Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Moving to Mexico next month!

As many of you may or may not know, I've been wanting to go live in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, my birthplace, for a long time. As a matter of fact, I was originally planning to be there by September 2005, but ended up in Spain instead! The earlier part of this year was spent on an overdue trip to Thailand, where I ended up doing a lot of volunteer work for tsunami recovery, making some life-long friends, and getting certified as an Open Water scuba diver, among many other things.

Okay, I digress... Back to the topic of moving to Mexico. Some people say "Why?"
My first response is usually "Why not?" (to which some have said, "Hmm... yeah really, why not?!").

Then I explain that despite not living there for most of my life, I have always loved everything about Mexico -- the language, the food, the history, the culture, the weather, the beautiful and warm people, the list goes on.

And then I mention that since I was whisked away as a wee lad, I have been back to my home town exactly once, and over the border like 3 times (once to Tijuana, once to Mexicali and once to Rosarito with my friends Chris y Darci).

Puerto Vallarta and the Banderas Bay area has warm water, great fishing, awesome surfing and scuba diving, hiking, waterfalls, and beaches, the small village feel and the luxury resorts too (if you're into that sort of thing).

Considering these facts, and that I have many aunts, uncles, and cousins there that I have not even met, it's basically a shame that I haven't even been back to visit. So, I plan to stay at least 6 months, and work with my clients in the US via Skype, instant messaging, and e-mail, as usual. I also have a new site about Vallarta in the works, and you can be sure I'll announce it here when it's ready.

Today, I booked my flight on Avolar (only US$63 -- can you believe it?) from Tijuana to Guadalajara, where I plan to meet one of my best friends, Mark, and take a trip to Lake Patzcuaro and the island of Janitzio for las Dias de los Muertos (Days of the Dead). It will no doubt make for some phenomenal photography.

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Monday, September 25, 2006

Russian Elm: the self-trimming tree

Late this morning, the sound of something large and crashing interrupts my train of thought. I step outside, and this Russian Elm tree notorious for falling branches, deposits probably the largest one yet onto the wood deck.

While some oak trees in the area here have fallen due to some insect larvae infestation, the Russian elm just does this naturally. Fortunately it makes for a nice renewable kindling and firewood source! The dogs, Rusty and Andrew, are seemingly unfazed -- excited even.

self-trimming Russian elm
"Bark, Bark!" Pulling his favorite ball from the newly arranged foliage and dropping it at my feet, Andrew the dachshund uses his surprisingly 'big dog' voice to insist that I kick it back in.