Friday, November 24, 2006

Trip into Las Varas, Near Chacala

I went into Las Varas first thing this morning, on the collectivo. It arrived just as Aurora and I got down to the tienda/collectivo stop. It was the bus that takes some chacala kids to the private primary school in Las Vara
I had to go to the Post Office/Correo. A week ago I mailed a rental receipt to someone in the States. And yesterday it arrived at my place, hand delivered by a taxi driver. Apparently the Post Office clerk had not charged enough (13 pesos), so I had to take it back it for the new charge.
I got off the collectivo at the Health place and walked by the Correo/Post Office. Which wasn’t open yet. And then over a block to the bank/ATM place. Got some cash. An older gentleman was very confused about his card, but a lady and I helped him. The ice cream store wasn’t open yet, 8am, but people were wandering around town already.
So, when I got back to the Correo it still wasn’t open yet, but this armored truck was there. Waiting for the door to open. Finally the driver climbed over the little fence and yelled in the window and the clerk came around and opened the door.I was thinking, “How weird they would have an armored truck for a place you have to bring your own change to because they never have any money”. But it turned out the truck was delivering the mail. Another example of my thinking I know what is going on, and it turns out I don’t.

I went on in after the armored truck left, and showed the clerk the letter. He said is was 13 pesos and 5 centavos. About $1.20 US. Rather than the 13 pesos I paid the first time. Plus I had to re-address a new envelope, which is included in the price. Whatever.
This cooking set-up is in front of a Carniceria (meat shop for beef and pork, I think). This large metal pot is filled with cooking oil, and pork is deep fried, using a gas heating element underneath. It seems to little dangerous. And kind of disgusting. But my Mom didn't cook like this, so it's not culturally appropriate for me, I guess.

I checked out the new automatic self-serve Laundromat. Open every day at 8am and it costs 1.50US a load for the washer and I don’t know how much for the dryer. Looked very nice.
This is one of the many, many little doctor's offices around town.
When over to the tianguis, the Friday street market, and got two grapefruits and a hand of small bananas, a bag of limons, and some grapes for 20 pesos. And then a kilo of peanuts roasted in the shell, for another 20 pesos.Got two portulaca plants for ten pesos. Jesus, an ex-neighbor who has a used clothing stand next to the plant stand, came over and said he would bring my plants home later if I wanted. But my plants were little and easy to carry.Went to the pharmacy and the clerk helped me look on their computer for a different diabetes med. Apparently Avandia, which I have been taking for about four years, sometimes causes retinal bleeding. Which scares me to death. But most of the diabetes drugs here include Metiformin, which my intestinal system reacts extremely poorly too. Requiring staying within 20 feet of a toilet at all times.

So, we couldn’t find anything that the CMV pharmacy chain carries. But I will explore more in PV in a few weeks, when I have some more cash. I am scared to take the Avantia, and scared not to be taking a diabetes drug. Plus my glucose meter is acting crazy and I haven’t been able to get Skype to work so I can call the Accu-Chek number and get help for that. Rats. Oh well. One of those weeks I guess.

When back to the collectivo stop, and shared peanuts and Coke (for Miguel Angel, the driver) and Ginger Ale ( for me, the passenger), while we waited for more riders. Nice relaxing wait in the shade.

This is Markito playing with his dog. His dog was getting ready to tie up the dog and instead let Markito play cowboys with the dog.

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