A couple of days ago we did NOT have a great deal of fun driving around Xalapa. Xalapa has a LOT of traffic and it is often bumper-to-bumper on narrow streets which don't always go in straight lines, especially at certain hours. Some of the hours include from 2 to 4 in the afternoon. This is the still-frequently-taken lunchtime when I think people do their errands (Workers work at least eight hours a day, sometimes more. Often I don't mind the traffic because it gives me a chance to see the huge variety of tiendas and workshops that line the way. Anyway, we went in to try to buy a generic version of a medication I take and to go to Costco to see about hearing aids. Costco is probably one of the best places to buy hearing aids.
So ANYWAY, of course we hit the 2-4 traffic, and it was cold and rainy and dreary. On sunny days, Xalapa looks bright and busy and colorful. This day, though, the sky was a dirty gray which seemed to drip onto everything and everyone.
About medications here in our corner of Mexico: There are lots of generics available and reputable places tend to have good generics, but some people (like me) may not respond well to generics available here so they end up paying non-generic prices. Our wonderful doctor had found (he and we thought) a generic put out by the very company that makes the non-generic drug. Unfortunately, according to the Pfizer salesman it required a prescription although the brand-name doesn´t and other generics don´t. (Here a little explanation: most drugs here don't require prescriptions. The ones that always do are antibiotics, benzodiazapines like Xanax, and opioid pain medications like oxycodin. Antibiotics and narcotics, in other words. There may be other classifications, but I haven't come across them.) So anyway we went to one end of town to get the prescription which was limited to only twenty tabs for some reason, and then drove to the other end to find the pharmacy. Need I tell you, they said they didn´t have it at either of the two stores. These were discount pharmacies, ones who specialize in generics, with a long counter and shelves piled high with boxes of medicine. Here most medications are packaged one pill to a bubble on a card of maybe ten, not in bottles. Even prescription meds come this way so you often have to buy a bit more or a bit less than you want. So we drove (sort of) a right angle to get to Costco.where I had to make an appointment for the hearing aid evaluation. Groan. I went to Xalapa with my friend Diane a couple of weeks ago by bus. It is much, much pleasanter to go by bus, and we would have if we hadn't had to lurch such large distances in a relatively short time in the cold and rain.
I now have the hearing aids. They are the Kirkland brand and they are excellent. The young technician was proficient and friendly and we got 19.22 on the dollar which was good for us but bad for Mexico (I think, but am not sure.) The first shock I had happened when she opened the door to the littl soundproof room where hearing aid stuff is done. With a whoosh, I was greeted by all kinds of sounds I guess I haven't heard in years. Costco is NOISY! Anyway, if you folks are finding yourself cupping your hand behind your ear to hear, leaning forward, maybe enjoying how soft everything sounds, maybe, just maybe a hearing aid evaluation at Costco would help. Hearing aids have come a long way.
The day before yesterday we took our dogs for a walk and went a bit further. It was not raining or misting, but it was chilly. We usually let the two smaller dogs run free, which they do with glee. Little Guy, the dachsund, can run as fast as Happy and as she is the alpha dog, she insists on being first. She is very cute as dachsunds are. She is tiny, with floppy ears and limpid, doe-like eyes. She has learned to make wheedling sounds, soft beseeching sounds, coy sounds even. Often we are at her mercy.
BUT in her own world which she enters as soon as she is off the leash, she is a hunter. In response to some smells she´ll roll in phantom remains, in response to others, she´ll dig frantically. In response to fowl and other low-resting birds, she´ll catch them. She takes off so fast she can´t be caught. She doesn't even acknowledge that anyone is shrieking at her to STOP while pounding after her. And it seems she inevitably catches her prey. We have been putting her on the leash long before we see a chicken, but the other day, she caught one yet again. It was dead before she even turned around with it hanging limply from her mouth.
Unfortunately, this chicken turned out to belong to friends of ours who refused to take any payment. There I was, holding it by its legs, there my friend was saying, no, no, you don't have to pay while she looked mournfully at the bird. Another friend made the suggestion that we buy her another live one. I think we're going to try to do it.
Last post I wrote about the miraculous healing of the dent in our front fender. So then we went to meet our ahijado to take the car to the man who was going to paint it. We only remembered half the message: to meet him. We didn´t remember the other half: to meet him at the painter's workshop. So we went to his house. I´m glad we did, though, because in spite of feeling a bit foolish when Doña J asked why we were there, we got to see the baby sheep Don A had bought. The guy who works for Don A was grazing them on a rope outside their chicken pen and I have a picture for you.
I think the big one may be the mama. But none of them are big. I have to confess I thought they were goats at first. You'd think I'd know what goats looked like by now!