Wednesday, April 29, 2009

H-A-C-E C-A-L-O-R! It's Really Hot!

Since I came back home yesterday, Monterrey is suffering heavy cloud cover, no rain, but lots of heat and humidity. Excellent weather conditions for harboring the Novel Flu. I have showered three times today.

Lots of "pendientes" (things to do) today. I went to visit my accountant, stopped by Home Depot (looking for lily pads for the fountain), bought a new foam mattress cover, dropped off the bedspread for dry cleaning (80 pesos, what a deal and it will be ready tomorrow), and finally got in contact with the guy from the water department who does repair work on the side and is coming to fix the leak in the pool.

I also cancelled a home-coming party for the next weekend. Too bad, but we can't have 75 people in the yard and pool with all that is going on. I hated doing it but we need to think about the group as a whole. Some people were offended, but after I made the calls the afternoon news report was on the radio warning people not to have their usual "reunion domincal" or Sunday get together with family. So that gave me a little "respalda" or backup.

It was so hot that I turned on my little 5000 btu air conditioner in the travel trailer and went there to take a very, very long 2 hour nap. For some reason, probably the constant time changes I have been through on the West coast, I woke up at 3 a.m. and decided it was time for coffee. I had too much going on in the ole noggin that it was useless to go back to sleep.

However, I do want to confirm with you the following, that I am using my mask wherever I go. I took this on the plane yesterday as I was returning from Sinaloa.

So what's with all the cloud pictures from the airplane, you might ask? Well, I am a mama's boy, always have been and always will be. My mom died in May 1997. The last time I spoke to her she was in her hospital bed. When I asked her what she was doing she replied, " I'm looking out the window at the clouds, they are so beautiful". That was the last time she spoke to me. She died the next day. Ever since, I have always wondered what she saw in those clouds that day. I really miss her.

Monday, April 27, 2009

And Then There Were Two

A little tribute to someone who has been in my life for almost 25 years. Over the weekend, Bea Arthur passed away. You may not know this about me, but not only do we have all the syndicated Golden Girl dvds, we also have all the episodes on VHS that we have recorded over the years. We started the first year in 1985.

Since that time, I have watched a Golden Girls episode almost every day since then. I even travel with Golden Girls dvds so that I can watch an episode on the road. We know the scripts, the lines, the jokes, and the stories. Estelle Getty passed away in 2007 and Bea this past weekend.

The episodes are time markers in my life. Thanks Bea for all you have given us, from Maude to Dorothy Zbornak. We have even thought about building a house that mirrors that of the girls.
Thank you for being a friend!

Class is Over

This morning, in the middle of the course I am giving in a hotel ballroom, a person from the education department came in and said the course was over and we were all to go home. As you probably already know, they have closed all the schools in Mexico until next Monday and that includes all of its associated activities. Like mine.

So I was able to change my flight and will be heading home in the morning. The streets are empty and now people are appearing with their masks on. I have mine ready for my trip home just to be on the safe side.

Now is when I can appreciate boondocking in Mexico!

There is a debate going on over on the Rv.Net about boondocking today. Funny, why would I want to stay in an rv park when all everyone from the U.S. and Canada does is complain about their bad electricity. And believe me, the bad electricity has nothing to do with Mexico. Good wiring, a transformer with a reduced commercial rate and there is no excuse to offer substandard power to rvers.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

A Relaxing and Painless Sunday
Wow, what a difference. I have been pain free all day today since my treatment yesterday. It turned out to be a pretty lazy Sunday. I got up before six and had my coffee and read my RvTravel.Com newsletter. Mostly interesting was the article about the Affinity Group (AGI) that is struggling to stay afloat. AGI owns Rv.Net along with a string of other rv relating services including rv insurance.
Around 8:30 I finally got my butt up out of bed, got showered and headed out the door. I was on a quest to find a special restaurant. I hate eating in hotels. Apart from the expense (even though the publisher pays all the expenses, I still can't waste someone else's money) I feel lonely eating in a hotel versus on my own. So I pay and get reimbursed by the publisher. I can eat better, enjoy my meal, find more interesting locals than I can in the hotel.
After I had checked my newsletter I thought it might be smart to check local restaurants on the web. Sure enough, I ran into what I thought was just the place. La Casita de Wafles (the little waffle house). How novel I thought. I could go for a good Belgian waffle and some eggs. I memorized the address, headed down to the concierge and got the directions. Four blocks up, one block right, three blocks left and five more left. A nice walk, and so I took off.
As I got close to Calle Sinaloa, I decided to ask. I passed a place that was preparing the grill for carne asada tacos. I said to the guy, " ¿disculpe, donde está la calle sinaloa? He replied, "una calle mas adelante" (one more block straight ahead). I then said to him, "busco el restaurante la casita de wafles". He said to me, ¿la casita de mofles?" (the muffler house). So I repeated and he told that yes it was one block ahead and five to the left. I continued on and watched as the numbers dropped from 309 down to 160. Well, where in the heck is the waffle house? I said as I stood in front of an abandoned house. As I turned, there were the bronze numbers hidden behind vines crawling up the wall. Oh no! The waffle house has fallen into ruins, forgotten, no smell of bacon. What a big disappointment.
Okay, I can accept that. There is a VIP's and a Walmart a couple of blocks away. As I passed the jerk preparing the carne asada he asked me if I had found the place. I told him yes (flipping him the finger in my pocket knowing his response). "oh yeah", he said. "They closed a couple of years ago". "Gracias" , I said along with (pendejo) under my breath. He got his laugh for the day and I was just the better as I did find what I was looking for.
So I went on to VIP's. Excellent, scrambled eggs, ham and bacon along with two small hotcakes. I enjoyed my coffee and juice and read the local paper. Swine flu is the headline of the day.
I went to Walmart only to buy nothing and return to my room for a nap around 1 p.m. I had taken quite a long walk through the well-to-do neighborhoods and it was very pleasurable. But, I had to go back to Wally World. I needed to buy 12 rolls of toilet paper and a ball.
What am I going to do with 12 rolls of toilet paper? Tomorrow I will use the tissue for an icebreaker activity with the teachers. I will tell them to take a roll to their group, and take only what they think they will need. After that, they will have to tell the group one fact about themselves for every square of paper they tore off. A lesson to be learned!
Have a good one! Wash your hands, don't kiss and shake hands, cover your mouth and nose when you sneeze.
I will go back tomorrow and take a picture of Mi Casita de Wafles!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Severe Back Pain and the Threat of Swine Flu

Finally I am able to post pictures. I had to change rooms here at the hotel as I was too far from the antenna to get a decent signal. I figured that if I was going to be here all weekend, come Sunday I would want to read my RvTravel.Com newsletter with my coffee and then do some rving surfing.

Last week I turned the wrong way or something and hurt a lower back muscle. The last two days the pain was unbearable. After the course this morning, I went to a local chiropractor who gave me a good massage, massage bed with heat, and a total of four adjustments during the 1.5 hour session. It was amazing the way he manipulated my body. I feel much better and will return on Monday afternoon. His office is very nicely equipped, clouds on the ceiling, music, incense and opens to a beautiful patio filled with palms and ferns. Very relaxing. Total cost, $200 pesos.

I came back to the hotel, took a short nap and then headed out for some really good Chinese food. I had chicken egg foo yong. It was to die for. The best I have had since my days in Texas.

Here is picture I took yesterday of the teachers doing some teamwork activities in the course I am giving. There are 150 in the course and they are great fun. They are eager to learn and great English speakers.

Here is a shot from the airplane on the trip from Monterrey to Hermosillo.
Which brings me to the recent issue of swine flu. Well, I wish I had known before getting on the plane in Monterrey I would have had a mask on. I have a bad habit of touching my face and it is a battle to keep from doing it.

I will be going home on Tuesday via bus to Culiacan so that I can avoid major airports. I will be wearing a mask at the airports, bus stations, and on the airplane and bus.

This is really spreading and I hope it gets nipped in the bud. The good thing is that we are at the end of the flu season so there is a good chance it may die out, hibernate or even morph. There are just some things we cannot control. This may be one of them.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Back In Los Mochis, Sin.

I will be working here until next Tuesday. I'm not happy with the hotel but we are having the training here so I guess it is convenient. The good thing is that I will be free every afternoon to go to the beach or sightseeing. Sunday I am free all day!

I have some great photos from the air that I took on the plane. I will attempt to post the pictures in the morning, the internet connection here is strong but it appears there are a lot of people competing for the connection.

I have some comments about the use of cell phones, Ipods and laptops. I am going to give an opening plenary in Aguascalientes in May about the Gen Y and Millennials, those that were born with electronic gadgets in their hands. I witnessed some interesting things in the airport as well as on the plane. Not anything new, I confront it daily at the gym, schools, businesses and at friends homes.

I plan on eating shrimp at every meal over the following days and will take pictures to give you an idea of the culinary arts of Los Mochis.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Water, Lots of Water

I asked for it, and it came. Yesterday the thundershowers started around 10 a.m. I had gotten up early and did a little house keeping, read my RvTravel.Com newsletter, showered and by about that time the rain had started. I was leaving to visit a friend who had just returned from living in Oaxaca for several years with her daughter. I stopped on the way to buy some pan dulce. You never want to visit someone without taking an offering of some kind. I got all of my favorites because I was sure she would invite me to eat while I was there. We chatted for several hours over coffee and bread along with a picture view of her kids and her life in Oaxaca. I have always liked Oaxaca but there always seems to be some tension there.

Since Sunday is my "día libre" for food and beverage, I scouted out the best pizza to buy. My first stop was a Domino's Pizza. Forget that s---! What an offer, one large and one medium for 295 pesos. Sorry, I'd starve before I'd pay that much money for a pizza. Off to Soriana, but that really fits the bill of a cardboard box pizza. Walmart came next and they had no pizza so I checked out their prepared foods. After which I saw a girl put her fingers into the "ensalada de codos" (macarroni salad), I opted not to have prepared food.

Last stop with or without pizza was CostCo. Long lines, but I got what I wanted. I ordered a large cheeze pizza for 135 pesos. A good deal, lots of sauce and pure cheese. Always a catch though, I, not being a fast food fanatic, thought that they had them coming out of the oven. So I paid and asked how long it would be and she said at least half an hour. Well, nap time was nearing and I could feel that feeling I get around nap:3o. What can you do! I went shopping in the store, mostly people watching as they move from one demonstrator to another grabbing up bite size samples of cheeses, crackers, teas, coffee, salchicha, chocolate brownies, etc.

By the time I was wondering back to the food section I had seen the woman who was in front of me getting her pizza. I got up to the window only to find out that people were pointing to their order slips on the whatchamacallit where they hang the receipts, and the pizza guy was filling their orders. So I reached inside the window and handed him my slip. He reached into the oven and pulled out a cheesed top pizza with the sauce bubbling out around the edge of the crust. I vowed at that moment I would not have a bite until I was home. The longest trip in history. I enjoyed every bite with salsa verde on the side. My nap came soon after and it was a good one.

Here we are today on Monday and all things back to normal. Semana Santa came to an end, vendors packed up and headed home. I got up at 6 thinking I would get to the gym by 7 and take the spinning class at 8. I got on the highway and it was like "lucha libre". Made dash by all 4 million people living in Monterrey to get their kids to school on time. As I passed the cars you could see the driver sipping coffee and the kid in the front seat with his head against the window and slobber running down his cheek sound asleep. Traffic came to a screaching halt as I entered town. So much for my workout routine I thought. I made it to the gym about 7:30 and even it was empty. My friend Christy who just had a reduced breast tumor removed was there to take the class also. She had been on chemo the last year. She looks great and says it was a success.

We convinced the gym's owner to give a 3o minute class which was enough to get me sweating and prepared for my weight lifting. All in all, it was a great ending to Spring Break.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Notice Anything Different In The Picture Below?

You're right, no change. The guys coming to cut the cement didn't show up. He told me it wouldn't be right away but I was hoping to get this going. On Monday, I'll stop by and see if I can at least get the guy out here so he can see what needs to be done. I will be working in Los Mochis the end of next week and it would be great to get this show on the road.

We were promised five days of rain. We have had none. It keeps passing us by. Now the weather is hot, humid and the air so heavy it chokes you. You lucky snowbirds that have already headed out. You have the best of both worlds. Heat I like, humidity mixed with heat, I hate.

I continue watering the grass but the cloud cover has hung around all day. Alright, I exagerate a bit. It sprinkled this morning but it wasn't enough to make a difference. It only made the heat worse.


Like all other things in life, things change. My quiet, safe and secure country life has had a small disruption. Since January, I made the decision to close and lock the front gates at night. I never did that before much less lock the front door. Last week I was in one of the sheds in front of the house and noticed that some suitcases had fallen. I blew it off and got what I wanted and closed the doors. Yesterday, I wanted to put the small window unit air conditioner in the trailer window so that I could have a drink and check my email out there. I hate the obnoxious roof air, the next rv we won't have one. Anyway, I got the window set up and went to the shed for the air conditioner. Now I know why it looked funny when I was in there last week.

You can see the shed in the distance.

In the last two weeks I took off for the day and a couple of times I left the gate open. The air conditioner was lifted. Not a big deal, not an expensive item but just the idea that some one came into the yard and took something. I had just told Croft when he was here we usually don't worry about those things because we don't have "gente mañosa" people with sticky fingers. I spent the morning shopping for a new unit. As they say, "from the ashes". I found something much better than what we had before. I can only wish the new owner of my old air conditioner the best of luck with it.

Don't f--- with my freedom, that's when I get bent out of shape. I hate this as I have lived the last twenty plus years without locks on my doors and looking over my shoulder. I refuse to give in.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Fixing The Pool Leak! Thanks Jonna!
We have had the pool empty now for about four months. It has saved a fortune on the electric bill as we pump our own water not to mention the filter use. So today I made a concerted effort to find someone to cut the stamped concrete and fix the leak. I had an architect come several weeks ago and he located the leak. I just hate to break that beautiful cement pad that cost us a fortune to install. Oh well, what is done is done. Heavy rains are due for the next few days so I don't expect these guys to come right away. I do want to get the pool up and running as it affects the sell of the house as well as the severe heat wave we have been experiencing. A pool is a love hate relationship. We have used it daily over the years but for only 15 minutes a day. Wow! I feel like I am paying for a quinceñera. It never ends. The new place in Allende will probably have a jacuzzi, no mas! A pool is a huge expense. I have to thank Jonna for prompting me to write this spot as she had a recent leak in her house. Not a big deal. Everyone has a leak of some kind during their lives.
I brought "Friend" home from the vet today. Bad news is, she is still too underweight to have her fixed. So we will wait a couple of weeks until she has put on some weight. She was very happy to return home and I saw her run for the first time since I found her. She still stinks, even though she has had several baths, due to her skin fungus which is improving greatly. You saw a photo of her before but I won't show her again until she is recovered. I guessitmate about one month more. It does me good to see her happy.
My Advice For The Day
Enjoy the day, it may not last forever. Saca el jugo del limón hasta que no puedes sacar mas!
I would also like to wish my life friend Patricia a very happy birthday and may she live long, healthy and continue to be wise as she has been my life teacher, although she probably doesn't know it. God bless!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

International Birding Center, Mission, Tx

One of the great things about staying at Bentsen Palms Village is you have free access to the International Birding Center. Plus, you also can use the bicycles from the rv park of which there are at least 30 or more available.

We took off yesterday morning for a ride about 8:30 in the morning. Well, this is the middle of April and things are heating up. So as you can imagine, the mosquitos are beginning to appear and started to have quite a snack on us as we posed for the picture below. I was actually dancing waiting for the camera to go off.

As we rode around the park we were amazed at the difference a few years can make. Mother Nature has begun reclaiming all the man-made materials including the asphalt and cement. It is in a slow deterioration and will continue for years to come. We have fond memories of rving in the park and being the only people in the park for days at a time. Nightime walks back then would produce starry nights and sounds of the woods including the javelinas that walk the park. I remember our little dog, Gum, one night out for a potty break and all of a sudden appeared those beady red eyes in the light from the flashlight. We grabbed him up and threw him into the trailer. Those guys can be vicious although they shy away from people during the daytime.

The park is filled with wildflowers many of which are now in the rv park and Retama Village. It is really a sight to see especially at daybreak when the birds first begin their singing.

Last night, we got together with some old friends, Tom and Jan. We met these guys back in 2001 on an rv trip to City of Rocks, New Mexico with my sister and her husband. We ended up at an rv park in Silver City and really hit it off. At that time, Tom and Jan had a mobile home in a 55 plus park, Winter Green in Mission, a very nice park. Now they have purchased a home around the corner. They gutted the home located in another 55 plus park and redid the interior and the patio. A real retreat. Great people. We went out for dinner at Logan's Run in McAllen and talked about our latest adventures.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Easter! Spring Break Continues . . . .

We have been spending quite a good time here at Bentsen Palms. No one is here, a couple of winter stragglers. The gym is fantastic and we take advantage of it everyday. At night, we walk down to the jacuzzi and pool for about half an hour after we have had dinner.

Yesterday we headed out early after our workout for a much better breakfast. We ate at Molina's on 23rd Street. Much better service, very nice restaurant and in our price range. Very good potatoes and we split a half order of pancakes to top it off.

We had intended to go to the Dollar Store warehouse which used to be all the way out on 23rd Street but never found it. We stopped at several bargain malls that had stalls inside where people sell things including card reading and massage. Very interesting how cultures spill across borders. I feel comfortable here because I can speak in Spanish just like at home.

I took my usual nap. Man it was a good one. We decided to fix dinner at home last night so off we went to the new to us HEB on Bryan Rd. Very nice store and they have a restaurant inside and their own garden center store on one side. The place was packed. I had a hazelnut coffee while we shopped and we tried quite a few food demonstrators; beef fajita, cheeses, cheese spreads on pita, cake, etc. You could just have lunch there.

I picked out a couple of rib eye. We normally don't eat red meat but behind our park model is a farm filled with cows. I guess that set me off! Meat is more expensive here in the U.S. even though all "case" meat in Mexico supermarkets is USDA. Juan fixed piratas. Flour tortillas filled with Oaxaca cheese and beef fajita. I prepared a pretty good side salad and we drank a couple of Michelob Ultra Lite beers. Only two grams of carbs. Not a heavy beer but a real thirst quencher. If you are ever in Texas and shop at an HEB, pick up some of their prepared salsas that you can find in a zip lock bag located in the produce section. Very good "roasted" salsa.

The sunset last night was very beautiful. I took several pictures. Oh, by the way, when we left yesterday for the gym, we had quite a downpour. The rain was very welcomed here as it has been dry and South Texas is under water control conditions.

Now I Get The Whole Picture

Wow, that good ole second amendment. Last night we were watching local television and lo and behold there was a commercial that started off showing a couple in bed, hearing strange noises and he reaches into the drawer of his nightstand. Then the announcer reminds the audience that we have the right to defend ourselves. Okay, I can accept that. Wow, then it goes to a full blown commercial to "one of South Texas' gun stores" where you can buy any weapon you can imagine.

So to end this short rampage, somebody turned a blind eye to all this shit that is going on for eight years and dumped it onto someone else. So here we are, you all know what the current outcome is. Basically, we're screwed. This doesn't look pretty and as much as I hate to say it, it is going to get much worse. Hang on to your hats!

Friday, April 10, 2009

Lazy Day Here In Mission, TX

Juan's plane didn't get in until 12 a.m. So by the time we got home and had a drink it was 2 a.m. before we got to bed. This morning I actually slept until 8 a.m. not in my routine at all. We went out for breakfast at El Refugio restaurant in Mission on Inspiration. Stop! Halt! Don't go there. The food was good but they double charged us for anything we added it. It was the most expensive Tex Mex breakfast in the history of my 52 years. Enough said about that.

We went to Camping World and farted around there for awhile. I did buy a cap cover for the bathroom exhaust pipe. It had flown off a couple of years ago and I finally got around to getting that purchased. How long will it take me to get it installed?

On the way back to the rv park, we stop at Retama Village which is part of the Bensten development project. We looked at an rv lot that comes with a coachhouse that you can turn into just about anything you want. Some people have them as bedrooms, or a family room with bath and kitchenette. What we like is the maintenance, lawn care and the club and pool. Very nice.

Of course I am cheap and like the rv lot. You know who likes the casita, which is a two-bedroom house with the rv garage built on to it. Very nice but, we'll see. It is 55 and over but they said we fall into the group that they will accept considering federal law allows X percent between 45 and 55 to enter.
Take a look! We are heading out the door for "lupper". We haven't eaten since this morning.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Spring Break McAllen, Tx.

I just made it to McAllen and it was a great day. I packed up the car last night, got the cats ready and send the new dog I had found (Friend) off to the vet to get fixed and another treatment on her skin. She has "hongos" fungus. Then this morning I set up the lights and timers, had coffee, showered and headed out the door. I stopped at an ATM to put more air time on my Movistar phone. I got on the highway and headed for Reynosa.

When I stopped at the ATM I also picked up the El Norte newspaper, a coffee, yogurt and some multigrain crackers. Set for the road I was able to catch the sunset above.

Along the highway from Monterrey to Reynosa I passed two smaller tolls on the autopista. The first was 38 pesos and the second was 37. Traffic was picking up and by the time I got 100 kms into the trip I passed the big toll which was 174 pesos. Here you could see a little more traffic. This was at 7:45 in the morning.

I also made a pit stop at the caseta de cobro. This is a large truck stop and they have a restaurant, Circle K convenience store and restrooms. They also sell liability insurance for Mexicans and Mexican residents like me heading across the border. Our new policy includes liability in the U.S. so I didn't need to buy any. I used the restroom and took the picture below. The restaurant has excellent food, but being the only place in town, or should I say "nowhere", it is very expensive.

Off again and heading to Reynosa I passed one checkpoint but was waved through. The town of Reynosa wasn't too busy as everyone is at the beach. Yesterday there were more than 500,000 people at the beaches along the coast of Matamoros. They also passed out 30,000 condoms. Finally, some common sense.

As I got closer to the bridge line up the traffic became horrific. Once I was able to fight my way into line it was 9:45. Good thing I had the newspaper with me along with the sales ads from the RGV that they hand out while you are waiting in line. My wait was 1 hour and 52 minutes. When I got up to the U.S. customs booth the agent asked me where I was from, what I did for a living, and if I had any fruits, vegetables, liquor or live animals. I said "no" to all of the above and she waved me through wishing me a great Easter holiday. Wow, that is really something!

I headed for Bentsen Palms Village RV park. As I said the other day, we rented a park model for five days. Great thing I didn't bring the trailer, imagine the hassle crossing the border and the long lines. So here I am, right on time for my afternoon nap. The park model is fully equipped, we only need to do some grocery shopping and get some liquid treats.

I pick Juan up at the airport later on tonight. That gives me a chance to watch some news and maybe go for a swim later. See Ya!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Semana Santa Is Here!

You could tell it was starting, it was inevitable. Yesterday morning on the way to the gym there was little traffic at 6 a.m. compared to a normal work week. I wondered what was going on and then it hit me, Spring Break, everyone is on vacation. That's when I started to panic thinking about the crowds as they land in and around my house in carloads, bus loads and God knows what else.

It wasn't soon after that they announced on the local news that 250,000 people were expected to come to the lake where I live during the week. Yikes! I need to get the heck out of Dodge. Good thing is, I am always one step ahead of the game. Last week I made reservations at Bensten Palms RV Park in Mission, TX. We are renting a park model for five days and will enjoy pure relaxation.

Around here preparations are already in the works. I have to be thankful though, because during 90% of the year, my neighbors don't live here. They descend on the place at Christmas, New Year's and Semana Santa. So they are coming, the workers are preparing the quintas, cleaning, painting, sweeping, mowing the lawns and preparing the pools. Soon smoke will start to billow out of the chimneys of all the quintas and the aroma of steak, hot dogs, and all other grill top goodies will start to fill the air. Sounds great doesn't it? Now for the downside. Music, music, music, all day and all night louder than I have ever heard in my life. Windows will rattle and shake and neighbors will begin to compete with each other. Some will even have live bands set up on the roofs of their houses. Ask them to turn down the music? I have before, and you receive a resounding, "you're joking, aren't you?". And the gate gets closed again.

So, as much as I love my wonderful life, there are always the downsides and this happens to be one. Whatever happened to Easter anyway?
I was coming home today from the city and saw that our town here in Santiago and El Cercado have started setting up their "puestos de seguridad" and posting signs about drinking and driving. Crashed cars have been set up along the highway parkways and medians to remind drivers of what mixing the two together can result it. It started last Friday as schools got out and kids hit the streets. 8 people were killed in drunk driving accidents or run over by a drunk driver not to mention all the accidents.

Here is the puesto de seguridad down the street from my house.

One of the many banners warning drivers to watch their speed.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Where Are The Low Profile RV Manufacturers?

I recently posted on the about low-profile travel trailers; Hi-Lo, Trailmanor, Chalet and Aliner. They are make great products but I truly believe, for lack of competition, they are mediocre at best. We owned two Trailmanors and enjoyed them. In fact, we are still contemplating a return to one because of its wonderful boondocking abilities. The model we like turns out to be TMs smallest model, the 2619. it is 19ft closed which is longer than our current standard travel trailer. Open, however, it is a full 26ft and has a bed on each end. The 2619 includes a full kitchen, dinette/sofa combination and a full bath. We have always liked the hard-sided bath in the TM versus the curtain/wall slide bath in the Hi-Lo. The problem with this particular trailer is that because it lacks competition, it is very expensive. Second, it has many areas that I feel could be improved upon.

So why did I post the question on With the current economy, high fuel prices, or should I now say volatile fuel prices, reducing our footprint on the planet (after all, rvers should be somewhat involved with the great outdoors) and knowing full well that the rver's enemy is wind resistence, why we don't take a closer look at low-profile rving? Hi-Lo at one time even produced several fifth wheel models. Imagine, it was a real piece of engineering.

Why would it be so difficult to drive these products to the edge and produce something of comfort, beauty, economy and in tune with keeping the planet a bit cleaner?

You decide, I sure can't figure it out.

New Poll

I had changed my original direction with the blog several months ago. I used to report on daily activities but it didn't seem to draw a crowd. Also, I was hoping to do something with GoogleAds but my account never got set up. They said they were sending me password requests in the mail but I would never receive them and it's not like you can pick up the phone and call Google.

So I have posted a new poll at the top asking if readers are interested in my daily doings. I just hate to post on both the and then here. However, I do come across some great things for both rvers and people wanting to live or foreigners who do live here. Today, I posted about the 3G card offered by Telcel Amigo, prepay internet using the USB gadget they sell. A little pricey, but it might be what we will do in the future while we are on the road.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Mexico Blogger Visits Santiago, N.L.

I got a call Monday night from my friend Croft and his lovely wife Norma. They are heading back north to Canada for the summer and stopped by for a visit. I headed over to the park where they were staying and we had a couple of beers and chatted for awhile.

Then yesterday, we went on a quick tour of downtown Monterrey visiting the Santa Lucia Riverwalk. We took a ride on the boat up and down the river which starts at Parque Fundidora which used to be an iron works. The ironworks was shut down in the early 80s and was then converted to a park utilizing the three furnaces and smokestacks and incorporating them into the park. This is also where the International Forum was held in 2007.

We then headed for the MacroPlaza for a visit to the Presidencia Municipal and a quick tour of the downtown area by car. We had lunch at La Anacua, a seafood restaurant that started in a palapa many years ago in Guadalupe, N.L. and has since expanded to several nice restaurants.

We headed back to the rv park for a final beer and off I went home. Croft and Norma headed for Laredo this morning. We had a great time and they are wonderful people. If you get a chance, check out his blog