Saturday, June 06, 2009

smooth sailing

I am an occasional sailor -- on sailboat or cruise liner.

One thing I learned early while sailing: I have an extremely good sense of balance. My sea legs are usually steady within an hour of being on board.

But every sailor knows that no matter how well-balanced he may be, there will come a moment when the entire world seems to turn topsy-turvy.

That is exactly how I have felt for about the last two weeks. My head knew exactly where I was, but I could not seem to find my footing.

A few readers even commented that I seemed to have turned negative toward my Mexico experience.

But I have once again found my footing.

Thursday helped. Just getting out with Jiggs and seeing him enjoying life was a lesson that I need to stop being overly-concerned about him.

He is a dog. He knows how to live in the moment.

I was going to take Jiggs to the La Manzanilla beach on Friday. But he was still tired from his seaside walk on Thursday.

Instead, we took an extended walk through our neighborhood. He even got to greet some young children on their way to school. Even though most adults shy away from Jiggs, children love him.

I then took a relaxed approach to the day. I listened to Oregon news on the internet. Read more of my tiresome novel. Napped. Exchanged email with friends. Making some sort of order out of my day.

Some of you know Scott Parks. He has several blogs about the local area. He has also been very helpful -- especially, in showing me the process to register my FM3.

I had supper with him tonight at one of my favorite shrimp restaurants. I knew that one thing I was missing in Mexico was regular conversation. We spent almost two hours sitting and chatting about a wide range of topics.

The topics are not important; the fact that I got to converse with an articulate fellow was. I walked back to the house almost elated.

And then came the icing. The sun was just about to set. I have not yet had an opportunity to sit by the ocean watching the light show that nature offers up in Melaque. So, I sat on the steps to the beach.

While staring out into the middle distance, I felt a nudge against my right arm. Jiggs had managed to wobble across the sand of the yard and to climb the steps.

So, we sat there. A guy and his dog just enjoying the simple joys of the sea and the sky.

It is nice to have my life sea legs back.


Anonymous said...

you have such a way to explain your thought! Thanks,enjoy your hard gain
insight.Take care

Felipe said...

A guy and his dog indeed.

When I first moved south (to Morelia), I immediately enrolled in a language school. It served more to give structure to my day than anything, though I did pick up some español in the process.

It also let me interact with the human race, both Gringos and some locals. It was exceedingly valuable.

I take it there is no language school in your neck of the woods. This is one problem with your area. I could list quite a few more but won´t.

Hang in there, and someday the owners of that house will darken the door, and you can get the bejeezus out of there and live somewhere more appropriate for your personality and needs.

Anonymous said...

Senor Cotton,
It's good to read you've regained your equilibrium....a good conversation, a sunset on the beach, and a nudge from a good friend. I think you are learning to be retired,and it didn't take you long. Thanks for the pictures you paint of life in the Melaque/Obregon/Barra area.

Mic said...

So happy to see how you two gents are enjoying the life and times of Mexico again. Thanks for the updates.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Steve for the early Saturday smile!

Steve Cotton said...

Anonymous -- Thank you so much!

Felipe -- There is a language school in La Manzanilla. I have thought about signing up. But I need to make dog arrangements.

Felipe -- Learning the proper elements for a successful retirement is a bit more difficult than I thought it would be. But it is all coming together.

Mic -- There is plenty to enjoy. We just need to open our eyes to see it.

Anonymous -- Smiles are our stock in trade.

Anonymous said...

Man's best friend...there's no doubt about it! Thanks for the great start to another beautiful day.

Constantino said...

Steve, I'll bet you that with a proper incentive you would be able to take Jiggs along to learn the lingo.
I have found that it's either a bottle of a favorite libation or a crisp piece of paper....
One of the first "favor requests" we needed was required to speed up some special service. Not wanting to be too obvious (I have since learned that when coming to greasing, it is never too obvious or unappreciated) I simply purchased a cheap little 8 x10 inch glass frame, where I framed a display of freshly printed large pesos, and presented the official with a framed piece of this artwork. It did the job just fine.
Favor requests on the road do not need any formal presentation...I hope this does not give you the "wrong" impression of business ways down's just reality!
Sounds like Jiggs is feeling better, that's positive for both of you!

Steve Cotton said...

Anonymous -- Best friend he is. He has a great instinct for the Proper Gesture.

Constantino -- I suspect that I could get Jiggs into the language class. The question is whether he would be anything other than a bother to everyone. He tends to believe that every word spoken is for his benefit.

mdoneil said...

I'd trade places with you and Jiggs in a second.

Enjoy every second of it, as you find you miss something, something even more wonderful creeps in and takes it place.

Jonna said...

I'm so pleased for you both. It is a huge transition, retirement, don't underestimate the stages and effects. Slack, one of my favorite words, is called for here. Give yourself a large dose and Jiggs too and then hand out plenty to those around you. Slack is a wonderful thing.

Steve Cotton said...

Mdoneil -- It is a good life. I just need more people to talk with.

Jonna -- I have a backpack full of slack. Distributing it is always the trick.

glorv1 said...

Steve, glad to hear you and jiggs are back to enjoying a day at a time. Sounds great that you had conversation with your friend and it sure does sound like it brought your spirits up. Have a great Sunday. Hi Jiggs!

el jubilado said...

The Spanish classes in La Manzanilla are very small in the off season. I started with two women and was alone by the end of the first week. Second week alone. They may be waiting for you just to start a class. If not for the late afternoon drive I've would have continued. The school and material is first rate. They would not mind a dog lying in the corner

CancunCanuck said...

Steve- Glad to see things are good, but remember, this is YOUR adventure and your blog, if it's a negative day, it's a negative day and don't let people force you into covering up what's going on. It's never smooth sailing in these kinds of moves and I would rather hear about your troubles and be able to offer support than to hear about all the fluffy light and goodness. Be honest, don't let people bully you into feeling something you are not. (Just sayin', depression is part of life and part of expatriating, don't hide it because some people take it as complaining).

Steve Cotton said...

Gloria -- I am enjoying each day -- as is Jiggs. He actually ran a bit today.

El Jubilado -- The late afternoon time frame concerns me. Driving back from La Manzanilla is no joy -- I did it once, and hated it. As for Jiggs, I suspect he would love the attention of a class, even a small one.

CancunCanuck -- Thanks for the moral support. When I started writing from Mexico, I decided I would cover everything. At times, I just need to be ressaured everyone has had to climb the same hill -- and that the view is really worth the climb.