Terlingua Dreams

Terlingua Dreams
Día de los Muertos - Terlingua Cemetery

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Trees in bloom in February

Yesterday afternoon when we got home I noticed that the trees in the front yard had started to bloom, mighty early even for West Texas considering it is still winter and this is the month of February.


Mother's "Nosey Rosie" neighbor who lives two lots down has his trees in full bloom, not partially like us. They are beautiful...then again he is always outside watering them...as he keeps a watchful eye on what the neighbors are up to. :D


For now I am happy that those hideous mesquite trees are still dormant!

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

A cold and rainy day in February

After the beautiful spring temperatures we have been experiencing lately, today winter returned.  It was a cold and rainy day with a high of only 64 and a low of 40.

It would be our luck that in such a miserable day we would have to go get the results of mother's CT Scan last week.  Today, there was a full house even though our appointment was late in the afternoon.

Been seeing a lot of these signs lately at different doctor's offices...sorry for the poor quality of the shot.



Another thing I have been noticing is more accessibility using "Patient Portals".  I like the idea of being able to leave a message for the doctor and to make appointments online.



Speaking of technology I noticed so many people playing with their cell phones.  There were these three kids I imagine waiting on their parent, the older one about 10 years old had a cell phone and his younger siblings about 3 and 5 years old...each had their own tablet!  Darn, felt like asking the little ones to show me how to use one...jajajajaja :D

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

No workable solution

Saturday, I had an almost pain free day...unfortunately that has not been the case since then. Sunday night I went back to sleeping in my zero gravity chair to see if it made a difference...it did not.

I am no doctor, but I am almost certain my leg pain has something to do with my bad back...that would be the lesser of two evils.  It could also be Deep Vein Thrombosis from the symptoms, as I recall a former co-worker almost died from it.

As my regular readers know, I have no health insurance.  Even with the so called Obama Care, the monthly premiums are more than a car note and would take a big bite out of my monthly budget.  Supposing I bought the insurance my deductible (I would go with the cheapest one) would be $6,000.00 a year.  I know that sounds like a lot but from my experience with my mother's medical bills, it would easily take a hospital stay of one day to meet that.

The problem is that we have no specialists in Del Rio, I would have to go to San Antonio or San Angelo, Texas. The same thing applies if I go to Mexico for treatment.  There are no specialists in Ciudad Acuña, Coahuila would have to go to the capital city of Saltillo, Coahuila or Monterrey, Nuevo Leon.

I can not forget that in my absence who is going to take care of my mother?  For that matter who is going to take care of me?

Like I said, I have been doing a lot of thinking but I have yet to arrive at a workable solution.

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.


Saturday, February 22, 2014

Fire at Moody Ranch

Pictures courtesy of the Del Rio News-Herald

Last night there was a smell to something burnt as I made my way to the living room. Turned on the lights and checked everywhere.  Went to the kitchen and the smell got stronger.  This is an old house so I got concerned, woke up my mother to let her know what was going on.


We once had an incident with the old A/C unit but this one is two or three years old and I did not have it on. Ran out side to see if it had caught on fire but as soon as I opened the door, I realized that it wasn't our house but something else was burning elsewhere.


The air was thick with smoke and you could barely see the lights in Mexico from the haze.  It was awful so ran back inside.  I could not help but think of poor Walter having to smell that :-(


Got online and learned that the Moody Ranch was on fire.  The Moody Ranch is a big ranch on the banks of the Rio Grande but further downstream from us going towards Eagle Pass, Texas.  I guess the strong winds blew it back into town.


The bedrooms face north that is why the smell was not as strong but it sure got stronger as the night went on. Glad to report the fire is now under control.


While many of you may not have heard of Moody Ranch in Del Rio, Texas...it happens to be the location where the popular western mini-series..."Lonesome Dove" was filmed back in 1989.



Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Bats, CT Scan, Ihop, Laundromat

Re-scheduled mother's appointment for yesterday Thursday, February 20th at 8:30 a.m.  We were on our way to the hospital around 7:10 a.m. when I saw this large flock of black birds but they flew funny. Since there was quite a bit of traffic, I ignored them.  When we got to the stop light a block from HEB another black flock of birds flew by...that is when I realized they were bats!

Unless it is a matter of vital importance you wont find me driving the streets of Del Rio at this early hour. Not only did I see bats heading south ( I suppose to Mexico) I saw an unusually large amount of black birds as well.  There were leafless trees covered with birds. It looked rather eerie...kind of like a scary Halloween movie.  All the way to the hospital we saw wave after wave of bats. My camera was in my purse in the backseat so was not able to take any pictures.

Even though the Radiology Department has someone there 24 hours, they do not open to the public until 8:00 a.m. at the same time that the business office opens so they can take your payment.  I always pre-register my mother to avoid the morning rush or surprises like down computers.

CT Scan room, now with a functional machine
We were the first ones there and they took mother for her CT Scan at 7:50 a.m. forty minutes before her scheduled appointment...that was a welcomed surprise!  As I was waiting for her I overheard other technicians saying that yesterday it was the CT Scan machine that was down and today it was the other machine.


I went next door to see if it was the MRI machine but no it wasn't it.  The time clock is across from the waiting area and what do you know, it was down as well!  Got to hear a couple of choice words being uttered as employees were trying to unsuccessfully clock in.

After her tests I asked her if she needed anything else from town before we headed back home.  I was so surprised when she told me she wanted to go to Ihop!  My mother is not much for restaurants and ever since they closed Luby's cafeteria she refuses to go to another eating establishment.  I hurried on to Ihop before she changed her mind....jajajajajaja :D


 I had already started eating before I remembered to take a picture.

Those red droplets are Tabasco Sauce

On our way home we passed the laundromat and there were only two cars in the parking lot. Dropped off mother and went back to tackle that dirty chore.  All in all got a lot accomplished yesterday that is why I decided to give myself the day off today.

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Re-scheduled appointment

Last night the phone rang at 10:41 p.m. (yes, we still have a landline telephone) thought it was rather late for someone to be calling but picked it up nonetheless.  It was the local hospital letting us know that the machine had broken so our appointment for this morning had to be cancelled.

This morning the telephone rang at 7:56 a.m. it was the hospital again letting us know that a technician was on her way from San Antonio to fix the machine and if I could bring my mother in this afternoon.  I told her definitively not!  Her tests require fasting and I was not going to let my mother go without eating until then and what was to guarantee me the machine would actually be fixed?

I believe she must have still been asleep and I snapped her out of it...she agreed to have someone call me back AFTER the machine was actually fixed so we could re-schedule her tests.  I really did not mean to yell at her but sometimes I wonder what the heck some medical personnel are thinking!

In a way I am glad the appointment was re-scheduled because my legs in particular my right leg hurt more than usual since the pain began a couple of weeks ago.  The pain begins in the upper thigh and it feels like my veins are stretching and I have a burning sensation.  Today even the back of my leg hurt and it was a struggle to walk.

One of the reasons I began this blog was to document my day to day life due to my CRS (if you do not know what that is look on the upper right side of my blog).  I remember this happening to me but only on one leg back in 2009 or was it 2010?  However, I do not recall on which leg it occurred since I did not have a blog then :-(

That was the main reason I decided to have a Del Rio doctor.  My doctor was voted the #1 in Del Rio in the local newspaper survey...so it is difficult to schedule an appointment with him.  By the time he was able to see me, the pain was gone.

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Darn Men Gossipers!!!

Did a lot of running around today.  First stop was pre-registering mother at the hospital for routine tests.  Just as I got there the air ambulance was taking off.


The recycling center is close by so off I went to unload my water bottles and metal cans.



Did not know they accepted regular batteries, so will be making another trip in the near future. Disappointed to learn you can not recycle yogurt containers or styrofoam egg cartons.  They only take the 3 dozen type of egg cartons for the local kindergarten teachers.


My final stop was to HEB to pick up a couple of items as well as mother's prescriptions.  Wanted to buy some soup and headed on down to that aisle.  There were two men who apparently had not seen each other in a while blocking the aisle as they chewed the fat.

They did not seem a bit concerned that they were holding up traffic.  Left my cart and made my way in between them to get some soup.  Thought how rude it was of them so decided to come back after I picked up some other stuff.  Came back 10 minutes later and they were still at it.  This time the recently retired gentlemen was giving his friend a full account of all the places he had been to and those he was hoping to return to.

Decided to go pick up mother's prescriptions and surely they would be through with their chit chat by then. Fifteen minutes later they had not moved an inch!  Who in the heck says that women are gossipers?  Men, in particular these two can certainly hold their own!

It was a lovely day with a high of 81 degrees even though it felt higher to me.

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Monday, February 17, 2014

A lesson in history

I can not in recent memory recall a February in Del Rio that was as hot as this year.  We have already had a high of 92 and today it was a very warm 89 degrees.  I am not complaining...I do not care for cold temperatures...however, it is mighty early in the season for it to be this hot. Everyone is watering their yards and I have already put the plants back outside.

Today we went to see Mom's primary physician for a regular visit and was so glad we did not encounter the zoo that we did last week at another clinic.  Last week I almost got ran over in the parking lot, they could not find a single wheelchair and a lady that should of known better along with her 50 something year old tattooed son were coughing up a storm and did not even bother to cover their mouth.  That woman needed to be in a hospital not spreading germs in a very congested waiting room!


While waiting for your name to be called one has no choice but to listen to other people's conversations.  For once I actually heard one worth listening. Two couples who did not know each other were talking and I learned that one of the men was in the American Embassy in Tehran, Iran when it was taken over back in 1979.  I vividly remember watching Nightline with Ted Koppel as the siege continued for 444 days.  He is a gentlemen from Brackettville a small town about 20 miles east of Del Rio.

The other couple were probably around 65 years old and she told how her dad was a Border Patrol agent and his first assignment was to Langtry, Texas.  She was 10 years old at the time and recalled how they did not have electricity.  They asked her if it was hard and she said, not for her since she was a kid, but that she imagined it must of been for her mother.  She did not mention what state they came from but implied it was one of the northern ones.

For those not familiar with Texas...Langtry is where Old Judge Roy Bean otherwise known as...the Law West of the Pecos...held court many moons ago. Then the ladies father was transferred to Dryden and ultimately to Comstock, Texas.  Folks, there is absolutely nothing there now much less fifty plus years ago. Well, I take that back Comstock has grown quite a bit in the past couple of years due to the additional hiring of Border Patrol agents. Population might be up to 500 by now :)

Really good conversation and as usually happens when you are interested in something...they call your name.

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Happy Valentine's Day

I want to wish all my readers a very happy St. Valentine's Day.



Remember, celebrate responsibly or this could happen to you ....:D


Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Gasoline prices rise .13 cents in two days :-(

Just this past Sunday gasoline was going for $3.02 citywide...$2.99 if you used a Stripes credit card.  In just two days it went up .13 cents to a whopping $3.15 a gallon.


Have not had a chance to watch the evening news...well, I take that back, I did attempt to watch them but dozed off so I have no idea why the sudden spike in prices. More than likely has something to do with the weather.


Speaking of weather it was miserable today but after tomorrow we are going to have beautiful sunny days and temperatures in the 80's.  Oh, this crazy Texas weather but there is no other place I would rather be :)

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.


Sunday, February 9, 2014

Going to turn in early tonight

My legs have been hurting a lot lately and I have been feeling tired...no real reason why.  Last night I even went to bed early (for me) 11:30 p.m.  Woke up at the ungodly hour of 7:00 a.m. Having slept 7.5 hours is a miracle the equivalent of two nights sleep.  Remembering how much I got done the other day by starting my day early decided to head off to HEB.

No crowds, plenty of parking space and the only thing on my list were milk, eggs and oatmeal. There was this young man offering samples of "barbacoa" and boy it tasted delicious!  I did not even know HEB sold it on weekends.  Over heard a customer ask him if they sold "menudo" to which he answered yes...darn it all...decided to buy some too!  There is a reason why they tell you to never shop on an empty stomach :-(

Drove by the P.O. Box and it was full...when was the last time I came to pick up the mail?  Oh yeah, it was the last time I woke up early!

This evening I soaked my poor feet in warm salty water.  I think I am going to turn in early tonight...well, maybe :)

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Beauty Shop / Little bottles of Coke

As you know I was sick with the flu during December and a good part of January and had not been able to take my mom to her favorite beauty shop in Ciudad Acuña, Coahuila, Mexico.  While I recommend going on a Monday or Tuesday, I did not take her with me on my two prior trips because it was just too cold for her.

Can only show you my haircut because mother got upset
the last time I posted a picture of her on my blog.

I was dreading it because one time I took her to get her hair done on a Friday and ended up spending more than three hours there.  I usually get off first to see if she can fit us in...was very surprised she did not have any customers.  Later learned her dad had passed away last Saturday and she did not open her shop until today.

$6.00 pesos is .47 American cents

A while back a reader wrote to inquire if they sold little Coke bottles in Mexico because he owned an old fashion dispensing machine.  I no longer have his e-mail or for that matter even know if he still reads me. At the time I did not find them, today I saw them at Gutierrez (a grocery store).


$4.90 at today's exchange rate is .38 American cents

I also saw this little washboard and thought....humm it just might work in Terlingua :-)

30.30 pesos is the equivalent of $2.37 US dollars

A reader wanted to know what exactly the rates I put up on my blog mean.  So an explanation is in order. The first number on the sign is the rate you will receive if you change $1.00 US dollar.  In the picture below, if you were to go into that Exchange House you would come out with $12.80 Mexican pesos.



Say you did not find anything to buy and wanted to sell back your Mexican pesos...you would only get back $0.9846 American cents.

12.80 divided by 13.00 = 0.9846 USD

I put up the dollar exchange rates for my benefit as I will buy Mexican pesos when the dollar is high and get more bang for my buck. I do not recommend you do this unless you live along the border like I do or visit often.  I try to pay for everything in Mexican pesos and if I do not use all my pesos...no big deal, I will use them the next time I come to Ciudad Acuña.



I get a lot of inquiries asking if Ciudad Acuña is a safe place to visit.  From my experience and my point of view it is...but ultimately only YOU can make that decision.  Mexico gets a bad rap in the American media and granted some places in the interior of Mexico I would never even consider venturing into.

However, you never hear in the same media about the good things Mexico has to offer, like affordable health care, low grocery prices, excellent travel destinations and the warmth and generosity of its people.  That is what I try to portray on my blog.

Take for instance this afternoon as we were heading back to Del Rio...the lines to cross into Mexico were so long they extended beyond the toll booths on the American side.  That gives you an idea of how many people visit this border city during the weekend.





By comparison when I got to American Customs...there wasn't even a line!



Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

On a quest to find my missing car keys

Yesterday after running my errands...got a wild hair.  Decided to go to Ciudad Acuña and try to find the keys to dad's old car that I lost last week. I knew I had a snow ball chance in hell of finding them but I was willing to take it.


My luck they would have an I.C.E. (Immigration and Custom Enforcement) sting at the International Bridge but thankfully they waved me through.  Not too much traffic except for the 18 wheelers waiting in line to be inspected before they could cross into Mexico...fortunately there are separate lanes for them.


Went to every store I visited last week and learned that...a lot of people loose their keys!  Was shown a bunch of them but none belonged to dad's car.  Went to the main office of the last store I visited but no dice. Then it occurred to me that perhaps I should check the pharmacy...BINGO!

The guy that works in that department said he knew I would be back.  He put them in his locker rather than turned them in to the main office as they tend to throw them away after a certain time frame.  I just had a gut feeling I would find them. :-)

Forgot to mention on my last post of my trip to Mexico, that effective January 1, 2014 the toll rates had gone up.  It now costs $26.00 Mexican Pesos ($2.03 American Dollars).  To see the rates you can click on the picture to enlarge it.



Less traffic than last week to cross back, about a ten to fifteen minute wait.


Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Rude Awakening

In case you are new to my blog...I suffer from insomnia...I do good if I sleep three to four hours a night.  At 7:15 a.m. this morning I was rudely awaken by the sound of heavy machinery...namely a tractor.


Just yesterday the person who owns the empty corner lot where a few months back they put up an unneeded new fence...showed up with two tractors and started clearing his lot which really did not require it.  Now mother's lots would require two perhaps even three tractors but theirs was overkill. Walter's owner who has been clearing his lot by brute force looked like he could not believe it either...perhaps like myself...wished they would come clear his lot.

Tried to go back to sleep but gave up at 7:30 a.m. as I needed to run several errands today.  The first one was to wash as well as fill up dad's old car.  BTW for the reader who inquired about its mileage, it has 97921 original miles.


 Gasoline prices around town today...click on the picture to enlarge them.








Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Propane delivery

Got our propane delivery today.  Prices have certainly gone up from the last time when we paid $2.30 a gallon. Today's price was $2.5641 per gallon, therefore only purchased 39 gallons to bring the tank up to 40 percent of capacity.  That should last us another three or four months.


He has been promising us a calendar for the past three years and we finally got one!

Not the most exciting post but since this is also my Cyber Journal needed to document price and date of delivery.

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Cold, Windy and some Wine

The howling wind woke me up this morning.  What a difference from Saturday which was a warm and sunny day in the 70's...but it's winter and you got to roll with the punches.  Have to be grateful I am not up north freezing my tush off.

I had every intention of keeping my date with the laundromat...had two fresh rolls of quarters BUT...there is always a but...the place was jammed packed!  What is the matter with these people, do they not know it is Sunday, a day to be at home with the family, go to church, watch the Super Bowl?

Since I was already out and about, I decided against my better judgement to go to HEB.  My plan was to go wash and by the time I finished, the Super Bowl would have already started and the store would be empty.  I remember back in the 90's in Houston...either Kroger's or Randall's, I don't remember which (I suffer from CRS)...would offer 10% off...if you shopped during the game.  It was great to shop with no crowds in the big city and get a discount to boot!

HEB was packed and everyone seemed to be in a jovial mood.  Only had three things on my list...bananas, milk and paper towels.  Noticed they had a lot of food tasting booths today and as I passed one, the lady asked me if I wanted to taste some wine.  Remember back in August 2013, I sampled some wine as well as Frio Light Beer?  http://terlinguadreams.blogspot.com/2013/08/wine-and-beer-tasting-at-heb.html

Well, it was the same wine but this time it tasted awful!  I had bought the wine for steak night in Terlingua but since my friends with the food did not attend this year and I had back problems I did not take the wine or the six pack of Frio Light...it is still in the refrigerator awaiting my review, lol :D

Hope the team you were rooting for won and/or that you got lucky numbers in your football pot.

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Keys

In my younger days I had a problem with misplacing my keys, in particular my car keys.  Though it has not happened as often there have been a few occasions when I have locked my keys in the car as well.  When it happens in a small town like Del Rio it was no big deal, I could always call my parents and they would show up with a spare.  Now it is different since mother no longer drives (her own decision).

In Houston it was an entirely different matter.  While I could call Triple A (American Automobile Association) I prefer to call them for more important matters...like changing a flat or when I need to be towed.

Carrying a spare set of keys became a habit and saved me more than once from having to call on someone who lived clear across the other side of town.  This past Tuesday it saved me from having to take a cab from Ciudad Acuña to Del Rio and back to Mexico probably about $60.00 or $70.00 USD.



I always carry keys on a wrist bracelet and I carry my spare on a neck thingie (for lack of a better term). Two weeks ago the plastic wrist bracelet with the keys to dad's old car broke as it was old and brittle...but I felt it break.  This past Tuesday it was cold and I had a few layers on as well as my coat when I went in to the last grocery store.  I am thinking it too broke as it was about the same age as the spare one and I just did not feel it.

When I got to my car I could not find it on my wrist but figured it was in between the layers of clothing so used the spare I carry around my neck to open the door and get out of the cold.  It wasn't until I got back home and inspected everything that I realized I lost it.  I am very grateful I carry a spare...you just never know when it will come in handy.

I was very surprised to learn that we do not have another spare set.  I will take that back mother found a spare key to the motor.  That is one thing I hate about dad's old car...there is a key to the door and a different key to the motor.  It would do me no good to have a key to the motor when I can not open the door and vice versa.

In my favorite desert I am famous for loosing my keys but eventually I find them.  My late friend Bear bought me the neck thing on the above picture and wrote on it Terlingua 1999.  Well dear friend, you saved me once more!

Good night.  May you all have Terlingua Dreams.