Wednesday, April 13, 2011


No, that heading does not mean what you might be thinking it means. It simply means "Enough already!"

But first:
Mind you, all is well in our little pueblo --so much we are loving our friends and "almost"family here. And the neighboring kids are dropping by to check out what new playthings I brought down this time--and bringing along their very shy, new, little brothers/sisters to meet the gringos -- and to learn that we are not ogres despite our pale appearance. All is so sweet...

Our four huge mango trees are sporting WALLS of mangos like ever growing, huge-already, beads, ripening in the sun, soon to be ready for the picking. Papayas, guavas, too. The grapes and various other fruits are slower. And ah, the flowers abound on the ground and all through the tree branches--think bougainevillea (bugambilia in Spanish) and see red, white, and mauve.

Waves WERE huge (as in 15'footers!!) and we WOULD have been here for them --which brings me to the title of this silly little essay: "¡YA BASTA!"

We had to leave one day late (thanks to pollen allergies which disabled me, til Louise of the Naturopathic Wisdom came to the rescue)....

Then half'way through our drive, in our most non-favorite town, we came to a stuttering halt.

Monclova! Pretty place, with sights and all to offer -- but seemingly crawling with corrupt cops. All of us gringos know this place. You commit NO infraction, but get pulled over anyway and charged with some bogus traffic violation, and a HUGE fine. No receipt, of course. Just "Hand over the money, Gringo!"

We fell for it once, knowing we were being royally fleeced. The guy told us we were technically a TRUCK because we had some bikes lashed to the back of our station wagon. And as a truck, we failed to STOP at a railroad crossing, and flash our lights. That will be $200 US, please. Robert argued, got it down to 100 outrageous dollars and off we went, enraged.

Discussing this with other equally robbed gringos, we learned the trick. Future stops through town (on inventive infractions indeed) were utterly defused by Robert. The ace-in-the-hole is to insist that we all go traipsing over to the central police station and deal with the infraction THERE. At this point, the cop always dematerializes into the traffic, without our cash, and we drive on.

THIS time ---hohoho!! Robert somehow reallytruly DID run right through a red light -- not once but two times!! The first time he did it, there was a cop car right beside us who.....was oblivious to our sin. We drove through and out of town, home-free...

...until Robert noticed that the car had heated up to almost evaporation in a puff of black smoke.
>>We hobbled back to town ever so carefully, and ended up spending the next two days working on finding and repairing the cause for over'heating.... Robert under the hood forever it seemed. When he would declare the car fixed, we´d head out of town and -- just at the top of the hill outside of town--the gauge would be back in the red--and back we´d go into town.

Don´t you know, we were BOUND to get stopped at SOME point by a robber-cop, yes? But of course. And on what (truly, in the moment) bogus charge? For running a red light! No kidding. We had NOT run a red light, not that time... and maybe we should have paid the fine simply for past unseen crimes...

...but not for the humongous sum he demanded, and especially, without giving us a piece of paper in exchange.

So...Robert pulled out the same ace-in-the-hole surefire ticket-expunger ("Take me to your leader.") -- and furthermore lectured the guy on how the cops are well known for this trick -- all highwaymen/robbers and etc etc etc... he told the cop they were all just seeking to fund their private fiestas with their friends, etcetcetc... That worked. ¡¡YA BASTA!!

After those two days stuck in Monclova, we drove up that long hill out of town successfully, and on to our digs by the sea...
...only to hear about the huge swell we had just missed. Had we left on Monday as planned, we would have arrived on Wednesday and been in the....thick?.... of it. As it is, the taper'down ain´t bad, though. We wear ourselves out every afternoon (after working on cleaning up and setting up house), have cervezas y algo a comer at the restaurant at the far end of the beach, and then stroll home in the dark (with little headlamps, mom) through the coco groves and across the little river -- the one where there are no more crocodiles (see previous posts for that story).

See you later, alligators.

No comments: