Life in the Modern World Can Be Very Convenient!

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I must tell you about my wild tale of life in the modern world.

Today, I had to pick up my new phone today at Galerías and also an order for sausages and ham from The Sausage Lady at Slow Food market, just north of Gran Plaza.

The two places are about a 15-minute walk apart.

I thought I could go pick up my phone, stop at Costco for my meds (only that because this being Buen Fin weekend it would be a madhouse), and then get my food.

Well, I woke up at 5AM with a singular thought: What time does Galerías open? 11AM! And Slow Food closes at 12PM! There was no way in hell I could get my phone and then to Slow Food in a one-hour window. Going to the Apple store for who knows how long (nearly three hours, it turned out) holding a big bag of heavy frozen stuff was not an option. I really did not want to go to Slow Food, go home, and go back out to Galerías.

Then I remembered my cleaning fairy was going to be here today.

So I went to Slow Food at 10AM, got my order (and a few other things), and then called my shopping an Uber (Flash service)! In a few minutes a guy showed up on a motorcycle, took my package, and headed to my house. I was able to track his trip in the Uber app. When he arrived, the doorbell rang on my phone, so I was able to see him give the bag to my cleaning fairy! She had instructions to put the bag straight into my deep freezer, so knowing my shopping was safe, I was able to head to Galerías, by way of Costco’s pharmacy, without any concern.

So Grateful for Dental Care

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A month ago, I had a dental inlay put in. It was extremely painful for a couple of weeks and I went through a lot of paracetamol and ibuprofen, but, eventually, I was able to go days without pain. But then I’d bite down on something like bread or hit it with cold water, and boom, I’d get a rush of pain all the way up the nerve through my cheek and into my brain. It was some of the most awful pain I’ve ever known.

I had an orthodontic appointment today, so I decided I’d get the inlay looked at at the same time. The me fresh off the boat from Canada would have kept suffering, terrified of being faced with a root canal or being dismissed as a whiner. The me of over five years here trusts her dentist. She took an x-ray to see if there was any sign of debris left in the repair and only noticed that the nerve was visibly inflamed. She had me do some bite tests and concluded that the inlay was a bit too long, so when I’d bite down, it took all the force of a bite rather than the force being distributed to all my other teeth. She rubbed some lidocaine over the area and then got out the drill. It was all I could do to stay calm — that was not enough numbing for how much that tooth hurt! I was worried for nothing. A couple of seconds of grinding, a few more bite tests, a few more seconds of grinding, and… instant relief. I could not believe it!

She gave me a prescription for anti-inflammatories and told me to come back on Friday to see how I’m doing. I have to go back for orthodontic reasons as well, so it’ll be another two-fer.

I went downstairs to the YZA pharmacy to get my meds. I needed 9 pills and they were out of the box with 10 and had only the box with 20. I did not want to do multiple stops so I said I’d just buy the big box. The pharmacist said that with all the branches they have in Mérida, surely there was another one or two on my route that he could call to ask if they had the smaller one in stock, which would save me $300? I do have one very close to me, so he called them and they had one box in stock! Thank you, Mr. Pharmacist! I was able to pay right there, so when I finally made it across town to the other store, I just had to present my receipt and collect my order.

At lunch, an hour after I got in, I took a chance and tried biting a soft piece of potato on the inlay side. Absolutely no problem! I’m not ready to try broccoli, but just that small thing felt like such a win. The tooth with the inlay is also already more tolerant to cold liquids.

I was braced for worst-case scenarios — having to redo the inlay or have a root canal or even having the tooth pulled, so that the solution was apparently so simple was surprising and most welcome!

Another thing is that I get a lot of medical malpractice work as a scopist and recently I had a pain doctor talking about objective and subjective pain. I’d always been told that my dental pain is subjective, ie. that there was no evidence of it and it could just be in my head. That today the pain actually showed up on an x-ray as an inflamed nerve made my suffering objective pain, and let me tell you, the validation alone helped!

There was no cost to my visit today for anything except the meds. 🙂

The Kitchen Is Effectively Done!

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There are just a few little details remaining and to move everything back in! I am so grateful to my amazing contractor, Alejandro, who made everything that bugged me right and brought my vision come to life.

I will do a proper tour and put up some pictures once I’m moved in and settled.

BBVA Continues to Keep Its Promises

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I’m coming to a year of being a client of BBVA. There have been a couple of small hiccups, but, overall, I have been thrilled with their service. When I opened the account in October, they said that I would be able to get a credit card within six months. They kept that promise in February. At that time, my limit was pretty low and they said I would be able to increase it within a year. That happened last week!

I had a little popup on the phone app that said I was eligible for a limit increase. I thought that if I pressed accept I would start a process of having to go in to my branch to sign paperwork that would be preapproved at the branch level but have to be escalated up to CDMX for final approval, same as with my credit card. Nope, the increase went through automatically!

Increasing the limit on the card was getting important so that I could start taking advantage of “months without interest” promotions that would allow me to continue to build up my credit limit here in the hope of getting a car loan and/or mortgage in the future. The initial limit was just enough for my monthly expenditures. If I took a months without interest promotion, that would tie up my balance, rendering the card useless until it was paid off. Sure, I could pay with my debit card, but I get points with my credit card. It’s not a ton of money, I’ve been getting about $500 a month, but I haven’t had to pay for coffee in months and my last regular visit to the dentist was free. So not using the card would be like throwing away free money!

Getting this increase coincided with the new iPhone having been released and I am desperately due for a new phone. You can’t get by here efficiently without a working smartphone — life effectively runs off them. My XR constantly overheats and randomly shuts down, which has caused me issues with Uber. I’ve never had the top line current model of a smart phone and have had two lower-end iPhones that were not great. Time to get current. iShop offered me a rebate equivalent to current market value (!) for my XR if I exchanged it for a new phone, which dropped the price of the phone I want by nearly 20%! They also offer up to 20 interest-free payments on my BBVA card and, get this, the new card limit increase is almost exactly the price of the phone. So I can finance the phone at no cost and still have the same balance on my card as before for daily use and, of course, I’ll keep freeing up balance every month as I make my payments. I also have the option of clearing the balance without penalty if I want. I’m not sure if I get points for a months without interest purchase, though that would rather be like getting your cake and eating too. I’ll know once I buy the phone as that would significantly increase my points balance.

I did one of the months without interest promotions with Home Depot to see how it works and it’s a bit confusing, at least in the app. In my account transactions, I see the initial amount charged to my card on the day of but then they also have a debit for the first payment. It feels like I’m paying twice, but the math looks correct on the statement. I like that it’s very easy for me to track on my end because when you pay your card, BBVA spells out your minimum payment (clarifying that you will pay interest), the amount to pay to avoid interest, and then what you need to pay to clear the balance. You can also make an “other” payment. I do that sometimes mid month to free up some balance. Last month, doing that did not affect my Home Depot promo — they applied that extra payment to other purchases.

I appreciate BBVA helping me feel like I actually live here so that I can keep cutting my ties to Canada. Having a credit card here is really make my finances easier to manage because I have so many fewer cross-border transactions. I pretty much only use my Canadian credit card for business purchases now.

The Most Exciting Kitchen Progress Yet

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I don’t think there are enough exclamation points to describe all the progress that happened yesterday in the kitchen!

Doors and doorframes were painted!

Interior door was cut and rehung!

One backsplash was sanded to show that we will get the perfect colour!

The new floor hasn’t cracked!

THE SINK WAS INSTALLED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!