to be returning to normal. It’s a beautiful anniversary day,  air is cool, sky is blue, and we’ll lunch on roasted chicken, beans and rice.

* * * *

* Orchid courtesy of the Cotton family who recently visited the mountaintop.

De common code

green

I GODDA CODE. Yes, a cold. Started last Friday night, and it’s marching on, day by day, not improving, not worsening.

I loathe colds with a passion. Everybody dislikes them, but my feeling toward them is red-hot, sizzling. And if anyone around me has a cold, expect me to stay 10 feet away.

That, or I’ll be running out the door, screaming.

My biggest fear is that it will lead to a sinus infection, which it can do. Sinus infections are hell on earth or, at least, that’s how I see them. Any ailment above the neck is dreadful.

Since moving to Mexico, I’ve been fascinated with the locals’ cavalier attitude toward colds. First off, few seem to make a distinction between the common cold and the flu, which is a whole different ballgame.

The Spanish-English dictionary defines cold as resfriado, but I’ve never heard anybody use that word. The word they use is gripa, which the dictionary defines as flu.

Go figger.

No Mexican I know shares my horror of the common cold. You can have red eyes, a scarlet nose and be dripping snot all over the place,  sneezing your head off, and you still get the damnable cheek kiss if someone wanders by.

Last Saturday when my current cold was still iffy, I was downtown, and my sister-in-law appeared.

She leaned over to plant the damnable Latino cheek kiss on me, and I said, “Better not. I have a cold.” “I don’t care,” she replied, and let me have it. These people are loco.

Many years ago, when I still lived above the Rio Bravo, I often neglected the yearly flu shot. Then I got a case of the flu, which a doctor told me was rather mild. If that was mild, I sure didn’t want to risk the whole enchilada.

Now I get a flu shot yearly. Been doing it for ages. My child bride never got a flu shot before she knew me, but now she does, at my insistence.

I haven’t been away from the Hacienda since Saturday. I live in my pajamas. My feet are in Polar Pairs (c) shoe-socks. My cold remains relatively low-grade, and I am waiting it out.

After breakfast, I wandered out to the yard, noticed the view above, and snapped a photo. Gotta have artwork.

Now it’s time for another movie on Netflix.

Twelve things

  1. After two miserable weeks, my cold finally cured itself, and I’m my usual vigorous self. I wonder if these things hang on longer as one ages. Probably.
  2. An insane woman has been walking our neighborhood for a year or two. She seems to be in constant motion, and at times she lets out an angry, blood-curdling scream.
  3. We’re deep into miserable Springtime. Campesinos set fire to the countryside, an annual event, and black soot descends on the Hacienda. It’s a constant sweeping challenge, and sweeping soot is like herding butterflies.odds&ends
  4. We have two definite restaurant days: Thursday and Sunday. That doesn’t mean we can’t eat out on other days too because we can, but we usually don’t.
  5. There is one exception to No. 4, but I don’t really consider it eating out. It’s more of a convenience. On Saturdays, my wife is quite busy baking for her afternoon pastry sale. Before we head downtown with the goodies, we eat roasted chicken at a very humble place near the Hacienda.
  6. Heidi Cruz won’t be First Lady next year. Dang! Seems the Slovenian hussy will be. Or Slick Willy. Lordy!
  7. Former Mexican President Fox said nasty stuff about Trump a few months back, but now he’s apologized and invited Trump to Mexico to get to know us better.
  8. May is the final month to prepare the yard for the summer deluges. I’ll be hiring Abel the deadpan neighbor in a few days to cut and haul lots of stuff away. I want the yard in fighting trim before the floods arrive.
  9. Spring is the only good season for short-sleeved shirts. My pants, however, remain the same all year. Blue jeans.
  10. I’ll be 72 this summer. I’m noticing an occasional unsteadiness in my walk, wobbly-like. This is relatively new, and I do not like it one little bit.
  11. With every passing year, I like Mexico more. Not having been in the United States for seven years now, and not having lived there in 16, I’m forgetting what Gringo life is like. From what I read, perhaps that’s for the best.
  12. According to an article in The New York Times, bilingual people are less likely to get goofy with age. ¡Bueno!