22 November 2009

Earrings & Tales

The plan was to buy earrings in Mexico rather than bring them with me. My idea of a reasonable price would be $2 or $3. I thought I had found the best place to shop at the Municipal Market. However, although it looks like a typical Mexican market which sells to the locals as well as tourists, the one here is solely for tourists. No problem except that there are no back alley lanes to sneak into to find the good deals and fun people.

Both at the market and at every other shop I’ve dropped into, I was shown “silver” earrings. Possibly they were and possibly they weren’t. When I’d explain that I was looking for inexpensive, lose-at-the-beach-don’t-care earrings, sales people would actually look at me in disgust. They kept insisting that $25 and up was a good price. I agreed with them but said I didn’t want silver; I wanted the pseudo-stuff. I got huffed at a lot.

Two day ago I encountered a place that had what I was looking for: those fake-silver, enameled, typical Mexican ones. He wouldn’t go below $6 and I bought two pair, feeling very pleased with myself. I intended to go back and get more at a later date. That is until this morning when I found the store.

I’ve been here less than a week but have walked down Calle Insurgencia at least twice a day since arriving. But today was the first time I noticed this store and when I saw the tables of bargain-priced jewelry, I walked in.

It was a large store, as stores go here. It was crammed with items from every available space including lanterns hanging from the ceiling. An older woman sat behind a wooden table that served as a desk, eating lunch and watching a 1950’ western on the TV.

The earrings hung on the wall to her left and I quickly spotted what I wanted. I asked the price; almost a dollar cheaper than what I had paid the day. I started pulling down pairs and making a little pile on the table.

Then I went to take a brief look at the bargain table and necklaces. The woman walked over and hand me a basket to keep my purchases in. We started talking about the store and I noticed some classic PV postcards. She said something and then began to sort through the cards until she found the ones with Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton, circa 1960, in front of their PV house.

She went on to tell me that they used to come into her store, which she has owned for 45 years, and buy everything, especially all the Mexican ceiling lamps. Rich used to walk in with no shirt and looking sloppy, but Liz was always well turned out.

I told her I would be back for more items and more PV history at a later date.

Continuing my walk, I went down a small street and saw an old guy sitting out front of his modest home, making a fishing net. I stopped to admire the work and talk. He was 80 and a retired fisherman. He agreed that the younger generation did not know how to make fish nets and said that he did it to keep busy.

As to my search for a way to get internet n my room; problem solved! I will be able to buy a USB internet connector thing and pre-pay for one month. I went to the distributor today, (it was next to where I was yesterday but I didn’t know abut this service, nor did anyone I spoke to at the three places I stopped in). They were open today, Sunday, but only to give out info. I will have to wait until tomorrow to get it set up.

So my only remaining problem is this piece of junk laptop. How could have all the research I had done on netbooks have been so wrong? It heats up so terribly within five minutes that I am actually burning my hands. I have just finished cutting up a pair of socks to use as hand protectors so that I don’t do any permanent damage. It sort of works. Unfortunately, there is nothing I can do about the crappy keyboard. It is like typing on a 10 year old computer. The letters are slow to come up, and if I type quickly, half the letters don’t even appear. I swear I spend 2 minutes on each paragraph fixing all the mistakes. It is maddening. I am supposed to be working on my book, but having to stop the train of thought to fix errors that are not of my making is seriously going to affect what I will be able to accomplish. It is driving me nuts!