Wednesday, February 27, 2013

an even dozen

It has been 12 jam-packed days since my last post.  I was reminded of my laxity at a gathering last evening at one of the puestos by a couple of my loyal readers.  OK, folks!  Here's one for you.

When last we talked, Alex was about to fly in from Los Angeles.  We drove up to Manzanillo to greet her.  She arrived in good time, looking splendid and eager for a little R & R.

First thing was, of course, Friday night at Dago's.  She greeted old friends, met some of the new folk in town.  Saturday we listened to the opera (Carmen) and played dominoes.  Sunday we played more dominoes and went to Fernando's puesto for our usual comida, followed by more dominoes.

Monday it was tiangues, where she first heard these little  chicks peeping their hearts out.

I guess this is an early harbinger of Spring and Easter!

Monday afternoon we took off for a 2-night stay at La Posada.  Mr. C and I had immigration business to take care of.  We checked in ~ our room was #6, right on the end overlooking the beach in front . . .

and across the garden to the beautiful sala where we had breakfast and played some snappy dominoes.

Monday evening we found a really terrific Argentinian restaurant, El Gaucho,  a few blocks away.  Great food, fine service, terrific chimichurri to drizzle on the beef.

Tuesday morning we were up and out to get to immigration before it got too crowded.  We were in and out in an hour, then to the bank to pay for our immigration card, back to the office for another wait.  It took about two hours, start to finish.  There was one tiny glitch; I started my renewal process one day too soon so couldn't get my temporary paper.  I had to go back on Wednesday morning to pick it up.  Not to worry; we were staying another night anyway so we could do some major shopping in Manzanillo on Wednesday morning.  So it was back to the hotel for lunch and yet more dominoes.

It was at about this time that Mr. C began to feel poorly and took to his bed, where he stayed for the next 18 hours.  We had planned to go to dinner at Toscana's to celebrate Alex's birthday but it was clear he was in no shape to celebrate anything.

 After a little glass of wine and a gorgeous sunset,  we went by ourselves.  This ocean-front restaurant has a perfect setting, a big, wide open dining room, excellent food and a very relaxed and friendly atmosphere.  We lingered over a lovely dinner; lots of catch-up girl talk.  We got back to the hotel around 10 PM; Mr. C was sound asleep.

Wednesday morning he soldiered on but it was clear he was not feeling well.  We packed up and left the hotel, went back to immigration where it took about 10 minutes to transact business.  We decided to just head on home as it was clear Mr. C was in no shape to shop.  When we got here, he went back to bed and slept for several more hours.  Our dear Chuy, meanwhile, had cooked us a big pot of chiles rellenos picadillo so dinner was ready.  Alex and I headed down to the group domino game.  About in the middle of the game the earth gave us a couple of pretty sharp jolts; 5.3 earthquake, centered due south of Tecoman in the ocean.  We were up in a mirador so we went downstairs and waited to see what else might happen.  The water in the pool was sloshing around but nothing more.  Pretty soon we trooped back up, finished our game, and reminisced about past temblors including "the big one" in 2003 that flattened blocks of ancient adobe houses in Colima and killed many people there, in Tecoman, and even in Armeria.  We were in Guadalajara at the time and I'm just as glad.  Folks here are still spooked about it.

Thursday we swam at Jack's, played dominoes down at Charlotte's, and got dolled up to go out to dinner with friends.  Great evening over at the Jacaranda in Armeria.  It's one of our favorite spots.

Friday was more of the same; swim, relax, read, play dominoes up on the 3rd floor.

And Dago's, of course.  There was a big crowd again.  Good food, as usual.

By the time she was ready to go back home, Alex had lost her I-live-in-a-cold-climate-and-spend-all-day-in-an-office pallor  and had picked up a nice bit of tan and had finally relaxed and begun to enjoy the place.

Happy Birthday!!

By Saturday morning, the day of Alex's departure, I was feeling a bit queasy.  The "jippy tummy" had hit me.  So I didn't drive to the airport.  I bid her farewell here, went back to bed and slept for a couple of hours.  By the time Mr. C returned, I was feeling better although didn't want anything much to eat.  On Sunday I was restored to fine fettle and went down to Fernando's for some lovely fish.

Monday's post-tianguis routine included a group domino game held, this time, at Chuy's puesto (a different Chuy), the same place mentioned above where the party was held yesterday.  It was quite cold on Monday afternoon with a very chill wind blowing off the sea.  We sat huddled around the table, wrapped up in sweaters and shawls.  Oh yes, it's winter.  I almost forgot.

Yesterday we ran errands, did laundry, all that boring, mundane, must-do stuff.  Then around 4:30 I went down to join the party.  Here's some backstory on how this got set up.  There is a little town outside Colima called Comala.  On the square there are a series of restaurants set up along the portales The drill is that you order drinks and the botanas are free.  All sorts of snacks appear on the table; tacitos, quesadillas, guacamole con salsa, tostadas, flautas, you name it.  It's along the lines of a botanero.   Chuy  ~ probably egged on by Neighbor Nelson ~  decided to try it here.  There were 40+ gringoes gathered for a very fine time. He wants to do this every Tuesday; perhaps twice a month would be enough for me. Mr. C didn't make it this time but, with enough persuasion perhaps I can get him out in a couple of weeks.
That's Neighbor Nelson in the black/white shirt

L to R:  Paul, Aline, Frans
Blanche (in the white top; she hosted the earthquake domino game)
Suzanne and Daniel ~ building new house
This falling behind business is not a good idea.  It takes too much work to catch up.  I'll do better.

One more thing, and that's to do the book reports.  I finished  Bring up the Bodies, the second in Hilary Manel's trilogy, Wolf Hall being the first.  Again, thoroughly absorbing.  She writes the best historical fiction i've ever read.  Next I read Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn.  Very, very disturbing.  This story is going to stay with me for a long time.  Now reading the third in the Matthew Shardlake mysteries by C.J. Sansom.  Also set in Tudor England, in and around the court of Henry VIII.  Also excellent.  When I finish it I think I'll move on to Louise Erdrich's The Master Butchers Singing Club.   Or perhaps something else.  It's such a luxury to have all this time to prop up my feet and give myself over to books!


Anonymous said...

Liz says:

Thank goodness for your nice long post! I was beginning to get a bit worried, but I knew you were probably just having fun with Alex.

Alex looks wonderful! Her new setting has done wonders for her, apparently! So glad you all had such a good time, but so sorry to hear Jim and you were sick. Was it the flu, or food-related?

Love the photo of the colorful chicks-- make mine purple!!!

So very glad you are getting plenty of dominoes in...

mary ann said...

love this post ~ hope you are both feeling 100% again!

DAK said...

I hadn't realized until I saw the photos how many of you gavachos there are in this little place. I hope Mr. C. is feeling better.