Baja California MX

Beach Bonfire

Sunday evening I joined the neighbors for a beach bonfire to celebrate the full moon. This has become a tradition for the neighbors to gather on the full moon to have a fire and share food and beverages on our beach while connecting and sharing our stories. The evening was warm and the fire large thanks to the men folk who had gathered lots of wood to burn. Here are some photos of the occasion. Life is good here 🙂

Categories: Baja California MX, beach mexico, Mexico, Pete's Camp, Retiring to Mexico, San Felipe Baja MX, Sunsets, Weather in San Felipe, why Mexico | Tags: , , | 1 Comment

New color for my Casita

I have a little one bedroom Casa (house) here in San Felipe now and then I change something just to give life a little boost. I got it in my head to paint one wall on the veranda, I love that word it sounds so grand, Mexican Pink. I went to a local paint store and looked at their color chart and there it was a very bright pink. When I told the man what I wanted even he called it Mexican Pink, in Spanish of course.

So I took some photos of the pink wall. I didn’t paint it pink I paid someone else to do the job if I had done it there would have been paint everywhere including the wall the floor and ceiling.

The photos also show the new iron work too, this adds a more Spanish touch to the house.

Here are some photos my now Mexican Pink veranda;

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From the entry looking down the veranda

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Looking towards the entry and living room

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Sitting area at the end of the veranda

 

Categories: Baja California MX, Building a house in MX, Mexican house projects, Uncategorized | 5 Comments

More House Improvements

I have wanted to make some changes to the house for some time and I contracted with a local artisan Steve Sherrod (Ironman Steve) to construct some Iron work for my house and construct walls around the house with another man all seems to be going as planed.

The Iron Work was installed today and the prep for the front wall started today too. I have a few photos of the progress to share.

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Blocks arrive

The truck arrives with the blocks and cement for the wall

The truck arrives with the blocks and cement for the wall

Prep work for wall mods

Prep work for wall mods

Prep for wall work

Prep for wall work

What the front looks like before wall mods

What the front looks like before wall mods

This is the Iron Work I had constructed and installed;

End piece going in

End piece going in

Long Shot

Long Shot

It's in

It’s in

Long view

Long view

Side view

Side view

Entrance View

Entrance View

Side view

Side view

Long view

Long view

Next the wall construction

Categories: Baja California MX, San Felipe Baja MX | Tags: | 4 Comments

What I do all Week

Monday; Watered some plants and filled the fountain in the early morning, later went to breakfast in town (Chumpos).

On the way home I paid for my TV $50, checked my mail bought fuel for my car came home played on the computer until lunch went to lunch at Road Runner Cafe, had a hot turkey sandwich with mashed potatoes and gravy. Returned home took a nap for an hour and half. Later checked the computer and thought about going out for dinner, but changed my mind and stayed home and had a bowl of cereal for dinner. Watched TV and played on the computer till bed time.

Tuesday; Filled the fountain checked the garden had an english muffin and coffee for breakfast got ready to drive the ladies to yoga meditation. Washed dishes sprayed the house for mosquitos as I saw two in the living room. Started this blog. Noted that the sun is coming up much later now.

I stopped by a friend’s house to confirm that we were going to breakfast tomorrow and then visiting an immigration facilitator later that morning. All is good I’m driving tomorrow.

I then had lunch at the camp cantina; 13138764_10154144259548648_2372979228226720421_n

hamburger and fries with a soda I had the place to myself. This evening I stayed home and made dinner; mashed potatoes, peas and kielbasa with whole wheat bread. I am not fond of cooking for myself as I make a big a mess cooking for one as cooking for four.

Wednesday; I was wide awake at 4:30 am! There isn’t much to do at that hour. I made a pot of coffee took a shower got dressed made my bed, toasted an english muffin watched the news on TV and played on the computer. Oh, I hunted down the charging cord for my tablet, I hadn’t seen it in a few days since the housekeeper was here. I found it in with my other cables in a basket I think the housekeeper thought that was where it was supposed to be instead of plugged into the wall. After she has been cleaning I find things in different places than I expect, it is sort of a game-she has her places for things and I have mine.

I usually water my plants and trees on Wednesdays so I started that early this morning. I have a soaker hose around three sides of the lot and that saves a great deal of time however the rest of the garden needs to be watered by hose and I have to move the hoses ever 15 minutes to get all the trees bushes and flowers watered. The hoses are on timers so I don’t over water or waste any.

Wednesday night I went to dinner with a group of friends at a local restaurant there were about twenty or more people there and it was quite a lively group. I had the Mexican combination plate; taco, chili rellano, burrito, with rice and beans every thing was good love chili rellenos, a big green chili stuffed with cheese rolled in seasoned flour and fried, a slice of haven. After dinner some of us moved on to the Pets’s Camp Palapa Bar for drinks and a chin wag. I finally just had to leave as I had been awake since 4:30am.

Thursday I got out of bed late and had to rush around and get ready to go to town for breakfast at Chumpo’s Restaurant where I met another group of friends for breakfast and more chin wagging. I had the breakfast special modified to my liking; two eggs over easy, Mexican beans, whole wheat toast and decaf coffee. Here is a photo of the gang lovingly referred to as the Lizards;
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After breakfast and feeding the local kitty her breakfast I went across the street to the Tattoo/Beauty Parlor1410814_690738617625818_333634678_o and made an appointment for a hair cut. Then I went to the local water office and put some money on my account 500 pesos or about $25, which with what is still in the account will last me for a couple of months. Then I went to the local plant nursery and checked out their new stock didn’t buy anything. From there I went to the local supermarket and bought groceries and some pastries. By the time I got home it was almost 12 noon. As I was getting out of the car I noticed a dog running in my neighbors yard and then I heard her owner calling for her so I alerted her where her dog was and she got the cute little bugger and all is well. I unloaded the car put groceries away and enjoyed a cup of coffee and a muffin I just bought.

Pete’s Camp Annual Poker Run, a race that isn’t is this weekend and people come from all over for this event. This is a description of a Poker Run;

Poker run – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poker_run
A poker run is an organized event where participants, usually using motorcycles, all-terrain vehicles, boats, snowmobiles, horses, on foot or other means of transportation must visit five to seven checkpoints, drawing a playing card at each one. The object is to have the best poker hand at the end of the run.

San Felipe has several Poker Runs sponsored by various organizations throughout the year usually the route is off road and bumpy I don’t participate as my back wouldn’t allow it.

Last night, thursday, I went for dinner at Padrino’s Italian Restaurant in town. I had a desire for one of their pizzas the Padrino’s Special. I met lots of friends there were tables full of them as usual there was lots of chit chat and pizza was delicious. 14601024_10157633800515061_616202711905055005_nThat’s the bartender Steve making the horns in the back he’s good bartender and looks out for us. As usual I left early and was home getting ready for bed my nine O’clock. Because it is race week we had some folks shooting off fireworks tonight, no big deal I just worry about my friends pets who get scared when they hear them. That all came to a stop about ten O’clock.

This morning friday, I got up a little later than usual made coffee and putzed around I have a hair cut appointment at noon and I have to go to Sunrunner Mail to mail off a letter today so I have plenty of time to putz about my house and garden. I went into town for my haircut and had lunch at the Taco Factory Restaurant1233596_470612633046333_1584807933_n they have these tacos made with shrimp and cheese that are delicious so I had two. I went home only to discover my cell phone was out of money so later I went back into town and paid some money to have time on my cell phone. I was across the street from Padrino’s Restaurant so I went over met couple of friends14522943_10157638345505061_5259438712859476203_n

and I had steamed clams for dinner they were perfect after a few non-alcoholic drinks  I went home and watched the news on TV and caught up on Face Book.

Saturday; I took a trip to the “Old Country” as I had to have my vehicle inspected by Customs and Border Protection as it is a new vehicle to me and it took months to get added to my Sentri Pass. Turned out to be a non-event everything went smoothly the officer there was very nice and I was on my way in just a few minutes. NOTE TO SELF; Denny’s is extremely busy on sundays go early or find some quieter place. Shopping and the trip back to San Felipe was uneventful.

This past week was a very busy week compared to the hot months of July and August as the winter visitors are coming in and the Mexican and American holidays are just beginning, but give you an idea of how I spend my time.

Categories: Baja California MX, Diary, Pete's Camp, Retiring to Mexico, Uncategorized | 7 Comments

October update

Health wise the bypass has been a success I don’t have much pain just very little in the sternum area must be a nerve that hasn’t healed yet. I have returned to my social schedule of meeting friends for breakfast four or five days a week. I go out for dinner twice a week unless there is something interesting in town then I go out for dinner again. I had a spate of dizziness a few times, that seems to have past. I also have been victimized by a by-product of the medications I took while in the hospital and I now take on a twice daily basis, hair loss. The meds interfere with the growth cycle of the hair and it falls out. Being a rather vain old lady I was distressed at this development so I purchased a couple of wigs to wear while I wait and see if the hair decides to grow again. The brown one is favored by my acquaintances over the white one I like them both.

Now, I mostly have the old age complaints; frequent potty runs at night and nagging heart burn on occasion. My back problem, the compressed fracture of T11, still gives me grief from time to time – I don’t think that will ever go away. So there I am repaired for now and getting on with my life.

I am content for now to remain in San Felipe until I get the itch again to move on so I’m going about my business of making the house here more comfortable. I just had a wall built to replace the wire fence between my lot and the lot to the north here are the photos;

I will be making some other changes to the house changing the front wall design, the a wall to the south of my lot then my house will be more protected from the wind. I have also ordered ornamental iron work for the veranda to dress that up a more make the house more secure. I’m looking for an RV trailer to park on the lot and use as a guest house. I would like a silver one that I can remodel and skirt so it would be updated, functional and comfortable. It is in the dream stage now, we’ll see if this comes to life as time goes on.

Today I went to the annual opening of Cowpatty’s a bar located about seventy miles south of San Felipe. The seasonal opening is the unofficial start of the “season” here for the Gringos that spend the winter in our fair village. There are some Gringos who live here year around like myself who enjoy this social bonding. Some people come from a great distance to be at this event in remote part of Baja Mexico. Lot’s of renewed friendships and catching up on who’s coming back this year and who did what while away and who couldn’t make it and why-quite the gabfest. Plus the quaffing of local beer and occasional other beverages of the adult variety was indulged in. I wasn’t driving today so I got in a few myself.

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Last night I got invited to a neighbor’s house to enjoy some drinks and nibbles with other neighbors it was a delightful time chatting away about the goings on of our neighbors and what they have been up to and their plans for the future. There were some dogs there too so I got my puppy love. The food was delicious and quite the hit. This same group meets on a regular basis for our Wednesday dinner out at a local restaurant. This is an energetic group that travel frequently to the US, Mexico and other lands so there are lots of stories.

I love my life here in Mexico more friends than I can count lots of things to do and good enough health to enjoy it! I’ll post again when I have something to say 🙂

 

 

Categories: Baja California MX, Mexico, Retiring to Mexico, San Felipe Baja MX, Uncategorized | Tags: | 5 Comments

Update on health

Just short of two months post-op double by-pass and feeling well for the most part. I still have some occasional pain in the sternum area that is not debilitating. My energy seems to be improving as I can now walk (slowly) two miles a day and I don’t need long naps so much. I thought with the walking every day I would lose weight but that hasn’t happened. I have adjusted my diet to limit salt and fat as much as I can. So, not losing weight has frustrated me. I can drive myself to town and do my own shopping still don’t feel like driving to town at night for dinner. I think that I’ll feel better about driving to town soon as I’m getting more stamina every week. Tonight I’m going to the local Camp Cantina for dinner with neighbors it isn’t far from the house. I like their Taco Salads, they are very well done and tasty.

Next week I plan to drive myself to El Centro CA for a doctor’s appointment. My Cardiologist recommended that I have a GP locally and the appointment is next week. I’ll go up to the “Old Country” the day before and stay in a motel overnight so I’ll be rested for the appointment with the new doctor. After the appointment I’ll do a little shopping and return to San Felipe. Hopefully all will go smoothly.

Further update for the month of June;

I have been able to enjoy some social visits and now can drive long distances as long as I use my special belt to minimize my back pain. I have driven by myself to the “Old Country” several times including a visit to a new General Practice Doctor in El Centro CA. She sent me for a mammogram and a bone scan both are unnecessary and the lady at the mammogram clinic was so rude I got up and left. Long story but for some reason I seem to attract health care professionals who are either rude, uncaring, and or incompetent, my tolerance of such people has gotten shorter as I get older.

I have been more socially active going in town for breakfast, joining neighbors for the full moon gathering and dining out in town. This improves my spirits and give me an opportunity to socialize and feel more engaged with others. I still get tired from time to time and need to rest for a while a short rest and I’m almost back to normal. I have been tending my garden myself and it feels good to out in the early morning working on the garden.

I also have been taking care of myself by having my hair colored and a pedicure at a local salon. Getting these done improves my looks (I think) and my self-esteem. here is a photo of me and my friend Irene getting our pedicures.

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The ladies doing the pedicures were caught off guard they usually are smiling and joking while they work and they are very dear to me.

Now it is the fourth of July weekend there will be lots of parties and fireworks hopefully all pets will be kept safe so they don’t run away and get lost.

That’s all for now will chat later.

 

Categories: Baja California MX, San Felipe Baja MX | Tags: , , , | 3 Comments

Good news

Photo on 1-8-16 at 7.24 PM

The weather has moderated just a little for a day or two, after we had rain-yes rain a rare occurrence here in Baja Mexico at least on the Sea of Cortez coast. Still it was a cold rain and my plants have suffered one is struggling to live. Today the sun was out and breakfast club with the other lizards was pleasant. I’m fortunate to have a group to socialize with and learn from as the ways of getting by in Mexico can be confusing if you’re trying to do it by yourself.

I am firming up plans to attend spanish language school, yes again, this time in Guadalajara Jalisco Mexico. This will be four weeks of intensive spanish only classes. I expect that my fellow students will be college students and professionals who are going to be very bright and committed to learning the language. I’ll have my work cut out for me to keep up. I am excited about the adventure ahead and I have high hopes this time my spanish will improve noticeably.

After the four weeks of spanish school I’m going to visit the Lake Chapala area for week or so before returning to San Felipe. I want to see how things have changed in the area and if I would fit in there. The draw for me is the climate it is supposed to be the second best climate in the world. Climate is not the only thing that would entice me to move, but after shivering my buns off this winter in San Felipe the idea has its appeal. I would sorely miss the friends and neighbors I have here so it better have a lot of charming attributes to make up for starting over, once again.

I also have to make a trip back to the old country to get a document notarized for the sale of my house last month. I’ll make a shopping trip out of it and buy some goodies for my comfort as there is a lot of winter left.

 

Categories: Baja California MX, learning Spanish, Spanish School, Uncategorized | Tags: | 8 Comments

I’m Cold tengo frio :-(

The past week it has been cold here, at least by our standards, the temperature is in the sixties during the day and low fifties during the early morning and a few night lower into the forties, yikes that is cold for here. I have found that I need to dress in layers to be comfortable. I worry about my flowers but they seem to be doing okay so far.

Morning breakfast club has seen a drop in attendance because several members are out of town to visit family or to do some shopping in the “Old Country”. I don’t like crowds so I’ll put off my shopping till after the holidays.

I did get some needed work on my truck done. The truck was wearing out tires on the front at an alarming rate and after visiting the local Alignment shop I was given a list of parts to get while in the “Old Country” and now they are installed on the Green Beast. I have noticed a difference in how the truck feels driving on the highway. It seems to be more stable not wandering on the road. I just hope that the tire problem is cured. While it was in the shop the brake pads were changed as they were very low. I feel better that all this work has been done. I am keeping a watchful eye out for a car with Mexican plates to replace the truck with. I am going to be a permanent resident of Mexico in a month and the law states I can’t legally drive a foreign plated car. That law isn’t enforced here very strongly as there are to many foreigners driving around, but at the border when they check your visa, things could get dicey with Mexican Customs and I don’t need that aggravation.

I am glad I have the fireplace on these cold nights it may not give out a lot of heat but the fire its self gives the living room a cheery feel to it. I also have a portable heater to help keep temps reasonable as well as electric heat for those rooms that need a bit more heat like the bedroom. I also have an electric blanket and that keeps me warm too. I also have a portable electric heater in the bathroom that I turn on and heat that room before taking a shower, with the hot water and the heater it gets nice and warm in there.

I have been looking at other homes here in town and so far haven’t found anything that makes my heart go pitter-patter. I’ll keep looking as the homes for sale come and go.

 

Categories: Baja California MX, Retiring to Mexico, San Felipe Baja MX | Leave a comment

Travel Plans in the works

I have a house (double-wide) in Arizona that I am selling and after much to and fro the deal appears to be coming to a climax with signing of papers on or about 10 Dec 15. That means a trip to the “Old Country” I have to be present at the signing with ID in hand. Very old-fashioned and anal if you ask me, but we must comply to keep officialdom happy and close the sale.

I have been considering selling the house I have and buying another house. If I like it here why would I do that? The first reason or excuse, take your pick, is that I am by habit a vagabond moving from place to place never staying more than three years and often much less than that. I have been in this house for four years so I’m past my due date to move on. The second excuse is a bit more of a feeling than a reason (excuse); when I first moved here there were several other vacant lots adjacent to this lot which gave me the feeling of separateness and still a feeling of being in the social network. Now all the lots adjacent to mine are occupied mostly by nice people and some who I cherish their friendship. One more thing I find hard for me to get used to is paying a lease and HOA fee every year which tells me I don’t own this place I’m a renter. I know this sounds odd but when I look out my kitchen window directly into someone’s lot I don’t get a warm fuzzy feeling I get anxious. I feel surrounded and hemmed in like a bird in a cage. I am not comfortable with neighbors so close. I have owned property with some land to it(10-22 acres) and liked it that way. I like people, just not so close.

So I’ve been doing a local search of properties to see if something else might fit my idiosyncrasies better and haven’t come up with much. I did find one property that is interesting oddly enough to get me to take a second look, it is a house made of stone and here are some photos;

Roof garden or lookout Stairs to roof garden Livingroom & Fireplace Kitchen House front inside of front gate Front Door

Livingroom & Fireplace inside of front gate Bedroom & walk in closet

Categories: Baja California MX, San Felipe Baja MX | 4 Comments

Thanksgiving Day 2015

Four years ago I arrived in this little town on the coast of the Sea of Cortez San Felipe, Baja, Mexico. I was driving an older RV and had my two pets a Lab named Shelby and a Siamese cat named Pia. We got a space at Kiki’s RV Park just a short walk from the iconic symbol of the town the lighthouse. I enjoyed walking the beach several times a day with my dog and the camaraderie of the RV park so much I decided to look for a place of my own to spend the winters.

I, with the help of Darrel the real estate agent of Baja Sun Realty, found and purchased a lot in Pete’s Camp. First I had the lot cleared and an RV pad put in. Before I knew it I was making plans for a little house and planting trees and bushes. I was lucky to have such kind and thoughtful neighbors that I didn’t want to leave. To make a long story shorter I haven’t left, which is rather odd for me as I am usually a rolling stone never in one place more than two or three years and now here I am four years later.

Not all has been joy, I lost my pets to infirmities of age and miss them terribly. They were my constant companions for many years and my attachment to them was emotional and profound. From time to time I get the urge to move on as the vagabond life still has its pull. Yet, I haven’t left-dare I say I have put down roots like my plants and trees?

Today is a beautiful day sunny and calm there are workers building my neighbors a new house the same ones who built mine. The fountain in my garden is gurgling and splashing, now and then a bird drops by for a little nourishment and flies off. I watch the sunlight patterns slowly move over the veranda and I am content, for now.

This little town, San Felipe Baja, Mexico has a pull that none other has had for me. I enjoy its celebrations and contribute what I can to improve life here. I celebrate the Mexican holidays and the American holidays taking the best of both as my own. I have become an Expatriate and wear the label with pride. I have friends and acquaintances who also are Expatriates and those who are sometimes temporary visitors. There a few things I miss about the “Old Country” and there are things I don’t miss about it. I view the country of my birth with more skeptical eye these days.

Today I will share a meal with neighbors and friends we’ll talk and laugh and enjoy each other’s company just like in the USA. Tomorrow I’ll have breakfast with other expats in town and enjoy the Mexican menu there. My life has this regular calm enjoyable pace to it I’ve only dreamed of in my mind before. Sometime I become a tempest in teapot over some issue or other happening in the “Old Country”, but sooner more than later I calm down and gaze at the water and enjoy the peace here. The calms are getting longer and longer.

Here are few photos of San Felipe for your enjoyment;

 

Categories: Baja California MX, Mexico, moving to Mexico, Pete's Camp, San Felipe Baja MX | Tags: , , , , , , | 4 Comments

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