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Get-to-know-each-other long weekend in Cancun 28-31 Oct 2012 Posted on May 27, 2012 at 05:02 PM

I have suggested that those who are interested should meet up for a long weekend in Cancun between the 28-31 October this year so that people can meet each other, have some fun and make new friends or even form new relationships. It was just an idea and I just asked the question to get some feedback and the resonance has been great with quite a few people seem interested. 

To make it more affordable for everyone I would be very happy to find accomodation so that everyone is staying at the same place and organize some trips (suggestions welcome) for those who don't want to just hang around on the beach. Every one can book their own flights and to lower costs even further people flying from the same airport can get together to make a group booking or maybe we can even make a deal with the airlines.

This is NOT a commercial trip, it is simply for those on MM to meet and have fun. Everyone is invited and the more the merrier. If you are interested, either email me on MM or answer on this blog and also where you will be flying from so I can put people who would be flying from the same airport together so they can do a group booking.

I would say that we should use the 1st of October as a cut-off date so I know how many rooms we would have to deal with. (It should not be a problem as its low season here and the more bookings the better deals I can make :) 

Any suggestions welcome :) Have a great day everyone, Fiffi

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Embarrassing Moment... Posted on Nov 12, 2009 at 10:27 PM

Just a very short one today but...hey squirrelly, I'm here!! :)¿

Just came back from a gallery opening and one of the ladies there did something similar as to what happened to me some time back - just one of my (many - I may add!) embarrassing moments.

I have decided to share my most innocent one with you (It does get worse - a lot!) and hopefully get some feedback from others who have also done stupid things, so at least I can make myself feel a bit better that I am not the only one that is a walking disaster! ¿

....We are invited to a function where everything with rank and name is invited. Panic!!! I have nothing to wear! (Of course I have, but I can't possibly wear the same thing twice now can I? - there are lots of important people there, I have to try and impress and women talk for crying out loud!) So, off I go and manage to track down a smart silky number consisting of skirt and blouse (very versatile and can be mixed and matched to make another outfit!) - now please do not think that this was an easy task! I lived in the country side and to find ANYTHING that can pass as a cocktail dress (Yes, strict dress code!) in the little boutiques usually looked as if it was designed for funerals, child christenings or weddings! I was extremely lucky to find something I liked in the first place I looked - plus to get something in silk, well god must have really smiled on me that day! I looove silk! Such a wonderful light material that flows beautifully and is perfect in any climate.

Ok, so the panic is over, the dress question sorted, I've done my war paint (well lip stick and mascara anyway - for anything more elaborate I would need to enroll in lessons - no time!) we head out and its the usual small talk coupled with the inevitable "May I introduce you..blah, blah, blah,... Smiles (false and real) everywhere - waiters walking around with glasses of Champagne and canapes and I don't know how I manage it, but every time I take a bite of something, I can guarantee that someone will ask me a question just at that precise moment! I will always admire those who never seem to have this problem and can make it through the entire night without trying to chew frantically, smiling apologetically and waving their hands across their mouths to gain time to swallow so they can answer the question. Why does nobody teach you this as a child? Should be part of the curriculum!

As the drinks flow and everyone loosens up a bit, I follow the call of nature. Unfortunately its a loong walk from the bathrooms back to the lounge, across the dance floor and pass the tables to the bar where we took position. Even though I don't drink much, I am fully aware that 1 or 2 glasses on me seem to have the same effect as an entire bottle to others! I was still in the safe zone drink wise but nevertheless had to carefully navigate my way back as it requires some concentration trying to walk gracefully and ladylike in high heels when you are not used to it. I walked along the corridor passing several people, taking the opportunity to stop and gather my strength to carry on the rest of the passage with a bit of small talk along the way. Then I made my way across the dance floor, successfully navigated my way pass the first table dishing out smiles to whoever was looking in my direction when someone I knew waived me over and involved me in a conversation. I have no recollection about the conversation (no I wasn't drunk - just happy that I still looked good and managed the long walk without looking like a stork in a salad or tripping myself up!) As I stood there with my back to the dance floor, hands on my hips (so it must have been something I feel passionate about!) ...I felt a tap on my shoulder. I turned around and was faced with a woman who started stuttering at me. I smiled at her encouragingly to spit out whatever she wanted to say and she blushed and waved me to closer. I was slightly bemused by her strange behavior but of course I obliged... I bent forward and she cleared her throat and said "Mam, I don't know how to say this ...but ...ehm, you've got your dress tucked in your knickers! My smile vanished for a split second as I realized I'd been flashing the entire dance floor with my derriere for the last few minutes and god knows who else on my way back from the bathroom! Did I pass the chancellors wife? Wasn't my husbands boss behind me? Oh sweet Jesus! How much is showing? Hell, never mind, what knickers am I wearing? Did I opt for the sexy number or did I go for the Bridget Jones style arm pit warmers? How can I check, help, I can't remember for the life of me!

I decided to thank the woman with a reassuring smile¿for her bravery in¿coming over and telling me (well you have to give it to her, most would have just collapsed laughing and not said anything) ¿and quickly assessed my options.

Now do I go all the way back and flash my behind to the rest of the room as I leave or do I rectify my predicament on the spot? I opted for the 'on the spot' solution and felt the sexy underwear, phew! At least one good thing! Now the weight of my shoulders was lifted, I could relax and laugh about it with the others (No choice! It was the only thing to do to save face somewhat!) Had it been the Bridget Jones knickers I would have died and probably ordered a bottle of whiskey for myself!

Needless to say that I needed a drink after that and it all went downhill from there....forget too much champagne, walking in high heels, wearing mascara when you usually don't .. I ended up having a ball, thinking that I must look reasonably attractive after all to receive soo many smiling nods and looks from everyone ....when I realized on the next trip to the call of nature that I must have rubbed my eyes and now resembled a Panda bear with huge black smears around my eyes. If people smile at me now I become very suspicious of their motives and if there is a bathroom nearby you may see me disappear for a moment to check...

Well done Fiffi - never lose your personal style but.... at least I am consistent with it!¿




Could you deal with this? Posted on Nov 10, 2009 at 08:06 PM

Usually I'm a happy little soul and there are not many things that easily rock my boat or frazzle me too much - even living in Mexico ?- but there are days when I question my sanity! ?

You either try and see the funny side or you go mad! I usually try my best to opt for the funny side, - although I have been known to 'lose it' - slightly! (Slightly? - Totally!) ?:)?

It's no secret that time spans in Mexico are usually used very liberally. No need to be upset anyone please, if you read this and you are Mexican - I am generalizing! Just the same as all Germans don't wear lederhosen, slap their thighs, drink steins and eat sauerkraut & bratwurst!?

Mexicans usually?hate to commit themselves to a fixed time, in fact they don't seem to understand the sheer concept and therefore use phrases such as 'manana' (usually if they have little or no intention to do anything about whatever is asked for) or 'aurita' (supposed to be now but could be anytime today or maybe tomorrow, - if one doesn't forget altogether of course) or the widely used 'Mexican minute' preferred to be used with tourist (no clue at all and little intention to find out)?

Unfortunately its very easy to find yourself slipping into the same attitude because you just can't fight against it, no matter what you do! Tourists are usually not a problem as they're used to be relatively punctual but people like my carpenter for example still come Tuesdays at 5 - just not sure what week, what month or what year! My cleaning lady and accountant come and go as they please and no matter how much I jump up and down, they just genuinely don't understand WHY I could possibly get upset - they ARE coming, so what's the problem? If I try and explain and put my foot down they dutifully try and look 'told off' for a moment and it will work for a couple of days (with a bit of luck!) ...but old habits die hard and before I can take a breather - they come and go as they please again!?I can't keep firing them because they are all the same, so it makes no difference! I have decided to just accept it for the way it is, or, and now here is one: ask THEM what day they come (forget about asking what time, that would be pushing it!) so at least I have some come back if they don't turn up!

Then comes the bank logic. Forget about "I'll just quickly pop to the bank" First you pick a number and then you wait..patiently.. 1 hour is average and you quickly learn NEVER to go mid or end of the month as the waiting time could be 3 hours +. In my case I wanted to open a US account. Equipped with a suitcase of paperwork because there is no way all the originals and octuplicate copies all fit into a briefcase, I have to sign about 15 times in front of the bank clerk. After signing I was dismissed and told to wait - about 2 days! After a week of calling I was told that one of the signatures didn't look identical to the other 14! Had I not called I'd probably never found out and would still be waiting! I had to repeat the exercise and sign everything again. Arguments like I signed it in the bank in front of the bank clerk proved to be totally futile, they just didn't see the logic in my point - even though every signature was countersigned by my accountant as a witness! A few days later I was 'allowed' to go to the bank again and got told that there was no problem, however, foreign ie. US cheques would take 90 (!) days to clear. Well, even though its a rip off, I needed one. Happy that at last I managed to open an account I return a few days later with my first cheque for about 200 USD. After queuing patiently until it was my turn I walk up to the counter and the guy smiles at me and goes "That'll be 150 USD" "What for?" I reply "For putting MY cheque into MY bank account? Don't you mean 150 pesos?" "Nope, 150 USD" ?"OK, so let me get this straight, I pay in a cheque into my account and the bank charges me 150 USD for each cheque I put into my account?" Affirmative nod. "Well, so what will you do if I have a cheque for 100 USD?" I get a complete blank look from the guy. He obviously hadn't thought about this problem before and was totally out of his depth. He referred with a colleague who was equally dumb struck at my question. Impatient to wait and furious that nobody said this BEFORE I opened the account I asked "Well, are you telling me you will 'credit' my account with minus 50 USD?" He looks at me blankly, thinks for a moment and then smiles at me broadly and goes "Yes!" "CLOSE THE ACCOUNT!!!!!" ?Why did I bother???

I had to buy a computer with a cheque because I had to block my card. Not a problem, equipped with proof of address, household bill, company paper, passport, inside leg measurement and diameter of right index finger I sign the cheque and am told they call me when the cheque is cleared so I can pick up my computer. Why can't they check with the bank now? Hello, we live in the 20th century, it IS possible to do such an outrageous thing. But.. nothing is easy! They tell me that "it won't take long" they will call me within 48 hours and "Not to worry" ?so I resign myself to the fact that I have to chase them up again as it is a pretty fair to assume that they actually mean "Do worry!".?Of course the phone call never comes and after 3 days I eventually get the go ahead that I can pick up my computer. Equipped with copies of the receipt, copy of the check and my measurements I turn up and low and behold I receive my computer. Well that was easy! Now the next part... I need to have an invoice! Ground floor, customer service...Off I trot with my computer in my arms and make my way to customer service. There are 2 people sitting like in a post office staring at me. I ask "Invoice?" and hand them the sales receipt juggling my computer so I don't drop it. The woman looks at me and says you have to pick it up from upstairs once the cheque is cleared. I am waving the computer at her to show her that I have already got it and when the penny eventually drops, she puts on a 'professional face' and tells me pull a number. I turn around, there is nobody in sight anywhere near customer service but, if it makes the woman happy, I pull a number. Now equipped with my number, still juggling my computer I look at her and she puts her nose up on me and after about 3 minutes, she presses a button and you here a "Ding Dong" and as if by magic, my number appears on the screen. By this time I am ready to collapse laughing because I feel like a complete clown and just hope that someone is filming this because its just so comical. I make my way back to the window again and guess what, she looks me up and down, asks me what I want, then talks to her colleague before she tells me, "Sorry this window is closed, you have to go to the next window!" Dear me, what an experience! ?

Theory about the beginning of dating sites Posted on Nov 10, 2009 at 03:10 PM

As a little girl I had a very restricted view of 'marriage', slightly warped even, not sure what triggered it but here is what I believed: ¿

I was convinced that for a woman to find a husband, he has to be 1 year older than her. Don't ask, I thought even though this was pretty restricting, at least if gives one 365 days on average and with a bit of luck 1 extra one for good measure every 4 years. I started to scan the boys in the class above me, but never spotted anything that would have come even slightly close to what I imagined my future husband to be. Older brothers of my friends turned out to be a pain in the butt so I wasn't too optimistic for my future. Probably because I thought that a husband ought to be the man in charge, a leader, strong,... but also all the things that I would have liked him to be, - unfortunately these only seemed to be embodied in the form of actors in movies like "Gone with the wind" on TV and not the boys I was looking at. Huh, fat chance of finding anything suitable in my village!

My hopes of standing any chance at all seem to be thoroughly crashed when ¿- for some other inexplicable reason - I thought I figured out that both partners MUST be of the same religion on top of the 1 year age gap. I guess the whole thing was triggered when my uncle (protestant) married my aunt (catholic) and it created a minor uproar in my village as it was outrageous and triggered many discussions amongst the adults. Oh my God - even more restrictions, - do they have places where you put down your age and religion and try and pick one that matches the requirements? How come all the grown ups I knew were married? Are there exceptions to the rule and how do you go about it? Questions, questions, my little brain was on overdrive....

Not being able to find the answers, I resigned myself to a single life from a very early age until the day I enlightened - all of a sudden I thought I found a way! If it was so difficult to find someone close by, well then I just have to broaden my horizon and look further afield.¿

My parents worked for the English Forces at the time and the word 'Tommy' (nickname for the English just in case someone doesn't know) completely fascinated me for some reason. Guess it sounded more exotic than Heinz or Karl or Fritz! My dad picked me up from kindergarten one day and we watched a procession of some kind (no idea, some kind of fairground thing). I was totally in awe of the uniformed band members marching along and in that moment I made up my mind - I tugged at his sleeve to get his attention to tell him with conviction "Dad, I know what I will do when I grow up - I am going to marry a Tommy!" He laughed....but......

The funny thing is I actually did! He wasn't a year older and he wasn't of the same faith either but I guess they had figured out by then that they (whoever they were) had to slacken the rules otherwise the world would be full of single people who would by now be frantically looking for suitable partners. I can just picture it "Excuse me, you look very nice! Where you by any chance born in 1961 and are you by any chance protestant?" "No? Well sorry about that" "Oh, excuse me what year where you born?....."

Maybe I wasn't the only one who believed it hard to find the right partner even as a little girl and others with similar thoughts to me had the ingenious idea to come up with dating sites!¿







Online Nah! Posted on Nov 03, 2009 at 10:57 PM

Online dating - that's what other people do but not me! At least I thought so for years!?

My kids and many couples I married told me different. I was always successful in whatever I did work wise but when it came to men.... different kettle of fish! Ironically I ended up in the wedding industry and love every moment of my work. Well, except for the odd bridezilla of course - but thankfully there is only about 1 or 2 per year and I can deal with that. Not everyone conforms well under stress and there are still people around who want to have a 'perfect wedding day' even though its totally boring if everything goes according to plan. What do you remember about it in a few years? That it was perfect? Big deal, - I'd rather have a good laugh about the pelicans that dropped an early present on the bridesmaid, the grandad who lost his teeth on the beach or the father of the bride who was so drunk by the time his daughter arrived (she was 1 1/2 hours late!) that they needed 'stabilizers' for him (the brother's of the bride) to help them all stagger down the aisle...


I was amazed at how many people meet online through dating sites and at a weak moment decided its an experience I haven't made yet and that I should try. I tried a few sites but was put off by dads trying to find a suitable mother to raise their children. Sorry - I raised 2 of my own and I am not in it to become a substitute mum for anybody's kids and start all over again. I do like children but I am not THAT maternal. Grown up kids are fine, thank you very much!

English is not my first language and not wanting to sound arrogant or snobbish, I was apalled at the bad spelling and crude stupid remarks of some of the people on other sites ?- ?so I decided maybe I should join a site that is a bit more up-market (yep, I'm still very naive at times!) where I can meet more educated people. I never joined to sit at my computer to wait for the shining knight in shining armor to whisk me away on its horse or race car or helicopter or whatever but its nice to meet new people, - ?especially when you live in a tourist resort where almost everybody knows everyone else and the only 'new faces' are tourists that come and go after a few days.?

A total 'online dating virgin' it was a bit daunting finding myself on the 'human internet cattle market' (meant in a slightly sarcastic but affectionate way!) but hey, there's a first for everything I guess.

At first I probably did many bloopers, most likely because I didn't want to waste time to read through the 'online dating manual', - come on, I am a big girl now and I can use a computer, surely it can't be that difficult!

I learned very quickly though. My first few experiences were strange I have to admit and I almost wrote this whole thing off. A couple of guys added me as their 'favorite' (wow, somebody likes me!) and I chatted with one guy was really interested (he was my guinea pig to see how this whole thing works - sorry mate!) ?gave me his phone number to call him right away (I didn't call) and asked if I was going to be online the next day - only to shroud himself in silence when I said 'hello' to him the following day. Well matey, you don't know what you're missing and you will never find out my dear bathtub captain!

Then there were a few others who emailed me or winked at me 'I'm interested in you' only to ignore my reply completely and made me feel stupid for replying in the first place. W anchors!

Then I met this cute guy (hmm at least I thought so for a couple of days!) who told me was of Turkish origin and he was eager to give me his private email address right away. Didn't think anything of it - la di da di da, I am blonde after all - at least sometimes!) ?and we started chatting on skype. Why the heck is skype different than the chat on this site - at least for in the beginning it should have been ok ?- I don't know!

Anyway, to cut a long story short, this guy sent me photos and bugged me for more photos of me. I didn't have ANY apart from 1000's at work so at the next wedding I asked my photographer to take a few shots of me. He did and dear 'Ben' received them. He declared his undying love for me (yeah right man - I wasn't born in a barn!) but I thought it was quite entertaining so I went along - baby! lol ?He told me he speaks Turkish and English but was born in the US. ?He wanted to talk to me on skype, ok, why not - Turkish accent my a***! He was freshly out of the jungle somewhere in Africa, probably still had the mud stuck on his plastic flip flops! His English was atrocious but very entertaining, he liked to wear topes (speed reducers in Mexico!) and loved pink tyres (ties), he was the only child of his parents (ahh you poor little mite!) had to lots of poper work (paper work) and always told me 'I love you more or I love you ditto' (More than what? - chocolate ice cream and what about the ditto bit, you even know what ditto means, honey?) Novelty was starting to wear off a bit after a few days but he made me laugh - a lot - so I thought I just play along for a bit longer. Nice break from a stressful day! I love languages so I asked him what does good night mean in Turkish - Tek meh was his reply (Tek meh where?) ?B******cks! So I prepared myself for the next chat. Had my wikipedia up and a free translation site and asked him where he studied - Amsterdam - 4 years! He didn't speak 1 word of Dutch so I decided to grill him on his Turkish a bit more. Hello was hola (ok!?! - thought it was merhaba!) and I love you was Mi do wa according to him. Yep, I used to have imaginary languages too as a little girl but I did grow out of that! After this chat episode it got a bit too dumb for me so I told him to go and do something nice to himself and hang out in a place where the sun doesn't shine! I blocked him and made his emails bounce back but unfortunately he's got my photos and no doubt "I" will be posted on another date site soon somewhere looking for 'Mr Right'. No harm done - to me at least and he actually did me a huge favor without knowing it by taking my mind away from other things - so 'Thank you 'Ben'!

I actually did meet a really nice guy from this site, we have become friends so that's something very positive.How I rate online dating now??Well - certainly extremely entertaining, surprising, shocking,amazing (why has nobody come up with a 'dating IQ test' yet?) with the potential to meet some interesting people, make some great friends, ?and who knows - maybe even find 'a matching lid for the pot' one day! ??