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31 October 2010
Dave Clingman



Tonight is Halloween, but so far (nearly 9 pm) no one has visited our door. Because we live quite far off the road, we don't expect many kids. Last year we had only two or three families of kids, all of which live here in the RV park.

Tomorrow is Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead), which is a holiday here in Mexico. We'll visit a tianguis (street market) that specializes in Dia de los Muertos items. Also, tomorrow night right here in our van, we'll have our own little celebration of our loved ones who are dead. We don't really have room to create an altar in our van. (We barely have room to walk past our work desk, and the couch is usually covered with stuff that needs to be dealt with and/or stowed elsewhere.) Still, we can share some food and talk about the ones we love who are now in heaven and share some photos of them. I'm looking forward to hearing about and seeing photos of Andrew's grandmother and two grandfathers. (His mom's mom is still alive and hiking all over New Zealand and writing books of her adventures.)

A couple weeks ago we put up a hummingbird feeder outside our van window, and I very much enjoy watching the flitters. Since this is the wrong time of year, our friend Larry is very surprised that we have four or five different birds visiting several times each day. We can tell the difference between them and have even named them. During the summer, Larry has as many as fifteen or eighteen at a time, but now he has only a few. We are very pleased that we have birds eating from our little feeder, and they bring a smile to my face as I pause from my work or reading to watch them.

My shoulder has been fine for well over a month now. Occasionally, it gives me a slight twinge, but it is fine otherwise. Thank you all for praying and for asking about it.

While in California last month, I bought a new computer, this time a desktop. We had originally planned to buy one of those small-box "desktop" computers, since space is limited in our van, but we found such an amazing deal on a quad-core (four computer brains inside the box) that we skipped worrying about the space. This computer box is huge, but it creates a new space behind the desk, against the van window, above which we added a shelf to move the filing boxes off the desk. Now, as I mentioned earlier, it is difficult to walk between the desk and the couch, but we make do, and the extra space on the desk where both of us work is well worth it. I like how fast this computer is. My old computer took about fifteen minutes to start up and would always hesitate when asking it to start a new program. This one starts up in about a minute and a half and opens new programs almost instantly.

In the Guadalajara Reporter newspaper, we both enjoy reading a weekly column by a lady from the US. Two weeks ago, she commented that she (and others) sometimes gets depressed at this time of year. So, she writes up a list of "simple pleasures" which reminds her how wonderful day to day life is here in Mexico. We took up that same challenge and wrote a list ourselves, mine in my head and Andrew's on a computer file. It is amazing how many things there are to enjoy and appreciate each day here. I often mention one or two in each of these logs of mine. We hope you are appreciating each day of your life where you live, as well.

For the folks in NZ, we hope sunny and warm days are on their way to you. For the North American guys, enjoy the Halloween holiday and the last days of autumn, and for those of you in Europe, we hope the weather isn't too cold yet!


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