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Thursday, December 29, 2005

a 3rd mellow day in Mission, TX

Another eventful day. Though today we did venture out into public. We went to lunch at Sahadi's, and then some shopping at the (in)famous La Plaza Mall. That place is crazier, busier, more crowded every time I visit. This must have been my 4th or 5th time there. Based on a limited sample (walking from our distant parking spot to the mall entrance), I'd say ~40% of the license plates in the massive parking lot are from Mexico: Tamaulipas, Nuevo Leon, another one or two that popped just once or twice. Mostly Tamps.

Inside, I'd estimate 80% of the conversations among shoppers were in Spanish. Life on La Frontera.

Lunch was good. Sahadi's is a nice lunch spot + gourment/int'l grocery store + nicely stocked wine shop. Lebanese proprietors. Not what you expect to find in the middle of the 10th Ave strip in McAllen. After lunch, I selected a six of Anchor Porter, and a 6 of an El Salvadorian pilsner that I hadn't seen before.

Before we all went out for lunch, Anj and I went for another walk. This time we walked to the main entrance to the subdivision, in a quest to get a real paper. We were unsuccessful in that respect, but we had some fun tossing and kicking around the tennis ball we'd picked up the previous day--until we lost it down the drain. Also, we found some graffiti! We stopped by on the way back from the mall and I took a few snapshots. Look for them on flickr.

I didn't watch as much soccer today. A bit of Man U-Bolton in the early evening on FSE, but then we watched the end of the Alamo Bowl after dinner. A few years ago I watched Nebraska win another Alamo Bowl in person, over Northwestern. Ina and Suvranu wanted to go, so the 5 of us drove up and back. I think it was Dec 2000, so 5 years ago! Come to think of it, it must have been 2000. The previous year my parents were just moving into this house, and in 2001 we were in India for our wedding.

Back to soccer--I just turned on FSE: UNAM v. Corinthians right now (Mexican clubs). Just flipped to FSC and found something more appealing: Man City v. Chelsea.

Little reading today. I did get into some fiction finally. My goal was to knock off a quick novel this week. It took me a while to settle on something. I read a few pages of Tolkien's "The Fellowship of the Ring" but was not feeling it. But then found something manageable: Tolstoy's "The Death of Ivan Ilych." Only 60 pages, and fits into my plan to get through some Russian literature. Though I didn't get through Gogol's "Dead Souls" earlier this year. Krops and I were talking about making "Anna Karenina" a selection for our (currently dormant) book club. Ina's copy of "War and Peace" that she bought in Ann Arbor is in our room here, but that will have to wait for some future time when I've got a few weeks w/o anything else to do. After hearing Vikram Seth talk about it, I have to get to Pushkin's "Eugene Onegin." (Especially since Anj and I started working through Seth's "Golden Gate" after we brought back her copy from Saginaw.)

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