Cesare’s restaurant, Malecon shopping, and D’Martha’s Hair Salon


I am back in hot humid June to escape the unseasonally cold weather in Calgary, Alberta.

Rainy season is just a day or two away and even in May there was the surprise visit of hurricane Bud which produced torrential rain. I am busy fixing my roof in preparation for 3-4 months of rainy weather. In Mexico many roofs like mine are flat and an annual application of sealant is essential. So we are working at it until it’s done.

My three dogs are fatter than I remember so are clearly being well fed even if they are providing a liquid feast for the ubiquitous ticks or as they are known here garapatas.

Sunday I ventured into Puerto Vallarta for a late lunch at Cesare just a block or two west of the Malecon. I had cream of cilantro soup and Humberto had a version of steak. It was okay but the service was very indifferent.

If you want to buy beachwear or sandals there is an expansive selection here but again with the service you don’t always feel the love and customers should always feel the love.

Yesterday was time for a haircut. The best place to go in my experience is D’Martha’s Salon where I get a cut and blowdry for 280 pesos. It is better than any haircut I have had in Calgary and by far the best here in Puerto Vallarta. Again there isn’t much warm and fuzzy feeling and Martha the diva is to familar in assuming she can call me tu instead of the more appropriate and respectful usted. Mexicans often assume that native English speakers don’t notice, well I got news fot you we sure do! Whatever her lack of social graces, I have to say I love my haircut, really love it!

Her place is at #326 Col. Emiliano Zapata Tel 322 223 0405 or email dmarthas@hotmail.com.

Today it was time for waxing and a paraffin pedicure with Carmen who operates a lovely little Spa service out of her modest home.

A 3/4 leg waxing with bikini line and pedicure came to 380 pesos and she does a great job in comfortable hygienic conditions which is not how it is every where I have been. Value for money and service Carmen gets 5 stars from me. You can call her too on 322 297 5106 and arrange an appointment although she is going to be away for significant chunks of time during July, August and September 2012.

I fitted in a lunch at Farmar in Bucerias where I had delicious cream of broccoli soup. The service too was indifferent on this occasion although when Candy is there you are in for a treat. She is warm, friendly, attentive, funny, smart and if you talk to her a survivor of meningococcal  meningitis and septicaemia as a teenager. She is a testimony on how attitude brings life! I’m definitely a fan of Candy and of Farmar when she is there!

What more? How could I  write in June without mentioning the sweet apricots at 20 pesos a bag from road side vendors. The mangoes both yellow ones and the more familar red are also in season. I bought 3 of each yesterday and the total cost was 42 pesos.

Our yard is looking thirsty with our unusally lanky lookung papaya bearing very few fruits for consumption. The lima tree which I rescued 3 years ago has finaly recovered sufficiently to bear fruit. In a while they will turn yellow and be ready to eat. The coconut trees too are in a state of readiness, and will grow another meter over the next few months once the rains come and the sky falls down. Sometimes the storms are so torrential it feels as if that is really happening.

The dusty road outside or lovely home remains unpaved and is occasionally graced by teenage boys walking along in smart suits for a quinze anos party. Even the poorest people in Mexico know how to dress up for an event and they truly put tasteless Canadians and Americans to woeful shame when it comes to style.

Now that I think I have offended almost everybody I think it’s time for a little drink of Guiness not a very Mexican drink but if you like it, it can occasionally be found in Walmart Mezcales or Mega near Bucerias.

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About Charlotte Ortega

I am a family physician and writer.I am an active member of the Puerto Vallarta Writers Group and I am coordinating this years International Writers Conference to be held in March in association with Los Mangos Library.Winters are spent in Mexico to escape the cold and the summers in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. I am British born but have not lived in the U.K. since 1997. My blog is intended to inform would be travellers and those who view Mexico as a preferred retirement destination on every aspect of living in Mexico, the good and the other...My husband Humberto is Mexican and is a font of knowlege on the diverse cultural and social nuances which exist in this vibrant and colourful country.
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