Monday, January 20, 2014

Monday, January 20th, 2014

Last night I forgot to mention when I was upstairs coming back from a trip to the restroom at Sport Wings I met a man about my age named Gary.  He told me next month he and his wife will be opening a Tex/Mex restaurant a couple blocks away on Circular 74B just east of Nutibara.  I had the feeling I had met him before and today I checked my blog and I’m pretty sure it was his restaurant Arriba Arriba! in Rio Sur where I had Thanksgiving dinner.

I went to bed at midnight (after posting to my blog), got up once early in the morning, and finally woke/got up at 7:10am.

Happy anniversary to me!  I arrived in Medellin exactly 1 year ago today.
I understand today is also Martin Luther King’s birthday.

I had my usual coffee and croissant at Los Mejores.  Damaris was there and I passed her a note asking if she would like to go to a movie with me today or tomorrow.  When there was an idle period with no customers I asked for her answer.  She said no and something about her son.  Sigh!

I stopped for a cup of coffee at the Tinto store.  Maria was there but not Gonzalo.  He stopped by briefly a few minutes later with a chunk of what looked like papaya he said he had to deliver to his sister.  A few minutes later I noticed Bob sitting across the street.  My first thought was that he was trying to avoid me but then I remembered he only stops at the Tinto store when Gonzalo is there, and not Maria, because he doesn’t want to get too close to Patricia’s family, which reminds me, it was interesting that it was Margarita and not Patricia he was with last night at Sport Wings.  I wonder what that means, if anything.  I haven’t seen Patricia in months – I wonder if she is still in the picture.

Recently there has been a lot of discussion on Colombia Expats regarding the cost of employing a housekeeper in Colombia.  This post from ColombiaGringo pretty well summarizes things:

I had a friend of mine that was sued by his part time maid that stole from him.  He fired her because she stole, and at any rate he had the maid get him for not buying shoes and uniform on top of everything else. The judge ruled 20 million pesos, that’s over 10,000 USD to be paid. Luckily for him he lives on his social security and veterans admin payments which are deposited in the USA, and he has no property here so there was no way for them to force collection. Others that have property here or a business can’t get away from it. They can put a lien on bank accounts and against properties, basically any assets in Colombia. Yes the Labor courts are in favor of the workers; it’s the employer’s responsibility to know the laws, and have contracts signed. Most foreigners find out about this law after a maid goes to the ministerio de trabajo when they are fired. I was lucky my first 4 years here, but as my small business grew so did people wanting to take advantage of us, despite clear and written agreements. Don’t over pay workers and think they will not want to sue you later because you paid them good. That does not work in Colombia.

Even though I have a house cleaner and not a housekeeper I’m happy to see that someone couldn’t go after my assets – because I don’t have any!
I spent a couple hours at LM going through my October Chess Life magazine.

Lunch was the chicken teriyaki at Sarku’s for 9,900 ($5.21).
On my way back to my apartment I saw Bob at the corner store playing with his tablet.

When I got back, under the front door I found an envelope with my January Sears pension receipt.  Not that I need it.

At 3:30 I left the apartment and caught a bus to Los Molinos.  I wanted to see Delivery Man (6.4) starring Vince Vaughn at 4:20 but the young lady selling tickets told me, in English, that the next showing isn’t until 5:40.  Luckily I had my Nook with me so I just camped out in the food court for an hour reading.  I bought a ticket for 9,500 ($5) and a medium popcorn and large soda for 14mil ($7.37).  One interesting thing is that one translation for Delivery Man in Spanish is Hombre de Salida but they have it listed as Una Familia Numerosa which translates in English to A Large Family.  I’ve noticed that a lot of movies have a different title in Spanish than English.  It was a cute movie.

On the bus ride back I was looking for the rustic furniture store I see on occasions – Muebles Rustico – to ask if they could make me a chess table but I didn’t see it tonight.

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