Monday, January 28, 2013

Time for my monthly blood tests.

Monday,  January 28, 2013

Last week it had been a month since my last blood test and it was time to set up an appointment and get that done.  I first sent an email to the Doctor that I had seen at Sharp Hospital when I arrived in Mazatlan just before Christmas asking him how I should go about having this done.  As he had been knowledgeable about the temporal arteritis I thought this would be the best way to go.  I did not get a reply back.   

Plan B.  I saw Dr. Olalde last year when I had all my muscle pain and was very pleased with his gentle manner of listening and the treatment that he suggested.  I had thought it would be easier to continue with the Doctor at Sharp Hospital but in the end I booked with Dr. Olalde.  I sent him an email with a quick outline of my current problems and asked for a Monday appointment.  He replied and we set an appointment for 11am on Monday. 

Monday morning Eric and I hopped on the bus and headed downtown to his office.  I had good chat with Dr. Olalde and he checked my blood pressure (good) heart (good) and then we discussed the blood tests that I needed.  I also had my medical tests with me so that he could have a look at the previous results.  He mentioned that the test for the C reactive protein that was done at Sharp hospital should have been a high sensitivity one and that was not what they had done.  He typed out a requisition for the local lab and we were done.  200 peso’s for the visit (about $16) which is very cheap by any standards.  Dr. Olalde explained that some people can not pay any more and even though other people can he charges everyone the same fee.  Very democratic I’d say!

Up the street three blocks and then left for two blocks to the lab.  Well…at that point we couldn’t find it and as we were standing on the street looking confused holding the lab slip a worker toting a big bucket came to help.  He looked at our lab slip and motioned for us to follow him.  A half a block ahead on the right and we were right where we needed to be.  How nice what that?  Very typical of the Mexican people to help whenever possible.  Eric gave him ten pesos even though he didn’t expect anything for this courtesy. 

The lab visit was quick, efficient and economical.  The lab manager spoke English, the blood work was done quickly and the cost was about $65.00 Canadian which included a 20% discount.  They took my email address and said they would email the Doctor as well. 

Tuesday I received an email from Dr. Olalde and he said that everything looked okay on the blood test except that two of the markers for my disease were up (ESR and white blood cells) although the most important one (C reactive protein) was very low.  He suggested there could be infection somewhere in my body even thought I am not showing any symptoms.  As I do not have any symptoms of the temporal arteritis at present I will continue with my prednisone reduction. 

On my visit to his office Dr. Olalde had suggested that I look at a product called Immunocal Platinum to stimulate the immune system.  I have done this on the internet and think I will give it a try for a month.  Can’t hurt! It is approved in Canada and does not seem to be a quacky product. 

After the lab visit Eric and I walked back down to the malecon to look for lunch.  Just off the grassy square we found a nice little “luncheria..taco restaurant” to eat.  Chile relleno was on the menu along with rice and refried beans for 45 pesos so that was what we had.  Very good.

We struck up a conversation with a gringo (Kurt from Saskatchewan) eating there and it turns out he used to RV to Mazatlan before his wife died 6 years ago and he said that he had stayed at Las Jaibas where we are parked.   He also said he knew a guy from Saskatchewan in the park and it turned out to be Fred and Marion who are parked right behind us.  Again…a small world.

After lunch we walked a couple blocks north on the malecon to the Pescaderia (fish store) that John in our park goes to to buy fish.  We bought a kilo of Dorado (Mahi Mahi) and a whole Red Snapper (Pargo or Huatchinango) and they filleted it all while we waited.   Cheap, fresh and delicious.  We will buy fish there on a regular basis and eat it at least twice a week.   Yum, yum, yum. 

A quick ride home on the bus… packaged up and frozen and off to the beach. 

A good day.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Bocce….Round two….and the winners!

Saturday January 26, 2013

I am so far behind on this blog it is just pitiful!  Oh well…here are the Bocce pictures.  Just in case anyone wonders why I would p0st so many pictures of the same thing….the reason is they are my record of my best pictures and the events they are from. 


Here are Dick and I playing Betty and Boomer again….they beat us in the last round. 


Betty delivers.


Dick doesn’t look very happy.  He should, we were winners this time.  Lots of fun!


Hal and Helene play Fred and Marion.  Bocce is all about how you hold your mouth when you deliver!!! Must have worked because they won this game.


Fred, Hal, Marion and Helene.


Hal and Helene beat Fred and Marion.  Good game!


Darlene, Betty, Gary and Eddy.


Darlene delivers perfectly….but she and Gary didn’t win!


This is Betty Morgan delivering her ball.  She and Eddy are from Vancouver Island and have been travelling to Mexico in their own rigs for a few years.  Last year they had two other rigs with them.  Gutsy gals!  Betty has a grand daughter in Stewart, B.C. who travelled south with her this year and then stayed for a couple of weeks before travelling back to the north.  After talking to Betty for awhile she asked if I knew “Jim Culp” in Terrace where we are from and I said “ Yes, he used to live across the highway from us and we drink the occasional beer with him on Thursday night.”  Small world.  Turns out he is her second cousin and the family is having a reunion this summer. 


Kathy and Dick are playing again….this time against Eunice and Don.


We were ahead….we should have won….we didn’t and now we are out.  Boohoo!  Good thing it’s only a game!


Hal and Helene play Bill and Jeanette. Getting down to the nitty gritty and the end of the tournament. 


Bill delivers. 


Helene delivers.


Everyone is smiling….guess who won…well it was ….Bill and Jeanette.


Sandi and Frank were the winners over Eunice and Don.


Score keepers.  Ursula and Val. 


Final score in the final hard fought game where either team could have won. 

And the winners are……


Bill and Jeanette. 

Congratulations all….really good games!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Beautiful San Ignacio

Thursday January 24, 2013

Time for another outing and today San Ignacio was our destination.  A nice 60 mile ride and because it is North of Mazatlan we don’t have to ride through all the traffic of the city.  We left the park about 10:45 am along with Frank/Sandi and Dennis /Marilyn in the jeep out the free road with the jeep leading and heading north.


When we left the highway to head towards San Ignacio the first little town that we go through is Coyotitan.  A really pretty little town with beautiful trees and flowering bushes and the local people are always smiling and waving. 


Along the edge of the road….a farmer with his goats.    P1030534

Heading north of Coyotitan towards San Ignacio.


Just before the bridge into San Ignacio we stopped so that Eric and I could lead into town as Frank had only been there once before.  Sandi is hiding her “Doo” because when you ride in the back of the Jeep your hair really takes a beating!


The big bridge heading into town.  P1030540

The bridge crosses over the Piaxtla River which originates in the Sierra Madre mountains.   A huge river.  There are pictures on the net that show the level of the river right up to the base of the bridge….an unbelievable amount to water. 


In the main square we noted these beautiful old street lamps.


Very intricate. 


We have eaten in this restaurant just off the main square before.  The rear area is a very large dance studio filled with beautiful murals.  I have blogged this before ( Tuesday, Feb. 22, 2011) and the pictures of the mural are on that Blog.)


Front of the restaurant.


Streets in San Ignacio.


Looking up the street to the giant Jesus statue.  It is massive.




As we wandered up the street after lunch to find the Dulceria (candy store) we happened up the Museum of Culture.  Very interesting.


A very large old loom.  Strung with very old wool.



Huge old spinning wheel.


Gun collection.


Horse related gear.




I took this picture of an old picture in the museum.  This would have been the old reaction ferry that ran on cables across the river before they built the bridge.  Depending on the angle of the ferry to the flow of water it will be propelled in either direction across the river.  We know this because we have one just a few miles from us on the Skeena River at Usk, B.C. and it uses no power….just the current.

At high or low water they are unusable and the Usk crossing then changes to an aerial cable car. 


I think this saddle may have belonged to someone famous in San Ignacio.  The horn was inlaid with mother of pearl and there were initials on it as well.  Who was the caballero….who knows.


Next stop the Dulceria where I bought some nice Mexican candy.  Just outside where everyone was waiting this local musician showed up with his trumpet.


As we walked back down the street he serenaded us with a little tune.  He was actually quite good.


Back down to the square.  There we noted the dome on the cathedral being painted up by the worker you can see on the top in the centre.  No….there is no safety gear and …..yes he is very high up.  Getting ready for Semana Santa (Easter) at the end of March no doubt. 


This young girl followed us down the street on her bicycle and was all smiles….until I took her picture along with these little guys….and then no one was smiling. 

A really nice day!

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Happy hour, swimming and a bit of Bocce!

Wednesday January, 23, 2013

I mentioned in a previous blog that the park owner Felipe built a swimming pool over the summer with a concrete deck area where the park could have gatherings and happy hours.  A very nice addition to the park.


Looking in from the front road toward the happy hour gathering.  There is an area to shower and also a barbecue area with lights….very nice.  No….the pool is not heated like most pools in Mexico.

P1030496 Some of the gang…they start to gather around 4pm and stay until 5 to 5:30.  Somehow the men and woman have ended up at different tables…not sure why.  P1030506

After an early morning Bocce game for me Eric and I went over to the beach around 11am.  The sea is much flatter at this time with very little wind so it is better for swimming than later in the afternoon.  Eric really wants to body surf.  Before we left Kelowna in November we bought Eric a shortie wet suit so he could swim if the water was cold and yesterday he tried it out for the first time.


Good size wave!


Eric had a rest and then….back in.


All done.


Here comes the parachute.  I’d still like to try that….maybe I will!


The beach is flattening out again and the weather has warmed up…..Bueno!

On Monday we started another Bocce tournament here in the park and this time the teams are spouses….well not everyone as some people including Eric don’t want to play.  No problemo…Dick and I are partners and there are a few other teams that are not spouses as well.  It is very loosey goosey here at Las Jaibas….no pressure. 


Day one…first game and Dick and I play Betty and Boomer. 


Look at that style….too bad I didn’t get close to the pea.  We lost that game.


Hal and Helene play Sandi and Frank.  Frank and Sandi win.


Betty and Boomer play Eunice and Donald.  Eunice and Donald have never played before and….beat Betty and Boomer….beginners luck?


That’s Bill refereeing doesn’t he look thoughtful?


Fred and Marion play Sarah and Blake.


Look at Blake’s form…I guess that’s why he and Sandi won every game in the first tournament. 


Second day and Dick and I beat Dennis and Marilyn.  A hard fought game and I actually made some shots. 

Next day to play Friday.  Wish us luck!


Tuesday afternoon….Hand and Foot card game inside the front office.  We have been playing out in the new palapa but that day it was too windy.