Monthly Archives: January 2009

Last full day in Mexico

I am getting ready to leave Mexico the van will be here about 8:30 in the morning to take me to the airport in Leon Mexico to catch my plane to Houston. I am ready to go even if I am in armored with San Miguel it is time to go back and take care of business there.

I had breakfast out; eggs Benedict and they were good with French Press coffee and I shared a table with a lady from Connecticut. She has traveled quite a bit and we had a fun time talking about our travels and the adventures that we had in various countries.

I came back to the apartment and started packing my stuff for the trip tomorrow.

The real estate agent sent an email and she has a house for me to look at today so I will go house hunting for an hour or so. I will tell you about it later.
I met with the real estate agent and I got to see a house. This house is just up the street from my apartment and is advertised as a two bedroom one full bath and half bath with living room and dinning room. The house in actuality has a small entry way that leads into the living-room and kitchen. The dining room is off of both the living room and kitchen. Off the dinning room is a stairwell going to the upper levels.
The stair well is open to the sky, on the second level there are two bedrooms and one bath, the bath is entered from one bedroom if someone was to be using the other bedroom they would have to walk through the other bedroom to use the bathroom. There is a spiral iron staircase going to the roof garden and surprise there is a bedroom with bath and storage located there not mentioned in the listing. So during cold and in climate days one has to go out side to go to the bedrooms. That is a big drawback also there is no patio or parking for a car. The location is fine close to everything.
Categories: Leon, Real Estate, San Miguel Allende | Leave a comment

A day in the life….


Mexicans love to have birds as pets here I am admiring
some canaries.

Today started as any other day; I finally gave up on my dreams and dragged myself out of bed of course it was in reality a call of nature that got me vertical and mobile, well at least in my stumbling sort of way I made it to the kitchen and poured last night’s coffee into the fake coffee maker to heat and started the kettle. Today I chose to have hot cereal for breakfast and coffee. I turned on the telly to the CNN news station to get my daily sanitized politicized spoon fed version of what passes for news in the U.S.. While spoon feeding myself my breakfast the talking heads spoon fed me the latest news of the financial disaster in my ‘home’ country. The collapse of the mighty Juggernaut of the American economy has had the fascination of a slow motion film of an accident. When will the downward spiral slow or hopefully stop? None of the talking heads knows that is for sure.

I checked my email and found nothing of interest and nothing actually for me just mail from various sites I had an interest in at one time or another. I was poking at the computer when I noticed that the housekeeper and the fix it man had arrived and here I was still in my pajamas and my bed not made. I scrambled about like an I love Lucy production making the bed and gathering my clothes to change into after my shower.

Ha, the shower, yesterday the fix-it man drained the small gas hot water heater to get the debris out of it so it would provide more than a few minutes of hot water for the shower…. no such luck! Now I know that the hot water will run out I am a bit quicker with my bathing procedure and endure the last few minutes of colder water as just something to be put up with to get bathed.

Today I had an appointment with a real estate agent. We talked about my interest in living in San Miguel Allende and what I can afford. As I suspected my meager savings won’t allow much and I will have to live some distance from the center of town if I wish to own property here. We agreed to meet tomorrow to visit some of the listings and get to know some of the neighborhoods to get the lay of the land so speak. The meeting was brief and I found myself out of the office walking along the portal beside the Jardine where I purchased a map of San Miguel as the tourist map that I had did not have much detail outside of the historic area. I found myself at loose ends; to early for lunch and I had, had my breakfast so what to do? I figured I might as well have some more coffee and walked over to Starbucks and ordered a pot of French Press coffee the cost is more but the amount of coffee is greater and you get to use this fancy French Press pot I think it makes one look like your a real coffee aficionado! My encounter with the staff in Spanish was less than glowing; for some reason when at Starbucks I don’t seem to connect with them as well as people in other places. I wonder why?

I choose a chair close to the window where I could see out to the Jardine and the cross streets, lots of folks cross here which amuses me to watch and wonder about their comings and goings. A nice lady asked to share the seat opposite me and I welcomed her company. She was having her coffee and reading what looked like her mail. I later asked her how long she had been in San Miguel. She said she had been there a year and loved it. I told her about my plans to look at houses for sale and that I was thinking of moving to town. We discussed her situation; she rents and is quite happy with her casita. Which is close to downtown not to far from the activities of the town center. We found out that both of us had lived in Kentucky and her son and grandchildren live in Boston, I resisted saying “what a small world”.

After we parted company I thought maybe “if” I decide to move to San Miguel I would be wise to rent a place first so in case this life in Mexico was not for me I would not be tied down with a house that might not sell for a year or more.

I later went to the bank to use my debit card from Wells Fargo the bank machine wouldn’t allow me to use it. I had called the bank before I left Texas and told them my plans and that my card was running out and I hadn’t received my new card. The nice folks assured me that the card I had would be valid to the end of the month, well guess what it isn’t! This could have been serious, however being a doubting old bi** I had brought sufficient cash with me; “Just In Case” something like this should happen and it did happen, grumble, grumble, mumble, mumble :

So after the disappointment at the bank machine I returned to the apartment and made lunch a ham sandwich and a beer the beer tasted so good I had two. The sandwich wasn’t bad either 🙂
The fix it man is hard at work fixing and repairing all sorts of things around here as with any property there is a a constant need to fix or replace something and with the constant use of these apartments as short term rentals there is always something that needs to be done.

I went to my meeting with my Spanish tutor this evening. We met at a local restaurant and I feel that we had a productive session. With help I talked with her in Spanish for an hour and a half. There were rough spots where I couldn’t recall a word or I had the tense of a verb incorrect at times I didn’t know how to express myself and need assistance to complete a thought. How ever the overall feeling I had was that I was communicating in Spanish about everyday things and telling a story about what I did in the past.

Categories: bank cards, Real Estate | Leave a comment

Classes come to an end

The formal Spanish classes are over, at least for now. I have a few sessions with my tutor. One on one is very intense, but one learns a lot. I will need more tutoring later on to improve my knowledge of Spanish and correct my pronunciation. I have the usual bad gringo accent no native speaker would mistake me for a native speaker. With help and use I hope to lessen the accent and move up in my abilities.
Categories: San Miguel Allende, Spanish School | Leave a comment

Week three

This is the beginning of week three. Last week was frustrating as I was having problems with my remembering the various tenses and spellings of irregular verbs in Spanish. I am studying sixteen of these verbs and find it hard to recall them. Hence the frustration. At first I thought
it was that I was losing my short term memory, a very bad sign, then I recalled incidents through out my life when my memorization was impossible. I told I am a right brain dominate
person and that we learn differently from left brain people. That bit of information does not help me remember anything, but makes me feel better.

This is Sunday and I went out to brunch at Cafe’ Monet a local restaurant and had eggs Benedict with French press coffee served in a delightful dining room, about $6.50. I shared a table with a couple from Southern California that were here for just a few days. They had been here thirteen years ago and were glad to see that San Miguel was still quite similar to how they remembered it. They were taking the home tour today and were in a hurry to get to the Library to get their
tickets for the tour. I hope they had a good time.

I plan to do a little touristy stuff today myself, I will report on that later.

Categories: Mexico San Miguel, Spanish School | Leave a comment

I have adjusted my work load

I felt that taking three classes would be to much so I
dropped the class using the Soap Opera approach. I
liked the idea and the class was interesting, but it
devertated my attention from the other two classes.
Instead I have contracted to have a tutor help me
learn Spanish. We shall see how that goes.
Categories: San Miguel Allende, Spanish School | Leave a comment

Dinner and a movie

I got a lucky break Sunday I went out in the evening looking for a place
to have dinner and found a place open that was having a special Dinner
and a Movie for one price. Dinner included wine, dessert and coffee as
well as the maine course. The movie was the 1997 version of Richard
the third, rather pecuilar version sort of art deco Shakespear.

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The firewood man

Saturday afternoon the firewood man showed up at the gate with his two burros and a load of firewood. I bought the load of firewood and took pictures of the man with his burros.

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What have I done?

Today I went to my other class in Spanish language and I arrived early.
I must have gotten the times wrong in my memory and so there I was
in time for a different class. This class was using the Soap Opera style
of instruction and was totally in Spanish with the class playing actors
parts in Spanish. I was asked if I would like to sit in on the class, so I
did and had a good time.
Then it was time for the class in the one I signed up for which is a class
in conversation Spanish also given in Spanish with the students asking
each other questions in Spanish and answering in Spanish.
Phew! From 12:30 to 5:30 solid Spanish instruction.
I don’t know if I can keep this up or not, but I would like to try to do
take all three and see what happens. We shall see.
Categories: learning Spanish, Spanish School, Warren Hardy | Leave a comment

What have I done?

Categories: Uncategorized | Leave a comment

I have returned to Mexico. I have rented a one bedroom apartment near the Warren Hardy Language School in San Miguel Allende Guanajato Mexico. It is nice to be back here in San Miguel and walking the narrow sidewalks shopping at the same stores I have before and listening to the language that hopefully I will one day be able to use.

This is Monday and I just had my first lesson for level three and I am excited; the lesson went well and my partner for the class appears to be amiable. The class is small less then ten persons, so the feeling is rather close and should add to the instruction. I am surprised by what I have remembered and what I have not remembered. I had dinner last night at a restaurant across from the Jardine and while I was eating I could hear the sound of the church bells as the windows were open and it was a warm evening in January. Very pleasing indeed.

I went grocery shopping this morning so that I could have some meals here at the apartment and save time and money. My purpose here is to learn Spanish and I endeavore to keep on target and achieve my goal of speaking Spanish easily and not stumble around and make gross mistakes, a lofty goal, but this is why I am here.
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