Trailer Park Nirvana image created by Stefany Kleeschulte.

Monday, March 28, 2011

A Kino Bay Sunday

Getting out of the park without Paloma wasn't easy. It took three tries. But finally I was able to throw her off - she headed south through the park while I crouched below the sea wall on the beach and went north, having to walk to the pier (muelle) through town rather than on the beach.

Bougainvillea blooming at Islandia

 Fish tacos, anyone? How about Liza frita? Or shrimp cocktails?

Or coconuts with crab? Apparently they have Viagra-like powers.

No Paloma in sight so I continue on the beach.

Stingrays. Not to be confused with manta rays which are known to jump in boats and kill crocodile hunters from Australia. I like the face on this one. He looks like he's looking back at his missing tail. Or maybe he just needs some Cocos Viagra.

The shells in the eye sockets are a nice touch.

The beach is littered with fish heads.

The occasional shell gathering.

Jingle shells. Gringas like them 'cause they're shiny and difficult to find, especially larger ones in perfect shape. These are about 2" in diameter.

 Poor gull. I saw him the other day. I wonder how long he'll survive with that bum wing.

Okay, I walk another mile or so down the beach then come back and cut up to the road that runs parallel to the beach. At the far end is a stretch of fish processing plants.

Even the humblest of dwellings can have lovely gardens.

Nearing the pier, the return of the taco stands.

Guero - whitey.

This place has it all: fish, clams, octopus, carne, cabeza.

Through town, away from the pier, I stop at the "Gravel Pit" for lunch which has been closed all winter. The snowbirds contribute less than they think to the local economy. Sure, they affect RV parks and restaurants like the Marlin, Jorge's, Pargo Rojo, but mostly the town relies on vaccationers from Hermosillo and other towns in Mexico. Many of the restaurants and taco stands don't open until spring. At the Gravel Pit I have a chile rellenos because I'm sick of fish.

After lunch, I'm distracted by a baseball game in the field across the highway.

I've never been inside this motel. Have no idea what the rooms are like or the cost but it sure is a sweet-looking place.

Back on Guaymas, another fine dining establishment - Plywood Palace.

Whoa, Luigi's now has spicy chicken wings!

I poke my head into Carla's and snap a pic of the flour tortilla conveyor belt.

Of course, I have to stop in the Hacienda Hotel to see Edgar. For the two weeks around Semana Santa, the hotel will be occupied by police. Oh yeah, hot guys with big guns.

Edgar. Hot guy, showing off his guns.

Reyes. He's going diving up toward the Seri Village of Desembuque. I ask him if he'll look for a jingle shell in its natural habitat and grab one for me.

Jose's tattoo parlor. He's been working in the city of Guaymas with the Chinese, something to do with jelly fish.

Back where I started.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Paloma Goes Dancing

Paloma's love of dancing started about four years ago when she followed me to the Marlin on New Year's Eve.I tried to park her outside the main door but it didn't work. Every time someone entered the restaurant so did Paloma. "Annetta, Paloma," Lucy would say and she'd show me where Paloma was making herself small under some table somewhere. I'd lead Paloma out only to have the process repeated. Finally when the meal was over and the dancing started, Lucy gave up. "Okay, she can stay." Thus a dancing dog was born.

There are not a lot of dancing opportunities in Kino. San Diego, a puta bar on the beach, is now closed but Paloma and I did go dancing there a couple times. She stared longingly as the girls climbed the scaffolding then slid seductively down the pole in the middle of the floor.

Not too long ago we went dancing at the Costa Azul, the only cantina in Kino. It is not a place frequented by respectable Mexican women. However, gringas can be counted on to do things out of the Mexican norm so one night I went there with two women friends. We had a blast but had not been back since. On this particular night a group of us had been at an event at the Hacienda Hotel (Paloma waited outside; the security guard kept her distracted with food). We weren't ready for the night to end so we thought we'd see if anything was going on at the Azul. When we arrived the place was empty but the call went out, "Americanos here," and soon the bar filled with locals. Then some businessmen from Hermosillo came in.

The Costa Azul is ugly. It smells like piss. The jukebox recycles through the same six songs, Mexo-techno of some sort. The only alcohol is beer sold in big bottles - caguamas.

Paloma became a royal pain in the ass as she nipped at the ankles of my dancing partners. One of the men from Hermosillo (that guy in the plaid shirt sitting against the wall) tried to keep her out of the way by petting her but that lasted only so long. Her favorite target was this guy:

The belly-rolling man. We met him our first night at the Azul. Instead of saying, "My name is so and so. Do you remember me?" he just lifts up his shirt. Even when I run into him on the street, he'll start to lift his shirt in greeting and I'll say "no, no, it's okay. i remember you."

If you're gonna dance at the puta bar, you better bring attitude.

That's our bodyguard against the wall back there. He was called when we showed up and immediately set to work keeping an eye on things. Beer splatters on the camera lens.

It wasn't until the next day that we realized the reason for our popularity. The caguamas. We'd order bottles of beer, get up to dance, return to the table, the bottles would be empty, we'd order more, we'd dance... You get the picture.

I saw our bodyguard the other day. He asked when we were coming back to the Azul, said the place has been hopping lately. Maybe we'll go tonight after we celebrate the Muslim Mexican marriage of our friend. We'll be driving to the party so, sadly for Paloma, she'll have to stay home.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Paloma's Friend

No one knows exactly how old Paloma is. Best guess is 12 to 14. She's one of the park dogs although people think she's mine because she shadows me. Or they think she hangs out with me because I feed her. For the record, I'm probably the only person here who DOESN'T feed her. I think Paloma hangs with me because I'm alone - people- and dog-less - and she feels I need someone.

A couple days ago I almost killed Paloma. She followed me too far up the beach. I was quite a way ahead of her and thought she'd turned back. Apparently she kept plodding along, her short legs carrying her big arthritic body for nearly two miles. Later at the park she had a massive nosebleed, caused by over-exertion and high blood pressure.

Now I close the gate behind me if I'm going for a long walk. Short walks do her good.

There's this man I see on the beach all the time. He's old and very dark. He gathers cans and anything else of value. In years past he was accompanied by three dogs but now he walks the beach alone. I don't know what became of his dogs but Paloma and Osa always ran up to him when they saw him. He's got that kind of a spirit. So Paloma and I were on the beach when the old man showed up.

Now that's a happy dog.

Things Gringos Expect

Besides decapitations (untrue), police shakedowns (true), kidnapping dogs for ransom (sometimes true), gringos also expect to be ripped off. I guess that's common at Pemex stations although I've not experienced it.  If Joe Blow is given the wrong change at Chubby Chicks (his name for the fruiteria because the women who work there are, um, robust), he'll assume it was done on purpose.

I think mistakes are made. I think if you expect to get ripped off, you will.

A few days ago I took a friend to one of the chicken places, Pollos Asados de Ebenezer. When we walked in, I thought I was in trouble with Maria, the owner. Gosh, she had such a stern look on her face and then she started in.

Remember that Gary Larson cartoon "What we say to dogs: sit Ginger, good girl. What dogs hear: blah blah blah Ginger." Or something like that. Anyway, that's how I am with Spanish. "Blah, blah, blah, muchacha, blah blah blah, mesa..." grabbing one word out of ten. It took a while to grasp what Maria was saying but finally it all sort of came together. The last time I was in - a couple months ago - Maria charged me for a whole chicken when I'd only had a half. I made some lame attempt to explain the mistake but finally gave up, not wanting to offend Maria. After I'd left that day Maria asked Enselmo, her husband, what I'd had and he confirmed it had only been a half a chicken. Poor Maria. She fretted for two months over the error. To make it right, she asked if I wanted money or chicken. Are you kidding me? I'll take the chicken any day. She was so relieved. At last she could feel "muy tranquila." Warm hugs and warm chicken all around when we left.

It's very simple. You reap what you sow. Like attracts like. Blah blah blah Ginger.

Monday, March 7, 2011

The Mexicans are coming!

If you're a snowbird or ex pat living in an RV park or a condo, you can pretty much go about your day without interacting with a Mexican unless it's the clerk at the Super T where you buy your El Presidente brandy or the women who work at the park scooping up mostly gringo dog poop. If you're a snowbird or ex pat more than likely you don't eat at the taco stands or fish stalls. You go to Club Deportivo for pig roasts or you go to the Marlin for the Friday night special - stuffed crab or sauteed pork chops. You go en masse, reserving tables for twenty or more. Rarely an odd number as it's mostly couples. Jorge's does a Mexican food special on Tuesdays which includes a margarita chica so you'll probably go there. The only Mexicans at Jorge's on Mexican food night will be Jorge, his wife and staff. Same is true at the Club and the Marlin. The poor people in this village do not eat out unless it's at a carne asada or fish taco stand.

But bring on the beginning of spring when it is blazing hot in Hermosillo and this little town gets invaded by Mexican tourists. It's the best time to be here.

I can go to the estuary on a Saturday and be the only person there. But this past Saturday the place was packed with tourists from Hermosillo. The atmosphere was festive. The guy who plays music around town - not Xavier with the crappy voice but the other guy - showed up with his guitar but no one likes him much because he charges too much for a song (50 pesos) and he's got a bad attitude. Still, any man with a guitar adds to the party-like atmosphere.

Yesterday we walked to the beach with the I-don't-know-how-many palapas. Fifty? Nearly every palapa sheltered a picnicking family. The beach was lined with kids digging in the sand and building castles. The ninos were even in the water which is muy frio, the sea not warming up until at least May.

What I was hoping for most happened: the mariachis from Hermosillo showed up!

Then a school of sardines must've been traveling along the shore because pelicans suddenly began falling from the sky.

This is when I enjoy Kino the most. Yes, I love the quiet fishing village atmosphere but I look forward to the return of the Mexicans. I can hardly wait for Semana Santa!

Friday, March 4, 2011

The Town Wanker

Two gringas from this little RV park were followed as they walked the beach - on separate occasions - by a public masturbator. I'd been dog/cat sitting on the other end of town and missed all the excitement.

When I returned home I was talking to a woman friend on my porch when I looked toward the wall which separates the park from the road behind it and there was a guy looking at us. I couldn't be absolutely sure I knew what he was doing but there was a certain movement to his hand and hips that was suspect. I said to my friend, "is that guy jerking off over there?" I walked over to the wall yelling "hey, go away. vamanos" but he just grinned and kept it up. When I shouted something about calling the policia, he moved away from the wall.

Just then the police showed up on one of his regular rounds through the park. I walked to the driver's door and the cop extended his hand and we shook. I said, "Hombre..." then I turned to my friend and said "how do you say jerking off in spanish?" So I just made the motion and the cop understood. We described what the guy was wearing and that he'd just taken off on a bicycle. The cop took off after him.

Later, I got to hear both stories from the women who'd been harrassed by him on the beach. He followed one woman on her whole two-mile walk. Finally a man saw her from his condo and escorted her home. Back at the park her husband jumped in the truck and took off looking for the guy, going to bash his head in or something macho like that.

The other woman had a more humorous tale to tell. The masturbator was totally buck naked. When she got back to the park she told our neighbor who's a bigwig with the mayor's office and they called the cops. She described him as a thin naked guy with a big dick. He was pretty easy to find.

Turns out the guy is mentally retarded and harmless. The cops couldn't keep him in jail forever so they let him out after a couple nights. We haven't seen the wanker around, figuring he's probably been shipped off to Calle Doce, the next town over.

There's something about this little village that even its perverts are rather endearing. Or to be pitied. I don't know, I mean what do you do with a guy like that? Jeez, you can't stick him in prison. I picture him as a lone desperado, penis in hand, wandering from town to town...