Friday, October 30, 2015


We are so thrilled to learn more about the Mexican culture, and how they perceive gringos who fail to greet strangers on the street with "Buenas Dias" (BD) .  Gringos are considered cold and rude if we fail to greet with a smile and a simple BD. It is also considered GOOD BREEDING while honoring your mother to say "Buen Provecho" to a table of strangers sitting next to you in a restaurant.  In a cafe the culture of Mexico will NEVER bring your tab to the table PRIOR
to your asking for the check.  To bring the check before you ask is like asking you to leave the restaurant. So do not be dismayed, simply ASK with a smile "La Cuenta, por favor." Also when gringos meetup with friends, people you see every week, hug them and say "Buenas Dias, Como Estas?" You greeted with a question "Good morning, how are you?" Their response will be "Bien gracias" or "Bien, Bien". When you depart as friends it is proper to say "Adios, Hasta Luego"
Which means "God be with you, see you later". In Mexico men and men, or men and women, or women and women greet each other with a hug and a kiss on the cheek .  Mexican men and women do NOT get jealous when you hug their mates, but they do think you unfriendly if you do not! ALSO the Mexican tradition of celebrating the dead has become somewhat Americanized.  Do not be alarmed by the "Katrina dolls" that line the malecon in Chapala during the last week of October.  The day of the dead Skeleton dolls are festively adorned to cause smiles while remembering loved ones that have died.  Passing out candy and wearing scary costumes is not the Mexican tradition. SHOP COURTEOUS: If you are in Guadalajara or in Chapala shopping and a clerk approaches say "Solamente estoy viendo, gracias"  You are politely saying "I am just looking, thank you".  If they speak in their native speed, which is often too fast for gringo comprehension, simply say "Despacio por favor, no hablo espanol muy bien"  You have asked graciously "Slowly please, I don't speak Spanish very well". It is wise to join LCS in Ajijic. Find LCS on corner of Septimbre and Cologne in Ajijic.The Lake Chapala Society of Expats offers great bus trips and Spanish classes. WELCOME to MEXICO! 

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Pueblo Magico

Merry Christmas 2015!  What a gift of God's favor it is to have our fair city of Chapala being primed for induction into the hall of fame of Mexico! We have been the happy recipients of many street improvements over the last year in Chapala. Our city has spent three million pesos to improve the image of
Chapala. In the month of December 2015, Avenida Ignacio Madero is enjoying a major facelift that includes new plants along the median and curbs painted in the Pueblo Magico offical colors. A catalog of buildings that make up Chapala's architectural heritage is underway.  The principal aim of local public works is to enhance the appearance of the towns historic center. Juicy
funding for each PM will be 400 million pesos in 2016 to spend on improving Tourism and 4 billion pesos in 2018. To gain recognition for PM status, Chapala City Hall has been restored and a new Centro Mercardo has been replenished with new benches for our Taxi service. Our new Mayor Javier Degollado is determined to get Chapala incorporated into the Pueblos Magicos (PM) program. There are a total of 111 towns in Mexico that now boast of the Pueblo Magico brand. In the
state of Jalisco PM towns include Tequilla, Moreno, Talpa de Allende, Tpalpa, Mascota, Mazamitla and hopefully Chapala. The PM scheme will be applied as one enters Chapala, and
within the City limits it will focus on the grand water front homes and the historic Railway Station that was built in 1920.  The street that runs in front of the Train Station and in front of Christiana Park and Cruz Roja is just down the street from our has been re-cobbled with a walkway and rest benches down the median, which is our new foot route to the malecon. 

Friday, October 9, 2015


A TUS ORDENES...My pleasure to serve you, I am all yours! Notaria Publica in Ajijic, municipio de Chapala, Jalisco was done on 12/30/09 by attorney Luis Enrique Ramos Bustillos for a fee of $200.00 USD. Senor Bustillos opened his office especially to notarize my Power of Attorney required for an absentee owner to close my real estate transaction. Senor Bustillos can be contacted toll free at 713-429-4719. Email: The state of Jalisco offer's an annual discount on preparing a Mexican will in September for a fee of $100 USD. Kristina Morgan from FOM welcomed me into Jalisco by immersing me into the warmth of her family on Christmas day. My dream has always been to have a view of mountains and access to a lake with mild temps that include a season of cool breezes that lead me to cuddle by a fire. My focus on Mexico, has brought me peace knowing that where I shall retire will be among such beautiful people. Like minded, and interesting folks from around the globe share my enthusiasm for Lake Chapala. Gracia-Alicia Bake will move into her new casa in Ajijic from Toronto in February 2010. Grace worked in Mexico City as a journalist who once interviewed Juan Carlos, the future King of Spain in 1967. Her daughter Michelle works in radio in Toronto and will marry her soul mate Chris Murphy in May at the church in Ajijic. Grace, Michelle and I created a NEW BEGINNING together singing Feliz Anyo Nueva while dancing with the best Mariachi band in all of Lake Chapala. Knowing that Chapala is my final nesting destination is like finding a pot of gold at the rainbow's end! With a forest nearby and a daily spin about the lake, living within a culture of people who are where they want to be, I will enjoy being active in LOVE IN ACTION. An orphnage where 60 kids aged birth to 17 are loved and taught English, dance, painting, arts, crafts. Boys in their teens go to Hope House in Ixtlahuacan where Kristina's family lives. Another special group home called Villa Infantil de Nuestra Senorea de Guadalupe y San Jose is located on the south shore within the boundaries of Jocotepec. Madre Maria de Jesus Mendez is the woman who heads up this facility with a purpose of building faith, hope and love in the children of Lake Chapala. In a relaxed village, with good friends enjoying pot lucks at LA CASA DE LA LUZ -- I will help others while enjoying maids, gardeners, and a host of delightful local Mavericks! Don and Linda Wright wait to serve you out of their office located directly next to Wal-Mart as you enter town. With a team you can trust, the Hernandez Realty Group also provides property management services. Contact Don and Linda toll free at 877-807-4934. Regardless of my immigration status, I now have title to a beautiful casa, and beginning in 2011, I will invite family and friends to visit. I took this photo of a small corner shop in San Antonio. Larger grocery stores exist in most lakeside towns with a full sized Soriana supermarket in Chapala. Fresh vegetables can be purchased at a lower cost at the street market every Wednesday in Ajijic at the corner of Constitucion and Revolution. Monday in Chapala, and Thursday in Jocotepec. Guadalajara has very large food stores such as Sam's, Costco, Wal-Mart and many large Mexican chain supermarkets. SOCIAL ACTIVITIES - There are daily luncheons, cocktail parties and fiestas in private homes attuned to a Jimmy Buffet, Tall Boys, SALSA y RAGGAE beat. LIFE in MEXICO, just hours to any number of white sandy beaches including a secret jungle beach that I visited on February 14th 2007! Cathy Roberts and I will revisit this sacred Shangri-La together in my retired future! BEACHES - From Guadalajara, a 4 hour drive in a luxury ETN bus to PV or Manzanillo. TRAVEL link click ETN. It is a 10 hour drive to Mazatlán or many other smaller beaches. RESTAURANTS: Lakeside eateries range from fine restaurants to cozy small sidewalk cafes. Nice dinners are about $10-15 US and up. My favorites in Ajijic is Ninette, Number Four (jazz piano) located on Donato Guerra near the lake side grace of La Nueva Posada for the best steak! Los Telares in the center of Ajijic on Morelos offers a fantastic all you can eat buffet that I enjoyed with a group of lively expats on Wednesday. Only $6.00 USD! ENTERTAINMENT - Salsa dance lessons are each Wed in Ajijic near the weekly market at La Bodega. There is good live music most nights of the week: music from 40's and 50's, rock 'n roll, karaoke, jazz, country, and dancing. Also at Lakeside there is a three-screen movie theater showing the latest popular movies; usually 2 of the 3 movies are in English. In Guadalajara there are state and city bands and orchestras, choral groups, ballet and theater groups, sports stadiums, as well as movie theaters. Lake Chapala also is the home of the famous Tall Boys and PsychQstasia. Top-flight local music and dance groups can be booked for your private parties. Click on any photo in any post to enlarge.Pictured here is Kristina Morgan, her husband Joel of the Tall Boys (youtube) and her brother David of Psychqstasia (youtube)and her best friend Tyler who house sits. Check links on the LEFT and enjoy your visit to LAKE CHAPALA.