Saturday, August 28, 2010

August 28

BIG NEWS:  we have rented a house for next year!  It's owned by someone who until recently owned a gallery in San Miguel so it's full of about a million paintings, few of which are actually to our taste but we'll move them.  It's got three bedrooms (room for you to visit!), two baths, an alcove big enough for a computer and associated stuff, a spectacular garden, several terraces, and a view of San Miguel that is simply breathtaking.

You can see the Parroquia in the middle of the picture, which gives you an idea of how high up this house is.

One of the owners used to be a landscape gardener in Aspen CO, and when he moved to this house there was nothing but concrete on the main terrace.  He created this garden.

It's got what is now an empty pool-type thing, which will be easy to fill.  We'll hire someone to make a fountain in it for the beautiful sound, and it's big enough for us to jump into on hot days.

Because nothing is perfect, there are of course some downsides.  First, there's no street.  Callejon Chorro consists of steps, about a dozen flights' worth up the steep hillside.  It will be good exercise but a challenge to bring in groceries and whatnot.  Because there are streets above and below, though, it's always possible to walk only downhill.  Second, the kitchen is pretty stripped.  We're considering having cabinets made.  Third, we had to rent it starting December 1, not January 1 as we had hoped.  And fourth, it's a little more money than we were planning to spend but the house is so gorgeous it will be worth it.

All in all, we are thrilled!

The other thing I wanted to tell you about today is medical.  I saw a doctor earlier this week who suggested that my low energy level might be due to parasites, and to have myself tested.  When the test did indeed indicate amoebas, I tried to call the doctor back, twice, but she didn't call back either time.  This morning we went to a pharmacy, showed them the lab report, and asked what medicine I needed.  Nope:  a prescription is required.  For a prescription one needs a doctor.  My doctor is unreachable.

Fortunately we went to a presentation a couple of days ago on health care at the Biblioteca, and learned about a clinic.  It was open on a Saturday morning, but pretty deserted.  An employee called a doctor and said we should wait for half an hour.  Fifteen minutes later the sweetest doctor arrived and introduced himself by his first name, Faustino, which of course I loved.  He gave me a physical examination and positively beamed at me for my good blood pressure, heartsounds, and pulse:  I felt like such a good girl!  Interestingly enough, he said that in Mexico there's a formula for blood pressure for adults:  100 plus age.  He therefore felt my blood pressure of 140/80 was excellent, while to me it seems high.  Then he wrote a prescription and explained everything very carefully, which was useful since he spoke no English.  I may have found a new doctor, Spanish or no Spanish.

And by the way, I'm feeling much better.

After we gave the owners of Callejon Chorro 5A a check, we walked back through the Jardin.  The bicentennial celebration is starting to get underway big time -- they are celebrating independence on September 16.  Houses are starting to sprout Mexican flags and vendors are selling all sorts of stuff in green, white and red.  There was a stage set up right in front of the Parroquia, not off to the side as usual, and the "entertainment" was almost as loud as a jet engine.  The speakers sent the bass notes through my chest and just about pulverized my bones.

But sitting there on the bench at about 5 PM for a rest (it was a long walk) gave me a great opportunity to people-watch.  It occurred to me that while few people were smoking, thank goodness, many were eating.  And they were eating Mexican junk food, high carbs and high sugar, from the many food carts ringing the Jardin.  Comida, the main meal of the day, is early- to mid-afternoon:  they could not have been hungry!  It is perhaps not a coincidence that so many people are overweight and that there are so many diabetics in this country.  It is so bad that diabetes is the primary cause of death here.  Well, I confess:  we succumbed and had a couple of chorros.  A guilty pleasure but at least we're careful to keep it rare.


  1. Mazel tov, Jo, on your house rental. It does indeed look gorgeous! But when you say you need only walk downhill, I'm not sure I understand. I know that San Miguel is heaven, but have you sprouted angel's wings to get back up to the house? :-)

    BTW, I wouldn't be so quick to use Faustino as your doctor. His 100+age formula is nuts. That would mean that if I had blood pressure of 168/80, that would be OK. I can't imagine a reputable doctor agreeing to that.

  2. I'm with Junaita- Dr. Google says:
    • systolic pressure is considered high if it is consistently over 140.
    • diastolic pressure is considered high if it is consistently over 90.

    Pre-hypertension is when your systolic blood pressure is between 120 and 139 or your diastolic blood pressure is between 80 and 89 on multiple readings.

  3. If you all realized how faithfully Jo has been- taking notes and pictures in order to share our experience we those we love- you would nominate her for a Putlitzer- I have.