The Transition and Welcome to 2020: 12/31/2019 – 01/01/2020

“Beatriz is very nice, don’t you think Jackson?”

“Yes, and she does a good job cleaning and her rate is very reasonable too.”

“It was an interesting taxi ride to Crucita on Tuesday wasn’t it?”

“Certainly was for several reasons.  What did you think of those young men dressed up as viudas asking for alms.”

“Some of them were very provocative don’t you think?”

“Absolutely Nilla.  After all they need to pay expenses to bury their ‘old men’ at midnight!”

“Widows, certainly not in mourning Jackson.”

“It’s all in fun.”

“But then there were the transit police at a random check point.  What were they looking for?”

“Basically safety issues – seat belt use by all, no tinted glass unless special permit, current driver’s license.”

“That’s good I guess.”

“It was disappointing to see that the marina still isn’t ready, looks like minimal progress Nilla.”


“And from what we were told, there is a private marina area, perhaps a yacht club besides the fishing boat area Jackson.”

“The beach is very clean compared to last year, and I noticed that there are very few shells too.”



“The clean part is good but I wonder why very little shells?”

“Crucita was pretty busy even in the early afternoon hours.  It was good to see Diego when we dropped off the grill-griddle pan for Neiser’s restaurant.  But he didn’t look to pleased about the staging being erected right in front of his property and immediately adjacent to Primito’s.”

“He wasn’t.  He wasn’t even asked if it would be alright.  Obviously people did not know that the malecon would be blocked either.”

“And so much for no alcohol on the beach or parking on the beach side of the malecon.”

“Did you notice?”

“Of course I did – maybe it’s allowed for the holiday.”

“It was nice of him and Guardagatos to come to Rimini to meet up with us.  Kevin seemed to like his key chain.”

“It was nice of them to cut up the pineapple for the New Year’s Eve party.”

“But too much dorado a la plancha for the Ts.  But Diego’s cat had a tasty snack.”

“No familiar faces at Ramblas.”

“Nope, new owners – no sushi any more either.”

“I hope Marcelo and his family had a good time in Manta on New Year’s Eve.  He seemed excited that he was not working after dropping us off.”

“Jackson, the pineapple for the party was incidentally brilliant on the part of the Ts.”

“Why do you say that Nilla?”

“Because this is the year the Greatest Gift is ‘goodwill’ and ‘goodwill’ is depicted by the pineapples on the crystal triangles on the Times Square ball!”

“What’s that all about?”

“Well, in 2014 , the Times Square Alliance and Waterford Crystal came up with the idea of having a theme for the ball over a ten year span, starting with 2014, when the Greatest Gift was ‘imagination – 2015, ‘fortitude’; 2016, ‘wonder’; 2017, ‘kindness’; 2018, ‘serenity’; 2019, ‘harmony’ and so on until 2023 when the Greatest Gift will be ‘love’.”

“So what’s next year going to be.”

“That’s a secret Jackson!”

“So, do they remove the previous year’s theme triangles?’

“No, of course not, every year since 2014 they remove only non-theme triangles – just under 200 of them, so culminating in 2023 the ball should have all the theme triangles sparkling on it!”

“So, what did you think of the party?”

“Six couples besides us, all very nice.  The Ts had a great time – they wore yellow – no yellow for us this year though.  Much quieter here in San Clemente is comparison to Crucita.”

“Palma Azul and San Jacinto Hotel had parties, but certainly not the number of beach goers we saw last year.”


“That white house next to Ensenada del Pacifico certainly had the music blasting till the wee hours!”

“Didn’t sleep much – difficult getting up for that long walk on January first.”

“Jackson, you seemed to enjoy the burning of the paper mache figures – the ‘old man’, ‘old year’ .”


“That was fun.  Did you notice the paper mache figures of the Ecuadorian president – some people really don’t like him – he went up in smoke in some bonfires.”

“Not to be political, but, I’d expect if the custom were the same in the United States, there probably would have been some paper mache Trump figures out there too.”

“But Nilla, politics aside and respecting everyone’s right to have his or her opinion,  I also thought that the lanterns were beautiful as they floated upward.”

“It was tricky getting them lighted especially with the breeze on the beach.”


“How about that walk down the beach to San Jacinto on the first?”

“There were more shells on the beach here than in Crucita.  And we saw the ‘butterfly-like impressions on the sand, tell tale sign for a sand dollar just beneath the surface. And so many people!”


“The busiest we’ve seen it.”

“The bakery had fresh warm sweet rolls, they always smell go gooood when they’re fresh!”

“Nilla, the Ts danced the cumbia at the San Jacinto Hotel, shared soup and fish bites and then walked back against traffic along the malecon.”

All main courses come with rice, salad and plantains – prices in US dollars!


“Jackson, I liked to look at what the vendors had to offer.”

“You and shopping Nilla!”

“Fernando was glad to see us when we stopped by Cafe Mussol.”

“Yes, cheeseburgers tomorrow for dinner.”

“I’d say we did a good job saying goodbye to the old year and welcoming veinte-veinte!


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