Sex hotel facelift

The enticing façade, fresh from new paint.

UNLESS YOU’RE a relative stranger hereabouts you know I live next door to a sex motel, a fascinating neighbor.

It wasn’t there when we purchased the property and built the Hacienda 14 years back. There was a cow pasture next door where a lone cow lived and attracted flies.

About four years later, the construction crew arrived and started building the sex hotel. There are just eight rooms.

The hotel is part of a nationwide phenomenon called Hoteles de Paso, meaning “pass-by hotels.” These establishments are noted for their very low prices.

Our neighbor, for instance, charges the peso equivalent of about 10 dollars for eight hours; 14 dollars for 12 hours; and 22 dollars for a 24-hour stay, all taxes included.

Take that! Motel 6.

They are usually nicely appointed places with discreet parking. Three sorts of customers, basically. Single folks with nowhere else to get it on. Married folks who just want to have some “us” time away from the 12 children and Granny.

And anyone else who simply wants a nice, inexpensive place to bed down for the night, mostly travelers.

Not being on a major highway, we don’t get much No. 3 trade. It’s almost exclusively Nos. 1 and 2.

We were very apprehensive when the construction began because we thought the hotel would be a noisy neighbor.

Mexicans are noisy.

But no. It’s been tranquil these last 10 years, and the place even serves as a 24-hour guard service of sorts since it’s always open, and the office is out front.

The hotel has provided us with some entertainment over the years, as you might guess. If you walk out to the edge of the upstairs terraza and peer over, you’re looking directly into a couple of the bedrooms.

Toward the tail of the construction process, my wife and I crept over there one afternoon and slipped up the stairs of the back room. Very impressive, beautifully appointed, even with crown moulding. One of the rooms sports a jacuzzi.

But after a decade it began to look a bit scuzzy, and a week ago a couple of fellows showed up with paint and brushes.

Now it looks like it did on its debut day, a place you’d be proud to take your pants off to have a little fun.

Border wall

This is today, April 5, 2017.

I AM BIG on border walls. We have one here at the Hacienda. It separates us from the sex motel next door.

Walls create happy neighbors.

Stepping out to the terraza this morning — it was 48 degrees! — I snapped this photo to illustrate the difference between the two worlds of Hacienda and, well, you know.

When the motel was constructed almost a decade ago, I had this section of wall raised about a foot so folks in the motel rooms could not peer directly into our yard.

But we still can peer directly into their rooms.

You’re also looking at our two border guards, which are yuge!* The nopal and the bougainvillea, both of which I planted when they were little pups out of pots.

The sex motel manager recently asked if I would mind if they cut the bougainvillea on their side of the wall. I cannot imagine why they would want to do that. It’s quite pretty.

I replied yes. What they do on their side of the wall is their own business, not mine.

What I am particularly pleased about this morning is the temperature of 48 degrees Fahrenheit.

It makes me happy to be alive.

That and other factors too, of course. Like the V-formation of white egrets that just flew overhead.

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* Tip of the sombrero to the Blond Bomber in the Oval Office for adding this spelling variation to the language.

The pink bedspread

NEIGHBORS

THE VIEW OUT the back window, the upstairs bathroom window, changes often, and it’s always interesting. I have photographed and presented the scene before, of course. Here’s today’s version, the one with the pink bedspread hanging out to dry.

We too hang our clothes on a line to dry, so in that respect we’re like the neighbors. One day perhaps we’ll buy a dryer to go along with our washer, but I doubt it. It would be a gas dryer because when we constructed the Hacienda we had the guys install a gas line for that purpose.

Let’s see. What can we talk about today? Well, it’s been raining quite a bit, which is totally out of character for March, normally a bone-dry month. Last week, it rained 72 hours nonstop if you don’t count occasional, 15-minute pauses to regroup. But now it’s blue, cool and beautiful.

We have vacationers, a Canadian threesome, through the end of the month in our downtown Casita. And the Casita’s neighbors, going uphill, also Canadians, are here for another week or so. They don’t live here, just visit a couple times a year from their sailboat where they hang out off the British Columbian coast.

I noticed this morning on a Yahoo forum that focuses on our area that other Casita neighbors, down the hill a bit, have put their place on the market for $139,000 U.S., including all furnishings, not a bad price.* If you decide to take advantage of this great opportunity, tell them that Felipe sent you. I’ll get a prize.

At first, I figured they were moving back above the Rio Bravo, but no. The owner told me they are moving to the Gringo-infested Lake Chapala area where there’s more stuff going on. Seems they lived there before and are missing it. Since I favor fewer Gringos around here, their departure is a plus, which is not to say they’re not nice people because they are. I just favor fewer Gringos as a general rule.

I don’t want my mountaintop to be like San Miguel de Allende.

But they likely will sell to other Gringos, making it a wash. Mexicans might buy the place, but due to the current exchange rate, it would set them back over 2 million pesos. I’m betting on more Gringos, which I favor in our little housing development for the sole reason that Mexicans can be very noisy.

Yes, I am sorta contradicting myself, but I don’t care.

So that’s what we’ve talked about today. It decided itself. The neighbors out back with the pink bedspread, and then we moved on to the tenants at our downtown Casita, the Canadians next door, and then the other couple selling their property. It’s nice to have neighbors and tenants. Gives one something to ramble on about.

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* We paid just under 1 million pesos for our Casita five years ago, which was about $77,000 U.S. due to the exchange rate at that time. Pretty sweet deal.

Out back

Neighbors

There’s only one way to look out back, and that’s through the upstairs bathroom window, which is a small one.

When I want to open that window, mostly to liberate steam during my showers, I prop it up with a kitchen knife. The window swings up, my own design.

These people live out back. I propped open the window with the knife to take this shot this morning. If you click on it, you’ll get a bigger version that you can then click again to get an even closer peek.*

Sometimes that happens here, and sometimes not. I don’t know why. Technology often confuses me. And the picture is not as sharp as I’d like, but I’m too cheap to buy a fancy camera.

Yes, those folks live directly behind us. We hear tell there is bad blood between them and Abel, the deadpan neighbor who mows our grass. Abel lives on the other side of the sex motel, you may recall.

Having bad blood with neighbors is not advisable. I don’t have bad blood with any of my neighbors that I know about. Sometimes bad blood is one-sided, however, and you never know about it.

My new paisanos are good at harboring bad blood.

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* I’m assuming you’re a pack of Nosy Parkers.