Saturday, September 08, 2007

Pinturas, Gas, y Almohadas

Since our return from a visit to California, there haven't been very many events to report here, so I have collected some small things that might give a glimpse into our life here.

This week, our landlord's teenage son and his friend came to finish painting the decorative, dark blue band around the base of the house. I joke that it's a barrier intended to keep out evil spirits. It really adds a touch of class.
It only took them a couple of hours to do the job, having marked a more-or-less straight edge for the upper limit, then kneeling on the tiled floor to apply brush strokes. They kept an old string mop handy to clean up spills.
The outcome was slightly irregular, but we are satisfied. (Especially considering that it was at no cost to us.)

Since we moved here over a year ago, we've noted the various mobile services that drive in regularly; for example, the propane gas trucks, each with their own distinctive recorded, often musical pitch. My favorite is the one that starts, "Señora de la casa, aquí viene Gas Del Lago, su gas de confiAnza...". It's backed up by a string orchestra playing dreamy, romantic music.
The most disliked is the rival company with the raucous pitch of bugle charges and loud cries of "¡GAS! Toodoo loootle too to doo! ¡GAS!" But, they sell good gas.
Gas Express trucks pitch a come-on which involves a series of prices, something like, "How much would you pay? $32.99? NO! Only $26.99!" I've never quite understood it exactly.
Incidentally, all the gas trucks charge about the same per tank, and they all accept the empties, no matter from whatever other company. I like that.

Now, I have just discovered, on the Gas del Lago website, that you can order gas by Internet! What is becoming of the old values and traditions?

We also have trucks of varying sizes and types bring foods such as fresh, hot tortillas, vegetables and fruits, and even pan. There have been mobile vendors who offer cleaning supplies in bulk. The housewife brings out the empty 2 liter refresco bottles, and gets a fill up out of drums of Fabuloso o Don Limpio at a good price.

In contrast to the regular mobile vendors, there are occasional passing salesmen on foot. We have seen a man laden with cheap, enameled kitchen ware; another hombre carrying a table for sale, on his back; a young man hefting long planks of wood for sale, at $250 pesos each (seemed a bit high to me); and the oddest of all, a few days ago a man walked up our street, crying out something about "¡Almohadas!" (pillows.) I went outside to look, and there he was, carrying 6 or more pillows.
We can sleep well, knowing that there's a source of pillows nearby. (Sometimes).


Michael Dickson said...

Must have been something mighty special about those $250-peso wood planks. Perhaps you misunderstood.

We don´t get that many peddlers where we live, probably because we are less isolated.

Michael Dickson said...

Who took the snapshot of you two sleeping?

Don Cuevas said...

I was pretty sure that the madera salesman was asking 250 pesos each.

Renoir did the picture of us. It was a "special night" out, in the Auto Hotel Leo.