Visit to the States!

Mom and I planned a trip back to the states during August to hedge our bets on good weather; it worked!  August weather in the Pacific Northwest is usually pretty good, although not always good enough to guarantee an outside wedding.  Just plan to have a tent or some other cover, just in case.

The weather was spectacular although most folks in the NW were complaining about how hot it was.  Really?  Hot?  Felt just perfect to me!  Thanks to everyone who hosted us and fed us and put up with our constant shopping and eating.  It was great fun.

One thing that I will do differently next time is NOT plan the trip out of Mexico at the same time as my residency renewal. I waited exactly one month before my “green card” was due to expire and headed off to GDL to apply.  What I did not realize is that they take the old card away while the new application is being processed.  What that meant is if I left the country without a card, I might have to start the whole procedure all over again and see my year of residency go down the drain.  Ana and I put on our most charming attitudes and the wonderful folks at the Immigration service pulled through; a fast application, approval AND new card in hand one week before departure.  Whew!

The most amazing thing I noticed in our travels was how easy it is for my friends and relatives to simply travel to a store and buy just about anything they need.  You cannot imagine how challenging it is to live in rural Mexico and be so far away from stores.  A “simple” trip to Costco in Guadalajara requires an all day plan.  And the restaurants!  WOW.  We rarely go out to eat in our area as the quality is pretty low and we cook far better food in the house, thank you very much.

Pics of the highlights:

Judi and me at Hiawatha Park
Judi and me at Hiawatha Park
Having fun after pizza in Ballard
Having fun after pizza in Ballard
Amber and her sweet smile
Amber and her sweet smile
Nicole and one of the horses she helps care for, that is a fly mask
Nicole and one of the horses she helps care for, that is a fly mask
Teacher Britni and the new puppy, Bella
Teacher Britni and the new puppy, Bella
My hand as sea creature
My hand as sea creature
My son, Nicole and me at the waterfront
My son, Nicole and me at the waterfront
BBQ at Janice's place
BBQ at Janice’s place
"OMG, is he hot" says the Buddhist Lesbian
“OMG, is he hot” says the Buddhist Lesbian
Sarah's cute little doggie, Russell
Sarah’s cute little doggie, Russell
Me and Rocky
Me and Rocky
David!
David!
Early rise and head to the airport to leave with Susan
Early rise and head to the airport to leave with Susan

 

Ana’s Mom had a Birthday!

You can imagine life in this part of the world would be different than in say, the states.  Just about everything has a slight to extreme difference, which is natural given the differences in culture.  When it comes to birthdays, some rituals are the same.  Friends and family gather together or call to wish a person well.  Cake is usually served (yum!) and some celebrations include gifts and food.  One of the differences here is music.  Live music.  In town, there are a few teenage Mariachi groups and other types of groups are called, “Bandas”.  If a family can hire a group for a birthday celebration, it’s a nice treat.  Ana hired a teenage Mariachi group for her Mom and they met us at her house at 7am to be a surprise.  That is another difference in this culture; a loud music group waking you up early outside your bedroom window is considered a treat and a delight. It was great fun!

20150504_073602  20150504_072749

20150504_161259