GasStationMakeoverNovela

So here’s my take on Episode 2 of the Great GasStationMakeoverNovela “Looking For Frida” on Telemundo!!

“BUSCANDO A FRIDA”/. “SEARCHING FOR FRIDA”
Episode 2

It’s a sad day for a mother when she finds out that not only has her perfect teenage daughter staged her own disappearance, ruining her father’s birthday and driving up the cost of police overtime,
but she gave herself a makeover in a gas station bathroom.

And that’s exactly what Frida Pons has done.

She has apparently rejected beautiful clothes, living in a mansion, and a private-school uniform that miraculously makes everyone look BETTER, for a grey hoodie, and having to use questionable bathrooms.

But, as always, in every telenovela where there is a gas-station makeover, she now has great bangs.

When Covid exploded here in Mexico, and I couldn’t get a haircut, I gave myself an Air BNB makeover here in my bathroom using scissors I bought from a paper store in Mexico City. I was confident that I could do it, based upon the multiple gas-station makeovers I have seen in telenovelas.
Inspired, I cut my own bangs.
All I can tell you is that my bangs looked nothing like telenovela bangs, which might be because the foundation is weak – I don’t have telenovela hair.

A long time ago, a friend of mine was reading a romance novel called “The Rich Are Different,” and she kept insisting I read it. And I told her then what I would tell her now – I don’t need a book to tell me something I already know.

And it’s like that for telenovela characters – they are different, and the difference starts with their hair.

Enough said.

So Mr and Mrs Pons are confronted with the fact that Frida seems to have willfully absented herself from her family, and sure doesn’t seem to have been kidnapped from the disco. But that fact matters not to the Pons, or the Police. They are still treating this case like a kidnapping until they have reason to suspect otherwise,
which might have to be a :30 ad in Prime Time from Frida telling her parents that she left voluntarily and was not kidnapped, although even then Mr. Pons would probably insist the police find her because he is the richest man in Mexico City and a very important architect.
Architecture is very important in Mexico City.

But the fact that Frida still looks alive, with a new, edgy look, has definitely taken some pressure off of the Pons Extended Family, which means they can go back to fighting, and behaving as badly as they always do.

For example, one of Mr. Pons’ sisters, Rafaela, is married to Salvador, and they are the parents of two of Frida’s Disco Cousins Tomas and Ingrid.
Mr. Pons other sister, Gabriella, is married to Antonio, and they are the parents of the Kissing Cousin, Diego. They are all hiding Secrets and Lies, which is not easy to do when you live in they middle of the forest, next door to your siblings who you also work with all day.

Let’s start with Rafaela and Salvador – they work together at the Pons Architectural Dynasty, like everyone else in the family. But It’s clear that Rafaela would prefer Salvador stay home with the kids because apparently he is better at laundry than architecture. Rafaela has very severe, super-straight hair, and wears a lot of black, which is how we know she is more interested in her career than her family. Frida’s disappearance has not stopped them from arguing and insulting each other all day, or from trying to claim that they are not better at grocery shopping than their spouse.

The other Pons sister, Gabriela, is more of a free spirit, and we know that because her hair is soft with a loose wave, and her clothes are colorful and unconstructed. Her husband Antonio looks exactly like the President of the Tight-Ass Club, and if I had to guess after just two episodes, I would say that somewhere along the way, the sisters either intentionally switched husbands, or accidentally mixed them up.
Gabriela and Antonio don’t bicker, but don’t seem that interested in each other either. They seem like two people who are seated in the same row in an airplane. Polite, but they’d rather not talk to each other. Their son Diego apparently feels the same way, because he spends most of his time at home either stoned in his bedroom, fist-fighting with his cousin Tomas, making-out with his cousin Frida, or ignoring his cousin Ingrid, Tomas’ sister. But that’s ok, because if this show had a sub-title, it would be “Everyone Ignores Ingrid,” which makes Ingrid a Prime Suspect in her cousin Frida’s voluntary disappearance.

Everyone is a suspect in Frida’s voluntary disappearance except for Frida herself.

So not only is everyone back at work at the Pons Architectural Dynasty the next day (except for Friday’s mom Mrs Pons, who is finding more and more excuses to visit Det. Handsome at the police station, and we know she’s sad because she wears a sweater over her dress).

Gabriela has just welcomed back an old, very handsome friend named Angel Olvera, who she hugged and kissed about a thousand times in front of her husband Antonio, which tells you a lot about their marraige. I am just not sure what yet.
After Gabriela spent all morning kissing Angel, he stopped by her office at Pons Architectural Dynasty, where she started hugging and kissing him again, even though they just broke apart apart an hour before.
Angel also seems to share a secret with Antonio, and it’s not just that his wife likes to kiss Angel an awful lot.

Meanwhile, Mr. Pons has received a mysterious call from a stranger who claims to have Frida, and wants One Million Pesos for her return. He and Mr. Pons called each other “Disgraciada” a lot on the telephone, and then it was a draw. I am pretty sure Mr Pons’ friend and partner got the money out of the company for him to pay the kidnapper, and Mr. Pons didn’t tell the police or his wife that he was about to pay someone 1,000,000 pesos for Frida’s return. I am not sure why that amount was so high, because clearly the kidnapper didn’t spend any money on the kidnapping.

When we last left Episode 2, Mr. Pons and his Briefcase Full of Cash were at an old factory, where the kidnapper insisted they meet. Somehow, the police got wise to the ransom meet, because they are there too. It is quite possible that the only person who is not at the Secret Ransom Drop is the Ransomee herself, La Frida.

Additionally, the police uncovered a message on social media, where someone anonymous (not for long) predicted that Frida would be dead soon. They are investigating that by going to visit Ingrid, which is probably fine by Ingrid because she doesn’t seem to have many friends, and an interrogation is better than nothing.

I have my own theory about why Frida disappeared:

  1. She probably has no privacy because her aunts, uncles, and cousins are always hanging around; and
  2. She has the awful, scary Mexico stairs in her house that are so treacherous that she can never do the Crazy Teenage Girl Storm-Out, because she’d fall going up or down those stairs. (These stairs, that are all over Mexico, are the most dangerous thing in this beautiful and complicated country.)

I predict that when the Pons sisters find out that their beloved brother took $1,000,000 out of the company they won’t be happy. They were teenage girls once themselves, and know that Frida probably isn’t worth it.

Don’t miss Episode 3 tonight!! This novela is off to a great start, and like every great novela, it’s just going to get better!!

See you there!

Telemundo

BuscandoAFrida

Telemundo
Telemundo Internacional
Argos

Scene of the makeover…
These stairs would drive anyone to run away from home!

PANIC AT THE DISCO, aka “BUSCANDO A FRIDA”

“LOOKING FOR FRIDA?” – “BUSCANDO A FRIDA”

So last night was one part of a Double-Header Premier night from Telemundo, and the new MysteryNovela is “BUSCANDO A FRIDA,” which means “Looking For Frida.”
I’m already hooked, and I’m going to guess that after a few episodes we will learn so much about Frida and her Family that we will wonder why they are not grateful she’s gone.

That’s a Novela I’d like to see one day – “We’re Grateful She’s Gone.” Basically, in my version, a teenage girl disappears and her family spends the rest of the show trying to keep her gone.

So in BAF, basically, Frida is a teenage girl who leaves her father’s birthday party early to go to the disco with her cousins, and disappears from there.
The only clues to her disappearance are that her phone and red cold-shoulder disco dress are found in a park in Mexico City (where they live), and she also made-out like crazy with one of her male cousins while the other male cousin spied on them jealously, and her female cousin danced alone and complained later that she thought Frida was staging the whole “disappearance” for attention, which seems odd because if there’s one thing Frida has no shortage of, it’s attention.
Or bad cousins.

Frida’s father, Mr Pons,left his own birthday party to take Frida and her cousins to the disco, which seemed ok with him.
I found this very odd because they live in Mexico City, and I lived in Mexico City for awhile, and if there’s one thing I know about Mexico City (besides the abundance of delicious Tacos Pastor), I don’t care where you are going or what time you’re going- you are going to be stuck in traffic. Forever.
When I lived in Chicago I was pretty much always late for everything, but when I lived in Mexico City I was always early, but that’s because I always added two extra hours to however long Uber said it took to get there so I would not be late.

So I’m not sure what kind of daughter asks her father to leave his birthday party to drive her to the disco in Mexico City, but if that was my daughter I’d think her disappearance would add years to my life.

The fact that Mr Pons was willing to leave his party and get back into Mexico City traffic to drive the teen cousins to the underage disco tells you one of two things:

  1. The adults at the party couldn’t wait to get rid of the teenagers; or
  2. The adults at the party were so boring that being stuck in traffic was better than being stuck spending more time with them.

I vote for #2 and here’s why:
Mr & Mrs Pons, their three daughters, and housekeeper live in a gigantic house in the middle of a big park, and the other two houses belong to Mr Pons’ sisters and their families.
And it looks like they are all together all of the time, which might be why Frida and her cousin seem to be in love.
(It’s a little of “Flowers In The Attic,” except the Kissing Cousins are in 3 pretty big mansions inside of a big park inside of the biggest city in the world. So they do have other options.)

So if I’m Mr Pons, and I’m spending another night (my birthday) with my sisters and their husbands again, I might volunteer to drive the kids into the city too.

Mr Pins is clearly a Captain of Industry, and his sisters are like his Lieutenants, and their husbands are like enlisted men. Which I predict causes no small amount of tension, because the husbands are like the Invited Guests at the Officer’s Club, but their wives are members, so they have more privileges and sign for everything. This means that the husbands have to pretend to like their wives even more than they have to pretend to like their brother-in-law.

Mrs Pons stays home and pretends to help her housekeeper run her house.

When Mrs Pons and one of her sisters-in-law goes to the disco to pick up Frida and the cousins, it might be a good thing Frida is missing because I’m not even sure where they would all fit.
Plus, with the cousin make-out that happened that the other cousin saw, the tension level in that car was going to be fierce.
Plus, it was going to be a super-tight fit, which could go either way.
Better that Frida disappeared, and one cousin was stoned out of his mind when his aunt found him sleeping in the Ladies Room.

The whole family is now sad and frantic, and probably wouldn’t be cheered up at the bright side, which means a lot less driving.

Mr Pons is so powerful that their own detective has been assigned to Frida’s disappearance, and we can tell Det. Cabrera is very troubled because he has a punching bag in his cool loft, and a dog who spends most of his day watching him punch the heavy bag.
And that’s pretty much it.

Plus, Det. Cabrera has the kind of haircut that a wife or girlfriend would never tolerate, unless of course they wanted to make sure other women looked the other way. I think that his haircut might be inspired (or caused by) quarantine, but because there was is no social distancing happening in the show, I’m guessing the series was filmed pre-Covid, which means that there’s no excuse for his haircut other than the fact he is a troubled bachelor who is too troubled to get a decent haircut.

Det Cabrera is a detective unlike any detective I have ever seen (and I’ve seen a few) because he drives his own car everywhere, and never talks to his partner about where they are going to eat lunch.

So he’s assigned to The Disappearance of Frida, and as soon as he met the Pons family he fell in love with Mrs Pons.
And her with him.
The disappearance of her daughter might have slowed her down a bit, but I’m pretty sure we will watch their romance unfold faster than the Missing Person’s Case he’s opened.

At the end of yesterday’s episode, Mrs Pons spotted Frida’s Red Disco dress at the same park where her phone had been found.
And Mr Pons got a chilling phone call from someone who claims to have Frida.
Since it was just the first episode, it seems unlikely he really does have Frida, unless BAF is setting a record for the shortest telenovela in history.

“Buscando A Frida” is an updated, new version of one of my favorite novelas “Donde Esta Elisa?,” which was a remake of a Chilean novela of the same name.
The original series is more than 10 years old, so there’s lots of space for changes and new material!
Perhaps the entire case will be solved on Toc Toc, so I can finally learn what that is.

The series was created by Pablo Illanes and this version was written by Sandra Velasco.
The series has great genes.
And so does the does the cast.
Everyone is beautiful, which always adds tension.
In a family this good-looking, no one is taking a back seat to anyone, or letting the mysterious disappearance of anyone interfere with their spa appointments, Keratin treatments or Pilates.

I’m going to be watching and telling you all about it, and I hope you’ll join me for this new fun ride from Telemundo!

buscandoafrida

telemundo

@TLMDPR @

Searching For Frida

“A SEASON FOR MAGIC & MIRACLES … AND MURDER & MAYHEM!!” (Episode 8)

Ever wonder what would happen if you combined a Hallmark Christmas movie with a Telenovela? Well, wonder no more!! Here is EXACTLY what happens, in “A Season For Magic & Miracles, And Mayhem & Murder,” (Episode 8)!!

Here’s what happens when you combine a Hallmark Christmas Movie and a Telenovela!

It’s been awhile, between travelling and other interruptions! So Sorry!!!

But here’s the latest episode, and you can find Episodes 1-7 here, and on my blog, lagringanovelera.me!

“A SEASON FOR MAGIC AND MIRACLES, AND MURDER AND MAYHEM!”

Episode 8:

But first a few flashbacks!

(((( When we last left the crime scene of Roberto’s (or maybe Pablo’s???) murder, LAS COLOMBIANAS, Special Assistant Deputies of Crime (And Arepas), had just announced that ROBERTO had been poisoned before he was ever shot, based upon tasting the white powder substance at the corner of Roberto’s mouth. This news stunned the Coroner, DOC FA LA LA LA LA, who was still counting the bullet holes in Roberto’s body. An even bigger surprise was the appearance of TWO TWIN ORPHAN children, JUAN CARLOS and GERARDO, who claimed they were Roberto’s Secret Sons. -Meanwhile, LUPITA and JAYCEE were falling in love while POLICE CHIEF RICARDO and MAYOR LUIS were interrogating them, even though the jury is still out on whether or not they are brother and sister.

-Meanwhile, GINA and VERONICA were in the kitchen preparing trays of Hot Cider and Christmas Cookies for the long night ahead, where it was clear that with Roberto gone, Veronica is very much in favor of selling Roberto’s store, Ye Old La Casa de Christmas of Ciderville, to The Career Woman Who Is Too Busy To Love Christmas, And In Fact Hates Christmas, and Wants To Buy Ciderville To Destroy It, who Veronica is sure is Lupita. Gina is worried for Lupita and Ciderville, and had to remind Veronica that the store isn’t theirs to sell, and Lupita has not yet said she is THAT WOMAN.

-Meanwhile, back at the Old Abandoned Mansion, FERNANDA has freed SANDRITA and ANTONIO from the locked bedroom, which Sandrita wasn’t too thrilled about, to be honest. Sandrita announces she’s with Interpol and has been following Antonio, and Antonio discovers the Santa mask in Fernanda’s pocket – could it be the same Santa mask worn by whoever killed Roberto?

-Meanwhile, BLANCA, PABLO’S wife, is not so sure her husband Pablo really is Pablo, The Surviving Twin.

-Meanwhile, no one is more confused by this story than me.)))

That’s enough flashbacks.

As Dr. Dre says, “Let’s Chill, ‘til the Next Episode…” (Which is this one!)

BACK AT THE CRIME SCENE…

Doc Fa La La La La, stunned at Las Colombianas’ conclusion that Roberto was poisoned, tries the powdery substance at the corner of Roberto’s mouth. Smiling, he opens Roberto’s clenched, rigor-mortis fist, where he finds the remains of a half-eaten Christmas Cookie. “This powder isn’t poison – it’s powder sugar!” The crowd cheers because now they can go back to the easier mystery of “Who Shot Roberto In A Santa Mask?” But Las Colombianas, not to be outdone, announce that Sugar IS Poison!

Doc suggests to Mayor Luis and Sheriff Ricardo give their girlfriends something else to do on the case. Luis and Ricardo have to agree, reluctantly, but since they have never settled on which one of them is La Colombiana’s boyfriend, and which one of them is The Other Colombiana’s boyfriend, the four of them link arms, like the cast of “White Christmas, and return inside the Ciderville Gingerbread Village Hall, where the deputized Las Colombianas are given the task of reviewing surveillance video.

When Mayor Luis suggests to them that they look for anything suspicious, La Colombiana announces that “EVERYONE IS A SUSPECT!” The Other Colombiana adds, “Even you two! Do you have an alibi? It seems to us that nothing in the Christmas Town of Ciderville is as it seems… , and everyone is Under Suspicion. Don’t leave town.”

The four of them stare at each other in a Very Tense Moment…

MEANWHILE, Lupita and Jaycee take a stroll in the moonlight, in Ciderville Christmas Park, a park filled with decorated Christmas trees, twinkling lights, covered bridges, an ice-skating rink, and a food truck giving away Hot Cider and Christmas Cookies. Jaycee and Lupita get a hot cider, and take a seat to watch the ice-skaters. Jaycee pulls the mistletoe out of his pocket, and holds it over their heads. Lupita’s fear that there is still a remote possibility that they may be brother and sister does not stop her from participating in a Full-Metal makeout. When they finally come up for air, JayCee asks Lupita if it’s true – Has she come to Ciderville to buy it and destroy it? Lupita takes her hands from his, and a single Telenovela Tear runs down her cheek. She rises, and walks towards the ice-skating rink, watching the skaters, one tear still running down her cheek. No tear from the other eye – like a Telenovela miracle.

Lupita then turns back to face JayCee and tells him “Let me tell you a story… A Christmas Story…”

MEANWHILE, back at the Ciderville Village hall made entirely of gingerbread, a worried Francesca worriedly watches the Twin Orphans, Juan Carlos and Gerardo eat some of the gingerbread counters in the Clerk’s office, and drink hot cider. These boys are hungry.

When they finish, Francesca asks them where have they been living all this time, and what happened to their mother? The boys look at each other, terrified, and won’t answer.

Francesca opens her purse, which is always an evening bag, and slowly removes a gun, a knife, and a bottle labeled “Poison,” and places the items on the table, in between their plates piled high with gingerbread. The boys’ four identical eyes veer between the weapons and Francesca’s intense stare and cigarette holder, which seems like it could be a weapon too. Juan Carlos yells “Matame! ¡¡¡Mátanos!!! La vida no vale nada!!!” (Kill me! Kill us! Life is worth nothing!!) Gerardo is silent, (to save money on the production). Francesca smiles and then suddenly jumps up and starts hugging them so tightly she might suffocate both of them. “No, mis amors!!! I love you and will protect you from now on!! If anyone tries to hurt you ever again, they will have to go through me – and my little friends!!” (pointing at the table loaded with weapons. And Gingerbread. ). “Now, how about some Christmas cookies for dessert! And more hot cider!!”

MEANWHILE, back at the Old Abandoned Mansion On The Outskirts of Town, Sandrita has Fernanda at gunpoint, while Antonio does the questioning, which is a pretty effective interrogation technique, even in Ciderville.

Antonio demands to know what Fernanda is doing at the Old Mansion, who was shot in the mansion earlier, and what is she doing with a Santa mask in her pocket?

Fernanda insists she will tell them everything, if they promise to help her. She directs Antonio to go to her purse, where he will find the answers to what he is looking for. Antonio does as Fernanda asks, and finds an Interpol badge in her purse! Sheepishly, Antonio then pulls out his own badge – He is with Interpol too! The three of them agree that since they are all on individual secret missions, they cannot reveal those missions to anyone, even each other. But they agree to help each other as much as possible. Sandrita is still suspicious of Fernanda, and demands to know what was she doing with the Santa mask? Fernanda tells them that she found it outside, on the road leading away from the Gingerbread Village Hall, and thought it would be something fun to wear at the Fundraiser For The Orphanage, coming up on Christmas Eve.

Antonio still wants to know who was shot earlier in the mansion.

Fernanda says she’ll tell them everything – but why don’t they do it over Christmas Carols and Hot Cider at the Ciderville Christmas Cafe? Antonio and Sandrita agree and as Antonio walks out of the room, Sandrita stops Fernanda in her tracks and says, “Antonio is MINE! MINE!! Do you hear me?!?! MINE!!! And I am sitting on his side of the booth at the Christmas Cafe!” Sandrita then caresses Fernanda’s face with the barrel of her gun and reminds her that she saw Antonio first, and called “Shotgun!!”

With a diabolical laugh, Sandrita runs out after Antonio.

A worried Fernanda walks over to the mirror and talks to herself, asking herself “What have you gotten yourself into now, Fernanda??”

She then removes a photo from her wallet and stares at it – It looks like a photo of Fernanda and Lupita together, taken a few years before, dressed in matching outfits – TWINS!!! And the man in the middle? ROBERTO or PABLO! (Too hard to tell!!)

Antonio calls for Fernanda from the stairs, and Fernanda hurries to join him and Sandrita for Christmas Carols and Hot Cider at the Ciderville Christmas Cafe…

… Until Next Time – Stay Tuned!!

EPISODE 4

“A SEASON FOR MAGIC & MIRACLES … AND MURDER & MAYHEM!”

When we last left off yesterday, GINA was at the door of the Ciderville ‘El Generalissimo’ General Store, and GABI was not happy to see her, while LUPITA was still reeling from the events of the day so far,and she had only been in town for a few hours!

Gina is holding a snowglobe filled with Dalmation puppies, and still in her Christmas sweater.

An angry Gabi asks her “QUE HACES AQUI?!?!? (What are you doing here?!?)”

Gina responds that she is there to see FERNANDA. Lupita insists she is not Fernanda, and wants to know why everyone keeps calling her ‘Fernanda.’

For the umpteenth time that day (so far) she tells Gina in no uncertain terms that she is NOT this ‘Fernanda,’ and adds for good measure, that she is not here to buy the town of Ciderville, either.

She then adds, to both Gina and Gabi, that she is NEVER going to wear a Christmas Sweater, and that when people in The Big City wear them, they wear them as jokes, for ‘Ugly Sweater’ contests.

Gina and Gabi bless themselves.

Gina asks Gabi for a moment of privacy with ‘Lupita.’ Gabi is reluctant to do so, but Lupita insists it’s ok, and so Gabi goes to the store-room to unpack more Christmas sweaters, which is also an excellent listening post.

Before she goes, she asks if anyone wants any hot cider, but no one does.

Gabi pretends to go into the store-room, but she stands in the doorway, where she can hear everything.

Lupita asks Gina what she wants, and demands that Gina explains why Gina, Veronica and Roberto kidnapped her earlier that day.

Gina reminds her it was more in the nature of an “Unlawful Restraint,” and not a full-blown Kidnapping, but agrees it was wrong and apologizes and begs Lupita for her forgiveness. Lupita says she forgives them, but wants to know WHY??? Gina tells her that the Town of Ciderville is very important to all of them, and they heard that a Busy Career Woman From The Big City Who Hates Christmas was coming to Ciderville to buy the town to destroy, and that she and her partners had decided to hold The Career Woman hostage until after Christmas, so that Ciderville could have “One Last Christmas,” but that when they saw the Career Woman was Fernanda, they just couldn’t do it.

In the middle of the conversation, they hear the screech of tires, and Gabi, Gina and Lupita run to the windows of the shop, where they see the long, black limo we saw at the end of yesterday’s episode has stopped in front of the store. The tall, very handsome, elegant man in a perfectly tailored Italian suit emerges from the back of the car, and again removes his photo of “Fernanda” from his wallet, then looks directly at the faces of the three women in the window. Lupita shows no emotion, Gabi’s face breaks into a big smile, and a stunned Gina drops the Dalmation snow-globe, shattering it into a thousand pieces. And then faints in case anyone missed the point.

The man – LEONARDO – begins walking up the Candy Cane Lane to the shop… Taking his time… Enjoying this moment…

MEANWHILE…

NADIA and OSCAR are still day-drinking, at a different Cantina in town, the “Ciderville Christmas Candle-Inn.”

The Cande-Inn has no artificial lights, is entirely lit by Christmas candles, and the bartender dresses like Santa Clause, the Bar-backs dress as elves, and the waitresses dress like Mrs. Clause. But not a “Naughty’ Mrs Clause – more like a Hallmark Mrs Clause.

It’s one of the most popular places in town, because everyone looks great in candlelight.

In between steamy embraces, in their corner booth, Oscar asks Nadia about the town – specifically, what’s with the cider, and where’s the snow? Nadia is about to answer some of his questions, but changes her mind when “La Murga” comes on the jukebox, and she can’t resist the Christmas salsa music. She pulls Oscar onto the dance floor, and even though the two of them have been drinking all day, they don’t miss a step.

Everyone in the bar begins to clap around them as they take over the floor, yelling “Eso!!”

Just like Mark Anthony.

The music ends with an abrupt scratching-sound, when the doors to the bar open, letting in daylight and two figures of two men standing in the doorway, whose faces are blocked by the sun.

The two men come towards Oscar & Nadia.

Nadia’s eyes open in terror when she realizes it’s JOSE and JOSUE, now in matching Christmas Sweaters.

Jose says to Nadia – “Mira Nada Más” (“Well, Well, Well, Look Who’s Here…”) “Go on, my love, why don’t you tell your new lover about the cider?”

Josue adds, and “And don’t forget to tell him about the snow, too!”

Jose and Josue laugh diabolically and crowd Nadia, who pulls herself up bravely to her full height (approximately 5’3”) and demands to know “QUE HACES AQUI?!?!?”

Josue brings his face very close to Nadia’s, and tells her “We’re here for you.”

“And for some hot cider,” Jose adds.

Oscar believes this a good time for him to leave the bar, to go find his Patrona Lupita, but Jose and Josue block his exit, which leads Oscar to rethink his exit, and instead orders “Hot Cider all around!!” This breaks the tension, and everyone has a good laugh, until Josue leans right into Oscar’s face, demanding to know “Que Haces Aqui?!?!?!?!?”

Oscar replies that he’s only passing through town with his Patrona,

but Jose corrects him and says “No, I mean what are you doing here with MY WIFE?!?!?”

He then crushes the cider goblet in his hand, never losing eye contact with Oscar…

MEANWHILE-

Back at the Ciderville Village Hall made entirely out of gingerbread, MAYOR LUIS and and SHERIFF RICARDO walk into the small conference room where LAS COLOMBIANAS wait for them, drumming their extremely decorated and very long nails on the table. They are wearing Christmas Sweaters, but because they are Colombian, the sweaters are actually crop-tops that just look like Christmas Sweaters.

The crop-tops are also decorated with small candles that are actually lit, but because Las Colombianas are Colombian, they are not afraid of wearing lit candles.

When Luis and Ricardo walk into the room, Las Colombianos demand to know “QUE HACES AQUI?!?”

To which Luis responds “I work here. The better question is “QUE ESTAN HACIENDO AQUI??!” (Which means, “What are you doing here, (plural)?!?!?”)

Ricardo then tells them to put their sweaters out, because this is a “No Smoking” building.

LA COLOMBIANA points at LA FRANCESCA, The Deputy Mayor and Chief Deputy of the Ciderville Police Department, who is spying on them from the doorway, and smoking. La Colombiana demands to know why La Francesca is allowed to smoke, and Luis explains that La Francesca’s grandmother founded the town, so she’s grandfathered in on smoking. And Ricardo reminds them that Francesca is also the Deputy Mayor and Chief Deputy of the Ciderville Police Department, so she can pretty much do whatever she wants. THE OTHER COLOMBIANA objects to the corruption of the Ciderville town government, and also wants to know if she and La Colombiana can have some more hot cider please.

Luis tells them that they can have as much cider as they want once they explain what they are doing there without an appointment.

Las Colombianas explain (In very fast Spanish, in a very strong Colombian dialect that sounds kind of Chinese to an untrained ear, like mine) that they are there in the spirit of Christmas, and want to work with Ciderville to end waste, and to that end, they have a suggestion: After Christmas, they volunteer to take whatever is left of the Gingerbread Town Hall and ship it all to starving children.

Their organization is called “A Nosh for Los Ninos.”

The ladies add that they want to create a Christmas Talent Competition to raise funds for the organization, which will take place on Christmas Eve, and that since they are very talented themselves, they should not be excluded from the competition.

Luis and Ricardo try to catch their breath from the long and fast verbal assault from Las Colombianas, which is just how they talk. But the Mayor and Chief like the idea.

And they like Las Colombianas.

Luis calls for Francesca to bring more hot cider for everyone, and while the four of them toast happier days ahead for their relationship, Francesca watches from the doorway, smoking, and pulls out her phone.

When whoever she is calling answers, Francesca says “My love, I have some very interesting news for you… But it will cost you… Meet me at the Christmas Cantina. …

No! Not that one, the other one!”

MEANWHILE…

Back at the Ciderville “El Generalissimo” General Store, Lupita is trying to revive Gina, while Gabi fusses over LEONARDO with hot cider and cookies, and she holds different Christmas sweaters up to him, trying to decide what will suit him best.

Leonardo really likes those cookies, and doesn’t stop eating them.

He eats and waits for Gina to wake up, and stares at Lupita. Lupita finally revives Gina, and when Gina comes to, she asks Leonardo, “Leonardo, Que Haces Aqui?!?!?”

Gabi reminds GIna that Leonardo is family – her brother – and the better question to Gina is “What are you still doing here?”

Lupita watches them while they argue, and Leonardo interrupts them both with a “Shut Up,” which they obey immediately.

Leonardo begins walking towards a nervous Lupita, who walks backward as he walks forwards, and she nervously asks him what he wants.

Leonardo responds “You, Lupita, I want you – my wife!”

Gina and Gabi bless themselves, and Lupita slaps Leonardo, hard.

And then slaps him once more, in case he didn’t get it the first time.

STAY TUNED FOR EPISODE 5!!

#Telenovelas

#HallmarkChristmasMovies

I Make Mistakes In México So You Don’t Have To…

I had never before been to Mexico,

I don’t speak much Spanish,

I don’t know The Metric System.

So why not move to Mexico from Chicago to write the Telenovela of my dreams?

What could go wrong….

Listen to my podcast to learn all about my mistake-filled life here, and please give it a great rating even if you have to lie!!

Gracias!!

#podcasts

#mexico

#telenovelas

#travel

https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/my-mexican-mistake-s/id1474401635

Not One Decorating Or Travel Tip Here. No Recipes Either.

Why You Need to Stop Decorating And Watch “La Reina del Sur 2” on Netflix

One of my favorite series, “La Reina del Sur 2” is now on @netflix everywhere, and coming soon to @telemundointl here in Mexico!

Only GOT beats it in the ratings, which isn’t surprising because basically LRDS is a NarcoNovela GOT, with it’s own cool acronym too.

There is a lot of driving in #lrds2 – and oddly some of it is by a ten-year old girl driving a Cadillac through the winding streets of Tuscany.

You’ll see things in this great series you’ve never seen before, including American actor (and Julia Roberts’ brother) Eric Roberts, speaking worse Spanish than I do.

The show has a wonderful cast, great music (thanks to @flaviomedinal and his back-up singers @robertowoficial & @lincpal) and is a lot of fun and a Truly Excellent Adventure. @calvatwitt as

“Batmancito” is going to break your heart, plus there’s nothing more fun than watching him argue with a ten-year old. Humberto Zurito is a blast as “The Narco Who Would Be President.”

The only real danger of his Presidency would be that Cabinet meetings could get confusing because he calls everyone “Mijo.”

Watch @reinadelsurtv on @Netflix for a very good time!!

#lrds #netflix #gringanovelera

There’s No Law Lesson Like A Telenovela Law Lesson!

Are you watching “Falsa Identidad” on Telemundo?

Because it’s a lot of fun, plus you could learn a lot about the law! Which is basically the opposite of law school.

So Circe and her friend wanted to scare the Battle-Axe on the right, I guess because she’s about to expose Camila and Diego for stealing her identity.

Part of her identity is being mean and unpleasant, but remember that Diego and Camila were on the run from the even more mean and unpleasant Gavino when Diego’s Brother The Mayor and his Guy El Salas gave Camila her identity. (If Diego has The Mean Woman’s Husband’s Identity, he will want to get out of that relationship right away!)

So Circe and her friend dressed up like maids to pay a visit to the REAL Camila to “scare” her.

I’ll be honest- if Circe showed up in my hotel room I’d be terrified, and I’d double my tip.

Circe’s co-worker accidentally on purpose killed the woman by stabbing her in the neck.

They dragged her into the shower and left her to be found, thinking it would look like a suicide, because I guess in Circe’s world, people frequently stab themselves in the neck to avoid talking to her, her father and/or Joselito.

Well, The Real Camila was found by her friend on the left, and even though all he did was find her, he was promptly arrested for Murder!

As a former prosecutor, if the standard for proof is that low, I would love to be a Prosecutor in Novelaville! I might have won more often!

But I’ll tell you what: If the standard for proof is that low, remind me to never tell the police about any dead bodies I may come across in my travels.

This poor guy is now charged with Murder!

I want to be his lawyer and here is why: It’s SUPER easy apparently!

When this guy asked the detective for his lawyer, the detective stopped questioning him, which is very good behavior by the detective.

When he returned to the Interrogation Room a few minutes later, the prisoner asked “Where’s my lawyer??”

The detective took the lawyer’s card out of his pocket, with a message to the prisoner on the back of the card that told him to “Plead Guilty to Avoid The Death Penalty.”

That’s it!!

If lawyers here see this bit, they will be ordering new business cards by the truckload! 😂😂😂😂

Join me on my journey learning Spanish from telenovelas on Telemundo!! I’m about to move to Mexico City!!

S

WATCHING “SENORA ACERO” COME TO AN END IS LIKE LEAVING A FUN PARTY FILLED WITH GREAT-LOOKING GUESTS WITH TERRIBLE JUDGEMENT, WHO NEVER CALL 911!

It’s very tough to say goodbye to the great SuperCrazyNarcoNovela “Senora Acero,” on Telemundo, but sadly, this is the last season!!

Que LASTIMA!!

Please join me for a trip down Bad Memory Lane in my latest article for Latin Connection Magazine, a tribute to five seasons of madness in Señora Acero!!

Saying goodbye to the crew is like being at a super fun party with your best friends, who are the perfect combination of good looks and terrible judgement!!

The magazine is available on line, and here’s the article!

@LatinConnection is all about living the Latino lifestyle in the USA, and in addition to my Telenovela news, there is a lot more news you can use!!

In “Falsa Identidad” We See Why All Big-City Mayors Should Still Live At Home With Their Moms

Que tal!

Well, in “Falsa Identidad,” the latest ThrillerNovela from Telemundo, last night we watched the second episode, and have already called out our spot on the couch for the third episode, which starts Muy Pronto.

So, I didn’t realize until last night that Eliseo was THE MAYOR, yet still lived with his mother and stepfather.

I’m from Chicago, where we have a longstanding tradition of Mayors Behaving Badly.

I realize now that if they still lived at home with their moms, they would behave a lot better.

Eliseo sent his brother Diego on the road with Isabel and her son, so that Diego could escape from the Narco Gavino Gaona, who wants to kill Diego for stealing his wife and his gasoline.

Gavino had already killed his wife, now it’s Diego’s turn. So far no one in Gavino’s organization has been able to kill him because they either lost him in the chase or they are in love with him.

I’m not sure which category David falls into yet.

Mayor Eliseo promised Isabel he’d raise her teenage daughter as his own, because there weren’t enough passports for her, but he still hasn’t figured out how he will tell his scary, steely, flinty mother (The Great Sonia Smith) that he has a teenage daughter who just popped up.

Since her 2nd husband has already accused her of failing as a mother because her son Diego steals oil from Narcos, he will also accuse of her as failing as a grandmother, and it will be no excuse to say she didn’t even know she had any grandchildren.

MEANWHILE, I love watching Diego and Isabel On The Road because they are bickering just as much as any old married couple, even though they just met yesterday in the hallway of the Mayor’s house.

They crossed into Arizona yesterday but the Gaona Cartel is hot in their tail thanks to a combination of very corrupt border agents and ultra-efficient hotel clerks.

MEANWHILE, everyone has come to the Mayor’s house looking for El Diego and Isabel. First, Isabel’s weak and drunk husband brought his father, The Chief of Police, to find Isabel and the kids at the Mayor’s house.

Here’s where MEXICO is just like Chicago: No police chief in the real world or in Novelaville, in Chicago or in Mexico, is searching the Mayor’s house.

Not if they want to keep their pension anyway.

So at first, the Chief pretends to be a little social, but he loses his temper and eventually demands that Zoraida produce his daughter-in-law and grand-kids. At that point the Mayor’s mom Fernanda threw him out of the house.

The only thing worse than getting thrown out of the Mayor’s house is if it’s his mom who gave you the boot.

Defeated, El Coronel and that imbecile of a son left the Mayor’s house and went home to get drunk.

El Coronel thinks Isabel has a boyfriend; he doesn’t know she escaped because her son will kill her.

Just as Fernanda got rid of those two, the whole Goana Cartel showed up, looking for Diego.

They surrounded the Mayor and his stepfather at gunpoint,

on the front steps of the Mayor’s house.

We may behave pretty badly in Chicago, but no one here would ever have the nerve to hold the Mayor at gunpoint on his front steps.

Honestly, he’s more likely to take hostages than we are.

Eliseo is very brave, and he told the Goana Crew, including The Perpetually Angry Gavino, that they could come in and search the whole house. Diego wasn’t there.

Of course, once he called their bluff (and they then claimed that they saw Diego driving away), they all left.

I think that the real reason the Goana crew declined the offer is because they were afraid they’d run into Fernanda.

MEANWHILE,

Gavino, whose appears to hate his daughter Circe and vice-versa, announces yesterday that when the time comes, he’s giving control of the cartel to his right-hand man Joselito, and not his daughter because she’s a woman.

Not only has a made an enemy, he may have lost a Falconer.

Watch this fun and fast show tonight!!

In The NarcoNovela “El Senor De Los Cielos,” The Casillas Family Are The Worst Houseguests EVER!

Que tal!

I hope you have been watching “El Senor de Los Cielos” because right now it is the only show crazier than “Sin Senor Si Hay Paraíso” , and believe me, that’s saying something.

First of all, El Senor himself is in a coma, with his head wrapped up in bandages, with only one eye poking out.

Imagine The Invisible Man in the middle of a contract dispute, with a lot of men wearing big cowboy hats and bigger belt buckles in charge of his medical care.

After he was shot by El Cabo and his ever-dwindling group of Not-So-Merry Men, he had sought refuge with El Rayo (his childhood boxing coach), where he was rescued by his half-brother Amado, who is known as El Aguila Azul, but to be honest I think he should be called “El Principe Azul,” and Aurelio’s triple-crossing girlfriend Corina, and some luchadors.

This crew got him to The Ahumada Ranch, which is usually a pretty quiet place even with Don Ahumada running for El Presidente, until their long-lost (for a good reason) cousins The Casillas Family (all shot up) showed up at the Ahumada Ranch. Dona Alba and Mrs. Ahumada are cousins, but there’s a reason why Mr. Ahumada doesn’t want them around and it’s this: THE CASILLAS FAMILY ARE NARCOS AND HE IS RUNNING FOR PRESIDENT AND HIS PLATFORM IS “I AM NOT A NARCO!”

With the Casillas Clan, you get a lot of gangsters, bullys, big guns, yelling, a Command Center, more yelling, plotting, full-metal makeouts in unexpected places, shoot-outs, worry, drama, a mini-hospital, a full medical staff, torture, kidnappings, and even more yelling. This is not what a Presidential Candidate needs, except maybe for the plotting. And the make-outs. And the medical staff is OK but only if they have brought Ambien.

In fact, the Casillas Clan should probably just stay home the next time they are attacked.

Meanwhile, to add to the Candidate’s worry, his daughter Diana was kidnapped by the neighbors, the Ramos Brothers, who I hope are better ranchers than they are kidnappers and neighbors. Don Ahumada and the police were on their way to rescue Diana, but she tried to stall them because with the Casillas Cousins taking up all of the air in the room with their problems, neither Diana nor her mother had had a chance to tell Papi that Diana is a Narca, and that is why she is still single.

Diana is like a teenager who gets caught with marijuana in her backpack, except in her case it’s like 18 tons of marijuana.

She was so afraid her father and the police were going to find out she was a Narca that she actually called her archenemy and Texas dinner date El Cabo to ransom her. Cabo agreed to do it, because he thinks everything is funny, even though he thought there was a slight risk that it could be a set up. And even though it was not a set-up, because he did not find Diana tied to the railroad tracks (which I guess The Ramos Brothers said they were going to do) he believed that it was. If you ask me, the best part about that scene on the tracks was that one of his henchman held an umbrella over Cabo, to keep the strong sun off his head. Cabo is like Queen Elizabeth without the handbag, in that someone else holds his umbrella.

If I worked for Cabo, I would tell him he needs a summer weight Run-DMC track suit, in seersucker, because black velour is just too warm. I think if El Cabo could be anything he wanted to be (besides El Cabo), he would be a Russian Oligarch, because no one would love to prance around in an ostrich jacket more than El Cabo.

Luckily for Diana, she is rescued by her half-cousin Amado Leal, known as El Chicle or El Aguila Azul. But in Diana’s case, it’s more like “El Principe Azul” because when he rescues her as they booth shoot it out with the Nitwit Ramos Brothers, it’s Love At First Shot. It’s a good thing her hair and makeup still looked good even though she had to wear the burlap head bag for several days.

See, my mother was right: You never know where you are going to meet your Future Husband, and having your head stuck in a burlap bag is no excuse not to wear lipstick.

Once Diana was rescued from the Ramos Brothers, she had to explain to her father that she was kidnapped because she is a Narca, which is also why she was still single.

Of course she was kidnapped because she’s a Narca!

What does she look like? The Lindbergh Baby?

Meanwhile, an angry El Cabo incorrectly felt he had been betrayed by Diana, so he tried to kill her father at a campaign rally. If he dies I think there is a chance he can still win the election since everyone likes a nice quiet candidate.

And El Cabo’s girlfriend Evelina went to the morgue to identify her dead father but he wasn’t there, and that’s probably because he’s not dead.

If I understood things correctly, and the odds are pretty good that I did not, Evelina’s father is El Rayo, which makes her practically family to the Casillas Family, which is going to make Thanksgiving particularly awkward.

Don’t miss a minute of this fast, funny and fantastic show!