Marijuana VS Alcohol!

I think Marijuana should be legalized for many reasons! I have watched two episodes of a show on the Discovery Channel called “Weed Country”. I still, and always will, think that marijuana is safer for people to use for trying to relax in the evening than to drink alcohol, and I do drink more alcohol than I use marijuana but I do either one of them for the same reasons, I just don’t like to smoke anything and don’t smoke enough weed to be able to justify the expense of the smokeless kind of using this drug, which I have tried and fully endorse but for as seldom as I use it I can’t justify the expense of buying the equipment to do so, but if I did need to use weed more I would definitely invest in the smokeless system. But I do not believe in abusing either one of these drugs. I think the show “Weed Country” is a pretty silly show, because it is trying to present two diametrically opposed points of view on the use of Marijuana. One is from the side of the grower and the other is “it is against the law”, whether or not it should be. Those two sides will never be able to get along because as long as something is illegal the police are going to do their level best to “win”, it is the way things have always been and will always be as far as I can see. The show is trying to present marijuana growers in a realistic light but it also tries to present the antithesis of it by presumably showing law enforcement in the “emerald triangle” of California as their equals in their pursuit in taking down the marijuana farmers. I find this a little, okay I find this hugely, a ridiculous comparison. What a huge waste of money they are putting out to try and stop something that is no more dangerous than “legal alcohol” and probably a lot less dangerous, when they could be using those same policemen to catch thieves and murderer’s. What am I missing here?
FOR MANY REASONS!
I have smoked marijuana off and on from the age of 17 and I have come to the conclusion that when used moderately it is the least dangerous drug there is. In my opinion the most dangerous drug is alcohol, it is the only drug I know that continuously builds upon itself one “toke ” after another where the “partaker” of this drug can continue to function long after it is reasonable for them to do so. It is also the only drug that you can go to almost any “grocery store” and buy! I have tried “cocaine”, “heroin”, “amphetamines”, “barbiturates”, “Psilocybin” mushrooms, LSD (only once but that still counts), and the only drug I feel is the most dangerous after all of my encounters is alcohol. I have known, and still know, people who “abuse” marijuana, and by abuse I mean they smoke so much of it that they endanger themselves in the same way that people who smoke cigarettes do. At a certain point I have observed theses friends of mine that smoked marijuana long past the point I consider (I did say “I” in this sentence) reasonable become excessively unreasonable and become unreasonably irritable and irrational and thus leading me to say that this is an addictive drug (mental or physical addiction is the same in my opinion) but as big of an ******* these friends can be it is not nearly as dangerous as the state that most of the people I know that are “alcoholics” can get in. All things, they don’t have to be drugs, when used excessively or beyond the point that they are used in what most people would consider a reasonable manner, can be abused. I have never heard of anyone using marijuana and beating their wife up, so if you only compare alcohol to marijuana this has to be a plus on the side of marijuana.
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My Kids Have Fur!

I have a hereditary disease that I wish to stamp out in my lifetime because anyone who has this disease has a 50 % chance of passing it on, which means if you have 2 children 1 child will have this disease and the other won’t. I consider this way too high a percentage for anyone to consider having a child. There is no cure for this disease if you are born with it, there are a couple of things that can be done surgically to give you the best quality of life that you can possibly have if you inherited it but that is all that can be done for those of us that have been born with this disease. After having had this disease for 55 years there has been absolutely nothing more they can do for it now than they could do for it from when I was 6 years old. The research money they are spending for this disease is wasted money since the simplest and most effective way to stamp it out is to not “breed”. So given that, it seemed to me that the best thing I could do for the world was to love and mentor my nephews (because she was born without this disease she will not pass it on), that were born to my sister who didn’t inherit my disease, besides not to procreate any children if you have this disease. The way this disease works is if you have it you will pass it on to 50% of your children, unacceptable odds even in card games, and if you were born without the disease then you can safely have children. So my sister, and her children, are free from this disease, this disease which is crippling and disabling but not life threatening, unless you consider the quality of life a threat – which I do! So since I will not condemn a child to the life I have had to overcome I have chosen furry creatures to be my children and they have given me some of the most fulfilling relationships I have ever had, including the ones I have had with non furry creatures, or humans as they are usually referred to. Canines and felines are senescent beings, which means they are “Living things are difficult to define, but life forms can be considered to be the most complex entities in the arena or environment in which they exist” , this is a definition that I found on the internet. So my furry children are equal to children except that human children aren’t furry.  I feel a great deal of pride to have contributed to the success of my sister’s children which I helped to raise but  I also feel a great sense of pride in having contributed to the raising of the animal “people” that have inhabited my life ever since I can remember. I do not believe that human life is any more valuable than animal life, as no one died and left me God of which life forms are the most important. I will say that I don’t feel a “fly” and other creatures like it, have the same importance or value of life as the furry creatures I share my life with because you do have to draw the line somewhere and in my opinion the idea of intelligence does start with mammals. I do believe that their are life forms that exist in our world that do really exist but they do not have a brain, or if they do it is not in a form that we can recognize. So given this is the perspective that I face the world with then I have every right to find my furry friends the equal of their hairless competitors. I was watching my small (okay she is not small compared to her 130 pound boyfriend) wolf dog laying on the floor next to me and she looked up at me with her big beautiful brown eyes and they said “You are my best friend and I love you” and all I could think is what could be more special than that? I don’t think anything can be, human or animal.

Niner's Big Brown Eyes!

Niner’s Big Brown Eyes!

I Wish There Really was A Silver Linings Playbook!

I have always had to deal with adversity for my entire life, as most people probably do to some extent, at least from the age of three which is the earliest moments in my life that I have any memories of. The three memories I have that I know are from when I was three are because my father died when I was three months short of turning three and all three of the earliest memories I have were either were before he died or when he died, because we moved from the place I have the memories from after he died. These three distinct memories are: 1. I remember sitting on the floor in front of a blackboard drawing apples on it with my father, I remember being impressed that the blackboard had pictures of fruit already drawn on it when my father helped me draw on it. 2. My father was an airplane mechanic and we lived in a trailer at the small airport that my father worked at and I remember running from my trailer to the one that was also on the property with my girlfriend that lived there with our little Pomeranian dog chasing us. After my father was killed in a plane crash at the airport we moved and since he died three months before I turned three that pretty much sets the age of this memory in stone. 3. I remember being very unhappy, I was in the trailer we lived in at the airport, because my mother left me with a baby sitter and she was dressed in black and a big black car picked her up and took her away and everyone was very unhappy. I assume that was to take her to my father’s funeral.  After my father died my mother took the settlement money that she was paid by the company that made the airplane that my father died in because the mechanical specifications were faulty that they provided him with to repair the plane and those faulty specifications resulted in the plane crashing and my father’s death. I was told, I don’t have any actual proof of this, that my father’s death (the factory specs had the flaps hooked up backwards so when he positioned them for the plane to go up they did the exact opposite and the plane flipped over down instead of going up on the end of the runway and crushed the cockpit and my father on what should have been take off) is the reason pilots now stop at the entrance to the runway and check to see If the flaps, ailerons, etc. are all going the directions they are supposed to before the plane goes down the runway to take off. I don’t know if it is fair or not that my father died when I was not quite three and my sister was three months from being born but the three years he was in my life I doubt made any difference in my destiny or my sister’s. I do know it was unfair that I was born with a 100 % inherited disease with a 50 % chance a child you have if you have this disease in a totally unreasonable set of odds and that is unfair to the innocent child. The fact that my mother remarried in a little over a year to the stepfather that eventually sexually molested me and my sister I have to believe was a way bigger influence in our lives than our “real” father dying when we were too young to know him and that was unfair. The biggest influence in our lives was our mother and as I grew older I began to realize how “screwed up” she was and that her problems unfortunately became her children’s problems and that was also unfair but most likely out of our “screwed up” mother’s control, it was avoidable but I don’t think she did it on purpose. It is hard to know what issues in life are necessarily a direct result of what events and circumstances that are a part of a child’s life when they are growing up and what issues would have been there anyway. I do believe there are things that are affected by how you are raised and I also believe there are a great many things that are things that influence the person you will become that are preordained characteristics you inherit and shape the person you will become no matter who raises you and how they raise you. In support of my believing certain things are inherent to the individual and not learned is the short experience I had in my breeding a few Bengal cats and raising kittens that had no contact with their father, and only eight weeks of contact with their mother, grow up to have more than could possibly be coincidental characteristics of one of their parent’s and the only third generation litter I bred I kept a kitten from it that grew up to have the same looks and personality of her grandmother, and I won’t bore you by telling you all the things they had in common but suffice it to say that kitten was her grandmother reincarnated and she never ever met her grandmother besides the fact she looked just like her grandmother and her neither of her parent’s looked anything like her. So this might not be enough to convince you that a lot of who you are is a product of genetics that “no one” has control over but it is a part of what makes me believe that. This also goes along with my belief that believing in the zodiac signs also are proof of my belief that a lot of who we are is absolutely in your own personal recipe that was used to create you and once the ingredients were mixed the cake was made and you can’t change how it tastes when it comes out of the oven. I am an “Aries” and when I read all of the descriptions for the different “signs” it is the only one that fits me. What I find useful about knowing which of the characteristics I have seem to be from my being an “Aries” is that I can read about the behaviors and values that are from being that sign and try to temper the behaviors that are caused by being this sign to use the best traits of this sign and yet not be too much of an “Aries” at times when the behavior I have that is caused by my being an “Aries” is not particularly socially acceptable. By not necessarily being all the Aries I can be, they tend to come on like “gangbusters” sometimes and many times I can see that it is just about what I am going to do and I stop myself before I offend or hurt someone. Honesty is always the best personal policy but discretion can be the better part of valor, and this is a behavior that Aries have to work on and frequently screw up at. I believe we are equal parts of family blood line genetics, immediate parent’s genetics, the universe and what we learn from whoever raises us and influences the most when we are young. This does explain why members of the same family can be so different, because there is way to know which traits a child will draw out of the available gene pool at conception, add to that the recessive traits that come forward with each draw from the available gene pool, then add the magnetic pull of the universe based on where all the stars and planets are aligned when you are born to what you learn from those who raise you and that gives the questions of “what made any one of us the way we are” a whole heck of a lot of factors that are beyond anyone’s control. If those factors align negatively they we are pretty screwed from the beginning, and vice versa if all those things aligned positively then you hit the “lottery”. Maybe when you get right down to it may be a lot of life is like the lottery. Whoever wins it isn’t based on fair, right or wrong. It is what is called “luck of the draw” and the concept of “fair” doesn’t apply. It is just the nature of the universe but I am not saying that once the draw has been made and your formula has been “cooked” that you can’t make any changes to the end product. You can change the frosting or the “layer” in the middle or even what is underneath it, but you always have to work with the “cake” that came out of the oven. Fair was never a factor so to succeed in life it helps if you don’t let it ever be a factor. Be all you can be and ignore what you can’t be but always striving to be “your” best! I don’t know how my story will end but I do know I didn’t pick most of the subject matter of it. If there is a silver lining I am still struggling to find it. I don’t feel sorry for myself I just don’t know where to go to from here. I am getting tired of fighting so hard to live every day with no help from a totally dysfunctional family.

FINDING MYSELF IN MEXICO!

PROLOGUE

Life can be a journey and a destination which is the case in my story as well as almost everyone else’s stories. When I was 27 my boyfriend and I felt like we were in need of a spiritual journey to get our lives back on track. It is not that we were totally off the rails, because by most people’s definition we probably weren’t, but most peoples’ opinions aren’t really the ones that count in the end. So based upon our strong work ethic that had been instilled in each of us at a young age and personal opinions about what we had recently been doing with our lives, which was that we were not living up to our own idea of what we should be and could be doing with our lives. It was not necessarily that we were anything wrong but then I guess that is really what we all have to live up to, our own personal expectations based upon the values we internalized while we were growing up. My boyfriend’s idea was to drive to Mexico to spend a month in a small fishing village my boyfriend had been to twice before I had ever met him to get our priorities back in order to our satisfaction. He was very enamored of this place and being he had already been there twice I trusted his opinion, I will say had I known at the beginning of the trip what I knew at the end I probably wouldn’t have gone but that really doesn’t matter because I didn’t know and I did go. I had only been to Mexico by way of a couple of walks into Tijuana from a parking lot in southern California to spend the day shopping and eating and then walking back to our car parked across the border, so my knowledge of the real Mexico was non-existent and my travel experiences were limited to mostly camping within two hours of where I lived, some three hours from where I lived visits to a few other places and a few 12 hour drives to a couple of places in western Canada and to three locations in southern California. So I would have to say my travel experience was very limited at that time. I will never call this trip a “vacation” but it was an experience I will never forget for a variety of reasons. This was my first time spending time with people living in a third world environment and it sure did make me appreciate all of the things I am privileged to enjoy living in the beautiful country of the United States of America.

 

 

 

The Adventure Begins

Greg and I left Eugene on the 15th day of January around 9:00 in the morning on a Thursday and even though it is pretty much the dead of winter the day still turned very sunny not long after we left. We got out of foggy Oregon and into sunny California about noon. We were in search of the Giant Redwoods we both had read about that were supposed to be located near the northern coast of California. I remembered that as a child our family had driven from Ashland in Oregon over the border to California and we saw some very awesome trees and there are home movies to prove it, but I was very young and was not driving so I really didn’t remember how long we drove before we encountered those very large trees. We stopped at several places along the way but never found the giant trees we were looking for. We saw a herd of wild elk along the side of the road that we were driving on and because they were a different type of elk than we were used to seeing we stopped at the “roadside” attraction that advertised a place you were assured of viewing these elk and even though we had already obviously had seen the elk we stopped at the tourist area for them. At this place that the elk were advertised to be at we found a map showing that there were some very large redwoods we should encounter on the the road ahead of us and they looked like the trees we had set out to see on this part of our trip. That evening we stopped in Eureka to spend the night. We stayed at a Motel 6, it was the first one I had ever stayed in, mostly that was because most all of the places my family went to were campgrounds in the woods, the trailer my parents had bought and placed on the twenty acres they had purchased when I was around ten years old in central Oregon which we visited a lot and that I also visited with my friends without my parents when I was old enough to drive my own car. About the only times we ever stayed in a motel was when we went to Ashland to see plays at the Shakespearean Theatre there and we always stayed at the “Thunderbird” motel that was within walking distance of the theatre and had a swimming pool to keep us children occupied. That was pretty much the only motel we ever stayed in, when we went to the coast my parents always went with friends and those people always had campers to stay in at the camp grounds we stayed at with our camper as well so I was sort of a rookie when it came to staying at motels. When I was 19 I drove my new car, that I had purchased at 18 with money I had inherited from my real father dying in a plane wreck when I was a three year old, to Vancouver Canada with my boyfriend at the time but downtown Vancouver did not have any Motel 6’s and we stayed at an very large and old and expensive Hotel – at least it was expensive for my boyfriend and I but it was a really cool Hotel and we could walk to all sorts of neat restaurants from it so it was worth the price of admission. Things have probably changed as far as how Motel 6 locations accommodations go but this was 28 years ago and the room was what you would call a very “basic room”, it had a bed, a shower, two chairs and a table, a black and white television set which cost us 99 cents to use and there were no frills and I think I the room cost us $19.99. We were pretty low on personal energy after our first day on the road after driving for ten hours and making tourist and food stops along the way. We went to a Round Table  pizza parlor a couple of streets away, we didn’t have this chain yet in my home town so it was sort of a treat and I was so tired I didn’t really care what I ate as long as I ate. We went back to our room after eating the pizza and I don’t remember watching much on our 99 cent black and white television before I was asleep and sleeping soundly, we didn’t need any more frills than a bed that night for sure.

It is now Friday and our second day on the road. We drove for about an hour and a half on a road called the “Avenue of the Giants” and it was the location of the enormous redwoods we had been seeking and there were a lot amazingly gigantic redwood trees on this road and we even got to drive through a giant redwood with my car. I even have a photo to prove it. We got to San Francisco about 5:00 and we spent two very frustrating hours driving around looking for Greg’s sister Robin’s house. We had written instructions she had sent Greg so that we could easily find where she lived but none of the street’s matched up with where we were and when we stopped at a couple of gas stations to ask for directions none of the people spoke English, they were all oriental, which was more than a little frustrating. When I was so frustrated I was ready to tell Greg to just leave San Francisco without staying there, Greg stopped at a flower shop to see if they could tell him why the directions to Robin’s house didn’t work and he brought me a bouquet of carnations back to the car. This was the first time, that I remember so it probably was the very first time, he ever bought me flowers (and I was thinking probably the last) because he could tell I was about ready to kill him for his incredibly bad sense of direction or utter stupidity which at that time made no difference to me which item was the case. He had found out the reason the directions he had been sent by his sister didn’t work were because he had told his sister we were coming into town on the Bay Bridge and not the Golden Gate Bridge which we really came in on. This explained why none of the streets on her map made any sense, it didn’t explain his stupidity but that is a different issue for a different day. He once again attempted to find where his sister lived after having received new instructions from his sister, and the owner of the flower shop, when he called her on where to go based on where we had actually entered the town and I assumed from where we were now officially located. He then spent another hour being lost once again and finally called his sister and she met us where we ended up, at a Safeway store that Greg went in to call her to meet us and buy some alcohol before I really did kill him (joke – ha ha – sort of) which actually was fairly close to her house. She met us within fifteen minutes as we actually had ended up fairly close to where she lived the second attempt to find her and she led us back to her place. We went out to a bar that night which was called the “I-Beam”, it was a new wave kind of a place and Duran Duran had just played there. It was fairly weird. Here is a little of what I found about it on the internet: The I-Beam was a popular nightclub in San Francisco that was located in the Haight-Ashbury neighborhood at 1748 Haight Street. Inside the I-Beam was shaped like a giant cube about forty feet on each side. There were Mylar covered cardboard I-Beams hanging from the ceiling above the center of the dance floor. At the entrance there were framed pictures of various astronomical objects such as galaxies and planets put there by former astronomer Sanford Kellman.  From 1980 to its end in 1992 Michael Garrett was the primary DJ—he played modern rock dance music by artists such as Madonna, Prince, New Order, The Cure, R.E.M., Nine Inch Nails, Duran Duran, Depeche Mode, etc. The temperature inside the I-Beam was deliberately kept as warm as possible in order to encourage people to take off their shirts while they were dancing; sexual encounters in the bathrooms were a common occurrence.The crème de la crème of new wave, punk, industrial, and indie bands played the I-Beam from 1981 to 1992. Many well known groups played at the I-Beam such as Siouxsie & The Banshees, Killing Joke, Gun Club, The Chameleons UK, Clan of Xymox, Billy Bragg, Tones on Tail, The Pursuit of Happiness, Duran Duran, Nina Hagen, The Damned, The Church, The Fall, Faith No More, Gene Loves Jezebel, Flesh For LuLu, New Order, The Legendary Pink Dots, The Lemonheads, Meat Beat Manifesto, Ministry, Motörhead, Big Black, The Butthole Surfers, 10,000 Maniacs, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Firehose, Soundgarden, Trouble Funk, Alice in Chains, Counting Crows, Screaming Jay Hawkins, Soul Asylum, Camper Van Beethoven, Gwar, Henry Rollins Band, Jane’s Addiction, X, Primus, The Slits, Sugarcubes, Bush Tetras, The Bangles, Fear, Flipper, The Wipers, Wilma, The Mermen, Meat Puppets, fIREHOSE, Pearl Jam, Smashing Pumpkins, Beastie Boys, The Rosemary’s, The Brian Jonestown Massacre, The Primitive Painters, T.S.O.L., Curve, Social Distortion, Jesus & Mary Chain, The Lloyds, Buck Naked and the Bare-Bottom Boys, and Chris Isaak.The I-Beam closed in 1994 after a long battle with neighbors over sound issues.

But it was not as weird as it seemed to be when we first walked in the place. There were a lot of gay people and what I guess what could be called ”punk” rockers and some people who looked like us as well, whatever that means!

The next day, Saturday, we went to a place I was told was a well-known cool place to go, for brunch at a place called “Bloody Mary’s” and it did have good drinks and we did have hang overs. Then we went to the Fisherman’s Wharf for a while and then we went to “Golden Gate Park”. It was a pretty cool place and had a very cool aquarium in in that had a Manatee; it was the first one of those I had ever seen in person. Actually it was the only one I have ever seen. We went to an excellent Greek restaurant for dinner and I had lamb baked in parchment paper for dinner. We then went back to Greg’s sister’s house and watched TV for the evening. Greg’s sister was pretty strange, it was the second time I had met her but the first time was only for one evening at Greg’s house when her and her brother and father flew to Eugene for Christmas a couple of years ago.

January 16, 1984

We left San Francisco at 9:00 in the morning. I can’t say I was unhappy to leave this confusing city. Today was not our day, we kind of followed Murphy’s Law of anything that can go wrong will! It was a pretty boring drive to Las Angeles. We stopped for lunch in a town called Coalinga, we had to drive ten miles off the freeway to get to it. It turned out that it wasn’t very big and was recovering from a major earthquake that had occurred in this area recently. We ended up eating at an A & W right off of the freeway after we toured Coalinga and found no place to eat and went back to I-5. We went another fifteen miles down the freeway only to find there were four restaurants there that any one of which would have been a better place to eat at, oh well, live and learn. Such is the nature of traveling to places you have never been before.

Next event for the day was unfortunately entering Las Angeles at 5:00 and ending up spending two hours stuck in rush hour traffic. I called a friend we were going to go visit and he was just leaving his house so we started towards Anaheim since we had already planned on visiting Disneyland the next day. After an extensive search for a motel we discovered upon checking in to the one we finally located that we liked that in the winter Disneyland is closed on Monday’s and Tuesday’s which of course the next two days. Greg was going to try and find a guy who owed him a lot of money who was supposed to live in Anaheim and discovered when he called the phone number the guy had given him that is was a bad number. Our consolation prize for the evening was that the motel was nice.

January 17

Since Disneyland was closed we went to Sea World instead. It was a really cool place. We got to see Shamu, I was expecting him to be a “hoakie” act and instead it was really a trip. He was a big ham and you could tell he really enjoyed performing. The whole place was fantastic and I got to pet a small whale and a dolphin, I am glad Disneyland was closed. We spent the night in a little motel called La Mesa near San Diego. We were super exhausted.

Greg & I Starting our trip to Mexico

Greg & I Starting our trip to Mexico

Motel 6 in Arcata, CA

January 17

Since Disneyland was closed we went to Sea World instead. It was a really cool place. We got to see Shamu, I was expecting him to be a “hoakie” act and instead it was really a trip. He was a big ham and you could tell he really enjoyed performing. The whole place was fantastic and I got to pet a small whale and a dolphin, I am glad Disneyland was closed. We spent the night in a little motel called La Mesa near San Diego. We were super exhausted.

January 18

We started our trek into Mexico today. We (I guess really I-since Greg doesn’t speak it at all and I took Spanish in Junior High, High School and 2 years of College) are having a little trouble picking up our Spanish but it is slowly coming back to me. We an interesting time getting across the border once we arrive in Sonora. First we had to stop in the immigration office and show proof of our citizenship, a driver’s license and voter’s registration card were all that were required, and then purchase “Mexican” insurance for my car so we didn’t get thrown in jail if someone decided to run into us. After we got our official papers we were stopped about two hours into Mexico, something Greg had already run into the first two times he drove down here, and depending on how rich you looked the Mexican police would tell you that you needed to pay a certain amount of money to continue on. While we were at the side of the road where the police ran their “mordida” (bribe) operation we saw a big motor home being totally searched and torn apart because the people refused to pay the “mordida” because it was illegal. We were smarter than that and paid the sum they asked which was about $20 for us as we were driving my pretty innocuous looking 1982 blue Mustang II with a four cylinder engine, not an expensive looking car and we were not dressed like we had money so it was a cheap price to pay for easy passage. We spent the night in a town called Sonata at a motel called the Excelsior and ate at the restaurant of the same name next to the motel. We had “Pollos Fritas” which is fried chicken, not exactly like the fried chicken I grew up on but it was edible and I was tired and hungry. The motel was even more basic than the motel 6 we stayed at in California, it had tile floors, a bad bed and it was very noisy all night long. It was the first exposure to a motel where the bathroom became your shower, literally as there were no shower curtains to keep the water out of the rest of the bathroom and the toilet paper was kept inside a plastic container so that it didn’t get wet when you took a shower. I had never experienced anything like it.

January 19

We are truly in Mexico now. I’m having trouble adjusting to eating at places that look like a literal hole in the wall. I guess if I wasn’t worried about coming down with Montezuma’s Revenge I wouldn’t be so bothered. There are some incredibly poor people in Mexico. When we stopped in some of the small towns on our way from Sonora small children would run to our car and want to sell us “Chiclets” gum or offer to pour water on our windshield and wash it off for a penny. It was a very depressing thing to witness. We stopped at a place for brunch and I had Tacos de Pollo and they were pretty good which did surprise me given the appearance of the place. We traveled all day, there is not much to see in the upper half of Mexico, there is a whole lot of desert there. We stopped for the night in Hermosillo. We stayed in a pretty funky motel, the worst we have stayed at by far.

Jan 20

This day is not starting out very good. It seems as if none of the vehicles in Mexico, or at least most of them anyway, do not have mufflers and they roared past our motel all night long. I didn’t get any sleep. I managed to wake Greg up at 6:30 so we just got and hit the road. We had breakfast at a restaurant o some sort about half way to Mazatlan. I had huevos rancheros, they were not too exciting but they were edible, and of course they came with the always present refried beans, in one of the many forms they come in. We got to Mazatlan about 5:00. It is a really pretty place on the beach. After a bit of searching we found a place to stay for 2800 pesos.

Me on the Mazatlan Motel Balcony

Me on the Mazatlan Motel Balcony

It was pretty nice and it had a little patio off our room where we could watch the ocean. It was called Las Brisas. We had a wonderful shrimp dinner, wonderful because my food standards are starting to change, at a place called “El Neys”. It cost 3000 pesos, which is about $20.00 for the whole dinner for two.  We were both pretty tired this evening and we didn’t make it up very late.

Jan 21

I had a pretty good night’s sleep last night for a change. I’ve been having a lot of trouble sleeping in a different place every night. Today I felt pretty good. We had a strange omelette for breakfast and then laid in the sun for a while. Then we got a good room (once again my standards have changed), at a pretty nice place for 2 nights for $2700 pesos a night. The place we stayed at last night was more fancy looking – but it had tile floors which I hate. I started my exercise program back up today finally. It was called the Sands Motel. It had a bar and restaurant. We went down to the market place in Mazatlan today. It is quite a place, you can buy almost anything. We had Mexican style “Kentucky Fried Chicken” for dinner tonight. It was pretty good although the pieces were cut rather oddly and the mashed potatoes were a bit strange but not too bad.

Jan 22

I didn’t sleep so good again last night, I can’t seem to get 2 good night’s sleep in a row. I am feeling a little frustrated because I don’t know where anything is or how to do anything. I am also getting tired of eating out all of the time but there is no choice because we have nothing to prepare food with. I am also getting tired of having lots of people around all of the time, I long for a little peace and quiet. It should be nice when we finally get to San Blas and can relax awhile. My nerves are getting a little tense, I need to get somewhere so I can get into some kind of a routine. I want to be somewhere I can get familiar with so I don’t have to wander around like an idiot all of the time. I kind of wanted to go to a bullfight today but it didn’t work out, oh well, it probably would have grossed me out anyway.

Jan 23

We left Mazatlan this afternoon and headed for San Blas. We got there at 4:30. The drive from Mazatlan to San Blas is very pretty. San Blas is in the jungle so there are a lot of exotic looking birds and foliage. We stayed at a really beautiful motel called “Las Brisas” (the same name as the one we stayed at for one night in Mazatlan) and we had a wonderful dinner at a place called “Restaurant McDonalds”. Mexico is a funny place, you never know what you are going to experience next. I guess that isn’t so different from life in general but being in a foreign country is a very foreign experience for me. This is also a very loud country and there are a lot of bad odors due to a lot of pollution in the cities, part of that comes from the fact that they don’t seem to require mufflers on any of the vehicles they drive down here which is probably mostly due to the extreme state of poverty that I have already seen in a short period of time.

Jan 24

It was kind of cloudy today, it has been that way for several days, we tried to lay out in the sun for awhile but it got so cloudy we had to give it up. We tried to find an apartment to stay in for the month that we plan on being here but had no luck in finding one today. Mexican motels have a strange arrangement for showers, usually there is no shower door and the whole bathroom becomes the shower once you turn the shower on. You have to put the toilet paper in another room because it will get totally screwed up by the water once you turn on the shower. I wonder if it is the same way at a private house but I imagine I will never know the answer to that question. You also can’t have your towel to dry off after your shower in the bath room so after you turn the shower off you then open the door and grab a dry towel from outside the bathroom. We went and looked up a local Mexican man named Jose Moreno that Greg had met from the other two times he came down to San Blas and he couldn’t find us a place to stay at. He did find us a cheaper motel that we could probably afford to live in for a month if we have to, it isn’t particularly nice but it it’s livable. We went to the “Restaurant McDonalds” for dinner again and ran into a couple we met there last night and asked if they knew about an apartment we could rent. Tonight they said they did know of a place for rent and we had a few beers with them and walked around town with them looking for the man they thought had a place we could rent. We never did find him but they said to come by their place the next day and they would help us find him again.

Jan 25

Last night I had another bad night because of still fighting what is called Montezuma’s Revenge which really just means a bug you catch that causes diarrhea. There was a very loud Mexican party that started about 2:00 am and at around 4:00 am someone set of fireworks for about an hour. All in all I got about 2 hours of sleep all night long. We went over to David and Carl’s this morning and after a lot of searching we found Rafael, who spoke perfect English fortunately for us. He showed us a beautiful little place and only wanted $150.00 for a month and we took it. We were really lucky to get it we thought, it was clean and cute. We went out to dinner at a place called “El Torino”, it was good and they made a good bloody Mary. Our whole dinner including our drinks cost us around $10.00. We have had quite a few dinners for not very much money. We stocked up our kitchen this evening so we can quit eating every meal out at a restaurant, it is getting very boring.

Torino Bar in San Blas

Torino Bar in San Blas

What exactly is the definition the word “Values” to each of us is the question I think?

This is a definition of Values I found on the internet and it sounds reasonable:

A personal value is a foundation upon which measures of integrity are based. They are normally considered objective but I don’t think very much can be totally objective. Values can be defined as broad preferences concerning appropriate courses of action or outcomes. As such, values reflect a person’s sense of right and wrong or what “ought” to be. “Equal rights for all”, “Excellence deserves admiration”, and “People should be treated with respect and dignity” are representative of values. Values tend to influence attitudes and behavior.

So keeping that in mind these are some of my thoughts on the word and how I believe values influence my live and how I came by them:

VALUES

This is one the most if not the most, important considerations a person has to come to  terms with in their life.  I have evaluated and modified what I thought were my values many times in my life and I imagine I will continue to do so for the rest of my life as I know it.

I think that a lot of our values have predetermined tendencies because of our upbringing.  Our parents bring us up in relation to their  values and of course a lot of these get absorbed into  our thinking through the years. 

Values are hard to describe, there seems to be more than one kind and definition of what values  really are to each of us and all of us.  They are the important principles by which we run our lives and they are also the things which have worth ,or make things have worth, to us.

Sometimes I wonder how much choice we really have in determining what values we should live by.  I have had times when I thought that I had completely lost some of my values but upon examination I find that I have not really lost the values but they had gotten buried in an avalanche of things that obscured them.  I don’t really remember making a conscious choice of what values to have and what ones not to have, a lot of times I have to analyze my values and decide what is the value and what is the behavior that came from the basic values I have.

The only way I can find of determining which values I should live by is by  trying to figure out which ones bring about the most enrichment in my life with the least amount of harm to others.  Ethical considerations have to be made when examining what we think are our values.  A value can be good or  bad and a lot of that depends on how we are using what we feel is the value in our day to day behavior and lives.

A person can value something very much but if the value starts destroying everything else that  is important to them then the person had better examine the value of their belief in what they value and change what they value that is destroying the value of the value if it is indeed a real value.  A value in some way should enrich  your life, possibly values should also give some direction to your life or be the direction, possibly that is part of the puzzle of what really makes up a value or makes something valuable.  I know that because of some of the values I hold that some of the decisions in my life are already made for me  because of their agreement or disagreement with my underlying values.

The values we live by should be realistic, or at least as much as possible, they should give us a rational outlook on life, they should help us with the running of our life.  The values have to be examined with regard to our morals and with regard to how it fits in with the overall presumed social values of the masses..  Values need to be healthy or the individual will not be, a person needs to understand their values, the good ones and the bad ones, once they are understood they can be dealt with but I  am not sure they can be changed, I think that some of the behavior can be changed that stems from some of the things we value but I doubt that the real deep underlying value we hold can be totally controlled by us.

I try to live by the values which bring about the most and best enrichment and enhancement of life’s experience.  This is how I feel a person should determine what values to live by.

 

We Came And We Conquered, Was Any Part Of That Right?

When I was young and idealistic, and maybe I still am, I couldn’t understand how the white men – my ancestors – could immigrate to this country and feel justified in taking over the native people’s land and condemning them to live on reservations. They were here first, I didn’t understand why that didn’t count for anything, and I can say all these years later I still feel that way. The nature of the world, natural or unnatural, is based on the survival of the fittest and I guess some kind of argument can be made that the winner in any type of event is the strongest but I am not convinced it demonstrates who is the fittest but who was smart enough to build a better weapon to kill those who might be stronger in hand to hand combat. I have a lot of trouble reconciling being better at cheating mother nature as being a superior quality. What happened can never be changed and never be made right but maybe part of our countries legacy might be to acknowledge that as a nation so we can show we might in some small way deserve to live here. Just a thought on a long running disgrace, in my opinion, that we have to live with our ancestors having done to the original inhabitants of this wonderful country I am glad I live in.

I Believe That If We Don’t Participate In Changing Our Government Nothing Will Ever Change

One thing I have always noticed about the way politics work in this country is that everyone gets all “Gung Ho” at election time and then after the election is over all of the principals we all said we believed in and would support fall by the wayside. I find this very depressing. We elect someone to be our leader and then don’t help. Then after we don’t help we complain that he couldn’t save the world, does anybody really believe one man can change everything all by himself? If they do they are amazingly delusional, no one man has that power, do we really think we elected God? I don’t think so. So why do we think a president can do what God hasn’t done for our country? It takes all of the villages to build a “good world” and that will never be a perfect world because perfection is most likely impossible, but wouldn’t f***ing near perfect be a wonderful thing to achieve if we would all put our collective energies into doing so? This is my hope and my dreams for this country and the world. It seems to me that it shouldn’t be impossible if everyone cared and everyone tried to make this world the best it can be!