Thursday, January 10, 2008

Full of Surprises

The past 24 hours have been full of surprises, most of them pleasant. My life is relatively boring so any small change perks me up for the day, so this has got me dancing in my chair. There's also fast-paced music playing outside, so that might have something to do with the boogie in my butt.

After the first camel sighting, we've spotted them on three more occasions. Always in a trailer, being carted through town like a show pony. We got right up next to one on Tuesday when it pulled over to the side of the road, but I resisted temptation and didn't stick my fingers in. King's Day has come and gone so I haven't been sure why they're here, but they are.

Yesterday I was walking to the market when I saw another trailered-truck coming down the street. Anxious for another camel sighting I waited for it to pass at the corner. This trailer advertised the Circus but did not have camels. Instead three leopards paced the confines of their cages and a female lion watched me as she relaxed against the bars. No word yet if there'll be elephants in the streets.

While in town I bought something I've wanted since we moved into a condo but I couldn't convince Ibis: a hammock! Our balcony is really small and with the stacked washer & dryer, gas tank and water heater, there's not a lot of extra room. I found one of those chair hammock thingies that hangs straight down from the ceiling. Not sure yet how comfortable this thing will be but I got a good deal ($30 USD) and I want it hung NOW.

There's usually music playing when I get home, not in our house but from one of the houses we overlook. Sometimes two play at once and 'battle' with each other, which is a lovely sound from thirty feet up. When I got home yesterday there was something different in the air. I could hear drums, but nothing more. Then it hit me: someone was practicing the drums. Right below our window. Fabulous.

A few hours later the music was still playing and I heard a familiar song, but something was off. The vocals sounded... strained. I went outside to hear better and I realized the neighbors now have a karaoke machine. Just like the one we used a month ago in Lazaro, but now right below my window. Fortunately the man only strangled one song and they went back to their regularly scheduled programming.

As I came in from the balcony I reached into the cupboard for a small bowl and discovered an ants' den. I had barely lifted it when I could see them swarming all over the stack, so I grabbed a paper towel and tossed all three bowls into a bucket. The bucket was already filled with water from when Ibis was cleaning earlier in the day but I topped it off to make sure they fully drowned. They were the really small brown ants - so tiny I couldn't count them - but I'd guess there were at least 200 in the bucket. We bombed the house for other bugs two days ago so I think, for now, the place is critter-free.

Once the bowls were fully doused I got back online and stopped by AW, my regular playground. There I received a private note from someone I sometimes chat with but still only know by his username. Well, he outed himself - I know his real name!

This morning I checked my email as I always do and there in my inbox was a genuine treat: an email from a former teacher! Many of you may inwardly groan at the thought of a high school teacher tracking you down, but I went to a tiny boarding school where the teachers were more like surrogate parents than dictators. And I'm not just saying that because I gave her my blog address... I never had this particular teacher as a teacher, per se, only as a field hockey coach, dorm parent, and friend. She married another former teacher and told me they visit Zihua twice a year - I might get to see her in March. Very cool. :)

Last but not least, while I was waiting at the doctor's office this morning another gringa came in to make an appointment (the phone has been out so you have to go there to make an appt for another day, ahh Mexico) and she was having trouble with her Spanish. I said hello in case she wanted help and she told me she loves this doctor and she's been coming to her for three years. I thought she was a tourist based on her looks - awful, I know, since I complain about that myself - but after three years I'd think she could speak better than she was. I've been in Mexico ten months and I can have whole conversations!

There'll be more excitement tomorrow - we were invited to go salsa dancing at an actual club that has a live band! The music doesn't start till midnight so we've been warned to nap beforehand (we're so old) but I can't wait!

ETA: I almost forgot - I came up with some concrete ideas for my book's conclusion while sitting in the doctor's office. It's scribbled on the back of an old prescription, ready to hop into the computer.


Nita said...

Egads! You almost left off the best surprise, finding the ending for your book? Glad you remembered to share that tidbit. As for the other surprises, isn't it fun when the day is filled with little tidbits like that?

Virginia Lee said...

What a great day! Well, maybe except for the ants. Ewwwwww!

I hope your hammock chair's comfy! It sounds like a great place to hang out!


wordsmith said...

Sounds like a great day...except for the ants. Between the ants and the giant roaches, I think it's time for you to get some borax chalk and pepermint oil m'dear. ;)
(My family's from Panama and my grandma swore by them as household bug repellants.) Congrats on finding the ending for your book!
And my son would have loved to share your camel-sighting (and other animals) experiences--it would be like living an episode of Go, Diego Go...only he'd be hoping to hear the becon call of "a rescate!" I hope you get the hammock up soon and that the neighbor's karaoke gets better.

Janna said...

Lions and leopards and ants, oh my!

Seems there's always something to keep you on your toes, no?

Melanie Avila said...

You have no idea...