It’s the End of the World and I Don’t Feel Fine

What a world we live in… I don’t think anything is going “back to normal” now. But life goes on, the sun rises and sets, yaddi yadda.

And client orders keep pouring in. Might as well make hay while NAFTA, what gives me permission to work as a 1099 contractor for U.S. companies and which the new administration wants to scrap, is still in place. It was a real shock to realise yesterday that I have, in fact, placed all my eggs in one basket and that despite a robust and diverse client list, my business could very well not survive the next U.S. presidency if I don’t find some solid and regular non-U.S. clients…

While I had to work a full day yesterday, it was hard not to be distracted, never mind that I had slept poorly. I eventually went out for a long walk to clear my head and to get some groceries, perishables and produce, to top up my big shop.

I listened to conversations as I walked past people chatting and there was no talk of what was going on across the pond. This brought on waves of equal parts relief and loneliness. I  really wished that I was home, sitting in C&C’s kitchen drinking a bottle of their wine and having their dry wit and words of wisdom wash over me.

The shop, small as it is, is full service and much better than the one I had access to in Bulgaria. But there are a lot more items that I have to ask for at a deli counter rather than select myself. Thankfully, the guy who selects the produce does a good job of it and I’ve been happy so far with everything I’ve brought home. I splurged on four huge Ambrosia apples I knew would not be cheap (3 euros) because it was that or chocolate and it’s important to take care of yourself in times of stress. Like in Mexico, I describe what I want if I don’t know the word for it, and the clerk seems to be slowly moving from shock that he understands me to amusement. The “orange thing that seems covered in wax” is a caqui (persimmon). I’d never had one and was curious. 🙂

The owner/cashier, whom I’d been introduced, didn’t remember that I speak Spanish. You should have seen the look on her face when I asked her where I could find garbage bags! Vicki, you’ll be pleased to know that the cheapest ones were purple! 😉

One thing that has surprised me in Spain is the lack of fresh milk and cream. Spaniards favour UHT dairy in a box. I wanted some cream to make a pasta sauce and could only find, like in Mexico, a milk product with the milk fat removed and vegetable fat added. They call it nata, “cream,” but it’s not cream as I’d get it back home. I was rather surprised. The taste was okay, though. The yoghurt selection here is pretty dismal (but prices are good) and I’ve been disappointed with cheeses available at small shops. However, I’ve had no trouble finding good butter, although, like in Bulgaria, you really have to read the labels because there are a lot of “butters” that are really just a margarine with a bit of milk solids in them.

Grocery prices in Spain are good, even with the exchange rate. I spent 15CAD yesterday and almost 5CAD of that was the apples (which is less than I would have paid for them there).

I got in and continued to flitter between work and the news until I felt I could quit. I made a good dinner and got to bed early.

And sure enough, the sun rose again today.

10 thoughts on “It’s the End of the World and I Don’t Feel Fine

  1. I know exactly how you feel. I know he wants to kill Nafta but does not necessarily understand what that means and we are hoping his party does not let him do it willy nilly as it will affect the USA too as Canada buys loads off them. I am sorry that your livelihood has been put in direct jeopardy of a dumb-ass and cannot understand in this modern age how so many people voted for him, definitely the scum of the earth. Unfortunately many in the USA live in a bubble and have no clue how things have repercussions. I am so glad that 47 years ago we moved to Canada from the USA although I have so many devastated relatives who still live there. It has caused some family infighting as I am sure it has in so many families.

    • Thank you for your understanding reply.

      I think he wants to kill NAFTA to hurt Mexico and hasn’t considered the implications for Canada.

      He’s threatening not just my livelihood, but the lifestyle that that livelihood affords me. It’s terrifying!

      I can understanding the in-fighting within your family. I cannot talk Quebec politics with the French-Canadian side of my family!

  2. …and the sun will rise and set tomorrow, too.

    Remember: Trump will be president, but that’s just it — president, not King of America. If the U.S. gets rid of NAFTA, he will have to persuade a lot of other people to see it his way, and respond accordingly. IF that happens — and I wouldn’t be too sure it does — it will take quite a while.

    Talk is cheap in the U.S. Action — now that’s a whole different story!

    Worrying about it now won’t accomplish a thing, except set you on edge and make you unhappy. And it may very well not happen. If it does, you should have time to notice and make changes to help your biz.

    (And thank you for visiting my blog! I’m honored…)

    • Normally, I would be in agreement. But normally, the Republicans aren’t in charge of EVERYTHING. Trump might as well be the King of America. 🙁

      Most people, including Canadians (!), don’t realise that Canada just went through NINE YEARS of rule by a party embodying hateful ideals of Trump’s administration and how damaging it was.

  3. The only saving grace for those of us living in the US is that the office of the President is more like a figure head, or finger puppet. When it comes down to it, the country is controlled by a much larger conglomerate than one person. In the case of the current Obama administration, this has been extremely limiting and frustrating. However, I am counting on it working in our favor with the “Cheeto Monster!” someone, somewhere will take control of his strings… We have suffered embarrassment enough already!

    • Canada and the world survived nine years of Harper’s insidiousness. With Trump being so blatant in his own misogyny, racism, xenophobia, disbelief in science, and warmongering, it might be easier to keep him on a leash.

      • Rae, I’m in total agreement with Suzanne. Don’t be fooled by what you hear and see on television with regard to yesterday’s Republican welcome committee on Capitol Hill. That is just a political facade. Believe me, both parties are going to keep Donald chained up like a pit bull. However, my immediate concern is what is now taking place in the US from the west to the east coasts with the large protests, a number of which have turned into riots. Another problem is Donald’s “jawboning” about what he is going to do the first 100 days after he takes office on January 20. Such talk upsets our population and other countries with their thinking that the US Congress is going to legislate all his crap. It “ain’t” gonna happen!

        One of my immediate worries, however, as the jawboning continues, is the populations along both sides of the Mexican border getting extremely nervous regarding what they perceive as a desperate immigration situation. Therefore, as Canadians snowbirding to the Rio Grande Valley and to Mexico, please be as Canadian as you can be; light up those Canadian RV license plates at night, wear those Canadian sweat shirts and tee-shirts, and put “I Love Canada” stickers prominently displayed on your RV. All the rabble rousers will then leave you alone because they will know that this immigration issue is not your fight.

        Dee

        • Have you seen his latest tweet? OMG, that mans needs to grow up. And a muzzle.

          As for announcing yourself as Canadian, that’s always good advice!

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