Step back in time

Wind chime we bought in Zihuatanejo years ago. Enjoying Sunday morn.

Mexico switched its clocks in the middle of last night. Doesn’t happen above the border till later. Has there ever been such an annoying custom that covers so much of the world that continues due to sheer inertia?

Why won’t someone say, Enough already!? Or, as we say in español, ¡Ya, basta!

Here at the Hacienda, we try to soften the blow by moving the clock only 30 minutes on Sunday and then the other half hour mañana. It helps. One of the two switches, fall and spring, feels worse than the other, but I forget which. I think it’s the spring switch.

Reeling from the change of even 30 minutes, we sat down this morning at some vague hour for biscuits, honey and coffee. Then we sat on the scarlet sofa for 30 minutes more, which is our habit every day of the week, a plus to not having real jobs.

Breakfast-recovery time. With music.

Then I put on grubby sweatpants, grabbed yard tools and sat on the rock/concrete out there pulling weeds from around the base of two little palms we were gifted years back by friends of my child bride’s in her long-ago home of Los Reyes, Michoacán.

Weed-free circle.

When you’re 76, getting down and — even more so — getting up from a rock/concrete surface can be a challenge, but it’s all part of the fun, I prefer telling myself. Yipee!

Meanwhile, the Kung Flu terror continues. I once more compared the number of people who have been infected and those who’ve died against the total population, and the results are always the same. You have a better chance of being struck by lightning or gored by a rampaging bull or kicked by a donkey in downtown Seattle.

It’s another cool, lovely day. We’ll be lunching this afternoon in a downtown hotel that serves some killer stuffed chiles. Wish you were here.

The dawn of autumn

Wheelbarrow and tools await instructions.

There were indications yesterday, but this morning confirmed it. Sunshine and 70 degrees. I skipped my customary exercise walk around the neighborhood plaza, choosing instead to get some yard chores completed.

I declare the rainy season done for 2020. It normally continues into October, even beyond, but I don’t think that’s going to be the case this year. I remember one year that it rained on September 30, and that was the end of it. I bet we’re seeing something similar now.

¡Qué bueno!

I put on my tennis shoes and my long-sleeve T-shirt due to the sun. I trimmed one of the bougainvilleas back. I whacked the stand of bananas. I scrubbed the birdbath and filled it with fresh water. Related to that is the location change of the galvanized tub where water waits for terraza watering purposes.

During the rainy season it sits under a drain pipe from the roof, endlessly refilled. Today, I moved it to its winter position under a faucet from a water tank in the Garden Patio.

New digs for the water tub.

I dug up some weeds. I trimmed sagging roses abutting the Alamo Wall. My child bride mixed me a glass of green juice with collagen.

Fall was my favorite season above the border because the contrast with summer was so stark. It’s less of a switch on my mountaintop, but it’s still delightful. Delight has been in short supply this year, one of the worst of my — and likely yours too — life.

Hacienda birds enjoy this colorful spot.

After doing my duties, I sat a spell on a rocking chair in the downstairs terraza. I watched a hummingbird sitting on a twig of the orange bush. Then he took off to dine on aloe vera flowers. I took his cue and stepped inside for cereal.

Saturday morning in the barrio

Abel at work today.

Saturdays are pretty routine as are the other six days of the week, but Saturday morning is when Abel the Deadpan Yardman comes calling with his weedeater. I provide the mower and gasoline for both machines.

Why do I call him deadpan? Well, he can smile. I have seen it, but not often. He’s been cutting the grass and doing the occasional other yard chore for years, ever since I got too shiftless to do it. He has never said a word to me beyond responding to a question.

Nary a peep.

As mentioned some weeks back, he’s more a musician than a yardman, specifically a trumpter with a local noise band.


I did some yardwork before he arrived at 10. I cleared out a small area that was filled with both sweet alyssum and weeds. The latter was getting the better of the former, and they could not be separated, so out they went, the whole little zone.

Next I watered the potted plants on the downstairs terraza before resting on a rocking chair with a glass of green juice and collagen that my child bride whipped up.

The sky is overcast, and it’s cool. says my new Kindle and its cover will arrive today. I hope so. It left San Miguel de Allende a bit after 6 a.m. I don’t know why it was in that Gringo-infested burg since it started its journey my way from Mexico City.

Climbing rose crept into the datura bush.

And that reminds me. There’s a big encampment of people in Mexico City’s Zocalo, citizens who want our megalomaniac president to resign. I hope they are successful. Someone in the opposition PAN party has introduced legislation, or something, to have the president’s mental faculties examined. Makes sense to me. He’s a whack job.

The encampment in Mexico City. Power to the people!

We’ll be having chicken, beans and rice for lunch today. I hope the Kindle arrives soon because I want to go downtown this afternoon and put my feet up for a spell.

I deserve that. I’m verily pooped.

The nosy neighbor

The Before shot. Way bigger than it appears.
The During shot.
The nosy neighbor.

As promised a couple of weeks ago in Roses of September, the final monster aloe vera has been cut down to size, not totally eliminated as we did with the other one in July, but made more manageable, more petite.

One reason I did this is because when the rainy season fades away, we’ll be hiring guys to uproot the grass you see in the photos and replace it with stone and concrete as my ongoing lawn-replacement campaign soldiers on, perhaps to be completed before I die.

The aloe vera was poking way out over some of the grass, plus it was long overdue for some stern discipline anyway.

The rear gate was open during the butchery yesterday, so in walks the cheeky kid who lives out back, uninvited. I was sitting on the yard patio in a web chair overseeing the aloe vera trimming when he walks up and sits with me. I took his photo.

He had never been into our yard before and was quite impressed.

He, his parents and numerous siblings live across the street in what would accurately be called a miserable hovel. But he has a good attitude and is likable. When I stood up to go inside for breakfast, he walked to the dining room window and peered through the glass. I waved.

The work ended. The guys drove off with the green garbage in their pickup truck to dump God knows where — I don’t ask — and the neighbor boy was ushered out the back gate by me. Adiós, kiddo! Everything returned to normal.

The After shot.

The aloe vera appears as if it returned from a week at Weight Watchers.

Before you depart today, it will be fun to chuckle at the notions of the nutty folks on the other side of the political divide. Enjoy!

It neglected to mention the (half) black president!