December was the most interesting month of 2017. While I have dreamed of living in Mexico where the sun warms the beaches and the pace is slower, I never dreamed that Lyn would actually commit to moving there. Even more surprising was his willingness to quit his job and move as early as this January.

That means that, yes, we are now living in Mexico. We came down to Puerto Vallarta to get certified to teach English as a foreign language (TEFL) and then embark on a new life. Live simpler. Eat fresh. Enjoy the sun and the sand. We don’t start our training for another day or two. That part is a little scary for me. It has been a long time since I was in school.

While we are here, we are living in student housing that we share with two other people. One, a college age student from Michigan. The other, a semi-retired lawyer (50-ish) from Boston. Both are very pleasant and sociable. The house is very nice, but not completely furnished. We have had to purchase a number of things that should have been here. Worst part is that we don’t have hot water in our bathroom. The school is working to remedy the situation, although they have not yet been successful with regard to the water.

We’ve also met some new people along the way. One couple from Seattle come down for 5 weeks every year. They haven’t move here because they have kids and grandkids back home, but they otherwise would. We met them on the street while asking for directions to the MEGA (a WalMart type grocery store) and for a recommendation for a restaurant. We ended up dining with them and walking back together. Very nice people. We exchanged contact info and hope to get together again while they are here.

One new friend I met on the airplane. Kelley is a nurse practitioner back in Oakland, CA who came down here to relax and unwind. We spoke at length about life and self-care, self-improvement and working on those sticky family issues we all seem to have. Again, we exchanged contact info and I hope we will see each other again.

Getting Around

Today we ventured to El Centro to explore the Malecon. While very beautiful, it is the place where all the tourists congregate. The prices on things are higher, and everyone tries to sell you something. There were many street artists made up as statues for tourists to take photos and leave tips. I may accidentally have been rude to one man selling jewelry. I told him “too bad” in Spanish when I meant to say “sorry.” Oh well.

To get to the Malecon we rode a local bus. Inside the buses you see a lot of Christian messages and pictures of Jesus. I’m not sure if that comforts me or just makes me feel odd. The buses are very beat up and there is no air conditioning, which is fine for the most part. The air near the water is pleasant and the breeze cools you down. Bus fare for our journey was 15 pesos round trip, or about 50-cents.

On the way back, we stopped at MEGA and bought some things for dinner. When we got back to the house, Mark was just arriving, and we chatted with him for quite a while. He had started his journey at 3:00 a.m. and it was 5:00 CDT (6:00 EDT). I invited him to share in our meal, since I knew he had to be exhausted.

I wasn’t sure how the meal would turn out. The house doesn’t have spices beyond salt and pepper. Despite this, the chicken and zucchini turned out quite well and the meal was very nice.

And that was just day one!

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