The partial panda

I walked into the bedroom today and saw this, a partial panda. As I’ve mentioned many times, my child bride crochets, a hobby she started with the kickoff of the Kung Flu hysteria last year.

As a result, we have yarn and crochet gear spread about the bedroom and sometimes other rooms too. Here is an example. She is a woman of incessant motion, and this keeps her hands occupied.

She sells her stuff — though not often — on the website Etsy. Due to its being not often, the merchandise is accumulating here at the Hacienda. The beasts reside in one of two places, atop the living room loveseat or in a suitcase under the stairwell.

Some will be moving out, however, for Three King’s Day in early January, gifts to our numerous nieces and nephews, perhaps some other relatives too. Those under the stairwell will be most delighted to move elsewhere, one imagines. It’s dark in there.

The nieces will love the plushy beasts, but the nephews will prefer something else, I suspect, because boys and girls are different. Perhaps some crocheted rocket-launchers.

Doings of November

Downtown yesterday afternoon, walking back to the Honda.

November is delightful here. It’s my favorite month. In another life, above the Rio Bravo, my favorite month was October. But here it’s November because it’s often still raining in October.

I phoned my stone-and-cement man yesterday to get the work started on the yard. I’m planning to eliminate another big chunk of grass, replacing it with stone and cement. There will also be some artistic touches. Alas, he is currently building a house somewhere, but I have through next May to get it done. Rain starts in June.

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Mail from France

This morning I drove downtown to check my PO box, a biweekly chore. I rarely get snail mail, but this morning I did, a handmade greeting card from a woman in France who used to be a coworker on the New Orleans newspaper in the 1970s. As I live in Mexico with a “new” wife, she lives in France with a new husband.

Her card said: The trouble with retirement is you never get a day off.

I find laziness increasing with age, but this morning I hoofed it outside to clean the birdbath, wipe the glass top of the patio table with its web chairs, and water the potted plants on the downstairs terraza. It’s good to have chores. It’s better to actually do them.

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The Honda gets glitchy

The air-conditioning on the Honda committed suicide last week. I took it to my garage yesterday to add more Freon, or whatever they call that gas these days, but sadly it did not need Freon, which means there’s a deeper problem. Monday, we’ll be driving to the nearby state capital where there’s a good AC shop near Costco.

My fingers are crossed. This could get pricey.

We’ve had the Honda for 12 years, and it’s never had a major problem, so we’re ahead of the game. The Honda was nice to do this in November instead of waiting till next April or May, which are the only months you really need AC here, and just in the afternoons.

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Artwork in yarn

November finds my child bride busy too. Her downtown pastry sales have been on hold for two weekends due to the Day of the Dead hubbub, but no grass grows under her butt.

She’s crocheting up a storm. Here is her latest creation, a unicorn. It’s her second unicorn. The first was purchased by a nice lady in Texas via our Etsy website. This unicorn is still not listed there, but it will be.

We’re doing something wild (for us) this afternoon. Eating hamburgers and French fries at a new spot downtown that we’ve yet to try. Eternally striving to stay healthy, hamburgers rarely are placed on our plates, but today will be an exception.

I hope it does not give me the trots.

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More water heaters

We have three functioning water heaters at the Hacienda although we only use two, a solar plus an on-demand version. The solar works great in the afternoon and evening if it’s been a sunny day. On overcast days, it’s easy to switch over to the one that runs on propane.

We have a Dallas couple in the Downtown Casita now, a two-week stay. The townhouse has been mostly vacant since the pandemic hysteria started, so a couple of unexpected problems reared their heads, alas, for the paying tenants. First, the water heater grew balky. I sent a plumber to fix it after two days.

I decided to check the water tank on the roof last Sunday, and it was almost empty because the electronic gizmo that automatically fills it when it reaches a certain level malfunctioned. It was an easy fix for me, but I hope it does not recur. They leave Monday.

Paying tenants should never lack hot water, so I’ve already bought another of the same on-demand heater we have at the Hacienda, and when the tenants depart, the plumber will install it, thus providing two options for future folks.

I am wearying of being a landlord, the hassle, which is why if I like you, you’re invited for a free stay. You might leave a few pesos on the kitchen counter for the maid, the gas and the electricity.

That would be nice. Keep in mind that those things are very inexpensive here.

Behold the smurf

Where but here on The Moon does one encounter such a wide array of topics? The answer is nowhere. So let us pivot from the previous topic, the End of Civilization, to the fun one of smurfs.

But hold your horses!

An online inquiry reveals many definitions of smurf. I was shocked, and maybe you will be too. First, there is the “Belgian comic franchise centered on a fictional colony of small, blue, humanoid creatures who live in mushroom-shaped houses in the forest.”

But in online gaming, a smurf is an experienced player who uses a new account to deceive other players into thinking he’s a noob (newbie). A smurf can also be a money launderer who seeks to evade scrutiny from government agencies by breaking up large transactions.

And there is the latest of my child bride’s crochet art, the smurf you see in the photo. Keep in mind that her work is done from scratch. There are no molds, etc. It all begins and ends with crochet needles. And numerous hours of labor. Her handiwork is for sale. International shipping available. Moon readers eligible for a sweet discount.

Be the first on your block to own a piece of The Moon.

Another Sunday drive

Entrance to Tupátaro.

When I was a teenager visiting my grandmother in southwest Georgia, the two of us would take Sunday drives after dinner, which is what lunch was called.

It had a fancier name than lunch because, like Mexicans, our main meal was in the middle of the day. Noon for Georgia and 2 to 4 in the afternoon for Mexico.

In Georgia, we often would stop by my grandmother’s sister’s place, which was just up the dirt road a ways, to scoop her up, so there would be three of us in the Ford. I would be the driver.

Flash forward six decades, and I’m still the driver. Granny and auntie are in their graves. Today, my child bride and I drove down the same route as the last Sunday drive on August 1.

And we ate in the same open-air restaurant, a country spot in Tupátaro which, we decided last time, did not merit a second visit. No matter. We ate there again, and reached the identical conclusion.

Some people are slow learners.

The official purpose of the trip — a purpose is nice but not essential — was to drive past Tupátaro to Cuanajo, just like last time. My child bride is hunting wood shelves on which to display her crochet art. It’s easier and cheaper to hire a carpenter, which is what we’ll likely do, but we drove to Cuanajo anyway because it’s a beautiful drive.

We didn’t find anything she liked in Cuanajo, so we came home, one more Sunday drive under our belts, along with the chicken and mole we ate at that restaurant. And beans. There are always beans.

To lightly paraphrase Joe Biden: If you don’t eat beans, you ain’t Mexican.

The outskirts of Cuanajo. This ain’t Houston, Toto.