Translate this Page

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Knitter in Paradise

Waited the rest of yesterday for the propane truck – didn’t show up – Mañana time I guess.
Just thought I’d share yesterday’s knitting project – well actually it wasn’t a project it was more a “I think I finally get it” type of thing. Looking at it I was thinking that if I added a couple of ties or buckles to it I’d have an overcoat for a Chihuahua.
Cute huh? Pretend the bottle top is a tail. Well I've never said I wasn't weird.
The only problem is it will unravel as I just pulled it off the needles – don’t know how to end it – need to go back to the web site and learn that. Would super glue work?
Bill just asked me what I was doing now [actually I’m just practicing the knit stitch –having trouble with the tension part] I told him I was making him a neck scarf – a long skinny one - he will probably be able to wrap it around his neck 45 times and the needles would still be attached. I think he thinks I’m nuts.
It’s a good thing the car is in the shop or I’d be wanting to go to the store and get more yarn – different colors – textures – Oh yah! Maybe I should write another blog call it Knitter in Paradise. Or maybe I should just stop reading books about hobbies.
I really need to learn how to cast off? Bind off? What ever?
I did find out that one of our friends at home is an excellent knitter – so there is hope for me yet. I get a stiff neck after I do it for a while – probably holding the needles wrong. Bill says I need to hold the needles between my bosom and my arm so they don’t slide out of the stitches. What bosom?
Oh boy another learning experience – I didn’t roll the skein into a ball – too anxious to begin to bother - so now I have a blob of fuzzy turquoise spaghetti that I’m trying to untangle. [Did finally get it untangles and rolled into a ball – kept dropping the ball while trying to roll it. Isn’t it amazing how yarn and thread can tie itself into knots that there is no way to untie. But if you try to tie a permanent knot in it it just keeps coming undone? Isn’t there any thing about knitting that is simple?
Will work today on casting on again – last time I did it too tight and then work on knit row purl row. I need to check to see if yarn here is cheaper than in the states.
Yes! I figured out the instructions for “casting off” well except for the last stitch – messed up there but otherwise it worked. So Bill’s scarf ended up being only 5 inches long – won’t keep him very warm.

No word from the Jeep place. And when we do get it back we want to use it for a couple of days to make sure he is happy. So that might delay our leaving Mazatlan for a week or so. Besides it is cold up North.

We all went out to dinner across the street again. Bill and I had chicken picatta – not as good as he makes but okay and George had beer battered shrimp. Had to eat in the inside part though as it was too cold to eat in the palapa. The restaurant had a guitar player singer there but he didn’t seem to be putting his heart into his performance. By the time we walked home some of the wind had let up so it wasn’t quite as cold here. 
During the day I downloaded a program to watch movies on the laptop. Why is it when all you want is the program you get all kinds of other stuff with it? Had to remove icons from the desktop, weird programs from the hard drive and then straighten out all my browsers as it added a home page browser called Tuvara or something like that to everything. GRRRRR. Lifes tiny irritations.  

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Time on Mazatlan's beaches

Got a call from the Jeep dealer/service shop yesterday afternoon – looks like Willie is getting major repairs. It is amazing he ran for as long as he did. A couple of the parts are being expressed from the states – will be here today or tomorrow. Transmission will end up having a major rebuild. In the mean time poor Willie is probably wondering what the heck is going on….he is in a strange place and everyone is speaking a strange language and poking and prodding him. But it is for his own good. And it won’t hurt much.
Bill and I took a long walk on the beach yesterday. Beautiful day for it. This is looking south back towards the islands in the bay.
These are rocks right at the water line. At first I though it was just sand piled up there – then I took a closer look. Guess someday in the far future they will be sand.
And more rocks these are about 10 to 12” above the sand, the water can go under them. Like fingers sticking out.
This morning George, Bill and I walked over to the restaurant on the beach for breakfast. Do us all good to get out and walk and the weather was perfect. Blue sky, sunny, a little cool and no wind yet today. One of the pretty bougainvillea bushes in the RV park.
Every time I see this one I think it should be on a wedding cake or at the very least part of a wedding scene. It is so pretty and delicate looking.
While we were enjoying our usual delicious breakfasts George saw a black bird fly to the table next to us and steal a sugar packet. He just picked it up in his beak and flew outside with it. In a little bit he was back again. George held up a sugar packet for him to see. He was very interested – sitting on a ledge and cocking his head watching the packet. George put it on the table and almost before he sat down the bird was on the table picking it up.
This time he flew to the floor with it.
He stood on it and pecked it until he had an opening in the packet then he enjoyed the sugar.
He came back later and tried to land on another table with two couples sitting there. They did not appreciate his company and scared him away.
Also saw people out riding horses on the beach. Looks like fun. Haven’t been on a horse in years. 
When I was a little girl and lived in Idaho we had a couple of horses. Even rode them in the rodeo/state fair parades. So long ago.
This sardine boat was out fishing.  The nets were out on both sides and it was moving around quite fast. Interesting. Look at the birds sitting on the rigging just waiting for brunch.
We got to talking about that no matter where you are if you really look around you can find something interesting to see. Even mundane things like the pink flowered bush. Or the tiny flowers growing in the dirt of the RV park. 
Back at the RV park now waiting for the propane man to come and fill us for the trip home next week.
Last night I was reading a novel and the main character had a quilt shop. She talked about the Sunshine and Shadows quilt pattern. I looked it up on line – very pretty and would be a challenge. It is all 3” squares. Lots and lots of work. Can't wait until I get home and open up my sewing machine again. Soon we'll have our 3rd great grand child who will need a quilt. 

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Willie and Knitting

Just got the scoop on repairing Willie's transmission - parts are being express shipped and should be here tomorrow and he should be up and running by Thursday. A couple of "wheels" inside the transmission were destroyed and the metal from them would foul the sensors. It would take a while for the metal to get to the sensors after he sat for a while thats why he would be okay when we started out and get worse as miles went on. We're lucky he didn't just leave us in the middle of no where before this.
As for knitting I found a really good web site with easy to follow instructions - in case your interested it is - http://learntoknit.lionbrand.com  so today I've been practicing casting on, knitting and purling. Finally did a bunch without any mistakes. Whoopie!
Also getting more sections of my necklace done - if we're without wheels long enough I should finish it.
Other than that nothing going on - sun is out so that is nice but it is still cooler than usual and windy.
George is still here at Las Jaibas and three more RVs have joined us here in the back.  I'm glad we got to take George a few places before the Jeep went in.  

Monday, February 25, 2013

No word on Willie yet

Was kind of waiting to see if we heard from the dealership about Willie before I wrote this today – but it’s starting to get late so probably won’t get him back until tomorrow.
Yesterday was kind of a bummer day. First the weather was cloudy and cool so we didn’t feel like going anywhere. And the NASCAR race at Daytona didn’t have the finish I’d have liked. The #18 blew an engine ¾ of the way through the race. Hope it isn’t another year like last year for him. If Kyle couldn’t win I wish Danica had of won.
We did go out in the evening. We’d made plans on meeting our friends there for dinner. So we bundled up and went over there. After waiting about ½ hour for them I finally called her only to find out she’d emailed me earlier that she was sick and couldn’t make it. But I hadn’t checked my email…..
Did see what I thought was a full moon coming up over the palm trees in the plaza. Very pretty.
Then I found out the full moon isn’t till tonight…..Will I remember to go out and look at it?
The Plaza was very busy last night. When we first got there the music we went to hear was playing and several people were line dancing.
I sure wish my camera took better pictures in the dark. Will have to see if there is one out there that does – without me having to adjust anything.
About the time we discovered our friends weren’t going to show a jazz group started up. And the musician we’d come to hear just stopped playing and the dancers stopped dancing. Come to find out the last night of the Mazatlan Jazz Fest was last night in the plaza. It was a “jam session.” 
We listened for a while but it was just to cool and windy to really enjoy it. So we ended up coming home and having leftovers.
I woke up about 1:30 a.m. and got up and download a book off the Internet. It is called The Leisure Seeker by Michael Zadoorian. It’s about an older couple – he has Alzheimer’s and she has terminal cancer. Much to their children’s horror they get in their RV and take a last vacation. They follow Route 66 from Chicago to the Pacific Ocean and then they go to Disneyland. Very interesting book. Makes one stop and think. Finally got back in bed at 5:30 then up at 7:30 when Bill got up to take Willie in. Either a nap today or to bed early tonight.
And just awhile ago we got a call from our house sitter. Something in the upstairs bathroom leaked over the weekend and the ceiling in the downstairs bathroom is all wet and buckling. Lovely. He is going to see if he can figure out what happened and get it stopped and then we get home we’ll see what else needs to be done.
Never a dull moment.
The wind is really rocking the RV today – at least it’s not cold out. And the sun is shinning.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Cold and Dreary Day in Mazatlan

It is a dark, cold and dreary day here so far in Mazatlan. In fact it is 8:00 and we still have the little heater on to keep the chill off. And according to the weather forecast it will be ugly and only in the low 70s most of the week. No parasailing. 
I bought some more Häagen-Dazs ice cream the other day at Soriana. The flavor  is Baileys. Supposed to taste like Baileys Irish Cream. And IT DOES. OMG it is delicious. I got to wondering what it would taste like to put a scoop of it in a glass of Chocolate Wine and top with whipped cream. Haven’t tried it yet but sure sounds good.
Had to make another run to TelCel yesterday as the Banda Ancha suddenly told us – no more GBs – you have to recharge it. What? We paid for 3GBs just last week. I checked my usage and had only used a little over 400 mega bites. What the? Well we got another lesson in Banda Ancha service. We found out that when we bought the GBs last week the customer service guy did not activate it and when it is not activated it costs 1 peso per bite used. So the 400 pesos we paid were used up already. We were told we should have used our TelCel phone to call 50/50 to activate time for the Banda Ancha????? We’ve never had to do that before. And besides we don’t have a TelCel phone. Bill was a little – whole lot – pissed off especially when they said we should have used our phone. What phone? Just a little misunderstanding of their system on our part and a lack of communication on their part. So another 400 pesos for another 3GBs of ACTIVATED Internet time – should last us until we are out of Mexico. And then we’ll just have to deal with getting our Verizon MiFi service back up and running. Things were so much simpler before all this new fangled technology – do I sound like an old fart?
From there we went to Soriana to get a take out pizza – theirs are pretty good. Ordered pepperoni and pineapple but they didn’t have any pineapple. Hum? A grocery store? But guess they can’t just get it from the produce or canned sections. Brought it home and shared it with George who was kind of like a hermit yesterday – staying inside with the door closed all day.
I watched the lap by lap information on the Nationwide race – my driver blew his engine 20 laps from the end – which might have been lucky for him as he was right up near the front all day and would probably been caught up in that horrible wreck in the last lap. What a mess. I think if I’d been Kyle Larsen's mother I’d have thrown up when I saw his car even though he was okay. And today for the big race it might rain. Wonder if they will let Montoya out on the track if they have to have the track dryers out there? (last year he hit one and set it and the track on fire - long long delay to the race.)
We’re supposed to go out to dinner tonight with a couple of friends – out to the Plazuela Machado. I hope it’s not windy as the restaurant is outside seating.
Been reading a whole series of Danielle Steele books lately. I used to read her a lot then stopped. I find I can skip whole pages without missing any of the story. Think I’ll go back to mysteries and who done its.
I’m also diligently working on my necklace – I now have 7 of the 30 sections done. 

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Willie's Woes

Willie, our Jeep, only spent a while over at the dealers yesterday but they do think they have found the problem and he will go back in bright and early Monday morning. We should have him back by Tuesday or maybe even Monday. While we were waiting for the diagnosis we had breakfast at a very nice restaurant – Sanborns – in the Gran Plaza Mall.
Very upscale – linen napkins and placemats no less. And no prices on the menu – now that’s a little weird. But it was only US$16 – two coffees, with unlimited refills, we both had  two eggs with ham and hash browns and toast.
They also have a bakery here is a display of one of their 15th birthday cakes. This is about US$175.00
Before we left the RV park this a.m. we saw George outside washing Ms. Tioga. He has more energy than us. Go George!
And before I forget in the last few days I’ve discovered a new use for black garbage bags and plastic grocery bags. Didn’t get pictures of either so you’ll have to use your imagination.  The easiest to explain are the grocery bags. In the main plaza are a whole lot of men who shine shoes. In one chair was a man getting his sandals shined. So his socks didn’t get polish on them he had grocery bags over his socks under his sandals. This made it easier on the shoe shine man to do the job. Ingenious.
The garbage bags are a little harder to describe. A man who appeared to be homeless – “down on his luck” was wearing the garbage bags as pants. It took a couple glances to realize what he was wearing – they kind of looked at first glance like gaucho pants. (this is kind of the idea )
Kind of puffy around the thighs. Any way – he was using two bags. He had his leg stuck through a hole in a bag and then pulled up the open end and put it around his waist. They overlapped one another at the crotch so he was covered. Would imagine he had to slit them down one side a ways to get them up around his waist. Another ingenious use of a bag.
After breakfast we walked around the mall waiting for the Jeep dealer to call us about Willie. This brand new shoe store was having opening day with a priest there to bless it.
Personally I think the women who walk in these shoes need the blessings more than the store. The women here wear amazing shoes –1- 2” platform soles and 5 – 6” heels. I don’t think I could ever have walked in them.
Spent the afternoon at home. Bill reading and me watching what I could of the goings on at Daytona NASCAR. Practice and qualifying etc.  Also got a couple more sections of my necklace done - only 26 more to go.
We all went out to Fat Fish for dinner again. George’s suggestion – he can’t get enough of the RIBS. No pictures this time. Bill chickened out though and had steak. After eating we took a little ride up the Malecón but didn’t stay out long. Willie is really acting up now – wants to start in 2nd instead of 1st and then won’t shift to 3rd. And it was windy and even COLD out.
Got home in time to watch the leaderboard of the truck race. Couldn’t get the actual view of the race. Kyle came in 2nd but led several laps. Maybe today in the Nationwide race he’ll win …..or tomorrow in the 500. And there are a couple of soccer games on today too. So guess it will be a stay home or maybe go to the sports bar in the marina and have pizza to watch the Barcelona game.
Had the little heater on all night and in fact it is still coming on once in a while. If the wind doesn’t come up though it will be an okay day – overcast. No parasailing unless the weather gets nicer.....

Friday, February 22, 2013

Visit to El Quelite

Hum…wondered why it wasn’t quite so cool in here this morning then I saw that sometime during the night Bill had dug out the little heater and turned it on. Feels good.
Busy day yesterday – left early to take George out to El Quelite for breakfast at our favorite restaurant out there. But before we get to that…..
The mechanic came with bad news. He cannot order the parts that Willie needs. Well he can order them BUT do we need 2, 3 or 4 sensors – that is the question. To order them we have to pay for all of them and then get a refund for the ones we don’t need. Well that’s okay, makes sense BUT mechanic cannot guarantee when they will get here to Mazatlan. Might be a week might be a month. Or not at all. So we are going to try with the Jeep dealer again this morning. Have an appointment at 8:30 BUT the problem is….Willie’s problem doesn’t show up until after he has been driven 20 or 30 miles and warms up. Then he stops shifting and the engine light comes on. Just driving from here to the dealer will not cause the problem to start. So we’ll see what happens.
But back to yesterdays adventures in El Quelite. As you know we go there quite often and know half the people in the pretty little town. So we love to take friends there who haven’t been there. It is about 25 miles inland from Mazatlan not far off the free road. A few years ago the owner of the big restaurant there had a raffle to raise money to buy bougainvillea to plant along the road from the main road into town. They are now getting big enough to bloom. Another year or so and it will be amazing.
First we took George to meet the ladies who spend all day in the warehouse sorting the rocks and debris out of the white beans.
Some of the debris and misshapen beans that has been removed.
Just nice clean beans that are ready for cooking.
Then we went to the restaurant El Meson d Los Laureanos to have breakfast. These bougainvilleas have been trimmed back since we were here last.
Going into the area where we eat we passed this wall display – it was making noise. Then I realized one of the chickens was real. And she was making a growling groaning noise. Bill said she was laying an egg. I’ve never been around a chicken when it was laying an egg. But it sounded like she was serious about something. Bill warned us not to get too close to her
Later I went back and sure enough here are three eggs. Dora one of the waitresses told us she is a prolific layer. In the last 20 days she had produced 60 eggs – three a day! Dora told us we had eaten some of her eggs for breakfast. Oh my.
As always Lola the parrot was squawking her head off. She got down off her perch and waddled up the aisle and into the kitchen.
And this time we saw that she has some companions but they are in cages. The only one who would stay still long enough to take her/his picture. I think it was giving me the evil eye. 
We all ordered breakfast. Along with whatever we ordered we got – totopos, two kinds of salsa, a bowl of fresh fruit, fresh oj, chunks of cheese (made in the town) and a couple of small bowls of different creamy pudding like stuff. Then you get your meal. Never go away hungry.
The restaurant is very pretty – we sat in the outside area under big trees – with iguanas in them - but that is another story – we sat under umbrellas. The whole restaurant is decorated with imagination.
A new room and patio has been built on the back of the original restaurant it is really pretty. A look at just part of the patio – the eating area is under the roof.
George and I in front of a great painting on the wall of the patio.
Outside the side door waited this burro – he is cute but none of us wanted a ride on him.
Then we took a ride up to the rooster farm. One of the beauties there.
I’ve written about El Quelite many many times. It is a really beautiful and tranquil town. Just enter the name in the search feature for more information about it. We’ve visited the cheese factory and the little bakery there and of course there was the incident with the iguanas.
On the way back to Mazatlan on the free road we got behind these trucks. I guess the one was in a hurry – solid yellow line means go around me if you can and are brave enough.
After dropping George off we went to the Jeep dealer, got groceries and stopped at the used book store then home again.
I swore at the NASCAR web site and tried to find out about yesterdays races – Yes – finally – Kyle won one of them. Then last night fixed chicken for dinner – more out of the freezer – less for the US border guards to confiscate.
And so ended our 120th day on the road this winter. 

Thursday, February 21, 2013

#18 Victory Lane

O heck ya!!!!!! @KyleBusch wins it!!!  on Twitpic

Looking at Condos in Mazatlan

We all, me, Bill and George went out to breakfast at Torres again. It is such a nice place to begin a day. Peaceful view and sound of the ocean, good food and wonderful attention.
After breakfast we went to look at some high-rise condos right on the beach across the street from the RV park. Two and three bedrooms, two and three bathrooms. Lots of windows looking out over the ocean one way and over the mountains the other direction. Lots of closets and cupboards too. And a pretty big price – from US$300,000 on up. The higher the floor the higher the price. We could even see the RV park from up there. 
Ms Tioga and Jennie 
Great views – looking north
the pool on the right
Looking south towards the city.
In fact for the last four years we have been watching them build the place. There are around 90 units in it and “they say” 46 of them are sold. But on further questioning there are only 3 units occupied. The beautiful pool isn’t yet heated, only one elevator works, none of the other amenities are finished yet i.e. clubhouse, tennis etc. If and when they have everything ready the HOA fees will be about US$300 a month. For that I’d live in Santa Monica, CA.
We watched the soccer game between Barcelona and MilanBarcelona LOST – unbelievable! And Bill fought the laptop and Internet for the first half of the game – and then discovered it was showing on one of the Mazatlan TV channels….
I am having a weird time getting used to my new (lenses) glasses – they are exactly the same prescription the only difference is there are no scratches on the lenses. Before it looked like I was living in a fog. Now I can see things clearly –wasn’t there a song something like that?
Why do I keep getting emails about those tubs you can just step into? Day after day. “Be safe, buy one of our tubs.” I’m not that old yet!  And how to get rid of belly fat. What? Are they spying on me? Leave me alone……
Fixed dinner again last night – using more from freezer. Except this time I added more to the freezer. Used the two hamburger patties but had to buy eight buns – still have six left. Didn’t gain any space in there. But the border guards usually don’t take bread.
Visited with George a little last night and ate some of the wonderful Flan our friend Angelica made for Bill. Heavenly.
Today we’re going to go to El Quelite for breakfast. It’s such a pretty little town .
This afternoon are two pre Daytona NASCAR races. Wish I could watch them. The results will set the starting order for the Daytona 500 next Sunday. And tomorrow night is a truck race and Saturday night is a Nationwide race. And Kyle races in all of them. But Daytona is just a crap shoot as to who wins and this year with the new cars………

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

In and out of stores in Mazatlan's Centro district

Got a late start today. Got up later than usual then we went out to breakfast with George to the restaurant on the beach and then we went to look at condos on the beach. It is almost time for Bill to watch his soccer game using the Internet. So I need to hurry with this.
Yesterday was another errands kind of day – just going from here to there getting stuff we think we wanted or needed.
Driving along the Malecón towards the central market we were surprised to see that the statues for Carnaval were being taken down. Quite a project. Each needed several men with saws and hammers, a crane and a flatbed truck. Here the crane is attached and ready to lay the statue down so the men could make it small enough to fit on the flat bed truck.
Driving towards the parking lot I spied this small store/market. “Scrumptious Baked Potatoes” – aren’t we in Mexico? I wonder how good they are maybe will have to try to find a place near there to park so we can try them. They have home delivery – will they deliver to the RV park?
One of the streets by the central market – it is a street for driving on but no one seems to care. Crossing and walking anywhere.
We wandered around inside one of the big yardage stores looking for laces for Bill’s shirt so I took a few pictures of some of the yardage. This is a nice wool used to make school uniform skirts. Costs about US$4.00 a yard. Actually a meter which is about the same as a yard.
Nice cotton prints. About US$2.40 a yard.
And French Silk Shantung. About US$3.20 a yard.
From there into the Central Market just some shots of food there. How about a cows head? The rest of it was on the counter behind the head. This is a whole isle of meat markets.
Or how about some smiling pigs heads?
Looking down an aisle of produce stands.
I want this piece right here! Another beef carcass.
Here are some fruits? In my handy dandy little cheat sheet for Spanish words I couldn’t find either of these. Actually it is spelled guanabana and it is used in ice cream and juices and is thought to help in the treatment of cancer. As near as I can figure out the anona is a type of guanabana - now isn't that a big help.
Grapes, mangos and papayas. We bought some of the grapes and they are delicious. Also got some tangerines and strawberries. 
Last night we went to a restaurant on the ocean for dinner. Had t-bone steak with baked potato. Perfect. Will go there again. They also had entertainment – strolling guitar players. One of them was very good – good singing voice too.
Other than that we didn’t do much. I tried with the knitting again…..I just don’t think that is going to be my forte. I ended up with a muscle cramp in my shoulder from the awkward way I hold the needles……that’s pretty pathetic.
Need to get this posted before the game is on.