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1 to 15 March 2020   16 to 31 March 2020

Sunday, March 1, 2020

Patrice and I went for a quick trip to Walmart this morning.
We stopped at a small store to buy lottery tickets.
What you see is how many different lottery tickets are for sale in Texas. Over a hundred!

We are invited to Patrice and Manon for lunch.

Grilled sandwiches and fries, hummm!

It is very windy, humid and hot. 30° C outside and the AC is set to 30° C and runs almost all the time.

The last two days have been very windy, not fun. Chairs were overturn, stuff flying, dust!

Monday, March 2, 2020

Natasha, our pretty grand-daughter.

Tonight's supper is at Manon and Patrice. We are having pink spaghetti. Real good.

Bingo night!
I am the only one who won, but then I had to share the winnings. One big $5 bill for me.

Tuesday, March 3, 2020

Our neighbors are leaving this morning. They were really nice people. Drive safe...

It is hot and muggy today.
Why not tackle a small project today?
We will be adding 6 small, one inch hole plus filter, to the oil access door. This will allow the engine to "breathe" a little easier.

I received the filters a few days ago.
We will put them on the oil access door.
I measured 6 holes at one inch diameter. I doubted myself on one of the hole and it is now crooked.

We re-installed the foam to reduce the engine noise and put in the filters on the door.

The end result. Patrice is pretty happy with the result.

Why did we do this modification?
The air for the engine comes from under the generator. It draws dust and other debris into the generator compartment. If the hole gets restricted somehow, the engine cannot draw enough air to run properly. By adding the 6, one inch filter, we allow more air to be drawn in for the engine and less air coming from under the generator.

While the engine is already accessible, why not change the engine oil.

In a RV, you do not always have the right tools. Patrice improvise a funnel with some cardboard.

All done.

After all this hard work, time for a Bloody Mary.

Or many Bloody Marys...

Wednesday, March 4, 2020

As usual, we are out and about at the next-door flea market.
The winds are high, but for about 30 minutes it blew really hard and there was a lot of dust/sand in the air.

The Park is slowly emptying. All those sites were full a week ago.

Thursday, March 5, 2020

We are going with a group of French-Canadian to the Mexican town of Reynosa. The town puts on a party to attract tourists.
At one time, Reynosa was a safe place to visit, but when the drug cartels came, the drug war came too. Many people were murdered, but not tourist, drug cartel members. The Winter Texan did not go to Reynosa after that. To prove the town is now safer then before, the town has a "party" for the Winter Texans, trying to draw us back.
On our way to Reynosa.

Right after we passed the US border, we took place in front of a marching band. We completely block the border for over 45 minutes!

We marched to the middle of the bridge, at the border between the US and Mexico.
We listened to many speeches from the local big political members. We are being watched by drones and probably had our photo taken many times.

The United States behind us.

Half a turn and now it is Mexico behind us.

The security is pretty high today.

The speeches are over and we walk to Mexico with our friends.

As usual, nobody stops at the Mexican border.

I was telling you the security was high. Soldiers were walking with the crowd. We saw many police officers and even a few military vehicles with machine guns mounted on the roof. We never felt unsafe.

We made it to the town center where many of the local entertainers performed.

The town offered a free meal plus free margaritas.

Here we are under the big tent.

Our meal, it was a Mexican meal with a slice of pizza.
I do not really care for Mexican food, but it was OK.

The priest Miguel Hidalgo is considered by many as the father of the independence of Mexico.

The town offered a gift bag to everybody. The bag offered samples of the local goods and a shot glass with the town logo.

Our friends showed us where the pedestrian shopping street was and it is very safe. The shops are upscale compare to Nuovo Progreso.
The standard of living seems higher too.

This is for Benoit, a 7-eleven!

Ah! The things you see in Mexico.

After lunch, we left Reynosa with some friends to go back to the US. We made a quick stop at a very busy store/bazaar.
Do you remember when we use to have plastic shoes?

After the store, we made it to the Hidalgo flea market.

Michele found a nice back pack from Ozark Trail for only $18. It is probably a copy. At least it is new and well made.

Thursday evening, petanque.
Lets just say that Michele and I had a few glasses of wine before we came to play.
Michele did not play as well, as for me, I did very good on the first game, but not on the second. We still had a lot of fun.

We had a busy day!

Friday, March 6, 2020

I went to the Park Meeting this morning. Not much new, but the donut were very good!

Patrice was already washing his 5th wheel when I got back.

Michele was helping him because Manon was busy preparing the supper for tonight.

Shortly after, I helped Patrice washing the awning.
The awning was really dirty.

Another view of our Park. It is getting empty.

You can see a little bit of the Val Verde flea market.

With Patrice's 5th wheel all clean, we had a nice cold beer.

Five o'clock arrives fast and we go in to watch our favorite show, "Un souper presque parfait" and "Le tricheur". Yes, French TV.

We really like "Le tricheur". Not Flick!

Flick is looking for some attention from Michele...


Thats better!

Manon made us a really nice stew.

A good day.

Saturday, March 7, 2020

We are on our way to Port Mansfield to feed the deers. It is a little more than an hour drive from home.

We stopped at the local grocery shop to buy some frozen corn for the deers.
Flick is waiting for me!

We have seen many wind farms along the way.

This is a different way to keep the electrical wires apart!

Port Mansfield, population 450.

The reason we are here, the deers.

They are used to people!

The deers eat right out of your hands. They leave slimy stuff on your hand.

A nice buck is hiding in the shadow. Will he come?

I did not know which photo to post on our blog.

This buck did eat right out of my hands.
Click here to see the movie.

After we fed the deers, we drove around the village. Some of the wharves are falling apart.

Handsome couple!

Manon found a small crab.

We saw many houses with the backyard on the canal. You can have your boat right at the door.

They have a fishing wharf here. We went to check it out. We talked to a few fishermen about fishing in these waters. Very interesting.

Some palm trees are blooming.

After the visit in Port Mansfield, we drove back to Raymondville to have a very good Patty Melt from Whataburger.

To top it all off, we even had Church's Chicken for supper.

We ended the day by playing some games.
We had lots of fun with lots of laughters.
A very good day.

Sunday, March 8, 2020

Today we went to the pool and even Patrice came for a quick dip.

Manon decided to come play petanque for the first time. Michele went too, but not me.
Manon in action!

It was a busy week.

Monday, March 9, 2020

I really love this sticker on the car.

Can you see the word "coexist". This world really needs to do that!

This our son in the middle, Jeremy. He is an aviation technician instructor at his squadron. The Air Demonstration team from Canada, the Snowbirds.

Michele was gone all morning shopping at the thrift stores. She needed a nap after lunch!

Monday night Bingo!

Not one of us (3) won anything.

Tuesday, March 10, 2020

We skyped with Jeremy, Kristin and Natasha.
Poor little girl, she is tired.

We are back to the normal temperature in the Valley. I am talking about +30° with 70 to 90 % humidity!
And the wind? 20 to 35 km/h.
I took a photo of Michele taking a photo of me!

Michele is having fun with selfies!

We are watching our favorite late afternoon tv show.

A nice Tuesday.

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

Michele, Patrice and I are out for our Wednesday walk in the Val Verde flea market.

They even sell compost in bulk!
I guess the Covid-19 is not a concern in the Valley. The closest case is more than 100 km away from here.

This evening, at the clubhouse, we are being entertained by Pickpocket Gene.

We patiently wait for the show to start.

Gene looking for possible victims!

He did find a few.

He is very good and we sure laughed a lot.
At the break, he was selling his ware.

He also did a Windsor tie knot in less that one second.

In the second half of his show, he talked about personal information security and how to protect yourself.
We really enjoyed ourselves tonight.

Thursday, March 12, 2020

We are in Mexico this morning.

I am back at the glasses place to get my lenses changed to progressives for only $100. They will be ready Saturday morning.

I also got my teeth cleaned for $25 and a new mouth-guard for only $100. The mouth-guard is ready in one hour.

We are getting a pedicure, all three of us.

For Michele and me, this is the first time ever. Manon has had a few done before.
By the way, the chairs are massage chairs, free.

Manon loves it!
What do we drink while we get our pedicure?
Margaritas! Imagine, somebody is looking after your feet, a massage for your back and a margarita for only $15! Happiness.

The lady working on Michele's feet.

And my lady working on my feet. None of them speaks French or English.

After the pedicure, our next stop is at the El Disco Super Center to have lunch.

We are inside the El Disco at the Poncho Bar.

Since I do not have my glasses, how can I look at the menu?
I have a small pair of plastic glasses in my wallet. Can you see them on my face?

The crew!

What I did not tell you about Mexico, is that I got my toe nails painted during the pedicure.

I know! A nice bright orange to make people talk in the pool at the RV Park.

Michele got her nails done too!

I was not the first one to get it done in the RV Park. Ken, another man from Canada, got his done a week before me.

Yes, politically incorrect, but hey! It was all in fun.

Manon and Patrice came to play petanque this evening. They had fun.

I was captain. I am not crazy about doing it.

We had a busy day.

Friday, March 13, 2020

Another busy day is in store for us.
First off, breakfast for the four of us at the Alamo Restaurant.

Patrice left us to go to the Harbor Freight Tools store for the big sale. Michele, Manon and I went to the Mercadome flea market.

Our next stop is at the local Walmart. Just like anywhere in North America, no more toilette paper and very little water bottles.

We also stopped by the local H-E-B (grocery store) and it is worst than Walmart!

We reserved a short cruise on the Rio Grande River for this afternoon, 3:30 pm.

That is one weird looking tree turning to seeds.

It is a very hot day and we decided to have a nice cold beer outside while waiting for the cruise.

The Riverside Dreamer arriving. It will be our cruise ship.

Ready to go.

Remember, one side is the USA and the other is Mexico.
Very few people can get in the USA here.

I am at the back of the ship looking forward and I turned around to look at the back of the ship.

On the Mexican side, you have many private parks for rent for private parties. This one went bankrupt. The Mexican Federal Police took it over, so the police officer could put their tent inside the building. By the way, the officer baths and washes their clothes in the river.

Another luxurious private park you can rent.

One of the parks along the river is a municipal park. During the weekend, this place is packed with people.

Further down stream, you have a dam across the river. It is not for producing electricity, only to hold water back for irrigation.
The arrow points tot he middle of the dam, the frontier.

I am sure you have heard about the wall between the USA and Mexico!
This one was built with private funds. It is 3 miles long. But! Like any government, the US government said, "we will built our own wall, better and safer". It will be built behind this one!

The river is only about 100 meters wide. We are surprised to see so many houses/cottages are on the American side.
This is the American side of the river.

There is even an RV Park by the river. Once the wall will be built, the RV Park will be outside the wall!

After about one hour on the river. It was time to get back to the dock.

We enjoyed our cruise on the Rio Grande River. We have learned a lot about both countries.

Saturday, March 14, 2020

I am back in Mexico this morning.

I am by myself because I am picking up my new glasses.

I made a quick stop at the dentist who made my mouth-guard. They needed to make a small adjustment.

I get right back to the American custom.

I only had to wait for 20 minutes to cross the border. A friend came to the border 30 minutes after me and had to wait 2 hours get through.

The rest of the day is relaxing at home.
While having a drink before diner, we saw a group of golf carts go by, stopped and everyone jumped out and went to a different golf cart!
What is this all about?
It was one of those spontaneous things. Every 100 meters, they stop and jump out and in another golf cart for another 100 meters, repeat. With a drink in their hands!

Sunday, March 15, 2020

We got some more photos of Kristin, Jeremy and Natasha ice fishing in Saskatchewan.
This little will do a lot of stuff in her life with parents like Kristin and Jeremy.

Sunday, it is petanque night. Michele and Manon went, but not Patrice or me.

Until next time.

Life is good...

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