My weird world

THIS IS MY hardscrabble barrio’s water storage tank. It sits higher than any other place hereabouts, so gravity is how water gets to my house and those of the neighbors.

About a decade ago, this structure was covered with graffiti, and it was an eyesore. Then it got a fresh paint of white and red, and it remained unsullied for years.

Recently, someone applied artwork, a series of skulls. The one on the right in the middle row is even getting a shower.

Our municipal water comes from an underground spring. It’s delivered to us that way. There’s no purification plant.

We are natural people.

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MY BEAUTIFUL WORLD

After  taking the photo at the top, I did a 180, and took the second photo, which is one side of our neighborhood plaza.

I’ve shot a number of photos of our plaza over the years, but never from this side. Look at those jacaranda trees. I get to admire them every weekday morning during our plaza walk.

We passed our 15th anniversary two days ago, and now we’re working on the second 15 years. I’ve been married thrice, of course. Five years with No. 1. Nineteen years with No. 2, although we were actually married only the last 10.

That means my current marriage has lasted the longest by a long shot. Although I am a fan of marriage, I hope not to have to do it a fourth time. Three is adequate.

Thanks for stopping by.

Who’ll stop the rain?

after
After: With the rain gutters.
before
Before: No rain gutters.

SPRING APPEARED over the past few days. I’ve sported short-sleeved shirts thrice. One is brown-checkered, one yellow-checkered and the third was a rose-colored linen.

We’ve replaced winter’s goose-down comforter on the king bed with a wool blanket that, we discovered on the first night, was inadequate for the cool air that flows in the window.

Another blanket will go atop it, but the goose down is retired till next winter. Short sleeves are in order for daytime.

Spring on the mountaintop brings numerous changes. One is the hour switch, that irrational nonsense that soldiers on yearly out of pure inertia. That happens next weekend.

Yes, the schedule is slightly different than what happens north of the Rio Bravo.

People tend to think — people who do not live here — oh, boy! Springtime! Fact is that it’s the worst season. It gets stuffy in the afternoons and evenings, and then there’s the dust.

The rainy season changes all that, cooling things off and inspiring Mother Nature to go full-tilt green. It’s nice.

That arrives in June.

Since we built the Hacienda 13 years ago, we’ve had endless problems with the downstairs veranda flooding from water that runs in during downpours.

Finally, we’ve done something about that. It’s a two-prong solution, the greater of which you see in the photos:

Rain gutters!

Common sense would have had them installed long ago, but common sense often is in short supply in our house.

The second prong is work done on the floor under the fourth arch you see in the photos, the rear, left.

It’s an entryway and previously was flat, providing a sweet path for blown-in rainwater. It now has a gentle incline urging rainwater outward instead of inward. Duh!

I’d like to jump completely over springtime every year, going straight from the goose-down comforter and coats to the rain of cool summer. But the Goddess ignores my opinion.

But by October, we’ll be asking, Who’ll Stop the Rain?

The baby’s casket

casket

OUR NEIGHBORHOOD abuts the highway down the mountain to the state capital. If you get on that highway, drive about a quarter-mile, you’ll encounter a small settlement. Turn right there and go up a block or two.

You’ll spot it on the left. That is, if it’s open at the hour you pass. It’s a small, very basic funeral parlor. Occasionally, it’s closed. I know this because I sometimes come back to the Hacienda from downtown via a back route that takes me through that small settlement that only has one major street.

When the funeral parlor is open they often put a baby’s casket in the doorway. Come here, it cries out, if your child has died, something that likely is more common in Mexico than above the Rio Bravo.

I find this small coffin’s prominent display touching, poignant and a number of like-minded adjectives. I don’t recall ever seeing such a display as this when I lived above the border, which was most of my long life. But I’ve seen it in Mexico a number of times in a number of places.

Babies should not die.