Monday, 18 January 2010

Getting ready to head south

     These next two or three days will find us buying little odds and ends to take back down to our little adobe hut.     Diana found an overhead, basket-style lamp shade that will complement our parlour, but I need to find new socket for it.     We shall also be buying a few groceries....always with the notion that if we can buy a bunch of stuff here, it will preclude the need for having to drive into Cd. Victoria to stock up.     It never seems to work out that way.....because other matters arise that  need to be taken care of ,   so we wind up having to drive into town anyway.
      The main things we might buy here is dog & cat food, fresh vegetables, and oddly enough, Mexican-produced fruit juices (JUMEX & VALLE brands especially).   This is pretty much for convenience.   Almost everything we buy can be found in Cd. Victoria for a similar price and quality, save for fresh chicken.   Some canned goods are a little more or a little less....but things like pickles are in short demand.   One have to learn the in's and out's of what is cheaper, better, or available.....and, above all, be flexible.
      For instance, I like chicken livers and gizzards....and the Mexican availability is good enough, because this fare is not necessarily something that calls for a "prime" stamp from the USDA.     I also eat "menudo" , something akin to English tripe stew, by preference, and the makings are readily available at the GRAN-D store where I shop...very clean, washed, and packed on styroboard backing and wrapped in tight cellophane.    The shrimp are fresh and relatively affordable, along with most fish from local fish farms (tilapia) and from nearby Gulf of Mexico sources (trout, sea bass, and red snapper).
      Oddly enough, and this is mentioned in our blog often, most of the beef, especially standard steaks...such as rib-eye, sirloin, and t-bone....ranges from really good to or near prime after we finish its correct cold-aging at home.   That aging process, and a bit of trimming makes a red meat dish worthy of our guests.

      Right at this time the fuel costs in the McAllen area is around $2.579 for regular....and the peso is a bit strong at 12.60 pesos to 1 dollar.   That makes PEMEX regular the equivalent of around $2.80 per gallon.   So that will mean filling up on the Texas side this time.    The old Dynasty make about 31 miles to the gallon, so it takes about half a tank to make it down to our Quinta...or about 7 gallons.