Friday, April 30, 2010

Good intentions




I suppose the treadmill would be more effective if I actually were wearing the shoes? I intend to walk every day. I need to walk every day. Most days I do but on other days, it never quite happens. I leave my shoes there as a reminder because, you know, the big ugly treadmill sitting in my living room isn't reminder enough!

What I really need is a treadmill hooked up to a laptop which can only be powered as I walk!

I would get some serious walking time in! If I were reading political blogs I would certainly burn off some major calories!


I could even check out what Hugo Chavez is saying on his Twitter account!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Is it really about race?

 I have lived in Latin America for over 25 years. I love the Latin people! I love the language! I love the culture! I especially love the cuisine. I have a Latin daughter  in law whom I love as a daughter. I have a Mexican  brother in law, and I even love him! My husband has a Mexican uncle and Mexican cousins. We love them too!

I say all this in hopes that you will not accuse me of racism. I have been a victim of racism and racial profiling. I have watched as my children were prejudiced against because of their color and race by their fellow citizens. My husband was even detained and held on a military base for not carrying his documents as he crossed a state line. He should have had his documents with him but being an American he was not accustomed to needing to carry his papers. Any Latin would have known better and my husband never left home without his papers again! My house was once painted with graffiti because of my color!


Every Latin American country requires its CITIZENS to carry their identification documents upon their person at all times. Any law officer can request any citizen to show their ID at any time. No suspicious conduct is required before the asking of these papers.

The reason for this is obvious. DUH! All Latin Americans are of the same race and look alike! How is a Mexican police officer going to be able to know which Hispanic is a citizen of Mexico and which is a Guatemalan? How can a Venezuelan  guarding the border of Colombia  know which Latin is a Venezuelan citizen and which is Colombian? It would not be possible for a Paraguayan  law officer to know which person is a lawful citizen of Paraguay and which might be an illegal Bolivian.  They are all the same race, speak the same language, share a common culture. The only way to prove citizenship is with documentation and no suspicious or illegal conduct needs to be committed  before requiring the person to prove their nationality. Not only does the law officer have the authority to do this, he has the responsibly to do this in order to maintain the rule of law of his nation.

In the USA we have a great diversity of race among our citizenry, and yet, in Arizona a police officer is now to be considered a racist if he asks someone to prove their legal status in this country when under REASONABLE SUSPICION!

If it is not racist for the Mexican police officer to asks for documentation of all citizens in Mexico, why is it racist for the American police officer expect all people, no matter their race, to be able show legal documentation in Arizona when they have already given reason for suspicion?

I reiterate! I am not a racist! I love Latins Americans, but I also honor the law, whether it be the law of the United States, Mexico, Venezuela or  Paraguay. Two years ago, when I legally immigrated to the country of Paraguay, I had to swear in front of an immigration officer to obey and uphold the laws of this land.  And I will honor their laws as long as I live here. If the day comes when I can not obey all of their laws, I will leave.


“The end of law is not to abolish or restrain, but to preserve and enlarge freedom. For in all the states of created beings capable of law, where there is no law, there is no freedom. ~ John Locke

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The Things I See...

BACON ZITS

Sound   yummy?

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

"House Hunting on a Mission Budget' ~ Part Six

I am afraid to show pictures of our house. It will only scare you when you see the condition the house is in. BUT, we know the owner and he is putting a lot of money into repairing the house which was destroyed by the previous renters. We have discussed what will be done  and knowing the owner, who also has other rental properties, we feel confident that the work will be done,

Before I show you the pictures, let me tell you what we were looking for. Mainly,
Rent under US $500.00
One level to spare me the stairs
Large living room for entertain groups
Lots of windows for light
A yard with greenery
A porch/patio to hang a hammock
Plentiful water,
Good wiring
Secure area

This house has all of these things but...it needs a lot of cleaning, painting and even some demo to get it there. SO we call this house the "WE Must be Crazy but We'll Take It" house.

                                                                                                                                                          This is the living room which opens into the dining room.Both are of a good size, have a nice neutral ceramic tile , cathedral ceilings and lots of windows and french doors. When the shutters are opened it provides very good lighting.


The living room has a fireplace and plenty of windows with shutters.

The bedrooms are decent in size , have nice lighting and built in closets. Grant it! Everything needs a good coat of paint!










The three bedrooms all have large built in closets




You can see my husband is taking stock of all the
things he will need to be fixing soon!


Checking out the storage available in the dining room built in.


The boarded up holes are for placing window unit Air Conditioners.



The big front porch will be perfect for drinking terere with friends and family!


Poor Hubby! Lots of yard work ahead as well!
 This house has been neglected but  is in a very nice area. We have armed guards at both ends of the street as well as a private guard post 20 meters down from our front door. The entire block behind us is owned and guarded by a large International law firm. The Guard Post happens to abut the back of  our property.
  The house is roomy. It is affordable. The owner will be putting in a new kitchen and remodeling the two baths. 
Its going to be OK! 

Really! It will be fine.... eventually....
I'm sure of it... 
(and you may have noticed I did not post pictures of the kitchen and baths! You'll thank me for it!)

Monday, April 26, 2010

'House Hunting on a Mission Budget' ~ Part Five

We almost skipped going to see this house because it was described as an apartment. It is like an apartment in that it is on the second floor. It is unlike an apartment in that it is a single dwelling built above two commercial office spaces,but it has a private yard.
We called this one,


"The Hidden Gem" 


This is the private garage entrance


Ample and secure parking



The garage leads to the BBQ/Patio area,  
so important in Paraguayan culture and useful for ministry



I mentioned the yard, right? 
The small shed in the back is laundry and storage
Notice the high walls which provide great safety for an area for the grand kids to play!

This is the living/dining room


An adorable kitchen!


With two sinks!


One of the bedrooms has a nice built in closet



The family/guest bath is big and clean!



The bedrooms are not large but do have good lighting



The master bath is almost as beautiful as the one in 'The Mansion'


I seem to attract the color green!



The master bath makes up for the orange shag carpet
(more orange than it shows in this picture) and the missing closet.



Closet needs work



The kitchen and living room do not have much of a view 
and have a balcony that will need childproofing


But the bedroom views make it easy to forget you are in the city something
very important if you have spent most of your life living in a jungle!

This house was listed on the high end of our budget but the owner was willing to drop the price  US$100.00 for us.

This is not where I will be living. It is where my daughter and her family will be renting. This house is a keeper!
 What do you think?

Friday, April 23, 2010

'House Hunting on a Mission Budget' ~ Part Four

This is a great house at a great price, US$ 550.00!  We call it, 
'The Circular Stair House'.


Nicely kept exterior.


Inviting front porch area.



Large garage and patio area, no grass though.


Well lit kitchen with decent cabinets!


Bar opening into dining area. Parquet floors!


Large living room with built in shelves. 
(Notice the very steep, narrow circular stair, no rails whatsoever!) SCARY!


4 good size bedrooms.


Nice closets!


3 bathrooms. 


Lots of balconies and stairs...lots!


Interesting,  unblocked view into all the neighbor's yards.

This is a nice house at a fair price. It is on a loud, busy street. The many stairs worry me because of my back problems and also for the grand children who visit often. It also has a lot of floors to keep up,(Sweep, mop. wax, buff) including a third story rooftop teraza from which one can see all the way to Brazil. Literally!

I could see myself living here if I had a larger family and were younger. Not now... its too much house for me!




Thursday, April 22, 2010

House Hunting on a Mission Budget ~ Part Three


"The Itty, Bitty House"


but...its clean! This little house was the cleanest one we saw. It also was affordable, US$ 450.00. It is tiny. It has no yard. It is a good way out of town. BUT it is clean! I could almost rent it just to show my great appreciation to the owners for such a clean place.



Small rooms. 


 
 Small but neat wardrobes.


 
All the window (3 in total) open towards the
front and are blocked by the wall, one meter from them.
(but the plants are nice!)




The side yard  comes with an extra sink for very short people!



 A small but clean bath! What a novelty!






The kitchen is a very small cave!


 
It is a very samll, dark and...green cave!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

The things I see...

While looking through one of the rental homes, we came across ...


Mona Lisa
and look who she was hanging out with!




Now we know why she wears that goofy, little grin!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

"House Hunting on a Mission Budget" ~ Part two

Both of the houses I showed you yesterday were renting for the same price, about $850.00 US. The first one, which we called 'The Mansion', was in a newer part of town and not necessarily in a secure area (which may very well explain why the owners now live in another house elsewhere!) so the price is reduced.

The second house I showed, dubbed 'The Disgusting Over priced House' is in an older more established area. It is an area of town where there are  armed guards on nearly every street. Location, location, location! They can rent at a higher price ($850.00US) knowing someone will pay just to live in that area.

But not us! I could make this house work with some cleaning, painting and repairs, but not at this price. It looks better in pictures then in reality. I suppose not smelling the mold and mildew helps...

Here are more photos of the beautiful staging done by the owners of "The Disgusting Over Priced House'.

The Patio

The office!



Not sure...



A loft? Maybe???


The guest bath.

As my fellow missionary with years of experience living in Paraguay said,
Brenda said...
Lol! Staging in Paraguay!! Hysterical. More like "you need the best imagination ever to see yourself actually living in this house". Its imaginary staging.