Monday, May 31, 2010

ZUMBA -- a la Mexico!

Here are the ZUMBA Extravaganza instructors (clockwise -- Junior, Jonatan, Arleen and Jessica). They have all the moves... and are INDEED in great shape!

Arleen Ramos -- beautiful, classy young lady, inside and out -- and a most talented Zumba teacher!

Future Zumba fan... or maybe like her aunt Arleen -- a Zumba teacher!

This young lady wears a beautiful smile ALLways! And her tshirt reminded me of Proverbs 11:13, A gossip goes around revealing secrets, but those who are trustworthy can keep a confidence.

Arleen's fans from across the border...San Diego side. All of us had a wonderFUL experience from this Mexican GODventureZ.

These are the two good sports who allowed me to ride in their "lift" so that i could video-tape this Zumba dance from that bird's-eye-view angle. Muchas gracias, senores!

It was a family thing -- a fiesta for all ages! Even for the guys!

Arleen and Jessica...doin' their thing -- the BEST at what they do!

And these folks, all ages, all shapes and sizes... enjoying Junior's Zumba... a la matador!

Zumba is Beto Perez!

Beto previously attended the Maria Sanford Brazilian Dance Academy. There he became an instructor and choreographed dance routines for popular performers including Shakira.

Beto invented Zumba in the early 1990s: as he entered his aerobics class he realized that he had forgotten his music. His only option was to use whatever tapes he happened to have in his backpack, mostly traditional Latin salsa and merengue music. Beto improvised the entire class on the spot using this music (which was non-traditional for aerobics) and from this experience he began to further develop Zumba. Soon, it became the most popular class at the fitness facility.

Following his success in Colombia, Beto moved to the United States and began teaching Zumba classes in Miami. The class gained popularity and in 2001... (Wikipedia)

Like the Eveready battery's still going...and going...and going...!

Saturday, May 29, 2010

ZUMBA Extravaganza In Tijuana, MEXICO

Even at just a little past 8 a.m., crossing the US-Mexican border into Tijuana (San Diego's next-door neighbor) was already a mini-test of patience for our driver, Delfina. It's a three-day weekend... and a special one, for it's Memorial Day weekend... both directions already bumper to bumper -- both peoples wanting to go to the "other side."

i joined four other women from the "this side" to mix with the crowd from "that side" for a two-hour Zumba extravaganza.

Seeing this pink fish sticker warmed my soul -- for i imagined a sister in CHRIST joining us for the Zumba class. And i remembered its miraculous significance: And He (JESUS) took the seven loaves and the fish and gave thanks, broke them and gave them to His disciples; and the disciples gave to the multitude. (Matthew 15:36)

This is the parking structure at Macro Plaza that was readied for the Zumba crowd.

Macro Plaza was the shopping center where this Zumba fiesta was hosted.

From the parking structure's top-most floor, i took in the view across the street... a circus tent decorated the landscape.

Donde esta el bano? En WalMart -- the WalMart on the Mexican side... very up-to-date facilities, gracious cashiers, abundant shopping oppurtunities.

"Eye-candy" for me, this Frutas y Verduras section...

My selection was that pinwheel shaped roll in the middle section, second tray from the right side. We bought six (or seven) different rolls for just a little over US$2. The pan fueled us for the two-hour exercise fest.

After the Zumba class, rather than waiting bumper to bumper for two hours to cross the border by car, Delfina parked her car in a paid lot; and we walked the five-minute distance to the line of other folks crossing the check point by foot. The soda vendor above and the following pictures below are the very interesting sights we encountered on the main street leading to the gate crossing...

Coca all the places i've traveled (including Caye Caulker in Belize, Ife in Nigeria, little towns in Cusco, Peru), this soda brand was a favorite.

Singing and playing guitar and harmonica for money... but his donation cup was nowhere to be seen.

People gave this vendor money, even without buying the Chiclets offered for sale -- he had no legs.

Pricey helados de crema at US$1.50 a scoop -- but worth every cent! Delfina treated me to a cone of cold chocolate.

This charming senora (with her fancy sombrero) was cooking up a storm of churros!

Beef? Pork? Cooked to tenderness for fajitas...?

A seller of right-off-the-grill, still-warm gorditas...i guess the big ones are called gordas!

i think i prefer los churros de la senora... That is one grande frying pan!

You know about the "two-fisted eater" -- so what to you call this one-fisted gordita with the chocolate ice-cream cone and the still-warm gordita -- both in the one hand because the other is holding the camera! Or should i just call myself ambidextro?

Many Americans cross the border to buy their medicine(s) from one of these farmacias.

A very typical third-world country image...this could have been taken in Manila, Philippines... but minus the pinatas above.

Another draw for alcoholic's "candy" store.

Open-air candy store... una tienda de los pasteles.

Getting closer to the gate... various souvenirs for the turistas.

Garden decor...maybe a colorful tortuga for my backyard?

Almost there... that's the actual gate to cross, though not the passport-required inspection area.

Almost there! (And this is where Delfina warned me, "No more picture taking."

But this young man said, "Hey, if you want to have a good souvenir of your time in Tijuana, take my picture!" So i did...and Victor gave me the thumbs up of approval.

Delfina and Doris...and moi still clicking happy!

The Zumba extravaganza was a GODventureZ! But that's another rLn story.

P.S. i am again raising funds for the Naselesele Village school children in Taveuni, Fiji. Your charitable donation of any amount is deeply and heartfully appreciated! GOD bless your loving heart!

Saturday, May 22, 2010


There were plastic bottles and aluminum cans in big, dirty plastic bags, just parked in the garage and at the side of the eyesore in Mom's garden.

So i loaded the five bags and went to One Earth Recycling...

And met these very hard working youths...Angel, Hugo and Vince.

My recyclables weren't sorted out, so i fished them out of the bags and put the aluminum cans in one bin and the plastic bottles in another bin... (WHEW! Dirty work, for some of our recyclables were from last year's dust and grime.)

Angel did his part in this area...Vince was the cashier today...dispensing the cash in exchange for the recyclables.

Hugo was "front" man...receiving the goods, interacting with customers, entering information in the computer, weighing the filled bins, returning loading carts, cleaning up messes (he swept up pieces of a broken bottle while i was there)...always on the move -- with a good-natured attitude and a ready smile.

Hugo...\o/ for his cheerfulness, courtesy and willingness to work on Saturdays!

Like the Proverbs 31 woman who " over the ways of her household, and does not eat the bread of idleness" -- neither do these three hard-workers eat the bread of laziness or selfish idleness.

When you eat the labor of your hands, You shall be happy, and it shall be well with you. (Psalm 128:2) Let him who stole steal no longer, but rather let him labor, working with his hands what is good, that he may have something to give him who has need. (Ephesians 4:28)

JESUS said, "Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest." (Matthew 11:28)

So why was recycling a GODventureZ? Because it was a first-hand experience...

On the physical level -- it was loud with crashing cans and bottles, and reggae music turned up to counter-act the irksome din. The environment was somewhat smelly and dirty -- where a fastidious person like myself just wanted to go home and have a thorough bath and shampoo afterwards.

On the emotional level -- i was touched by the three youths' hard-working attitude. They weren't at home watching TV or playing video games, but working diligently...getting dirty and sweaty...earning their rightful wage.

On the spiritual level -- it touched my soul. Having just worked in a factory environment -- drudge work -- i can relate to some extent on what's its like to just work for the money...where there is not much pleasure or fulfillment in the work itself.

My prayer for Hugo, Angel and Vince -- May GOD grant them genuine repentance leading to saving faith that they may find rest in JESUS, Who gives everyone who believes in Him peace that surpasses all understanding. May the three young men find true rest and fulfillment in The CHRIST.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

My PET Spider MO'O

My pet spider, Mo'o, misnamed lizard --
Did not come by like a blizzard...

But softly on eight legs she tiptoed --
Sideways and upside down, much agility she showed.

Mo'o, like GOD's still small voice --
Whispered to me that i have choice.

Choose UP or choose DOWN --
With GOD to swim... or with god to drown.

And behold, the LORD passed by, and a great and strong wind tore into the mountains and broke the rocks in pieces before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake; and after the earthquake a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire; and after the fire a still small voice. (1 Kings 19:11-12)