Saturday, August 16, 2014
It's Just the Way It Is.........in Mexico!
Mexico is still a CASH society. Therefore, if one is leaving town for about six weeks, as I am, one must stockpile money for bills to be paid while gone. Now with the ATMs only giving 6000 pesos (about $470US) at a time, that implies a couple, if not a few visits to the ATM. Not a problem..........unless the machines are out of money on the weekend. Aha, I learned that lesson and will never attempt to get money on the weekend ever again. Once I had to delay my departure because there was not a machine in town with money on a Sunday! I kid you not.
So, I've got that experience under my belt and won't ever let that happen again.
I've also learned that the two, only two kinds of meds I take sometimes are not in stock. If I need 6 weeks worth, the pills usually come in 14 to a box. Yup, not a month's supply in a plastic cylinder container like in the states, but we must by them in small quantities in a box. Six weeks worth of two types of meds makes me look like I'm dealing drugs when I cross the border. So, again, I never wait til the last minute to stock up for a trip. I started a week ago by going for these meds. They had one box of each. Ok, I got those and asked when the others would be in.....manana. Remember, manana does not always mean tomorrow. It has been a daily trip not only to that pharmacy but to two others. Finally today in a panic, I found one box and two boxes of generics at a pharmacy that I don't usually go to in centro. Whew. I couldn't leave town without those either.
So, I've got that experience under my belt and who knows what I'll do next time!
Money given to the maid to pay bills - Check. Money to buy gas and pay tolls - Check. Pills in suitcase for 6 weeks, just in case I have to stay that long - Check. Two huge bags of food for Velcro - Check. I'm on a roll. until.............
Whoops! I purchase US car insurance for the month or so I'm in Texas. On Friday morning, after finding out on Thursday that I need to hightail it to Texas, I talked to the agent in Laredo who always handles this insurance. It is the most efficient and least expensive I've found. Plus, I've found they pay their claims. That's another story. So in our conversation she asked for the number on my Mexican drivers license. Holy moly! It had expired four days before. Sheesh. I hightailed it, and I do mean hightailed it over there praying it would not be a complicated procedure. Here's what I took, just in case. My passport. My visa. My expired license. And, last but not least, a bill that shows my name and the address I live at. Often they want this. I've stopped trying to figure out why............
It turned out to be the most efficient thing I've done in Mexico - EVER. He needed the license, the passport and my visa. I walked to a copy place to have a copy of the visa and passport made. I then had a new photo done, told them I wanted this license for 5 years as well, was fingerprinted - two different fingers - one on each hand - and then given a form to drive to the Government payment office about 10 minutes away.
I came back with the paid receipt, handed it to the man and was handed a laminated drivers license. All in under an hour. What a deal! In Texas they mail it to you and you get it in about three weeks! AMAZING.
I'm "outtahere" on Monday morning at 0700 to drive to Houston to be a Grammy and "Mom in charge" for a week or so. My daughter Julie will have her thyroid and lymph nodes removed on Wednesday at MD Anderson. I'll be in charge of running the house or the kids running me or whatever. They don't start back to school til the 25th so I'll have them for GREAT company. Then when Julie gets home from the hospital, I'll be "Nurse Mom" for as long as she can stand it! ha.
That's the plan, man. There is a lot more to follow all that, but, for the moment I'm focusing on the first order of business which is get packed, get outta here and get to Houston to my daughter and son-in-law's house.
I'll see you on down the road, hopefully.