Sunday, May 24, 2015

XVIII. La Primera Semana

Beautiful and exotic describes much we have seen the past week. This flower 
is of the aptly named Flamboyant Tree, Delonix regia, of which there are
several in the plaza and many along the malecon.
The First Week

My serene-but-curious spouse and I just returned from the plaza where Sunday night doings are in full swing, maybe even fuller swing than when I first posted from Mexico, a week ago. It’s been a very full semana, to say the least, and the most important achievement is us staying healthy, both physically and mentally. Oh, there have been moments, but all in all we’re more than OK.

Of course, the other huge accomplishment is renting our beautiful Casa de Luz, as described in my last post. We’ve spent the past two days since moving in by, first, boxing up all of the owners’ stuff that was in our way or that we didn’t want. We growled at their golf clubs left in our closet, and I carefully removed the offensively redundant “Owners Cabinet” labels from two locked cabinets.

"Owner's Cabinet"
label has been removed
from cabinets, top right,
in office/guest room
Next, my supremely well-organized wife found just the right place for all of our belongings—all, that is, that are not still being held hostage at customs. What remains is a very well-appointed and decorated living space that has begun to feel like our own. I hooked up our laptops, set the clocks to the right time, copied keys, picked up the laundry I had dropped off the previous day at the lavandería, and other similar manly tasks. And, of course, hiked over to El Torito Super Mercado for coffee, coffee filters and milk—a necessity.

Throughout our first couple of days, our personable rental agent, Eduardo, has been a solid, if somewhat elfin, presence: checking on the utilities, being a buffer from the owner, calling us to see if everything is alright, telling us when and how to leave out the garbage, how to order water delivery, etc. We like both him and the sweet, solicitous Alejandra, also of Roma Realty.

The Mexican version of 7-11 is called Oxxo. This is a
previous iteration--usually flagged as an abarrotes--a type 
of convenience store found every couple of blocks.
We have begun exploring the neighborhood, seeing the sights, and finding tiendas that meet our needs. Many visits have been paid to the local vino y licores store, more for bottled water than the harder stuff. I’ve picked up some aguacates, piñas, tomates, papayas, etc. as my handy spouse has begun easing into meal preparation. We are both tired of eating out.

I had a surprisingly hard time yesterday finding some bread. The local panadería was out, and apologized for that fact. Nowhere else around the plaza had any, and I didn’t want to wait, nor did I feel I could count on, the woman who sometimes sells from the trunk of her car at Colón and Hidalgo. I had seen a bakery just down the block but it sold only dulces. The friendly owner, however, welcomed me to the neighborhood and directed me to a grocery store on the highway, or carretera.
Not something we've seen on our
suburban Seattle streets.

I enjoyed all these peregrinations about the pueblo—the new and foreign sights, trying to make sense of the strangeness and if that was not possible, just appreciating it. I treasured— and hope I will continue to value—each interaction as a chance to create or reciprocate a friendly feeling.

And back home, here at Constitucion 23C, we have reveled in our mornings and evenings on the balcony, with coffee or wine respectively, as we look out over this new land we are beginning to inhabit.


  1. Love every entry! I feel like I am there with you.

    1. Thanks so much for you comment, Kelly. I'm glad you're keeping in touch.