More Construction

In between remodeling my Mom’s cabin (putting in an external cat cage now that she can no longer have cats living in her house) we are putting in the first of many raised garden beds in our ample yard.  There are plenty of rocks on our land so we are using them up for our projects…..hahaha….I wish we could use them all up as there are rocks everywhere.  First reason for the beds: we are getting older and would love the opportunity to garden standing up without bending down so much.  Second: we need seating in the yard and a bench like edge would be fantastic for family and friend gatherings. Third: I love some organization and a series on contained beds will help with aesthetics and ease the part of my brain that craves order. Some order, not tons.  Lets not get crazy.

Pics are of the bed in progress and the floor of the cat cage.

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Horse on our Property

Argh….the neighbor’s horse came on our property again.  Some days just feel like an uphill battle where I get run over……or trampled by….the stupid horse next door or some other silly interaction with a neighbor.  Its touchy here to deal with these sorts of situations.  First, I am still understanding the culture and unsure how to handle a tense situation and second we think someone already cut our exhaust pipe on our truck (at least that is what 2 mechanics told us when getting it fixed).  I do hear that these sort of passive aggressive actions happen, especially when a tense situation arrises without adequate resolution.  Being rude is about the worst offense one can commit in Mexico, that and raising your voice.  Bad, really bad.  AND….men are not used to women telling them off.  I think my sassy attitude and commanding German voice is just not so acceptible here in Mexico.  Sigh. 

I would love to just build a big ass fence and completely block the neighbors out and that will happen but it’s not the right time.  We need to get a boundary line resolved and that should happen next month…..hopefully.  In the meantime, horses come on the property and I put up temporary chicken wire fences.  Maybe the next post will be happier as it’s Spring and time for more gardening!  Just need to keep the horse out so it does not eat my plants or keep knocking over our building supplies. 

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Healthcare in Mexico…or what happens when someone is really sick

One of the reasons we decided to retire early and move is because both of our mothers are aging and we wanted to spend more time with them while we have a chance.  My mother lives on the coast of Nayarit in a nice little village and Ana’s mother lives in our small town.  The towns are about 3.5 hours drive from one another. The ideal situation is for all of us to be in the same town but…..ideal does not always happen.  Both have experienced some health challenges lately and my mother has been showing typical symptoms of the elderly.  It’s a challenge to care for everything so spread out, geographically speaking.  We recently visited my mom and over a 5 days  period we were in 4 hospitals and 2 ambulances.  This has not been fun but my learning and experiences could be helpful for others in the same situation…..in need of emergent care in a foreign land. 

* First of all, and this may seem obvious, do some research before getting ill to be familiar with healthcare services in the area. 
* Get a book that translates basic medical terminology from your language into the native language.  Trust me, this will be VERY helpful as you cannot count on translation services no matter how much you beg or ask (especially if they don’t understand you).  Have the book with you when seeking medical care.
* The internet is not everywhere so you cannot simply google everything. 
* No matter how much you yell, “I have pain”,  someone trying to provide you assistance will need to know more about your symptoms in order to treat you effectively. 
* Try and be polite with everyone as in Mexico, being rude can get you ignored.

My mother was quite ill with pneumonia, broncitis and an infected lung…I am sick to my stomach thinking about how long this might have been happening. She is stubborn and often refuses treatment or doctors.  So here we are.  Each time a hospital got her stable, she slipped back as now we see she needs oxygen and elevation.  Hopefully we can get her stable now and get some quality back into her life. She is moving in with us and when she is better, move her to her cabin on our land.  Whew.
More tips: some hospitals expect at least one family member to stay overnight with patients to assist.  They may or may not have an area to sit or lay down.  Bring water, snacks and a blanket.  Bring a cell phone (buy one locally for cheap) as there may not be ANY phone on site to use.  I cannot emphasize enough to research payment options and insurance coverage in advance.  Ask about tipping as it can help increase the quality of support and care.  Keep a list of meds and allergies on you in your wallet. I had no idea she took so many medications.

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