A few lazy days have passed without much more than swimming by the pool (or in the ocean), relaxing with Mexican beer and some homemade tequila refreshments and cooking whatever we’ve been able to rustle up from the local fish markets. Last night it was 6 red snapper and 2.5 pounds of shrimp…for $12. Really. That’s it. I’ve also been able to keep up with work emails without being devoured by work. That is to say I am skimming the hundreds of emails I receive each day and generally keeping the pulse of what’s going on and what items I’ll have to deal with when we get back. But nothing more.
Today is Rhonda’s birthday – 41! That means, among other things, that we have known each other for 16 years now! That’s crazy! It also means we’ve officially been together for 11 years. The girls and I made a quiet plan to hit the town and find some special presents for her. I think tonight we’ll go out for dinner, too. I can’t tell if she’s ok with turning 41 or not. She’s a little quiet…we’ll see. In the past it has just depended on the year and where her head is at the time. Things are good right now, so…
We’re supposed to go to a hidden beach today called ‘Playa de Los Muertos’, I think because it’s by a cemetery or you have to go through one to get to the beach or something. There’s a cloud cover this morning, something usual for this time of year. It may or may not pass, but it’s still warm and I think the girls would opt in for the beach even if there was a hurricane outside. In writing that I am reminded of the time we went to Chicago in late spring and they were dead-set insistent on going to the beach and flying kites in their bikinis. Heh heh heh…didn’t last too long. It was freezing!
Being around other parents and their kids is always interesting to me. I wonder if any two sets of parents discipline the same way, communicate the same way, etc… It doesn’t seem like it, or at least everyone I come in contact with is a little different. Rich’s little boy Max is exactly two years younger than Lily, and the difference between them is greater than I would have guessed. That isn’t to qualify anything, just noting difference. It seems like every stage a child goes through is so all consuming that as soon as they are on to the next place, I’ve forgotten about the last. Seeing Max struggling to communicate or being less flexible with what’s going on has reminded me about those times with our girls and how much easier things are when parents and children can share a common language.
Bird is always good as a Mother Hen, shepherding around the little ones. She’s such a good kid and so responsible. But she’s also only 6 so we always need to make sure she’s doesn’t saddle herself with so much responsibility that she’s not having fun, or at least the experience she should be having at her age. Monday she was sick and slept all day. I always get worried when that happens. I got sick all the time when I was a kid, just like everyone else. You go through it and then it’s over. For some reason, I can’t remember those times. When my girls are sick I assume they’ve caught some rare virus and are on their deathbed. Horrible. But she’s ok today. As I’m writing she’s playing a game on Rhonda’s iPad while the other kids watch.
Lily has been in the water non-stop since we’ve been here. Her swimming skills have improved so much! She has reached that point where I don’t worry about her survival anymore. If she falls in the deep end she can just take a deep breath and swim underwater back to the edge or, as it is, all the way to the shallow end. Today she had me throwing a small rock in the pool so she could dive and retrieve it. Dozens and dozens of times I threw that rock and she’d go after it. Don’t ask me why that is such an appealing activity but I did the same thing when I was a kid…over and over…
Yesterday Rich and I stopped and talked with a realtor in town. There are tons of beautiful condos and houses for sale – many of them owned by Americans that got hammered in the recession and now have to sell. It sounds like a pitch, but the realtor said houses have been going at 30, 40, 50 and even 60% off the asking process. And even the listings aren’t that expensive, all things considered. I guess I mean that relatively. Now that I type that out I think about how my parents would have reacted 30 years ago when we were here about something that costs around half a million dollars. Yeah, relative.
Foreigners can’t buy land here, at least not around the beach. There are basically three options for people like us – 1) buy and put your house in a bank trust 2) form a Mexican corporation and make the house the asset of the corporation or 3) find a Mexican national to purchase the property and then make you power of attorney. Option three seems nuts unless it’s a family member. Option two is basically how we operate in the states with some things and option one seems to be what most people do. Interesting. I could tell that some of the conversation piqued his interest – mine too, but we’re looking to move to Colorado right now, so we’re hardly in a place where buying a house in Sayulita makes sense. Maybe in ten years. Let’s hope in ten years.