After a big work day on Saturday, I decided to give myself Sunday morning completely off. I don’t know if that’s what did the trick, but I actually managed to sleep more than 8.5 hours straight! I’ve been averaging 5.5 hours a night straight since I moved in, then falling back asleep for another 1.5 to 2 hours. Needless to say, I was feeling perkier yesterday morning than I have in a while!
I decided that instead of making coffee, I would walk to Oxxo to get one of theirs with hazelnut creamer, as well as a ham and cheese croissant. I came in, heated up my sandwich and prepared some fruit, then lingered over breakfast and watched an episode of a TV show on Netflix. Having been sufficiently lazy, I decided to see if the laundromat was open as I was beyond out of clean clothes.
The laundromat was open and so loud that it was really hard to communicate that I wanted to use a machine. The gals finally figured it out and set me up. I was confused as they wouldn’t take my money and instead fed tokens into my machine. I felt so awkward that I decided to just stand there and wait for my clothes to wash rather than go home for 20 minutes or so (the laundromat is only a short block from me). Finally, their industrial dryer finished up and the place got almost quiet. One of the ladies asked me some questions and the ice finally got broken! We had a really nice chat and they asked me questions about travelling to Canada that really makes me want to finish the post I’ve been working on for ages about Canada as a travel destination.
At the end, they rung me up on a cash register and gave me a proper receipt. So at least now I know the procedure. But I’m hoping to have a washer of my own before I get so desperate again for laundry. I know it’s only $21 a load to wash only (or $65 to have it done for you), but after 20 years of mostly laundromats and hand washing, having my own washing machine isn’t a luxury I’m willing to pass on.
I came in and set out everything to dry. Dresses and tees went on hangers to hang from the racks in the laundry drying area next to the tinaco and unmentionables went on the little rack I bought at Costco. I actually prefer this to a proper clothesline since I don’t have to deal with clothespins. I can just sweep the little things into my basket to take upstairs and everything already on hangers can go straight into the closet.
The laundry was done by noon and then I got my work done. Late afternoon, I went out to pick up a few groceries at Super Aki, grateful to have a basic supermarket only 700m from home! I’ve sadly given up on my fridge — it’s now not cold enough after freezing everything! — so I’m shopping daily and eating out until I can replace it. 🙁 At least the freezer is good! I’ve been looking at used fridges and I’m almost convinced I’ll be able to get my money back or just about even with it being problematic. I am also considering contacting the guy who sold it to me to see if we could work out a deal on a trade since he repairs fridges, but I’m not holding my breath. I’m really disappointed as it is a very nice fridge and I doubt I’ll be able to find anything as good for about that price. Anyway…
I slept pretty well again last night, but woke up after only 6.5 hours of sleep so I was glad that I managed to doze off again. It promised to be a busy Monday, so I got to work right away.
While waiting for my second coffee of the morning to be ready, I very carefully moved the painted shelves to the kitchen. They are still very tacky and so I don’t dare put anything on them, but it’s nice to have them in place. Looks good!
On my lunch break, I did the same with the cart:
I’ve officially had enough of that turquoise so I’m going to transfer the rest of the paint to a glass jar to have it on hand for touch-ups and am moving on to another colour. 🙂
I had made a mental note to go find a placemat or something to use as a food preparation surface when I remembered that I bought four flexible cutting boards recently and only have two in rotation! Not only does the orange one look great against the blue, it is the perfect width!
Late afternoon as I was finishing up work, my landlady called to give me a rooster update. You might want to empty your bladder before continuing with reading this. She informed me that while, yes, there are definitely a few roosters up the street that she told the owners to get rid of because we are living in the city and there are by-laws and the owners promised they are eating chicken as fast as they can, these roosters were not the source of my woes.
The source of my woes is that the neighbour right next to me decided to use an obnoxious rooster crow as his alarm clock and he likes the snooze button.
While, yes, I have been bothered by genuine roosters since I moved in, the most bothersome one that was waking me every morning was an alarm clock. I have to laugh!
It was then time for me to make my landlady laugh by telling her about my water shortage adventure the other night. There I was in the shower and absolutely covered in soap when the water just stopped. I should have known I as going to have problems because the water pressure hadn’t been great in the days prior, but I didn’t put two and two together. Anyway, there I was covered in soap and the only water in the house was about half a garrafón of drinking water. With drinking water being so expensive here, I sure wasn’t going to rinse off in it!
Let me pause here in my story to explain how the water system is at my house. It is a fairly common system in Mexico. City water fills a tank (tinaco) at ground level. For some people, that tank is underground (cisterna). The pressure of the city water connection pushes the water in the ground-level reservoir to a rooftop tinaco, which then supplies the house with water, gravity providing water pressure. In Mérida at least, the water is potable until it enters your ground-level reservoir. If your water system is closed and you occasionally run bleach through it, then you have potable water in the house. That’s the case here — I can clean my teeth and wash veggies with the tap water. It tastes pretty bad, though, so like most people, I buy my drinking water. If I owned the house, I’d have a filter at the kitchen tap to make the water taste better, but I don’t so I’ll stick to the jugs.
So there I was that night without water fumbling around my yard looking for the switches that would turn on the exterior lights where my ground-level tinaco is located. When I did that, I was able to get to the tinaco, open the lid, and see that the tinaco was full. Okay, so I had water (I did have a momentary flash of concern that the water company had failed to process my payment last month!). The roof-level tinaco is so far away that I figured that it would need help to fill. Ah, yes, I found a pump! But there was no switch or button to turn the pump on.
I pondered this for a moment and like in a TV show, I had a flashback to a moment some weeks ago when I tried a switch on a wall in front of the washing machine room and it caused a racket I couldn’t identify. Flipped that switch, went back to the tinaco, and it was already almost a full quarter empty! I let the pump run until I stopped noticing a change in the water level, about two-thirds empty, turned off the pump, and went back to the shower. Success — I had water, albeit super cold! The next day, the ground-level tinaco was full again.
And that’s how I learned that once I get a washing machine, I should get in the habit of turning on the tinaco pump when I got to the laundry room. In the meantime, I made a note to do so every few weeks! By the way, the tinacos do not over fill because they have a float in them, like a toilet tank, that stops water inflow when a a certain level is reached.
After we hung up, I quickly finished my work so I could start on dinner. While that was in process, I decided that the cart didn’t feel nearly as tacky as did the shelving unit (likely because it is made of a more porous material). So I took a chance and set it up! It felt great to get out of the way that huge table that wasn’t doing much for me and instead start to get a sense of how the room will be when it is fully kitted out.
I still don’t know what I’m going to do with the middle and bottom shelves as I’m not married to the idea of using them for putting other small appliances. Time will tell. 🙂
Even with a pretty bare larder, I put together a super nice dinner. I softened an onion, then cooked it and pasta in homemade chicken broth, adding near the end good butter, the juice of one lemon, cracked black pepper, and sweet frozen peas (the La Huerta brand of peas is so good it should have them listed as a controlled substance). It was a shame I didn’t have any Parmesan to finish off the dish, but it came out very nicely for what I was working with.
I’ve been here three weeks now and can’t believe how quickly I took to the house. I can imagine things will only improve as I start to bring in the bits I’m missing to fully settle in a routine!