Tuesday, September 29, 2009
To tell you the truth, I've become pretty bored with walking, so I thought I should get an IPOD so that I could enjoy some tunes while hoofing it. I went into Best Buy last weekend and the salesman showed me the available options. He told me that he uses his phone for all his musical needs. I asked him if I could use mine instead of an IPOD. I had just gotten a Verizon Envy Touch for free because I was due for an upgrade. He said, "Wow! That's a cool phone...you have lots of options!" Well, I only use my phone for calling and text messaging, so I was interested in what it had to offer. I was about ready to pay $150 for an IPOD, but just had to pay $45 for ear phones and a memory card to store songs.
Recognize my trademark Isla picture?
So with the little storage disk on my phone, I'm able to listen to whatever songs I want to hear. Since I'm trying to learn Spanish, I decided to download some Spanish CDs. I've heard that's a good way to learn how to understand Spanish. These are a couple of the CDs I've downloaded.
Sunday, September 27, 2009
When I walked through the door, it was like I stepped across the border...just like when I crossed the Rio Grande to Nuevo Progreso. Between the Mexican music playing and the strong aroma of tamales, I wasn't in the U.S. anymore. It's not a very big place, but it's chock full of all the typical Mexican goodies, to include fresh fruit and veggies.
So, I was a little hungry after walking through the market, so I stopped at a little fast food place that I've never been to before called Wienerschnitzel. I'm not a huge hot dog fan, but I haven't had one in quite awhile, so I decided to stop. I had the Chicago Dog.
So I was walking around the Outlet Mall and saw a bookstore I had never seen before. After visiting the Mexican Market, I couldn't pass this up...
Saturday, September 26, 2009
So I posted another ad on Craigslist last night for my son's truck. A 1995 Dodge Dakota with a mere 250,000 miles on it. But it still runs...AND the air conditioning works! So I listed it for $750. I got 20 e-mails and just as many phone calls on it. The first callers came up from San Antonio to take a look. While they were checking it out, I got a call from a guy in San Antonio who said he'd pay more than $750 for it...up to $1,000 because he really wanted it. The couple who were checking it out asked if I would take less than $750. I told them I just got a call from someone who really wanted it, so I wouldn't take less. After looking at it for another 15 minutes and calling an auto mechanic brother, they took it for $750...cash. Oh, yeah. Another successful Craigslist sale.
I'm the kind of blogger who has to have something to say...a story to tell...an adventure to relay. Well, not today. Other than the Craigslist deal, I don't have much to report today. Other than the fact that I got these kickin' ass shoes for a steal of a deal. Three weeks ago, I saw these babies for 59 bucks. No way, Jose. I haven't spent that kind of money on shoes since I worked for The Washington Post and had to dress to the nines. But I happened to stop in and saw they were marked down to $17.99. Oh, yeah...another great sale today! Nevermind the fact that they only had about 5 pairs left and I had to take a half size smaller. That's okay...they're comfortable...really. (I will post pictures of any blisters I get.) And $17.99 for real leather??? Get outta here! And aren't they cute??
So I'll end this post with a photo of a very rare colorful sunset from Texas. It's such a shock to see one that I had to take a picture.
As you can tell, it was a slow blog day in South Texas.
Thursday, September 17, 2009
Since I get two gratis weeks over Christmas now, there's no way I was just going to stay home. I did that last year and was just about climbing the walls by the end of the two weeks. So I will be gone for ten days on this trip and one of my sons is planning to join me for a few days while I'm there.
But I'm doing something different this time. I'm going to go to Playa del Carmen first. I really want to see different parts of Mexico and I know that if I go to Isla first, I will get into that "Isla Mode" where I don't want to do anything or go anywhere else. (What IS it about that place??) So I've already arranged for a five night stay at Luna Blue in Playa BEFORE I get to Isla. I would also like to take a trip to Chichen Itza and/or Tulum while I'm there. And I've been told that Valladolid is an "authentic colonial" Mexican town, so I'm sure it would offer many good photo ops. When I went to Isla last July after selling my house, I was so stressed right up till then, that I couldn't really enjoy the trip. And when you know that you have to go back to moving to another place, it makes it even harder to relax.
At first, I wasn't even going to go to Isla and just spend all my time on the mainland. But when I was looking for places to stay, I did a random check on Isla for hotels, expecting all of them to be full for the holidays. The thing about Mexican hotels is that you have to send e-mails to most of them to see if they have vacancies, and in most cases, it can take a half a day to about two days to get a response! Some of them haven't responded at all...maybe because they're booked. So, remember that new hotel across from Justicia Social that I posted on my last trip?
Well, if anything, the new digs will make for an interesting blog post.
Saturday, September 12, 2009
There are many Texas small towns with old motels...like this one...
Although this was probably a totally respectible place in its day, it looks pretty sad today and is apparent that almost no renovations have been done.
Here's another. The weird thing is that these hotels are still open but look the same as when they opened back in the '50s. You really wonder what the rooms look like. The toilets in the front really add to the aesthetic value of this property.
Prices are good, though...
I came upon other old abandoned buildings like this one...
And dead gas stations...
Kind of an interesting mission-style church...
I've done road trips in other states, but the ones I've done in Texas are pretty depressing. I don't know how people in small towns here in the middle of nowhere can make ends meet. And that fact is pretty obvious when you drive though them. A lot of the homes are in very bad shape and restaurants and businesses are closed down with no new businesses taking their place. I think it's a very bad state of affairs for small town America.
So, on that sad note, I came upon this poor guy out of his luck while minding his own business. I'm out of the ordinary because this is the first time I've seen one of these in the five years I've lived here...most people have become accustomed to seeing this a lot. Poor thing. They really are strange little creatures...nature's little tanks. A sad end to my Labor Day weekend road trip. The end. :-(