Thursday, May 31, 2012

Is that a Chinese mural

I saw this mural on the wall of the Franciscan monastery of Santa Ana in Tzintzuntzan. Construction of the monastery began in 1526. I've never seen any Purepecha art that resembles this.   Maybe a visiting Chinese artist? 

Probably not but just thought I would ask

Sunday, May 27, 2012

The sun is out

Hurricane Bud just slipped away Friday night after leaving almost 2 inches of rain and some heavy winds. Lots of branches down ... some from people cutting to protect their houses. Lost power a few times for a few hours. Woke up Saturday morning to the sun shinning and we have the same today.

No work Friday but Thursday and Saturday we finished up the walkway and the step around the palapa. Next week they will tile the palapa floor. I ordered 4x4 support beams for the lamina ramada in the other part of the yard but he was going to cut them Friday and couldn't. They also finished the cement 'cap' on the two flower beds earlier in the week

Just got back from the Ice factory with two large blocks to cool the beer and Coke for the birthday party we almost canceled. Should be a good day with as many as 50 people attending.

The sky looking north at 4pm Friday

The sun is out this morning

Thursday, May 24, 2012

We're gonna get wet

Well Bud has finally pulled himself together into a level one hurricane and is headed in our direction. Latest news is that it may reach level two for a short while before bouncing off the coast and weakening back to a tropical storm. The Weather Underground says we should expect rain and thunder storms thru Sunday, possibly starting today.

Throw a quick load in the laundry, maybe put a last coat of sealer on the new roof and off to Cihuatlan to stock up. We're due for rain but I hope we don't get enough for flooding ... and heavy winds we really don't need at all. First rain of the season always seems to knock the power out ... so better add a flashlight to my shopping list. Oh well, this is what we get here in the summer.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Casa de Roma

At least that's what one of the workers calls it. It started out me just wanting better shade and rain protection on that side of the house and ended up considerably more fancy than imagined. I chose the width and angle but workers came up with the rest. The flower beds which will have a cement cap on the top edge was an after thought.

Still needs to be painted, sealer put on the roof and lots of odds and ends. Next week will start on a single step around the palapa and maybe tile the palapa floor. I've got a bunch of tiles left over from the house. The lawn is extreamly tired from all the traffic but will hopefully come back  The roof will one day be covered in with the red curved roof tiles but first to get it sealed before the rains.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Flowering Neem

Yesterday I thought I was smelling the Gardenia while watering the garden but it was 15 feet away and I was next to my largest Neem tree. Today the Neem blossoms really came out and gave them a good sniff. No doubt why the Neem is also called the Indian Lilac. Not real strong because the flowers are tiny but I hear in India where there are many trees the aroma is distinct at the beginning of summer. Another sure sign summer is here in Mexico.

Neem is not supposed to flower or fruit until 2-3 years old so it means this one sat in it's bucket before I planted it about a year and a half ago. Very interesting tree and I'll let you look it up. Will be interesting to watch how long the flowering goes on and how large the seeds become. Found two interesting videos below - an animation on 'natural insecticide' and one of my old favorites - CBC -The Nature of Things with David Suzuki

My Neem flowers

How to create a natural insecticide from Neem seeds (in English)

Miracle tree NEEM

Monday, May 14, 2012

Preparing your daughter for marriage

The mysteries of the Catholic Church in Mexico.

Hugo left work early today because he and his daughter have to prepare themselves for what I think is her final step in her communion tomorrow.   I believe he has to present her somehow and say a few words.   Interesting that the family is not very religious but they don't want to jeopardize the daughters chance of getting married in the church.   Couldn't find anything on the web that was clear about the procedure but Hugo says it all has to be documented on paper. Guess I'll hear more tomorrow and after.

Yari about 6 months ago in what I think was the first communion

Friday, May 11, 2012

First low pressure system of the season

The Eastern Pacific hurricane season starts on the 15th, only four days away. This Invest 90 is a few days early but probably will bring nothing but clouds and a bit of rain. This season is expected to be busier than the past two which were below normal. Most activity is scheduled for late in the season due to El Nino effects. West coast of Mexico

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Oscar working on the 'arcos'

Oscar working on the arches yesterday with Coyota my dog in front

I felt it would need something as a filler up top and not just the columns connected to the roof. I was thinking smaller arcs next to each post but Oscar insisted they should be a full arc. Today he's doing a semi-finish coat and I think they will look good. He also wants to make some type of molded design on the columns where the arc meet but we'll see.

They still have to fill in the wall where they cut out the old marquesina, give a finish coat to the top of the roof ... and then stucco everything. Maybe two more weeks worth of work.   The blue plastic is to protect windows and doors.

Monday, May 07, 2012

A sad note about my neighbor's family

I took some neighbors and their 84 year old grandmother to the Jaluco Centro de Salud 2 days ago because she couldn't sleep due to pain in her legs. She has had a circulation problem for months but due to money concerns and being stoic, she hasn't seen a doctor. The doctor at Centro de Salud said she needed to go to Emergency at the General Hospital in Manzanillo so after gathering things together and informing family off we went. Grandma ended up spending the afternoon on an IV and it was later determined she needed better care so will spend a few days in Euchari Clinic.

Jaluco Centro de Salud

We found out yesterday that she needs to see a specialist in Colima because blood clots are cutting off circulation. If she can't get circulation back they will want to amputate. Of course the stoic grandma wants to die with both her legs in the company of her family and is not very pleased with all this medical attention. I had to tell the grand daughter that doctors won't insist and the decision will be up to grandma. If she wants to wait it out in one piece I don't know what they can do for the pain. There's probably something.

Very sad because she is a sweet, smart and handsome old girl

Sunday, May 06, 2012

Bigger than I thought it would be

Larger and taller than I pictured but that just means more shade. It also hides the tinaco on the bodega behind it. Putting up the palapas (palm fronds) yesterday pretty much took over the yard so my cement workers had to take a break along with helping the 'palaperos' a little. Very nice work in my mind and I would recommend these guys to anyone in the area. Including the wood frame and palapa the cost was 8000 pesos (about $700us).

After they left we gathered under the palapa, had a few 'cubas' (coke and tequila) followed by tacos de carne asada. Very satisfying day. I'll post some of the construction fotos on the house building Blog soon.

Friday, May 04, 2012

Another Dia del la Cruz

This is the second cross we've put up on the house. Last year was the big project including the roof. They worked until October and then found other work almost all winter. That gave me time to fine tune, paint, seal, garden and consider what I had and what worked. I hired these guys back a little over a month ago with three "roof" projects in mind; awning, palapa and lamina shed. More detail is on the house building link.

So yesterday was mostly goofing off, a little work in the morning, watching and helping the palapa guys get started with the structure and started with the "cubas" (tequila and coke) around 4. Around six three families arrived with a huge pot of pozole. The party and dinner finally concluded around 9pm

The second cross made by Hugos wife

First time I've seen jicama on a stick

Palapa work done yesterday

The construction of the house finished in April 2011 and I'm pretty much settled in. As of March 2014 I'm in preparation for rain mode for this coming summer. That includes sealing and painting things and dealing with drainage issues from last year.

Sparks Mexico Web
Manzanillo Information
House building in Pinal Villa

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