Archive | July, 2014

When Words Fail To Describe

26 Jul

As I sit to begin my weekly blog post, I usually have an idea, a direction, or a story in mind. I’ve already rolled a topic around, worked on a catchy title and know where I’m heading. This week I am at a loss to describe my week. We’re in California for an amazing wedding, our own. We have been in a relationship for twenty years, and had a commitment ceremony fifteen years ago. Yesterday we got legally married. There are no words to describe the sweetness of the experience. We were relaxed, surrounded by people who love us and it was perfect.

 

It's a long flight from Cancun to Dallas to San Francisco.

It’s a long flight from Cancun to Dallas to San Francisco.

The setting sun provided the backdrop in Healdsburg.

The setting sun provided the backdrop in Healdsburg, CA.

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Our adventure is not over. We return to Mexico tomorrow and a honeymoon in Playa del Carmen. We thank you in advance for all your love, support and well wishes. We are blessed to have lived to experience the freedom to be ourselves and have our marriage recognized. Gratitude, gratitude, gratitude.

 

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Bicycle Bacalar – Número Dos

20 Jul

When we arrived in Bacalar, Mexico for the first time almost two years ago, we had our rose-colored glasses on. We saw what we wanted to see, a small eclectic village situated on the most beautiful lake in Mexico. Yes, the streets were bumpy, the houses run down, and there was lots of trash. But that’s Mexico, no? The people were warm and welcoming. We fell in love from the get-go and decided that we could be happy living here.

As we round the corner on our one-year anniversary as full time Bacalareñas, we’ve noticed many changes in our little town. The streets are cleaner. Roads are being repaired and beautification is everywhere.

The number one improvement for me is that there is now a place to recycle plastic. We see people picking up discarded bottles from the roadway. It will take time for recycling to catch on, but I have hopes.

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Lisa is appreciating the new tables and benches recently constructed near Fort San Felipe in the center of town. They are perfect for an afternoon picnic in the shade while enjoying lake breezes.

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These wonderful Mayan carvings have been erected at every intersection for a half mile along the southern road into Bacalar. They are lit at night and each one is unique and beautiful. The stelae pay homage to a rich heritage for visitors and locals alike.

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The road leading out of Bacaler to the north has new street lights, a pedestrian walkway, freshly painted curbs and a modern bus stop. We often see people sitting on the benches watching the world go by.

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Hats off to the new presidente of our municipality, Don Chepe. His heart, vision and hard work have improved the beauty and quality of life for the people of Bacalar. How often can we say that for an elected public official? Bravo.

Bicycling Bacalar – Practical and Spiritual

13 Jul

I find that living in small town Bacalar, Mexico, population 11,000 is an endless opportunity to be curious. I am curious about my chosen neighbors whose lives are very different from mine. What better way to observe unobtrusively than from the seat of my bicycle.

I ride on a daily basis, to visit a friend, stop by the market or pick something up at the pharmacy. It is both practical and spiritual. I must stay “in the moment” to avoid speeding taxis, less than friendly dogs, potholes and the never ending topes (speed bumps). It’s fun to ride a new street, nodding and greeting folks the way it is done all over Mexico, buenos días, or buenas tardes. Perhaps some day I will be as my friend Soco who has lived here all her life. It takes her twenty minutes to drive out of town on her way to work because she must wave, greet and sometimes stop and hug everyone she passes. What a lovely way to live.

Visiting the cemetary.

Visiting the cemetary.

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Kayaking Laguna Bacalar – Hawks, Bromeliads and Wild Orchids

6 Jul

By all reports, this summer has been windier than normal on Laguna Bacalar in Southern Mexico, resulting in a choppy lake and few trips out in my kayak. I have missed the quiet mornings of gliding along the mangroves feeling like an early explorer discovering a new world.

This week has provided the delightful surprise of waking to a flat, quiet laguna and I’ve been off in my little blue kayak.

Perfect kayaking conditions.

Perfect kayaking conditions.

The opposite shore is thick with beautiful mangroves. It takes me about 15 minutes to traverse the lake from our house. The endless rains of last fall made it easy to cut through the mangroves to explore the canals east of the laguna. This week I managed to travel south along the groves observing the large black and white hawks known as kites that are out in search of snails for breakfast.

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The cool mornings allow a private tour of the peaceful edge of the laguna. The mangroves are a haven to sea birds and air plants. Bromeliads and wild orchids cling to the branches waiting for the rainy season to begin in earnest.

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Wild orchids.

Wild orchids.

Today we had another sort of lake excursion planned. Our friends from Tulum were visiting for a weekend getaway, and Lisa arranged for a launch to take us out on the laguna for a day of swimming and picnic. We could not have picked a better day.

Heading out to enjoy the lake.

Heading out to enjoy the lake.

Our friends Hillary and Amir brought their boat around and picked us up for a four hour tour. Hillary’s mother and aunt follow my blog from Canada, so this shout-out is for them.

Greetings from Hillary in Bacalar.

Greetings from Hillary in Bacalar.

A fun day was had by all.

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