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Thursday, May 31, 2007

¿Am I Really Surprised?


I still have the patience of an elementary teacher. I can wait my turn at the barbershop like the best of them. Isn´t it grand that I could have that experience, again.


Just ahead of me were a gentlemen in the barber´s chair and 3 young boys. I waited and watched what little street traffic there was going by the shop. I listened in on the conversation of the barber and his client...


¿How else can any immersion student learn the language?


Maybe my Bipolar II paranoia was kicking in ... Maybe what I heard was real ... I thought that I had heard the "M" word. Twice.


Without reacting, I slowly reached for the local GDL (Guadalajara) newspaper. I found the first section and began to read. They stopped talking and did not say another word until the haircut was complete. Hmmmmmmmm ...


I do read and comprehend Spanish very well .... Maybe next time, I´ll hear all of the conversation and find a graceful way to shame the gossiper ....


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Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Waiting


Waiting is a luxury and a pleasure. ¿Bothersome? ¿Why? ¿What is there to hurry to?


The life of a retiree in Ajijic is what the retiree wants it to be. Sure, you may want to make it to the town square on Sundays before 7 PM. The "dessert" lady comes to the square with numerous other vendors around that time. The older woman makes one of the best apple pies that I have ever had.


Tacos, roasted corn, fruit, and the best bacon wrapped hotdogs south of the border are on the square most evenings. Weekends bring out more vendors. Food, toys, dulces, and ballons become available.


Fast food is nowhere to be found. ¿And, who cares?


Food additives, especially high fructose corn syrup, are rare if not non-existent. Coke is made with real sugar, like we had it in my youth. Everything is fresh and made to order........ ¿so waiting?


No problema.


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Monday, May 28, 2007

Relax

¡Nueva Vida!

There is a certain amount of comfort in knowing that my high school and college Spanish enables me to communicate my needs. When I do make an error, the real friendly folks repeat what I meant to say. This matches a teaching style that a very kind 1st Grade teacher taught me.

I try.

I hear stories about gringos and Canadians that have lived in the Lake Chapala Region for years and years and have yet to try to learn the language of their neighbors (neighbours, if you are Canadian, eh?). I am not sure how or why one would live in Mexico and not make an attempt to learn the language. Lazy or arrogant? I just don't know....

Relax. The pace of life can be what you want it to be. I choose not to wear a watch. We eat when we are hungry and we return to the apartment when we are tired.

When we move in to the house next month, we may establish a routine of sorts and I´ll still read and blog. As stated in my profile --- writing is my therapy --- my platform to vent --- and its become a means to communicate with some of my family.

Anyway, its time to get back to ..... whatever the hell I want.

Hasta luego.

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Saturday, May 26, 2007

Still Here

We are almost ready to settle down and create a daily routine. Sadly, we don´t have our own internet connection. And, we have a deal in the works for the rental of a house just down the street from where we are now.

Details about the house will be forthcoming. Needless to say, the apartment on the square has a few problems that I cannot accept in an "as is" lease. We like the location but, the minus list is longer than the plus list.

More to come.....

Mood --- very stable --- no depression and no anger --- no hypomania...

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Thursday, May 17, 2007

The Culture of Life


The Culture of Life?

I want to scream every time I here some spinning and obfuscating Republican say that phrase. It is a code word for someone who does not support the right to privacy and the reproductive rights of women. It is absolutely maddening that every Republican candidate for president in the 2008 Presidential Election panders to their conservative base with such words.

Unfortunately, if the conservative Republicans really supported a "culture of life" they would not support the tax increases to insure a true culture of life. They would not want the government to create the new and comprehensive programs nor spend the monies needed.

In my "perfect world" the culture of life would:


1. Provide the best prenatal care with testing and nutritional advice and assistance.

2. Provide "Well Baby" care, including all immunizations.

3. Provide comprehensive insurance/medical care for all citizens from birth to death.

4. Provide the best education where teachers are not forced to teach to a test. Provide world class laboratories, swimming pools, PE supplies, classroom supplies, computers, and wireless access to the Internet throughout the school district.

5. Provide no-cost college educations for all that desire to learn.

6. Provide a comprehensive human sexuality education that includes all options and information about the prevention of STDs, AIDS, and pregnancies.

7. Provide for information and all the options available for women to exercise their reproductive freedom.

8. Provide all care and expenses for those with with terminal illnesses.

9. Provide families with respite care for elderly parents and other dependents.

10. Provide counseling and medications for those living with mental illnesses.

11. Provide grief counseling for the family and friends of the dead and dying.


My short list represents some of my ideas. All of these services would be provided to everyone without cost.

Wouldn't you support a culture of life that really is devoted to life? The hate and fear that is promoted by so-called Christians must end. In other words, put up or shut up!!

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Visiting

I am visiting my hometown. I barely got settled in my new home and I had to return. Thankfully, I came back to the river city for "business" that could benefit me greatly. Just imagine a 3 night stay (back at the hotel) and an early flight home to Ajijic.

My brother is taking me to the airport tomorrow morning. He'll pick me up at 3 AM and we'll get there about 2 hours before my flight. I'll be in Ajijic by 2:30 PM. Oh, Happy Day...

I might get some sleep tonight.

Stressors? You bet. Hypomania? Does anyone need to ask?

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Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Ajijic, Jalisco, Mexico

Kenny Chesney tells it like it is.......




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Color


Stephen Colbert often tells folks that he doesn't see color. It is a "running joke" that does have serious connotations. We all see color but, many of us have an ability to see beyond the skin color of our fellow men and women. We do not prejudge anyone based upon a specific skin tone or variation of color.

Recently, a grand-niece asked me about the village in Mexico where we now live. She wanted to know if there were many African Americans in the area. I had to think for a moment. What did she really want to know and why did she ask the question?

There I was with what educators call a "teachable moment". I answered her question. Yes, I knew only one African American gringo retiree.

I then told her that when I look at my neighbors, I only see people who are Mexicans. Yes, in our village, we have folks with all shades of color. I told her that my tanned skin was darker than some of the villagers and that it mattered little in the grand scheme of life.

Wait, I had a story to tell her (don't all teachers?). In November, I had spent some time getting to know one of the guys I met. This young man had a good sense of humor and seemed like someone I'd like to have as a friend. He told me about one of the other guys that I met that night. He told me that this friend wanted to date him and be his boyfriend. BUT, he was too black.

My jaw dropped to the floor.

It seems that I have not escaped prejudice. I really hadn't imagined that one Mexican would have a bias about another Mexican because of the tone of his skin color. Maybe I shouldn't have been surprised.

Needless to say, I dropped all thoughts of including that young man into my circle of friends.

I answered my grand-niece's question and then some. I trust that she understood the message.

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Friday, May 11, 2007

We Are Home

We unloaded our junk and cats yesterday at 5:oo A.M.

We're home.

We are beginning a new life in Ajijic, Jalisco, Mexico. We had an apartment on the town square already let. We need to get a few fans but, all is well. Our terrace is huge. Everything is tiled and all the ceilings are vaulted.

We don´t have an internet connection, yet. Here we are at an internet cafe.

Let the new life begin.......

Monday, May 7, 2007

Bipolar + Sanity

Insanity has been defined as doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.

I am sane.

After four years of retirement, I have decided to do something new and I expect fantastic results. I am in the process of moving. My worldly possesions have been sold, gifted, or put aside for an estate sale. My mortgage company has agreed to sell my condo. We have only a computer, some books, some music CDs, clothing, bedding, and all the cat sh*t we'll need.

I now know something of the freeing and cleansing experience of giving away all of one's worldly treasures.

We will be taking up residency in a small community that some call "God's Waiting Room". I am not going to "wait" on God. I will be enjoying life and gathering new experiences.

To my Bipolar Planet friends -- I have not done anything rash or stupid. I am not running away from any troubles. I am running towards a new life.

Think goods thoughts for us.......

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Uncle Sam Thursdays


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Just Another Fun Filled Day


What do you call two bipolar guys that run away from home and stay a week in the first hotel they come to?

Answer: Two bipolar guys.

Yes, here we are. We've made one of the most important decisions in our nearly 18 years together and we stop at a hotel to gather our wits and really get our shit together. Can you say
self-indulgent?

We will check out of this hotel and continue on our journey in the fast approaching morning.

Hell, I didn't even remember to take my meds tonight. I read one of my bipolar blogs and was reminded by her mention of her med regime. I have even forgotten to take one med this week -- nearly a whole week.... You'd think I would notice that the tremors were less severe....

We've got to get on our way.

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Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Success Is No Violence


"Success Is No Violence," President George W. Bush.

So, now we know. The Shrub has finally defined what needs to happen in Iraq to be able to claim success. We WIN the WAR when the Iraqi Civil War ends and the terrorists stand down.

I am so relieved. King George somehow "knows" that the centuries of violence between Shia and Sunni Muslims will stop and the legacy of his presidency will be assured. The small percentage of violence caused by Al Queda will also end. Thank God! When our troops come home the terrorists will not swim the great expanse of oceans to "fight" us here in North America.

Does that "inspired" definition of a successful war apply elsewhere? Will the "War on Marijuana" end? Does anyone know any violent pot heads?

Is the "War on Christmas" over? Only the rhetoric from the Christian Right was vile.

Is the "War on Traditional Marriage" over? I don't recall any gay on straight violence.

Is the "War on Reproductive Freedom" over? Have the so-called pro-lifers denounced the murder of doctors and the bombing of medical clinics? Will they focus on the needs of the children born and the elderly?

Is the "War on the So-Called Gay Agenda over? Will Matthew Shepard be one of the last martyrs? Will Phelps and his family go home and worship God and His Son? Will the "Focus" and "Save" groups end the emotional terrorism against Gay, Lesbian, and Transgendered persons?

Will we have "peace" in our times?

We can only hope.
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Enough Already


Enough Already! Does it really matter if the SlamDunkmeister gave faulty intelligence to King George? Does it really matter if the CIA Czar wanted to "please teacher" and played along with the war plans from the Shrub's neocon cronies? Why the hell is the "mainstream' media rehashing what yahoos and nonsense got this Republic in the Iraq catastrophuck.

Did we lose sight of the 4th anniversary of The-Codpiece-in-Chief's aircraft carrier Mission Accomplished stunt?

And, what about the dead, the dying, and the wounded?

It's the War, Stupid!!

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