Tuesday, January 28, 2014

a celebration of sorts

We are off to Manzanillo this afternoon for two days of R & R ~ not that we don't get plenty of that right here ~ and to celebrate our wedding anniversary.  Fifty fun-filled years!  Nary a cross word in all that time.  We're planning a couple of nice out-to-dinners; one at an Argentinian place we found last year and one at Toscana's, a gorgeous up-scale place on the beach.  We'll stay at La Posada, as usual.  And do a little shopping, too.

For one thing, we need two more clay light fixtures to hang in the newly constructed overhangs in the back.

 The old ones were partly wooden and got infested with termites,.  They also had tile roofs (tejas) which acted as condos for iguanas and rats, so over the summer Fernando demolished them and built two sturdy  cement structures with hanging lights (now hanging bare bulbs).

We'll go up to Santiago to the Artisianas to look for the bell-shaped fixtures that hang throughout the terazzas.

The last time we were there, albeit some years ago, there were none, and I don't know where else we can find these things.  Even something vaguely similar will do the job.  Let the next owner worry about matching perfectly!

Speaking of the next owners, the gentleman who looked at the house stopped by to introduce himself.  He and his wife both loved the place but have decided to rent for a year, a house waaay out in the colonia right on the beach.  The first tidal surge of the summer will fill the pool with sand, but that's something you just have to learn the hard way!  Meanwhile, the real estate office reports lots of hits on the web site but no expressions of interest.  I guess we can plan on returning next year!

CURRENTLY READING:  "Paris" by Edward Rutherfurd.
JUST FINISHED:  "Going Clear:  Scientology, Hollywood and the Prison of Belief" by Lawrence Wright (he of "The Looming Towers").  See also:  "Apostate" by Lawrence Wright, the New Yorker, February 14, 2011.
SATURDAY LISTENING:  Madam Butterfly by Puccini from The Met.

Meanwhile, the weather is glorious, the pineapples and watermelons are sweet and juicy, and all in all, life is good.

Friday, January 17, 2014

they came . . .they saw . . .

but they didn't buy.  The "lookers" have returned to the US without having dropped a bundle on our house.  We await the next interested parties of whom, unfortunately, there are precious few these days.  I think the Mexican Riviera boomlet is over and we will probably have to wait quite a while to sell.  But it could be in a worst place, you know.

 Meanwhile, the weather is gorgeous, the garden is thriving, the domino games are great fun.  The tree in the photo above has been invaded by a gorgeous purple trumpet vine that we nursed along for several years to no avail.  Suddenly it's all over the place.  Dago's tonight; the opera is Tchaikovsky's Eugene Onegin.  The days roll by, as days will do.  It's mighty peaceful.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

it's show time!

This morning the house made its official debut on the local real estate market.  After a week of hard work that included painting, moving furniture, hanging pictures, tidying up in the garden, arranging closets and I don't know what all else, we were ready.  We left the house at 9:30; first lookers came at 10 AM.  We won't know the results of their visit until either later today or tomorrow.  But let me tell you, if I were in the buying (instead of selling) mode, this would be my first and only choice.  Why?  Location, location, location; two blocks from town, from the beach and malecón, easy walking anywhere.  In addition, lots of light, large rooms, high ceilings.  Not typical of Mexican-built homes.  Here are some photos of what the buyer saw.

Welcome!  Looking from front door to back garden
Small front garden

Small bedroom.  Headboards painted on wall by friend Marie.
Guest room downstairs looking out on small garden

Second floor terraza

Dining table and chairs on the terraza

Living room
Work desk in living room
Large, bright kitchen
Corner counter
Master bedroom
Third floor, hammock ready

The view from the 3rd floor
So we'll see what happens.  Meanwhile, for us, the house has never look better!

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

los nietos

Daughter Alex  and g-dot Em have been visiting Andrew in San Francisco for the past few days.  Alex didn't see her kiddies over the Christmas holidays; they spent the time in Long Beach with Peter.  She sent me these pix.

She reports that her AirBnB apartment was great; in the Haight near Andrew's abode.  They dined well (Zuni Café among other places), walked miles and had an all-around fine time together.
Alex also sent this photo of Emily which she titled:  Our Lady of Perpetual Facebook.  Love it!  That's one busy thumb.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

the Sunday supplement

Lots going on here.  Well, may not "lots" but a few item which may, or may not be of interest.

First, the rain finally stopped after five days and somewhere over 3".  Not much, you may say, but for us it is an unseasonal downpour.  Wonderful for the trees and gardens; everything has greened up brilliantly.

  The mosquitoes, too, are probably breeding like, well, mosquitoes in all the little puddles and pools left around town.  In a week or so we'll reap that harvest.  We had a few days of clear, hot, brilliant skies but we are now in a cool, breezy overcast period.  It will probably change tomorrow.

Friday night we went back to Dago's to try again and my shrimp were vastly improved.   I took a little stroll on the beach and saw these delightful things.  First, a sand castle that was more like a bomb shelter.  Either that or the construction crew was unclear on the "castle" concept.  One wave and it will be all over for this place.

 Next I heard little band.  It was was really good; they played great old ranchero music, all in tune, all together!

I mention this fact only because on New Year's Eve there was a band down on the malecon that was so bad it was laughable.  It sounded like the players (a) had never seen one another much less played together; (b) had never played an instrument before at all and therefore could only play one note per instrument ~ trumpets, clarinets, tubas, drums, base; (c) were all congenitally tone deaf; or even (d) were practicing to appear as a rag-tag street band in a Fellini movie.  Personally I like (d) best.

This is a shot of Dago's from the beach side at about 6:30 in the evening.  The light is so warm and lovely.

And the sights, as the sun set.

We've spent the weekend getting the house ready for a potential buyer's visit on Thursday.  A paint touch-up here, a furniture rearrange there, setting up this, taking down that.  I am trying to look at the house through buyers' eyes.  Hey, I'd buy it in a minute!

One thing we had to repair was this little front wall in the downstairs patio.

 While he was working to fix some cracks  Fernando splattered wet cement all over it so we decided to repaint.

There is no way we could ever match the color; Marie and Fernando painted our walls years ago so the paint formula was long lost.  Instead I chose a vibrant, deep blue/purple  and, I must say, it looks fabulous.

Muy Mexicana.  Next the sun face goes back up on the wall, the fountain gets set up, the flamingos go back to grazing and we'll be ready for inspection.