Monday, October 26, 2009

Yes, but we don’t have a key

On Friday all the children (147) left the primary school in La Manzanilla with a note stating that today, Monday, parents needed to come to the school at 5:00 pm to clean.

Lyle had received this same note 3 weeks ago, I showed up at 5:00 and waited with 2 other mothers until 5:45 before we decided to leave. No one ever showed up to open the gate so we were locked out.

Rick and I get there at 5:00 to find one man with a machete and one other woman at the school. The man with the machete goes to the edge of the school and starts hacking down the grass. The other woman has a list of all the parents, she checks off our name from the list and tells us we need to clean the garden area. So Rick and I look around and ask if there are any tools and she tells us, "No, but you can put the grass, that you pull by hand, in the trash dumpster by the gate."

We brought gloves.

We started pulling grass and after about 5 minutes I say to the woman, “this would be a lot easier with a lawn mower.” To which she replies, “yes, the school has one, a push mower, but it’s locked in the bodega and I don’t have a key.” I'm thinking, "geez they can produce 147 slips of paper with the note to come to clean but no one can think to come and unlock the door of the bodega..."

We pull grass, by hand, for another hour and leave. No other parents show up, but at least our name is check-off as doing our cleaning duty.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Surf's UP!

This past weekend we headed to Vallarta to meet some visiting friends. We decided to take them to Sayulita for the day and try our hand at surfing. Well, they wanted to try surfing.

After we got settled in our beach chairs we spied a man out in the water with two kids, small kids, we estimated about 5 and 7 years old. We assumed he was an instructor. They kids were doing great, he gave a board a little push when the wave came in and up the kids jumped. We ventured out to have a chat with the man and come to find out he was the dad, was learning to surf himself, and had just rented the boards for the kids.
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After a brief discussion with Lyle we decided to rent a board. Fifty peso’s an hour gets you a board, because I was renting for Lyle the guy gave us a few tips about holding the board and standing on it. Them he looked at me and said, “I’d try to sell you a lesson but kids learn so fast he probably won’t need one….now you on the other hand.” I laughed and declined the lesson for myself.

Kid’s learn fast is an understatement. He would have gotten up on the first wave, if Rick and I hadn’t pushed him so hard. This is a picture of him on the second wave, and the rest is history!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

I’ve hit the mother lode!

That’s what this chicken is thinking. He discovered our compost pile about 2 weeks ago and now everyday, for the better part of the day, he is hanging out eating his fill and lounging under our banana tree.

Funny thing is he hops the fence at night and goes to roost with his buddies. But alas he hasn’t shared his good fortune with them, he comes alone every morning.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Death to leaf cutter ants!

Yes, it’s my battle cry! We are waging a war in our small yard in La Manzanilla. Why, why, why there is a 12,000 sq ft empty lot full of vegetation on the side of us, but no they want to eat our almond tree and my brand new not even in the ground hibiscus.

A web search revels these little bastar#$%#@’s are nearly impossible to kill as they have several openings to a massive underground habitat. Some courses of action include 3 gallons of boiling water down the hole, followed by a pureed mixer of citrus peelings; flooding the highest opening (for up to an hour because the underground area is can be so vast) then putting a liquid herbicide down the hole and running around and capping all the exits, yeah like that is going to be easy to do. We’ve started with small caps of sugar mixed with borax and a nightly dose of a poison called Patron.
Here is the top of our almond tree after 1 night.