Thursday, March 16, 2006

A Little Chacala Garden

Chacala has been a hard place for me to start gardening. Everything, the plants, soil. climate, temparatures, humdity is so different from what I used to. I am starting to think that you can successfully get starts (new plants) from almost any plant that grows around here, just by sticking the cutting in the dirt and leaving it along. The fenceposts all grow into trees. The post that surround the showers and toilets where I am camping have grown into small trees, shading the area.

My little plant collection is starting to look kind of nice. I have 12 pots (actually 10 peso/90 cent buckets) filled with plants. Some of the dirt is from the creek bed and the rest is from the local plant nursery. I am getting hungry for plants, although I have bunch of starts and some pots where the seeds are just beginning to sprout.

So this morning I got rides down to La Penita, the next town south of Las Varas, on the highway. It was easy getting down to La Penita. Someone picked me up right on the road, and then out on the highway a cab came along right away. One of the passengers was a woman I met last week going somewhere. She sells Mary Kay and is learning English. So we practiced English as we sped toward La Penita.

In La Penita walked down to the Thursday market and looked at the plants there, which were much too expensive, between $2 and $6 dollars. Then got some buckets for pots, and stopped at the used clothing space at the market. I have been going thru their "Hawaiiana" shirts whenever I go to the market, but I never wanted to pay 75 pesos (about 7 dollars). but my two "nice" shirts that I wear to town, etc, are both disinigrating, so I went ahead and spent the money. I really like the shirt. I washed it get I got home, and am going to wear it next week when I go to visit the botanical garden south of PV.

Bought a pineapple (50 cents), a cantaloupe (60 cents), and two grapefruits (30 cents) and walked back up to the highway. There's a shady place to sit and wait for the right taxi or collectivo. There is alot a construction going on in the area right now, but someone was directing traffic and calling out which destination each vehicle was heading for. I waited about 10 minutes. Someone sat down next to me, and introduced himself as a sign painter who had seen me around Chacala when he was painting signs there. Asked me to say hello to some individuals in Chacala. Nice conversation. I can't remember if we talked in Spanish or English. I guess that's a good sign that my Spanish is slightly improving. My landlady is teaching me numbers right now, and I seem to be getting better at hearing prices and understanding them.

Caught a collectivo and got off at the plant nursery a couple of K's north of La Penita. Got four nice plants, a yellow Lantana, and two really nice coleuses and something with a pink blossom, for $40 pesos. Stood on the road waiting for another collectivo, and got picked up by someone I had riden with before. And he had my lost sunglasses for a month ago. Pretty nice.

Got off at the Cucero de Chacala, at the fruit stands, and waited for a couple of minutes, and Beto, Aurora's (my first landlady here) husband came by in a friend's truck, and they took me home.

The plants look great, and I shared the coleuses with the neighbors. We are going to get more dirt this evening.

Six boats came in last night, and will probably be gome in the am. The grassy part of the motor home camp is empty, and there are about 7 motor homes left on the main beach area, and about 4 spread long the south end of the beach road. Getting quiet. I think most all the Canadian and US visitors will be gone in about 10 days. Just guessing.

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