Hey Buddy, can you spare a screwdriver?

“¿Tiene usted un destornillador?” I asked, hoping the translation was correct, or at least close. She looked at me concerned for a moment.

Mind you, this is not covered in my daily Spanish classes. We haven’t gotten to the point where we are covering household tools or construction of various store-bought objects. Yet I found myself in a room that could double as a steam room, with the pieces of a floor fan in my lap, sweat dripping down my nose, asking for a screwdriver.

But I get ahead of myself:

While I was grateful to have a place in PDC with the Mexican family that hosted me (and they were very friendly and accommodating), the room I was in was less than conducive to writing, sleeping, drawing, and general well being. So, I took to the internets to help me find a new place.

Success was found through Airbnb.com in the form of a room to rent in this lovely house here:


Compared to the concrete room I was in before, this is house is absolutely beautiful and adorable. I found that I would have a room to myself on the 2nd floor:


And I even get a quaint little balcony, should I get the urge to sing “don’t cry for me Argentina” at night:


Plus, the place is surrounded by these giant, complex, tropical trees that let me pretend I’m living in a jungle. Machete is, so far, optional:


To add to all this, my housemate / landlord is a local tour guide, so she knows all the most amazing places around here, knows history and culture, and lets me alternate between Spanish and English so I can practice Espanol but still eventually get a point across. On top of all that, the rent is cheaper than the room with the family, and I get to control what I have for breakfast. Perfect!

One drawback: my room, as it turns out, is basically an oven.

No problem, there’s a ceiling fan. One pull of the chain yields… not a lot. The fan blades leisurely turn at a rotation of about once per hour. Elisabeth explains that she has asked “the man” to get it fixed, but in Mexico things happen on their own time. So she provides a boxed fan, some assembly required.

Thus I find myself sitting on the bed, squinting at a construction manual (en espanol, natch), and realizing that there is but one thing I need: un destornillador. After she stares at me long enough for me to think I better leap back to the translator app and try some other tactic, she goes off and I hear many rummaging sounds from the adjacent room. while she is looking, I discover that the blades on the power plug work perfectly well for the larger screws. Eventually she comes back with a steak knife that lets us get the smaller screws sorted.

And now I sit here, with the fan blowing me in the face, in a lovely nueva casa.  Life is good.

I highly recommend airbnb.com.  Great site for finding temporary housing.  I also highly recommend living in this house if you are ever in Playa.  It’s listed in airbnb as “room in a Mexican Caribbean House” and it is excellent.

6 thoughts on “Hey Buddy, can you spare a screwdriver?

    1. I briefly thought of taking this challenge, but then the thought of filing a blog post with pictures of a bloody, mangled hand made me think twice. Actually, that might make a good blog post… hmmmm.

  1. If only you had that old Dell computer from your office at Transpoint. I am sure it had enough fans to cool your oven. At least it sounded liked it would and it might convince you it was cooling your room.

Hey, you trippin or what?

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