Where and When to Hand Out Chickens

Quince Letras, corner of Tampico and Francisco Villas streets We load from either side of this "Coca Cola" store on the corner

Quince Letras, corner of Tampico and Francisco Villas streets
We load from either side of this “Coca Cola” store on the corner

THANK YOU all for joining us on the 24th of December, the morning of Christmas Eve day, to hand out chickens, food, clothing, toys and candy! It’s a terrific event and very, very memorable. It has been a family tradition of ours for many years now; even our son very much looks forward to it.

Don’t worry if you don’t speak Spanish; we’ll pair you up with a group that has someone bilingual. Please bring your pickup truck or large vehicle if you have one. Also, wear your Santa hats and Desayuno de los Pollos t-shirts if you have them!

Are you wondering what time to show up on the morning of December 24th in order to help load the trucks and deliver the goodies out to the invasiones? Those who have worked in the past and know the drill, please plan to show up about 6:30 am. Those of you who are first-timers, coming by about 7:00 am will put you there just in time to help us load. We make lines of people to pass the foodstuffs/despensas into the truck, and able-bodied guys load the boxes of frozen chickens.

If you have used clothing, toys or candy that you want to be sure gets handed out, please take it over to the Medina family this week so we can get it sorted. Any donations you have will also be appreciated in advance, so we can buy more chickens! Just take whatever you have to the wrought iron shop where Jorge works. It’s open every work day.

DATE: December 24th

TIME: 6:30 am if you are driving a truck, 7:00 am if you are helping us load and deliver. We usually finish by 11:30 or noon, but some years it’s taken longer (depends how many routes you participate in).

LOCATION: 15 (QUINCE) LETRAS, corner of Francisco Villa and Tampico, just down the hill from the Church of Cristo Rey (Christ the King)

  1. Turn East at the Fisherman’s Monument.
  2. Go to the first light and turn right.
  3. Proceed one block and turn left (Francisco Villa street, just before the Pemex station).
  4. Go two blocks.
  5. If you are NOT driving a truck or transporting supplies, please park in the next block. This will give us room for loading. Once you’ve parked, walk another block down, past the iron works business called “Quince Letras.” On the corner of Francisco Villa and Tampico you will see a small store with a bright red “Coca Cola” hand painted on the outside, across from a tortillería. A door next to the Cocheras Automaticas business will be open. That’s Yolanda’s mother’s house, and it’s from there that we’ll be loading.
  6. If you ARE driving a truck or transporting supplies, please drive up to Tampico street (the “Coca Cola” store on your right on the corner), turn right, and park. We will be loading right there.

IMG_0669If you can’t find it, just ask someone for “Quince Letras” or “Desayuno de los Pollos/Medina family.” Everyone in the area will know. It is just down the hill from the Cristo Rey Church (photo at left).

Merry Christmas to all! And see you there!

Santa’s Here Early!

1.P1220988I know many of you wonder why we live on the malecón. Isn’t it noisy? Yes, it is! And we love it! We get a parade at least once, sometimes several times a week. It is wonderful. Certain seasons of the year, we get several parades every day.

This evening, just as we were winding down from work, who should show up but Santa himself? I guess he got cold at the North Pole! It was a few Pepsi trucks, and Santa and his elves were handing out soda to those along the malecón. Now I hate that sugary sodas are causing diabetes and obesity in this country, but it sure was making everyone happy to see the jolly old man, and it sure was a nice transition from the work day to the evening for Greg and me. Bless you, Santa!

By the way, have you been wondering where the city will be holding the Feria de Navidad/Christmas Fair that they’ve held the last few years in the Bosque/city park? It will be December 19th through January 6th, 6:00-11:00 pm, at Salon Bacanora on Rafael Buelna. Entry, all rides (10 child rides, 9 family rides, and 3 “extreme” rides) and artistic presentations are completely free of charge. Refreshments will be available. Take the kids and grandkids! It’s always been a lot of fun.

Definitely Feeling like the Holidays!

P1220962Thank you all for so generously helping out Desayuno de los Pollos. Today I went out with Roger, Sue and Dave on a toy shopping spree. We each pitched in several hundred dollars of our own money, but we used some of what so many of you have kindly donated for toys also.

I’m guessing what we purchased today is going to bring smiles to the faces of 500-600 children, babies and teenagers this Christmas. We bought art supplies, games, toy cards, puzzle books, baseball bats, balls… While I felt bad to contribute to ruining our planet by buying cheap stuff from China, it was sooooo much fun to pick out the gifts, trying to balance girl, boy and gender-less items (difficult task, I might add)… I trust it lightens a parent’s worries a bit, as well.

Many thanks to Importaciones Sanfri, who gave us a 20% discount on our purchase, because they knew the toys were going to needy kids. Today’s outing definitely put me in the spirit of the season! Thank you all!

If you would like to contribute to buy toys, chickens, or anything else, please click on the “Donate” button on the upper right of this blog, or email me at dianne@vidamaz.com. We look forward to seeing you all on the 24th around 7 am!


Lost in Translation: The Bum Dollar

1.IMG_0664Does the above sign in the Golden Zone crack you up as it does me? Every time I see it, I have no choice but to chuckle. Why in the world would anyone want to trade in their pesos for bum dollars?! I’m so glad for this fairly new business, as it brings joy to my day every time I drive by.

In my world, exchanging money for bum dollars would mean getting fake dollar bills. Granted, the phrase “bum dollar” isn’t one I’ve heard, but it does logically follow a pattern (see the definitions below, from McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs). The people at BumDólar even advertise “the cheapest dollars on the planet!” ;) 

Cheap Dollars

I haven’t used the BumDólar exchange service; they may be completely wonderful. I post the photos tongue-in-cheek. Sometimes things are just lost in translation. What sounds good in one language can be hysterical, or offensive, in another.

For years I’ve said that my ideal job is to be one of the people who laugh themselves silly while choosing brand names like BumDólar, Calpis soda, Barf detergent. or Shitto sauce.

Dictionary Definitions and Sample Sentences

bum: false; phony.
“That’s a bum dollar.”
“He gave me bum advice.”

bum rap: blame or punishment that is not fair.
“Teachers are getting a bum rap from people who say they don’t work hard enough.”
“She was sent up to the penitentiary on a bum rap.”

bum steer: misleading instructions or guidance; information that is not correct< or not helpful; a misleading suggestion.
“Her suggestion to eat at that little Italian restaurant was a bum steer.
“I got a bum steer from the salesman, and I paid far more than I needed to for a used car.”

bum’s rush: hurrying someone out of a place.
“The young customer in the jewelry store was getting the bum’s rush until he pulled out an enormous roll of bills.”
“Bill got the bum’s rush at the restaurant because he didn’t have a tie on.”

bum someone out: to disappoint someone.
“This menial job really bums me out.”
“The bad movie bummed out the entire audience.”

bum something off someone: to beg or borrow something from someone.
“Can I bum a cigarette off you?”
“You can’t bum anything off me that I don’t have.”

bum around (with someone): to spend or waste a lot of time with a particular person.
“He used to bum around with Ted a lot.”
“They bummed around together all summer.

bum out: to have a bad experience.
“Are you going to bum out again tonight?”
“Man, is he bummed out!”

bummed (out): discouraged; depressed.
“I feel so bummed; I think I need a nice hot bath.”
“When you’re feeling bummed out, think how much you’ve accomplished.”

bums on seats: if a public performance or a sports event puts bums on seats, many people pay to go and see it.
“This production needs a big name to put bums on seats.”

the bum’s rush: the action of getting rid of someone who is not wanted.
“The photographer was given the bum’s rush by two policemen guarding the office.”
“Why do I feel I’m getting the bum’s rush? Where are you off to?”

Tell me, what are some of your favorite “lost in translation” phrases here in Mazatlán?

City Improvements are Rockin’ It!

Mazatlán has a bumper crop of city renovation and development projects underway, and I have been remiss, posting to VidaMaz’s Facebook page about several of them, but failing to actually upload them here to the blog for you who don’t follow us on social media.

Parque Central/Central Park

The first project is championed by Pueblo Bonito’s Neto Coppel. He announced his plans to build a new state-of-the-art museum several months ago, and we shared those press releases. The new museum will be built on the site of the current Teodoro Mariscal baseball stadium, (if) and when a new stadium is built up north in the marina. The overall project, called Parque Central or Central Park, is planned for the current site of the Bosque de la Ciudad, City Park, just behind the malecón between the Aquarium and Avenida Insurgentes.

I love how the estuaries are actually expanded rather than contracted in the plans, and I also adore that we will have another frontage road to Avenida del Mar—permitting access during street closures such as Carnavál parades and marathon. The plans include pedestrian and bicycle access to the park from the malecón, which will be terrific for locals and tourists. The plans, I’m sure you’ll agree, look marvelous! This will be a huge addition to our gorgeous city! Click on any photo to view it larger or see a slideshow.

Carpa Olivera/Outdoor Pool in Olas Altas

The second project I want to be sure you know about is already under construction. It is the renovation of the historic outdoor pool in Olas Altas. For the past several weeks the area has had a plywood wall blocking access, and work is proceeding to upgrade and update the pool. Below are the architects’ renderings of that project, as well as a couple of photos of the site from the Mayor’s office.

Again, I’m sure you’ll agree this project is a huge improvement. It will be wonderful to have a public swimming pool with such an incredible view. This is a project that will be a terrific asset to families in our community, and it will showcase Mazatlán on the world stage—seaside pools gain a lot of attention.

Palm Trees on the Malecón

I’ve posted photos of workers cutting the cement of the malecón in order to plant the palm trees, which it seems were gifted to the city by Stone Island. I then posted photos of them installing lighting. There has been a lot of pushback by residents who don’t like the new palm trees. Some complain they provide no shade, others that they ruin the open view of the ocean. Personally, I absolutely love them! I believe they add a sophistication and cared-for look to our beloved oceanside promenade, which I believe is the longest in the world. As I write workers are installing lighting in front of our condo building, but the first stretch of lighting, from Valentino’s to Las Gavias, has been completed. Photos from the Tourism Office are below.

New Athletic Facilities in the Bosque/City Park

By now you know we have new soccer fields and basketball courts in the grassy center of the boulevard along city park. Just recently they have finished two new, gorgeous tennis courts, and I am told the city will be offering tennis lessons to the public. Thus far they go very under-used, so get out there and play!

Between the new courts and the Kilometer Zero art installation are new weight and exercise machines that have been installed. These are obviously built for outdoor use, but my guess is they won’t last long in this salty air unless they are scrupulously maintained. Get to them and work out while you can! At 6:30 am yesterday when I went by, a young man, a trainer, was there instructing people how to use it.

Zona Dorada/Golden Zone Renovations

Finally, I reported on our social media several months ago when the Mayor announced rehabilitation of the Golden Zone. Improvements include new sidewalks, which are gorgeous, by the way! They installed the new undulating wave/resin and concrete sidewalk in front of the Hotel Playa a week or two ago. I failed to get a photo of it when I saw it, and now it has been all torn up as city workers install new cable for lighting. Poor planning, sadly. The Golden Zone should be finished by February, they say, and in addition to curbs, sidewalks, lighting and landscaping, we pray they’ll be working on drainage. Flooding in that area is horrible when it rains, primarily due to the fact that most of it is reclaimed land.

Some residents complain that all these monies could better be spent on drainage, sewage, road repair, etc., but nearly every day on the Mayor’s page on Facebook he shares with us yet another paving or water project in one of the city’s many colonias. He does, indeed, seem to be doing what he promised our municipality when he ran for office! I, for one, am very excited.

LOVING our city!