Category Archives: Doc’s Pub & Resort

Thanks Friends


Happy to announce that my home, aka Dockerty’s Pub, is officially reopened to guests.

Thanks to Chuy and Jorge, plus their teams, my new walls, entries, lighting and doors will be welcoming Pub friends and family for beverages, food and more fun memories.

My bachelor mess, construction zone and dust bowl have dominated the past 2 months.  But, I have hosed down the entire house and cleared out the big chunks of debris and stagnant props for a simplified and peaceful setting.

My pantry and wine frig enjoy nearly the same abundance as my Irish luck and appreciation of those of you who have helped me recently.  Looking forward to sharing it all with you.

H, PS, S, D and BL are at the top of a long list deserving my appreciation and thanks.  If I did not mention you by initial or name, just drop in for the beverage of your choice.  Newly positioned door bell provides the new password for your VIP visit.

Salud, Amor y Paz de la Pub.

 

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Workout Success


No wonder that so many give up so early on their new exercise plan.

The first day, the first week and the first month is full of pain, little success and lots of frustration.  Sore muscles tell you “just fuggeddaboutit!”.  Injuries say “what were you thinking?”.  Your tortured mind tells you that the upcoming workout should be procrastinated at all costs.

No, I had not let myself go to complete flab this year.  But, I was likely up 10-12 pounds at one point due to travel, weak mind and other distractions. Exercise and fitness goals are a huge part of my soul.

Waitaminute, we thought you did not own a scale and don’t believe in weighing yourself as a good measurement of fitness, right?  Right!  But, they way I feel, look and clothes fit tells me exactly how many weeks of serious effort are needed to correct my conditioning.

August 8 began my recent workout discipline.  I started with an easy chest and arms weight workout and a light 2 mile hike. The photo of my neighborhood above is my outdoor gymnasium.  Only required additives needed to these hills are good shoes and good attitude.

Today marks the 8th week completed of my path.  Out of 56 days, I missed only 8 for an 85% success rate.  More importantly, was that at week 2, I began throwing in some serious hill interval workouts to kick my bunz into puddles of protoplasm.

Today’s 12 repeat sprints of a 200 yard hill(approx 8% grade) followed by chest and arms weight session was a winner.  My new sofa grabbed me hard for a spontaneous nap today after this morning’s punishment.

About my diet, I slightly moderated the amount and type of food enjoyed.  Added fat with avocados, olive oil, coconut oil.  Preferring veggies and salads over rice, pasta and spuds.

Last night’s spaghetti dinner modification example including 1/3 the normal pasta serving.  The other 2/3 was zucchini and spinach.  Those 2 veggies go great with my red sauce and Italian sausage.

Cucumber, tom, apple, avocado, chicken salad with olive oil, lime and Tajin dressing

Yep, I like my beer, wine and occasional starch sinning.  But, I’m guessing my diet only changed approx 20%.  Biggest change was focus on adding veg intake.  In calorie terms, guessing I’m devouring 10-20% more than before due to the intensity of my workouts. Like my no scale rule, I don’t count calories.

It is fun to be in a place that I can eat virtually as much as I want.  Other than my beer and wine fixes, I’m lucky not to own a sweet tooth. Well, I need an ice cream score on occasion, so I load up my daily protein smoothies with ice, so that I have to spoon it.

Smoothies, salads, fish(not fried) tacos, stews/soups, pork/chicken/seafood, nuts, broccoli.  Nope, I’m not perfect on these, but, my trend with these fresh foods is my friend.

Food tastes better, my mind thinks more clearly and sexual performance and enjoyment are improved, youbetcha!

Sharing my success as encouragement for you and yours to find a way to improved health.  If you only walk around your block, that is better than sitting in your Barcalounger.

Bajadock’s 5 tips for long term exercise success:

  1. Find an exercise activity that you might enjoy. Hey, I don’t completely enjoy all of my types of different workouts, but, I enjoy taking on the challenge and the satisfaction of achievement.
  2. Set an exercise schedule, add a buddy if that helps you and get it done in 30-60 minutes.  A 10 minute high intensity interval workout is better than going out for a 1 hour walk.  Quality  and consistency win over quantity.
  3. Modify your diet.  Unless you are working out with intensity for 2 or more hours a day, you will not outwork a bad diet.  Find vegetables that you enjoy.  Do a one day per week “cheat” day to take care of your cravings.  Modify, don’t try anything crazy, because that won’t last long.
  4. A little bit of fruit , especially berries, in a smoothie(I like whey protein) is good.  Fruit juices and a whole lot of fruit might look healthy, but the sugar content will defeat your plan.  OJ in your morning is a weight loss killer!
  5. Extra bonus:  Until you reach some little point of success, weight loss, % of planned days executed, keep it your little secret.  I hear many announce their new plan or buy the shiny new equipment and discuss their purchase with 20 friends.  Shhhh, JUSTDOIT, exercise and wait until you have health news worthy of a press conference.  Thanks for reading mine, CHEERS.

Baja Peasant Food


My diet is fairly healthy with little pre-prepared food.  But, once in a while, I indulge in something that is full of fun like this week’s chili fries.

I’m all about peasant food or “comida campesina”.  Fresh, local ingredients prepared and cooked family style are my pleasures.

As mentioned before, lots of swirlies, splashies, sprinkles and flowers on plates are warning signs.  If “elevated cuisine” is simply plate decorations, enjoy the above example for your next hot date.

Hey, Doc, isn’t that a splashie decorated on your  chili fries plate?  Um, that is a spill from my ladle.

Salads, tacos, soups, stews and ceviches comprise 90% of my food intake.  But, the chili fries thing was because I had a carbohydrate itch that needed scratching.

Yep, I like my fries cooked medium-well, so they get a few extra minutes in the oven for the crunch factor.

Chili recipe was a slight new twist adding mole sauce to the mix of pork, black beans, poblano chiles, celery,  zucchini, tomatoes, onion, cumin, oregano and chili powder.  With cooler weather here, this cauldron of bubbly goodness poured over crispy fries is a good evening.

Poblano or pasilla?

Only thing I omitted that could have pumped up the decadence factor on my chili fries is some gooey cheese.

What wine to pair with this seductive dish?  That would be “vino ambar”, aka cerveza!

Next up?  I think I’ll be exploring a seafood poutine, thanks for my friends in the other BC, British Columbia.

Healthy Life Secrets


Bajadock: The year 2017 has brought me more distractions from my daily exercise routines than imagined.  For me, exercise is in my blood, my mind and my spirit.
 
Happy to celebrate a solid full month of daily discipline in August.  I feel better, sleep better, think better, enjoy the taste of food more and even enjoy improved sex.  Okay, youbetcha, I have a healthy imagination!
 
Often, you have to get out of your own way to walk the path to success.
 
After an exercise layoff, the first workout, the first week and the first month of exercise routine can be very discouraging.  Pain, few results, unwilling muscles, fatigue and a weight scale scream fuhgeddaboutit!
 
Which is why I don’t own a weight scale.  My exercise physiology professor professed, “To see if you are losing weight, get naked in front of a mirror.  If you are fat, the mirror will not lie.  If you are improving the mirror will not lie.”.  
I’m very happy to back in the groove, one day at a time.
The mirror is smiling this morning. 
CHEERS to your health.
Most everyone is interested in living a long, healthy, and happy life. The near universal demand has given rise to a copious supply of charlatans selling “answers.”

Internet entrepreneur, conspiracy theorist, and natural health guru David Avocado Wolfe says that “superfoods” will extend your life. Freelee the Banana Girl espouses the benefits of a diet that’s vegan, raw, and yes, full of bananas. Gwyneth Paltrow seems to stand behind whatever kooky quackery will make her the most money.

The claims these characters make are flashy, marketed as fix-all solutions to the health problems that prevent us from living long and productive lives. They’re also fallacious. There’s little to no evidence to back most of their assertions.

The reality is that Wolfe, Paltrow, The Banana Girl, and many others claiming dietary or lifestyle “secrets” are simply out there to make a buck. The actual “secrets” to health and longevity are not secrets at all. Far from being flashy, they’re actually quite boring. And I’ll give them to you for free:

1. Exercise. The physiological benefits of exercise are so powerful a group of scientists likened exercise to a medicinal drug. Habitual exercise promotes a healthy weight, prevents diabetes, fights depression, and reduces your chances of dementia, among many other benefits. You only need to spend 150 minutes per week exercising at a moderate pace to attain these benefits. That’s merely 2.2% of your waking hours! For even more benefits, exercise 450 minutes per week at moderate intensity or 225 minutes per week at vigorous intensity.

2. Eat a Balanced Diet. Science has not identified a “healthiest” diet. “Everything in moderation” sounds vapid, but it has a lot of backing. Simply paying attention to what you eat seems to yield results, not any specific diet. If you want some specific tips, here’s a few that can be distilled from the research:

3. Don’t Smoke. The numbers are striking. Lifelong smokers can expect to live ten fewer years than their peers.

4. Make Friends. It sounds silly, but a meta-analysis from 2010 really drilled this point home. Examining 148 studies with 308,849 total participants, the researchers found that people with stronger relationships had a 50% increased likelihood of survival. What does this mean? According to the editors of PLoS ONE, this means that “by the time half of a hypothetical sample of 100 people has died, there will be five more people alive with stronger social relationships than people with weaker social relationships.” Whether through a reduction in stress or levels of depression, or some other factor, meaningful relationships help us live longer.

More tips could undoubtedly make this list, but if you follow these four “secrets,” the odds are good that you’ll live a long and healthy life.

South Dakota License Plates


After my adventurous purchase of my new vehicle in Reno, 3 weeks ago, fedexed my documents to Clay County.  Also sent two signed, blank, personal checks with the documents to them.  This is an office that has handled me with efficiency and friendliness during the past 10 years that resembles nothing like my other DMV experiences.

Telephoned the Treasurer’s office to verify receipt and was handed off to “M”, as she was about to telephone me.  The car dealer in Reno from whom I purchased the car was taking their time processing the title work and had not yet sent that to Clay County after 1 week.  Also got a copy of the SD application and was able to scan it and email back to Clay County.

Shared my Reno to San Diego driving experience with the team at Clay County Treasurer’s office

Well, the Nevada temporary tags are going to expire in a few days, what do I do?  Explained the situation in an email to “M” at Clay County.  She asked if I would like a SD temporary tag, because I had sent them an extra personal check to cover that small expense.  Got the temp tag via email, SHAZAAM!

Not many people send signed blank checks in the mail.  But, this team at Clay County is easy to trust.

Also got a needed copy of my other vehicle’s S.D. registration via email, thank you.

That same day, the Reno dealership confirms that the title document is being sent to Clay County.  On Monday of last week, “M” confirms that she can fedex my new South Dakota plates, reg, etc.  “M” also explains that she is going to be leaving the office and would be handing me over to “L”.

As Clay County team brightened my day with their efficiency, shared the photo of my neighborhood with them for cheers.

A couple of hours later, “L” emails me that she received the title info and has fedexed the plates and reg package to me that same day.  Also has the total for my check including S.D. sales tax on vehicle, processing fees and fedex.  Wow, this entire process likely was completed in 1-2 hours.  And “L” provided me with the fedex tracking #.

Drove up to San Diego for first time with my new vehicle to pickup the plates plus other stops.  Customs and Border Patrol at San Ysidro gave me a grilling about my SD temporary tag.  Also had my bill of sale and MEX + USA insurance docs.  Gave them my SENTRI pass as well.  Thought I was headed to secondary inspection for sure.  Nope, got through after about 5 minutes.

Package was received 2 days later and my new vehicle is proudly sporting Mount Rushmore on front and back bumpers. Yes, one of my friends at Clay County placed the orange “2” sticker(February expiration) on both plates, thanks.

Last piece of the little story is SENTRI.  I had lost my SENTRI/GOES website password.  With online threads stating 6 month waits to get new vehicles approved in the SENTRI program, I was anxious to get in line.  When SENTRI emails you a temp password, DO NOT COPY/PASTE it into login page.  It creates error message.  Confession:  the email with your temp password clearly states…”Do not copy/paste or ELSE!”.  But, in my typical stubborn fashion, I failed to read those easy instruction.

Another photo of my neighborhood’s hidden beach shared with Clay County team

Big thanks to “L” and “M” for fabulous customer focused service.  Cheers to everyone at Clay County Treasurer’s Office.

Thankful


Have endured a tough emotional, physical and mind blowing week.

Thanks to all for help and I’m lucky to be here.

I am thankful for a wonderful life.

Thanks to my friends who care.

Thanks to my fabulous family. We are a small family.  We do family well.

Thanks to the wonderful women who have shared their time and energy with me.

Thanks to my neighbors who have shared their resources and experiences to ease my pain.

Thanks for every sunrise, sunset, fog, cloud, moon glow and raindrop.

Above sunset Friday is by IRE.  THX!

Time wounds all heels, so I’m hoping my walk will ease through the cosmic debris with time.

Thanks.

 

Propane and Other Utilities


My humble home in Ensenada requires the services of 6 utilites: Electricity, propane, water, internet, tv and cell phone. Drinking water, unlike general household water, could be considered #7.

Because my full 300L propane tank lasts me 6 months, if I forget to send an automated calendar alert, that tank is easy to forget.  When tank is below 10% levl, it’s a good idea to get some gas.  Can’t remember the last time I called for a propane truck, as they usually patrol our ‘hood a few times weekly.  They either honk or I can hear their diesel engines approaching.

My tank was at approx 7% level today, when I heard the Z gas posse coming to the rescue.  It’s approx 75 feet from the street to my tank for their hose to reach.  Guessing they were only at half spool.  Will have to ask next time.  “How big is your hose?”.

For kicks, I did a spreadsheet a while ago comparing living expenses during my 30 years in Colorado vs. here in Baja.  My 6 utilities here are well under $200/month, as I’m not a big consumer.   Utilities in Denver were triple that number.  Heating in winter, running an evaporative cooler in summer and watering plants in the desert air cost muchos pesos.

No, I’m not going to jump up on the table about how much less expensive Mexico is vs. US.  Your mileage may vary according to your lifestyle, entertainment needs and shop till you drop fetish.

But, my 200peso per month cell phone for unlimited texts/calls to/fro Mexico and U.S. is a whopping 12 bucks.  Almost everyone I know still working in the U.S. is paying $100+++/month for their cell service.  One hidden trick is that a lazy non-working slob like me doesn’t need a lot of data to get through the day.

I know several people who are even more remote than am I and their solar investment is significant.  Glad I’m on the grid as solar technology still does not have the ROI for my low kilowatt use.  $30USD/month is a taco per day to fuel my frig, tv, internet and lights.

Food and beverage?  I’m guessing those expenses are the same in Baja as in the USA.   There are expensive restaurants to enjoy, as well as tacos.

One of my favorite quotes was from my favorite and only niece visiting a few years ago.  At Trailero’s Tacos on north side of Ensenada, she was amazed at the flavors and buffet of veggies and salsas to add.  “Hey, Unc, why would you ever need to buy grociers here?”.  !

Biggest savings here is housing.  Just had a new friend casually asses my property as $2 million in SoCal, because of the water view.  Dunno about that and there are inconvenieces and inconsistencies in Mexico that blow up that propheltactic argument.

At 10 years here, I’m thrilled with my choice and would change very little of the choices made.

Now if we could just get a consistently good restaurant out here, I would patronize it often.

Frig Wars Sequel


Three weeks ago, noticed that my referigerated beer was on the lukewarm side.  That Luke guy must have been a charmer to get all of that recognition for so many years.

Deployed my handy frig thermometer to see what was happening.  52F-ing degrees?  Ouchees.  My Frig wars from December/January are back!

Freezer was doing its job freezing ice and at 0F degrees.  Reading various diy articles on the cold freezer + warm frig diagnoses, most likely air is not moving properly due to ice blockage.

Thought it must be simple, but, a bit beyond my screwdriver skillset.  Against my better judgement called repairman “N”, who helped me years ago, but, failed me this past January.  He shows up and says “needs freon”.  Well why the heck is the freezer compartment working?  Then he tells me he forgot to bring his freon can and charges me 200 pesos.  He did not forget to bring his girlfriend with him on his visit to the clouds in our panoramic neighborhood.

Per my January story of frig drama this winter, I think many of these frig dudes have two paths of income.  One is their freon can.  The other is swapping compressors.  Essentially they can prescribe drugs(freon) or do heart surgery(compressor).  They know nothing else in between.  New compressor is likely a $300USD fix.  I went through 4 “recommended” frig repair guys in December and January before finding someone who knows refrigerators.

Called my #1 frig tech, Angel, from El Primo appliance store in Los Globos segunda district.  He was busy that week, but, would get back to me.  He did call me back later that week to let me know he would get back to me next week. Nada.  Angel truly knows appliances.  But, he is difficult to engage for a service call in my remote part of the universe.

Are they clever enough to slow walk my frig repair to parlay that into me buying a new frig?  Hmmm.

Having penciled in my mind the $1,200USD for a new frig, what should I do?  The drama is not urgent, as I have a freezer full of good food, lower drawers in that frig that are at 40F cooling veggies and a spair dorm frig taking care of me.  But, the 2.5 weeks of frustration is clawing at my attitude.

Picked up my vehicle this Wednesday from our neigborhood mechanic who is the perfect technician.  He does what you want, usually is down within 24-48 hours, calls you with options and will also offer advice on other diagnoses for future repairs.  Wish I had a guy like him for all of my other repair needs.

With my fixed car on my way downtown Wednesday, decided to give Angel, frig tech expert, one more try.  Headed to El Primo appliances(Angel’s shop) with flan and watermelon for Maria, the owner.  Wrote a letter in Spanish explaining my frig diagnosis of cold freezer/warm frig and stapled 500mnp to the letter.  Added a 12 pack of cold Tecate for Angel.

Maria had Angel on phone immediately.  Friday visit was promised.

Friday 5:30PM, Angel calls and says he’ll be at my house in one hour.  But, he also asks me questions about the frig behavior.  My Spanish is sufficient to explain the congeledor frio/refrigerador caliente aventura.

At 6:25, I see Angel’s smiling face.  Angel looks like a MLB shortstop who should have plenty of groupies attending to his needs.  Like most good techs, he is small on bullshit and quick and curious on what is wrong with my frig.  In January, he guessed what was wrong with a bad upper coil, took the frig on a Friday at 6PM and had it back with new coil on Monday at 6PM.

On today’s visit, he opened up the panel behind my frig veg drawers to show me the glacier of ice covering the lower coil.  Chopping with a screwdriver, using a paint heat gun and boiling water, we cleared the ice.  Angel, guessing the fix, brought a spare fan to replace the bad fan that was causing the ice buildup.

 

This little guy, approx 4″ x 4″ was causing me all of this grief.  Looks like it costs $5 bucks in China. It is an evaporator fan.  “Evaporator fan motor W10395278 circulates air through the fresh food compartment for efficient cooling.”    The fan is approx $45 at SearsPartsDirect.  Use PARTS17 for a 15% discount.

Angel charged me a whopping 1,000mnp(that’s a whopping $60USD) for the 1 hour of work, plus 45 minute commute to/fro my house.  OK, add on the 12pk of Tecate Roja, the gas money and the sweet goodies for Maria, and I’m likely paying $110USD for the service.  Could not get that deal in USA.  And I would have missed out on practicing my Spanglish and learning more about Mex cultura!

Simple things make life so happy.

El Primo, Maria, 646-177-3177.  El Primo sells and services major appliances.  Español solamente.

May your appliances enjoy a wonderful Independence weekend!

Crime Hits Home


Colonia Puerto Escondido, center right, is my neighborhood.  We are on the south side of Ensenada Bay in Baja California.

My morning usually begins around 6AM with coffee, music and reading.  This Wednesday morning added a new ingredient.

Heard some noise as if a worker was doing some type of construction around 7:15.  Walked out to my 2nd floor patio to see a white van and 2 guys taking stuff from my lower level.

Shouted at them and stupidly went down the stairs to confront them.  One more guy was half asleep in the back of the van.  They took off.

What was stupid was me not having any weapon at hand and attempting to do what??? My lucky news was that only one of the three, the lead dude, appeared to pose a physical threat.  Number two was scraggly with a bandage on his neck. #2 was Tommy Chong’s brother.  Number three was nearly in dream state.  Guessing they were drugees.

Called 911 and gave them all of the information.  Approx 1990s Quest(Nissan) van, smashed in right rear and side, California plates.  The 911 call was at 7:40.

Called a friend/neighbor for whatever reason after that.  I was surprised at how upset I was and still had adrenaline running 30 minutes after the confrontation.

7:15 in the morning?

Saw running water coming from under my garage doors.  My lower level has an apartment and a 2 car garage. Unbelievably, these guys tried to detach my water pump, which was now spraying water from its location in my garage.  More good news was that they did not break the connections.

I have been away much of the spring and had not visited that lower level apartment in months.  When I looked around, I realized that I had lost quite a few items, including 2 bicycles, a Yamaha keyboard, a table saw, a spare water pump and lots of hand tools.  It will take a while to realize the inventory missing.

But, I also understood that to get all of that stuff, this morning’s shopping was not their first at my house.

Stuff is low on my list, so I really don’t care about losing it.

My peace and health and that of my friends and neighbors is vital.

I would change many things on my behavior yesterday morning.  WTF, no photos?  I was in full defense/fright/flight mode and was not cool under the pressure.  Told a friend that I would have an embellished story in 10 years about my bravery and how I took down 6 thugs with my bare hands, hah!

Our neighborhood, Colonia Puerto Escondido is a rural, secluded, quiet spot.

We have been discussing neighborhood security a lot recently as crime has increased in Northern Baja, Ensenada and our area.  There have been at least 5 buglaries in our neighborhood in June.

More good news is that we are working on our overall neighborhood security.  Any and all layers of security are good ideas.

Lighting in our hood is weak.  At night, the entry to the neighborhood is very dark with only a few exterior lights lit on houses.  I added dusk to dawn lights to my house this spring and will add more.

We are working on radio communication, walkie talkie, push to talk(PTT) smart phone apps, individual alarms, individual protection and more.  Heck, what took us so long?  Well, you have to start some time.

We also hope to get an access gate with entry technology that will meet our needs.

Colonia Puerto Escondido housing map

Back to that 911 call, I saw a police car roll by my house at 1PM.  Because my shouting talent from my terrace worked so well at 7:30AM, I thought I could shout down the patrol car.  Nada.

Called the police # in Maneadero at 154-1724.  “No, call this number, 154-0088”.

For police press 1.  For trouble press 2.  For big trouble, press 3.  For really big shit trouble press 4.  Ok, I’m kidding.  But, why can’t the police main # handle my burglary report? Obviously, my 911 call went nowhere.

Patrol car showed up in approx 25 minutes.  It was great Spanglish practice for me and handled all well, except that I could not come up with “bandage” in Spanish as the one unique characteristic on Tommy Chong’s neck.  Vendage!  “Cinta para sangre” could have worked.

The police questioning took on a repetitive nature.  My guess is that they were trying to catch me in a lie, because there was no sign of damage or forced entry.  I had left the door to my apt unlocked.  My fault, youbetcha.

At one point, one of the cops was so interested in my story that he was checking out his teeth in the driver’s side exterior mirror of the cop car.  Must have a hot date that afternoon.

They took my residente permanente ID info, phone #, address… .  BTW, they indicated that there was no info on my 911 call at Maneadero police station.

After much chatter throughout Wednesday, two neighbors saw the van approaching.  Two other neighbors walked right by the van in front of my house, including 1 seeing the guys getting out of the van.  No blame here at all.  Looks like workers starting their day at a house.

Careful and good luck out there.

Airline Adventures


                                                                                 by staff travel editor, Crusty Curmudgeon

Recent travel in the USA has me slapped around like a rag doll in a Cuisinart food processor.  Here are my recent experiences from June flights.

At 6AM, before my caffeine fix, howtheheck am I supposed to read, leave alone execute, the instructions on peeling the correct amount and spot of the luggage tag and affix it without it looking like a jet lagged shar pei puppy? Friday morning, I simply handed the tag to the agent and asked her to do it.  She happily showed me the way, including perky instructions.  She failed miserably and it looked like hell.  “Well, I guess I need more practice”.

LOVE TSA PRE lines, except when jeweled, pocket changed and big metal belt buckled passengers ahead of me can’t get the idea that the scanning machine you walk through is designed to detect metal.  “But, it’s just water in my water bottle!”.  Remember, these are the TSA “pre-approved” smart passengers, top of their class.  …says the guy who can’t affix a luggage tag.

I usually have little drama vs TSA.  My only problem is forgetting the corkscrew in my backpack.  Backpack always has my essentials of laptop, phone, laptop accessories, car key(+1 extra), tequila, assortment of condoms.  I have lost at least SIX corkscrews at TSA junction.  My 99 cent corkscrew made it due to stowing in my checked bag this trip.

While I sleep at my window seat, why do my fellow passengers feel the need to put snacks in the seatback ahead of me?  “These gourmet crackers and pretzels are must treats for your taste buds and we did not want you to miss them.”  This happened on 3 of 4 flights on last trip.  I must ooze “lonely bachelor that can’t cook” look.  How about some Publisher’s Clearinghouse forms next flight?

Which do you prefer, crying kid or kicking kid?  Crying kid is too young to control.  Though my reading or sleeping peace has a hard time with the infant testing his operatic skills, the kicking kid obviously has shitty parents.  Had a kicker this trip.  I raised out of my seat, turned around and said, “Hi, I’m enjoying your child’s percussion skills on my back.  Any way to take off his shoes to lighten the body blows I am receiving for the next 5 hours?”.  Law enforcement met me at destination, tazed, cuffed and dragged me away.

Which do you prefer, chatty pilot/crew or unintelligible pilot/crew?  “Once again, thank you…” for the 8th time before we take off means that we are going to be hearing a lot from this team today.  “Once again, sit back, relax…”.  Where is the mute button?  And how do I mute and darken the must see video screen in front of me?

More video fun, why do airports need to connect me to “news”?  If you catch my trend, I’m not big on getting random audio and video barking at me while traveling.  Heck, even gas stations pelt me with news or advertising while I pump gasoline.  Intercontinental at Houston airport likes their CNN televsions in gate wait.  Maybe they could mute the tv?  Bring back the hare krishnas!

Loved the United Airline CEO mea culpa in their May magazine after the April passenger pummeling at ORD.  “We will do better.”.

Airport construction is at an all time high.  The quarters weren’t nearly cramped enough before, so add construction and walled areas of development to limit seating areas for gate wait. “Hi, I just got off a tube squeezed next to random strangers with odd habits for 3 hours.  Can I sit on your lap and have you tell me your life story, while waiting for next flight?”  I found a gaggle of wheelchairs in a corner and pulled one out for my lounge “safe space” this trip.

Airport food?  Hmmm.  How many different ways can you throw 500 calories of starch at a traveler for $12 USD?  I usually fly with an apple and almonds, but forgot my snack kit on this trip.  This little spot near gate E2 at IAH was a reasonable deal for a turkey, veg, avocado wrap for $11USD.  Most of the time, I avoid airport culinary delights.  This wrap was fresh and would do it again.  $11?  Yeah, but, I was hungry.

San Diego airport, my home runway, used to be a small airport.  It is still not ORD, IAH, LAX, but, the remodel has turned SAN into another shopping mall, disguised as an airport.

Google flights is my favorite tool(x-Southwest)

Didjaever reserve a flight with 7:30 as a takeoff time and not catch the “PM” tag?  I have never served in the military, but use military time(19:30) on my watch and in many other ways.  It works for me.  But, in a late night haste, caught a great deal for my return flight from MCO to SAN.  Tried checking in 24 hours before and caught a “your checkin attempt failed because it is more than 24 hours before your flight” error message.  WTF?  Realized I mistakenly reserved a night flight.  Had enough time, airline miles and a small fee to get a different morning flight to escape Mickey Mouse land as needed.  My good fortune increased as I was able to get my treasured window seats, not available on my previously goofed flight.

Last time I flubbed pm vs. am was in 2006, on my flight attempt to view, and hopefully, buy my lot in Ensenada.  That too was an inexpensive and lucky fix.  Bought my lot 2 days later.

Punta Banda International Airport photo courtesy of I.R.E.

Did I mention how thrilled I am to be home in my monastery?  Safe and easy travels wished to y’all.

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