Monday, December 15, 2014

Food Cravings, Sharing, and Stuart Smalley

Those of you who've met me won't believe this one.  I actually totally lost my appetite for over a month after my surgery.  Unfortunately, when the first six weeks were up, all hell broke loose.

I'd like to say I seized the opportunity to drop 20 pounds, but it didn't work out that way.  The downward fall started with a trip to Costco to buy a pumpkin pie to take to a friend's house for Thanksgiving.  I bought a couple of chocolate items to give as hostess gifts during the holidays and an extra pumpkin pie with the intention of inviting the neighbors over for a late birthday party.

Despite my generous intentions, the huge bag of Ghiradelli chocolates and the extra pumpkin pie just disappeared.  Oops.

I try not to be a complete glutton when we're on the island, so it somehow makes me feel better to split food items when we can.  It saves on calories and the budget.  (I realize from the looks of the photos below, I'm in total denial about saving calories!)

Rolandi's on Hidalgo is open late if you happen to arrive on a ferry after 10:00 p.m.  This pizza with proscuitto, mushrooms, olives, and asparagus has always been a favorite and big enough to split.

We usually head to Barlito our first morning for a breakfast and Brad/Tiffany fest.  We often share a Cool Breeze or panini at Barlito, but it looks like we didn't this particular morning.  But they're big enough! 

Notice the sandia above in that photo with the Blume panini?  I discovered that the juice shop on Juarez (the San Jorge) sells sandia in bottles in the same case as the OJ.  On our last trip, we stopped everyday on the way to the beach to buy the large bottle.  I drank as our son used to say -- the whole of it -- and didn't split it!

We usually hit Oscar's early in the trip to split the lasagna and garlic knots.  That's my half share above.

We also enjoy splitting a Soggy Peso burger and sweet potato fries for lunch once a week.

If you hang around Barlito until lunch, the nachos are loaded and HUGE!

If you happen to encounter the pan man who walks around with this metal container on his head, it's also big enough to split.  Just kidding, but look at all those goodies!  This trip I vow to buy something from him.  He was down by the old Juarez ferry dock when I saw him in May (just north of where the Gran Puerto ferry docks).

We also love sharing the sliders and Cobb salad at Qubano.   

Here's Ruben of Ruben's with his humongous burrito!  It's a keeper.  Order an extra plate and cut it down the middle.  It's definitely enough food for two!

I simply have to quit with the food before I strip the pantry tonight.  I'm craving all of the above and more!

Back in the day when we traveled to Isla Mujeres several times a year, I got a little jaded and ho hum. The past few years with our catastrophes and cancelled trips, I can truthfully tell you that I am excited  to the max about my next trip!  I'm channeling Stuart Smalley!  I can affirm that I'm Good Enough, Smart Enough, and Doggoneit, I Deserve This Trip!  (I made up that last part.)

Thursday, December 11, 2014

It's Beginning to Look a Lot . . . .

Like Christmas!  I'm baaaack.  

I have new hardware and a card for the TSA when I fly.  Yesterday marked two months since my TKR -- total knee replacement. Woo hoo!  The process wasn't easy.  It was described to me as hell by a physical therapist before my surgery and fortunately I didn't listen.  (But she didn't lie.)

It's water under the bridge now.  I still need ice and Aleve, but I can walk short distances, swim, and crack jokes.   

And -- ta daaaaa -- I can return to Isla (next year).  I'll be the seaglass spotter and Craig can be the picker.

Cheers and Feliz Navidad!

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Open Doorways

Sorting through photos from our May/June trip to Isla Mujeres, I noticed a lot of open doorways.  I usually snap photos of closed doors!

A peek into the laundry on Juarez -- Tim Pho.  The name sounded Chinese to me until a cabdriver told me Tim Pho's Mayan for laundry.  Was he pulling my leg?

A small tienda on Juarez sells the daily newspapers.

There's a cute little restaurant across from the square now -- Q Bravo.  Their baguette sandwiches are very good!

A glimpse into the mini-super on Juarez across from the Navy base.

This doorway's partially open!

I've never passed the doorway into Hemingway's Cantina (sorry I can never remember the new name).  Maybe I'm leery of that cuidado con el perro sign.

Not a doorway into Cafe Cito, but you could step right through that window!

The view through the open doorway at Poc Na is one of my favorites!

Step right into the corner tienda on Hidalgo to pick up cool drinks for the beach!

Finally after all these years, I caught this door open!  It appears to be a dressmarker's/sewing shop.

Happy Saturday!  Try not to labor too much on Labor Day weekend!

Friday, August 22, 2014

Hot Mess

I'm happy to report I passed a pulmonary function test yesterday and I'm normal. I also don't have pertussis, or at least it didn't show up in the blood test taken at the 11 week mark in my summer marathon.  The official diagnosis is -- drum roll -- I'm a hot mess!

You'd think I'd be out singing and dancing to celebrate my normal lungs, but I've lost my Get Out of Jail Free card.  I cannot pass Go (make any travel plans for the future) because I cannot sing (talk) and I cannot dance (walk).  I'm off to the ENT next week for an assessment of the damage to my vocal cords, and hopefully on my way to that office, I can stop off at the hospital for the MRI that was ordered for my knee.

Then on the way home, I'll stop off for some cheese to go with my whine.  (Craig can run in while I sit in the car.)  Enough already!

My husband often tells me that I edit Isla Mujeres down to a gorgeous white sand beach and quaint brightly painted Caribbean structures and fail to show its -- how shall I say it -- funkier messy parts. So these photos are about keepin' it real.

Hey -- I think an orange moto against a distressed blue background is pretty!

Necessity is the mother of invention.  A plastic bucket will do just fine for a flowering shrub, and a propane tank makes a great plant stand.

In all fairness, I think this cart's parked in front of an upholsterer's shop, so it's probably waiting for a reno job. We see this style of golfcart around our neighborhood.  A 2-seater style like this at a home expo in April listed in the $25,000 range.  Seriously!  I'd rather buy a small SUV!

Watch out for prehistoric looking things that crawl.  I almost stepped on this iguana getting off my barstool at the Soggy Peso.

Here's an affordable new casa on the airport strip. It's actually not very gritty.  I like the color scheme!

Island style bike rack.

Painted buckets, conch shells, and painted rebar make colorful front porch decor affordable.

Shops sometimes have scary official signs when they get suspended from doing business for one reason or another (but the guy was still out front trying to lure tourists into the shop)!

This sign looks a little threatening since I only recognize the word policia.

I love a blue door with its own parking space in front.

A kitty squatter on a bed of concrete bags and trash.

Looks like they started to paint?

Meanwhile, back at the carniceria.

Abandoned licoreria (liquor store).

As Porky Pig used to say -- That's all folks!  Hasta manana!
(You do know manana doesn't necessarily mean tomorrow!)

Saturday, August 2, 2014

The Saturday P Update

I think I'm at the eight week mark now with this gift and yes, my symptoms are still like a Nyquil commercial.  Add no energy whatsoever and little sores all over my mouth. (Those are probably caused by the big-assed inhaler.)

I actually went to a Kohl's store a week ago because I feared my credit card might expire from lack of use. That or I would miss the last call to buy summer clothes on sale for my next tropical trip.  Yes, I live in Arizona, but they don't sell shorts and tank tops year round.  Anyway, I felt like a 100-year old woman -- wheezing, hufffing, puffing, having to sit down and rest, etc...  Shopping is HIGHLY overrated!

While I originally poo-poo-ed pleurisy because it sounded like an old timey illness out of a Jane Austen book, I now realize my doctor was dead on with that diagnosis.  The crippling knife shooting pains in the upper back are still there and much more noticeable now. Especially if I'm in one of my pity pot moods and actually cry, which brings on the pain. Crying is also HIGHLY overrated!

My favorite ex-pro baseball player from the Dominican Republic who just happens to now be an expert granite installer was in my house on Thursday.  He looked at me and said -- you must have chikungunya.  

I laughed.  That Fausto is so funny!  We love to talk baseball with him because he's friends with Omar Vizquel, who once wrecked his Porsche at the bottom of our street in Bellevue, Washington.  Fausto also used to live in the Seattle area when he played semi-pro ball and his father-in-law is a Hall of Famer, but that name escapes my addled mind.   I also love listening to his Caribbean accent.

Anyway, Fausto explained he'd just been back to the Dominican to visit family and many of them are suffering from chikungunya.  Craig and I chuckled after he left, but I started trying to remember what he'd told me so I could tell my doctor about it next week.  I'm grasping for answers now!  We both thought he said something like chiknpoule.  Sounded like a thin chicken gumbo soup. I finally googled chicken flu in Dominican Republic this morning and found chikungunya.  I'm positive I don't have that, but it's a dengue type mosquito borne illness that has actually shown up in Arizona this summer because our mosquitos just happen to be the same.  I really should just tell Fausto to stop by for a Coke Zero whenever he's in the neighborhood because I learn a lot from that man.  And he keeps us both laughing!  

If you've read my rambling update, I suppose I should reward you with some bonus photos from Isla Mujeres!  Ding ding ding!  Here's some Saturday scenes from Hidalgo!

Never tried this place, but there must be a joke to the man(nequin) behind the menu board.

Men hangin' at the beer store.

Vivian's Qubano cats waiting ever so patiently for her to serve their lunch.

Vendor riding down Hidalgo.

A look down the hallway to the tortilleria on Hidalgo.

The corner store.

The Jeep Bakery by the cemetery wall.

Sunset where Hidalgo meets the sea.