05-18-09
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18 May 2009
by
Dave Clingman

This past week was quite interesting.  By Wednesday, Andrew felt well enough to return to school.  He had received an email stating that classes would be held only for six hours instead of the usual eight.  So, he drove to class Wednesday morning, only to find a note on the door stating that classes had been entirely canceled for the week.  It turns out, however, that the note was intended only for the evening classes for the previous night, and that Andrew's classes were still meeting.  He found out this only yesterday morning.  Because the other student was absent yesterday, the teacher was able to get Andrew back up to speed during yesterday's four hours.

Last Thursday we drove to another of the street markets.  This one was much larger than the Monday one the previous week.  We didn't even finish walking through it all.  We bought quite a bit of produce (cantaloupe, which Andrew had never had, tomatoes, mushrooms, etc.) and a couple of DVD movies.

On the way to the market, we dropped off our first load of laundry at the local laundromat.  We had been told that they take your dirty clothes and do all the work for you, including folding them, but the lady running this place merely told us how to use the machines.  She did, however, move the clothes from the washers to the driers for us, which saved an extra trip or time sitting and waiting.  Total price for four loads of laundry was 193 pesos (nearly fifteen US dollars).

Friday we drove to Tapalpa, Mexico another location we are considering for our longer term home.  On the way there, we detoured to see the two active volcanoes in the area, but it was much too cloudy to see anything.  oh, well.  We both enjoyed driving through the pine forest and smelling the sweet fragrances there.  The final fifteen kilometers of the drive was along a dirt road.  We visited an eco park, where one can pay to ride the zip lines (cables strung between trees).  The park was closed, but we drove to the very top of the road, where there was a nice view, and then had our picnic lunch, before continuing into the town.

Tapalpa, Mexico is a friendly small town in the mountains southwest of Guadalajara.  We saw a couple of the tourist things near the town and then visited a realtor to check out the prices.  We were surprised at the amount of money they wanted for even just bare land.  The small houses are priced at about three million pesos (nearly a quarter million US dollars), and the price of vacant land is around half a million pesos per hectare (about fifteen thousand US dollars per acre).  Yikes.

Our Crown bus back in Coarsegold finally sold.  We had left the bus at a neighbor's house who sells things in his yard.  After a few weeks, with no word from him, I decided to list it yet again on eBay, and this time it finally sold, and for very nearly the amount we wanted from its sale.

Now it is back to "life as normal" for us here in Mexico.  Andrew is gone each day for his classes, and I am left at home to work on client websites and to do the household chores.  (Mostly I just sit around lazily, enjoying the bird calls outside, but occasionally I'll jump on my scooter and ride to the store, just to get out of the van.)

We have updated our website, and you can now view photos of our drive south, our new home, and of Andrew's surgery.  We hope to get photos of our Tapalpa trip onto the website later this week.

Until next week . . . .

Read update 12 May 2009

Read update 25 May 2009

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