March 8, 2012

Shopping in Cancun

I had an appointment with my lawyer in Cancun yesterday, so it was a perfect time to spend a couple hours shopping for things we still can't get on the island despite Chedraui's attention to us.
At Walmart, I picked up frozen portabella stuffed ravioli. It's the same brand that Chedraui brings to the island, but only in a four cheeses stuffing variety. Note to self to bug them to death about this. Also, frozen bagels. Ditto to Chedraui.
Also in Walmart's freezer section, frozen soy beans, edamame, an Oriental kitchen staple. Last time, they were pre-shelled. But yesterday, with the husks on, perfect for steaming and eating out of hand.
Walmart's drug store also had a couple of meds I need that no one on the island stocks. One is Wellbutrin, an anti depressant that works on the dopamine receptors. When I take it, I walk with much more easy and grace.
Then it was on to Home Depot for big planters to replace sun rotted ones on the rooftop patio. While there, I ran into a heave duty 4" fan, perfect for the kitchen counter, sold as a desk fan, and some lettuce seeds described as French. The picture looks like Boston lettuce.
Next door is Soriana. They had Colman's mustard powder, which I immediately crossed off my Ohio shopping list, and a Mexican Black Forest-style ham 150 gram package. I opted not to get instant Irish oats, which seemed oxymoronic stupid, but nearby was a nice Pinot Noir for 100 pesos. No, Chedraui doesn't stock it!
Soriana's greens were the best I'd seen in a long while, so I picked up a head of romaine. And for the Punta dog, 5 pounds of chicken hearts, already nearly done cooking with rice and frozen vegetables. I suppose the chickens Chedraui cuts and packs don't have hearts. Only feet and some livers!
So while Isla Mujeres' grocery needs are being met much better now with Chedraui, there are lapses. Some, like chicken gizzards, can't be explained! But that's the heart of the matter.
And after spending $120US in the three stores, Carlos took me to Mauricio Mendoza, my lawyer who lives in the Home Depot and Soriana neighborhood. Migracion had requested more tax documents. Fun in paradise!

March 5, 2012

OK, so we are tired of high season

I speak for myself, but I have been talking to others as well. And let's begin by saying, we are tired of high season. Luckily, it is near the end.
As the economic crisis deepened worldwide, here on Isla Mujeres, we found ourselves with more capricious and odd tourists. No, not travelers. Those people are always a delight.
Having gone to Chedraui yesterday for the second time this year to buy Liquid Plumber after persons didn't live by island rules and flushed toilet paper irked me. Why would you come here, a tropical paradise, and not play by the rules? Our plumbing can't take it!
And along those lines, there is no reason to run AC 19 hours a day in February. Some did. At the rate of 23 cents a kilowatt hour, we have arguably the most expensive electricity in the world. Leave it on to go eat breakfast? Return to drink and play cards inside while everyone else is enjoying cool sunshine? Why come here?
And yes, it is Mexico. Labor statistics say everything is cheaper here. And we landlords are on the side of our workers and pay more than the hotels do. But tourists see the prices. They are pretty much spread through all neighborhoods equally.
So, why would you come here and not budget a tip for the maid? The person who shovels the beer and booze bottles from your apartment because you wouldn't throw them in the trash bin as you went along?
There is a hint of jealously we sense among some of the visitors to the island, that we can afford to live here and they can't. Listen up. No one is getting rich here. Most of us are just getting by.
When you call for another bottle of water on a Sunday and have an unopened one in your apartment, it is an annoyance. When the AC doesn't work in the middle of a cold front and you call for service on a Sunday, it is an annoyance. Please, don't annoy us. We can close up our places, mothball them, and not take a loss! We'll find something else less annoying to do with our time!
Just come here and play nice, OK?