I’m not sure if it’s because I listened to the song or if it was just my turn to have a strange dream. But Thursday night was the night for more than one strange dream. As I whizzed through different decades in my life, the imagery was distinct and clear. I don’t recall all the details. But I went from nineteen to four to thirty-seven and a variety of other memorable ages. The people in my dreams seemed so real although many have not been a part of my life in years, either by choice or in some cases death. But they were all there and alive in my dreams.
Friday night I was surfing through Spotify and came across some old Perry Como songs. Yes I am that ancient. When I awoke the next morning I felt more than a little disoriented. I expected to see my childhood rocking chair and my record player. Those songs really got to me. They were favorites when I was a child. Middle of the House, Mi Casa Su Casa, Catch a Falling Star. I wonder if my readers remember any of those.
But when I opened my eyes I was here in Mexico, not in my childhood bedroom. Yet it had all seemed so real. For a few fleeting moments I was transported back to the safety of my childhood, a very comfortable place. At that age I didn’t watch the news on TV so I had no idea how chaotic the rest of the world was. My parents did a good job of sheltering me back then. Of course there was no Internet or Facebook in the olden days either.
I wonder if my own children ever have similar experiences. Of course they probably remember Madonna or Michael Jackson rather than Perry Como. The 80s were definitely different than the 50s.
This afternoon as I work on my novel, I’ve decided to listen to 60s country in the background. Can’t wait to find out what the dreams will be about tonight!
I tried something new in 2023 that had been highly recommended in a course I took last fall. And the result is exactly as the prof predicted it would be. My happiness level has increased.
Not that I wasn’t happy to begin with. It doesn’t matter how happy you are with your life, there is always room for improvement. So I tried this and I’m going to share it with you.
Our discussion in class centered around social media and how it takes away from our happiness. Students talked about how they took sites such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter off their phones. By constantly seeing others’ posts, the temptation to compare our lives to others is a strong one. But not readily having access alleviates this problem.
That makes sense. That can definitely present a problem if we are always envious of what we perceive others to have. And it may make us feel dissatisfied with what we have.
Twitter and Instagram are two sites I visit extremely rarely. But Facebook is still on my phone. And my tablet. And my computer. But I spend about a tenth of the time I used to on this site. I use it to mainly to share my blog posts twice a week. I enjoy looking at my memories. But only once in a blue moon will I post something.
I have all but given up scrolling. I have several hundred Facebook friends, many of whom have nothing better to do than to tell me what they ate for breakfast or what color t-shirt they’re wearing. And then there are those nasty posts about politics or religion. Or people who feel the need to post every photo in their gallery including ridiculous selfies. And don’t get me going on the ones who feel it’s necessary to share a dozen posts a day.
Sorry but I don’t have the patience for this anymore. I don’t miss the frustration of scrolling through twenty posts to get to one that actually may interest me. Instead, I search the people I want to keep in touch with and check out their posts regularly. I also rely heavily on Messenger and do respond to those messages.
I also prefer to read the news online rather than to rely on gossip and inaccurate speculations so prominent on Facebook. Although I must admit that even some of the events reported on national networks sometimes may fall into those categories.
By the way, if I’ve offended you by this post please feel free to unfriend me.
I’ve actually been trying to catch up on phone calls lately and have been hearing all about the frigid temperatures in Canada and all the snow in Washington state. I was on zoom the other night with a group in Winnipeg and every week they beg me to send them the sunshine and the warmth that I have here in Mexico. Were it only that simple! Of course I blew them away when I told them I still sip herbal tea at night despite the warm temperatures.
Covid is still very much around here in Mexico. I have friends in Puerto Vallarta who have been stricken once again with this dreaded flu bug. Thankfully it’s not nearly as bad as their first experience. We need to keep them in our prayers. They have to travel internationally in a couple of weeks so hopefully all will be well by then.
I discovered a new bakery around the corner from where I live. Actually it’s not a new bakery. It’s just new to me. It’s open from 6:30 am to 2 pm. Seeing as I don’t really do mornings this winter, I’m seldom wandering down that street when they’re open. However, the other day by some miracle I had actually eaten breakfast before noon and found myself walking by the bakery at about 1:45. Delicious pastries with pineapple fillings and bolillos fresh out of the oven! No. I’m not setting an alarm in my phone to wake me early. But I do hope I’ll pass by there at least once or twice before I head back to Washington next month.
So now an object was shot down over Alaska this week. And apparently the balloon that the Americans shot down had meandered over Canada first. Interesting that Trudeau did ask the Americans to take down a second object hovering over the Yukon. As if China hasn’t caused enough chaos with Covid. I wonder what’s next.
I was talking with one of my friends the other day about tamales. He had just returned from Cuba and told me that tamales down there were pretty scant due to the food shortages. I think he was drooling when I told him about all the different fillings we have here in Mexico. The rajas and cheese are one of my favorites with chicken running a close second. Occasionally I get the ones wrapped in banana leaves too.
Have a great Sunday!
A devastating earthquake rocked Turkey and Syria earlier this week. A Chinese spy blimp was shot down off the east coast in the USA a couple of days ago. 123 confirmed tornadoes touched down in the USA in January of this year. Rain and snow are in the forecast for the west coast in Canada that will result in avalanche alerts and treacherous mountain passes. Quite a world we’re living in today.
Here in Aguascalientes the sun is shining brightly and another high of eighty degrees is in the forecast. It’s peaceful, tranquil. If I didn’t read the news online I wouldn’t know about any of the aforementioned. Today I was also reading about Trudeau’s latest take on healthcare in Canada and the funding he has proposed. Interesting. Too bad it’s too little too late.
I’ve been researching computers and videogames that date back to the 90s and early 2000s. I may be writing fiction and can make up the story, but other things have to be accurate although no statistics are required. Those were the olden days……..before iPhones, iPads and Uber. How did we ever survive? My grandsons here in Mexico were playing on iPads when they were toddlers. I had puzzles, board games and magic slates at that age. I wonder what’s coming next. When they grow older and think of the olden days I wonder what will be on their minds.
I was out for lunch last week with friends and somehow we got on the topic of interpreting dreams. I remember taking a course in that decades ago. It brought back a lot of crazy memories, especially when we were talking about the significance of colors. I must admit I’ve had some pretty strange dreams since we had that conversation. But no, I don’t intend to analyze them. I’m actually hoping that maybe they’ll disappear instead.
It’s Humpday and I’m rambling. So I’ll stop.
Have A Wonderful Wednesday!
It’s been another interesting week for a change. Definitely never a dull moment around here. I have a new friend I can talk to.
The internet has been pretty unreliable this winter. I believe we’re on modem number five since I got here in October. But who’s counting? New modem. New password. But it got even better on Friday. I now have a new box in my room that connects to my TV and internet. And miles of new cable. But I now also have two remote controls for my TV. One merely turns it on and off.
The second remote is my new friend. I get to talk to it when I want to change channels or ask for movies or whatever. There is a catch though. It only speaks Spanish, not English. So I have to work on my imperatives so that this gringa doesn’t confuse it too much. And it is definitely another way to practice my Spanish.
Of course I still talk to Alexa every day. I don’t want to hurt her feelings. After all, she is coming back to Washington with me next month.
Speaking of Alexa, here’s another one of her jokes:
I once knew a peanut who wanted to be a teacher, so I recommended a job in macadamia.
Did you hear about the new electric car from Germany? It’s called a Voltswagen.
That ought to pacify Alexa. She got as much attention in this post as my new remote control even though her jokes are so corny.
Who here remembers the sitcom Room 222? I recall watching it around 1970ish. Teaching has sure changed since back then. Of course the whole world has changed.
So the other day I went on an old sitcom binge. Unfortunately all were in English. But it was fun! Different Strokes, Facts of Life, Happy Days, Laverne and Shirley, Three’s Company and a few more.
February 2nd is coming up. Groundhog Day up in the north. Here in Mexico it’s Dia de la Candelaria. Back on King’s Day when we had the Rosca, small plastic figures of the baby Jesus were hidden in the bread. Legend is that whoever finds them brings the tamales on February 2nd. Carole, if you’re reading this, are you bringing them to a party in Toronto?
I had a great time at Costco earlier in the week. My friends in Washington tease me when I tell them I have a membership solely to be able to buy Cheddar cheese. The stores near me have a variety of Mexican cheese but Costco is the only place with the Cheddar.
It’s getting hot again. 80s this week. Looking at the pics my friends post of snow cools me off though. I don’t miss the snow.
I start a new class online tomorrow. It will probably be the last one this winter. Once I get back to Washington fitness classes and training will occupy much of my time. And of course I’m looking forward to seeing all my friends too.
My characters are still talking to me so I’m still focused on my writing. I finally have my timeline all straightened out and that was a rather tedious task.
Constitution Day is coming up this weekend. It’s always interesting keeping up with holidays in three different countries, especially when they don’t always coincide. My province in Canada has Louis Riel day later in the month while the USA celebrates Washington’s birthday. They’re all good excuses for a long weekend.
This isn’t the post I had intended to write today. However I feel the need…..no actually I want to write about this today. So please bear with me.
Life is complicated. Families are complicated. As a mother there is always that need to protect your kids, even when they’re adults and have kids of their own. And it makes it even harder when you live thousands of miles away in a different country.
Something happened last week and my kids were caught in the middle. And I am so incredibly proud of them that they did the right thing. Maybe I did do something right when they were growing up. At least I’d like to think that was the case.
It’s difficult enough attending an event like they did in the first place. The extenuating circumstances made things awkward and uncomfortable for them. But they did it.
My close friends back in Winnipeg will know the details. They understand the situation and also admire my kids for doing what they did. There is no need to go into more detail than that.
I had a video call with my kids yesterday. It was the best way possible to wrap my arms around them and hug them. Somehow the miles disappeared for that short time. Technology enables us to send love wherever in the world we are.
Okay. That’s my post for today.
Have a great Sunday!
I looked at the date on the calendar last night and wondered how come I have only two months left until I head back up north. The time is flying by way too fast. And the older I get the faster it goes.
I fly out of Guadalajara and will be back in East Wenatchee two months from today. Other than my trip to Culiacan, I haven’t done any other traveling this winter. I hope to go to Puerto Vallarta next month but that’s about it. I’ve focused on writing this winter and I’ve taken some courses online. So travel has pretty much been on the backburner this winter.
Tonight I’m doing a library program online from Washington. It’s about Mount St Helens 40 years after the blast. It should be interesting. And I’ll be participating in a Women’s study with Church of the Rock in Winnipeg for the next six weeks. Whatever did we do before we had Zoom?
I’m also going to be taking another psychology course but I haven’t registered for that one yet. I’m still trying to decide. There are so many available and they all appeal.
Duolingo……. I haven’t forgotten you either. I’ve actually come out of retirement and have referred you to a new student who is anxious to learn English. Such a fun place to learn a language!
But I do find time for friends too. I’m meeting a friend from Portland for lunch today. We haven’t seen each other since King’s Day and that was earlier in the month before I went to Culiacan.
It’s been a good week. No crazy emails from Canadians abroad. The trip back from Culiacan was uneventful. Even the internet connection has been behaving itself.
One of my friends went back to Toronto this week so we had one last lunch together. She’s thinking of heading off to Europe. Meanwhile she sent me a photo of a Chinese New Years celebration. That brought back some memories. I haven’t seen that anywhere I’ve lived in Mexico.
I’ve been terrible about phone calls this year. I do have a long distance plan but somehow have been doing a lot more texting this year. But I did call a friend in Leavenworth and a friend in East Wenatchee this week. And it was great to hear their voices and catch up on the news although unfortunately it wasn’t all good.
Yesterday I got together with another friend from Calgary. We hadn’t seen each other in quite a while so we had a lot to catch up on. We were in the Jardin De San Marcos and somehow three hours flew by.
I’ve still been spending a lot of time writing. And at crazy hours and times. The other night at 3:30 am I found myself eating a salad and drinking coffee. I just lose track of time. Good thing I put alarms in my phone to remind me to eat!
The only routine thing I do is online church on Sundays. I haven’t decided which college course to take yet this month but I’m going to look for one with some flexible times. Thankfully Duolingo is around 24/7.
Have a great Sunday!
I just returned from a fabulous weekend in Culiacan with my family. And I’ll add that it’s the highlight of my winter in Mexico this year.
Culiacan. This is the city where my Mexican adventure began back in 2010. When I first arrived, my Spanish vocabulary was extremely very limited to Cerveza fria por favor. Juan wanted to improve his English and I desperately needed to learn some Spanish. We both taught at Senda and would meet in the library where Juan patiently helped me read children’s books.
At the time he and his wife Lucila had one child. Juan Carlos had just turned one. The family has grown and they now have four boys. And I have four nietos.
On Saturday night my granddaughter Madeline called me from Kelowna. This was a really special video call because she got to meet my Mexican family. She was a tad overwhelmed as the boys were eager to talk in English to her and one even showed her a picture he had colored. Madeline commented that it was a little crowded with everyone in the room. She is an only child so it is very different.
The boys were all excited to see her and commented on her blond hair. I have always talked about Madeline to them and it was nice that they all had a chance to meet. We’ll have to do it again the next time I go to Culiacan.
One of our favorite pastimes is playing board games. This weekend we played Uno and Scrabble. We play in Spanish and English.
The boys are learning English at school. Juan Carlos received a certificate from Cambridge recently. I helped Jose Agustin with his homework over the weekend, another of my favorite things to do when I visit.
Although I’m not Catholic, I always go to mass with my family. Sunday evening we were at La Lomita. My ten year old grandson was sitting beside me with his arm around me and his head resting on my shoulder. He looked up at me and said “Grandma I love you” and gave me a kiss on the cheek. Life just doesn’t get any better than that.