What am I doing to keep my peace & protect myselfadjusting to the new norm
Posted 27 April 2012 - 07:07 PM
The OP is doing what feels safe for her then it's the right thing. I have bars on all my windows & skylights, 3 dogs & I did what felt right for me. I don't want to live in an apartment & haven't since 1977. Whatever floats your boat...
Posted 27 April 2012 - 07:38 PM
My solution to having a safe place to live is a simple one.
Although I could afford to buy a big house, I have chosen instead to live in an apartment.
During the past dozen years, I have lived in apartments in four different Mexican towns/cities.
A multi-unit apartment building with a locked entrance gate, a good landlord and responsible tenants is, in my view, at or near the bottom of the list of targets for burglars or armed robbers. After all, there are usually people in and around the building. Plus, there are normally several vehicles in the parking area.
Seems to me that no crook with half a brain would venture into a place where there are lots of potential witnesses. Plus, any savvy robber would have to figure: "Hey, if these people were rich, they wouldn't be living in an apartment."
In the 12 years I've lived in apartment buildings in Mexico, there have been zero robbery attempts in those buildings.
And, in case you're wondering, living in an apartment doesn't mean you're settling for a second-rate home environment. The place where I've been living for the past four years is a nicely furnished two-bedroom apartment, with satellite TV, wireless internet and a comfy back yard with swimming pool, trees and plenty of flowers. Most of the tenants - Canadian, American and Mexican - are long-term residents and are friendly and respectful of one another.
One other thing about living in an apartment: If, for some reason, I decide to move, I won't have to wait forever for someone to buy the place. And if something changes in the immediate area that makes the neighorhood a less pleasant place to live, I can pack up and leave with ease.
So that's the apartment solution. And it doesn't require razor wire, security cameras, spotlights, trained personal protection or guard dogs.
Works for me.
This is fantastic for someone that doesn't want yard work either!!! I felt safer living in Guadalajara where there weren't any expats. We owned a house that was wall to wall w/3 other houses. But we opted to move to Chapala and make it our permanent home, it's more peaceful here and we can relax. Let's say I'm the most paranoid of them all and someone else out there reading has been feeling the same way. If they own in a rural area or have a larger lot, I'd just like to help offer some helpful options if they'd like to beef things up and stay. There's a lot of people I know that are staying & we all want to feel safe. Where ever you live, if you're happy and feeling just fine, I'm so happy for you and I hope that never changes. This post is for those folks maybe losing sleep right now. I'd like them to feel empowered that they can do some things for themselves and feel safe. Probably have noticed that my biggest push is for the good guard dog really ;o) Early last year, I was super chicken & wouldn't go outside to walk anymore. The dog isn't just for the house, it's so I can enjoy going for a walk in my neighborhood & if someone tried to bother me while I'm home, I feel that my dog can help me, whereas I felt pretty powerless before. Probably no one else around me has or had a problem walking, it was just me but I'm out there again!
Where I live, it's more rural than Johanson, and I never want to find even a screw driver near me that's not intended to be used to assemble something or put away in the tool box. We certainly don't live in a prison, on a $100K lot, nor do we live in a large house full of antique goodies, but we do have little feet and I want those little feet to be able to go into the yard and not be concerned that some man on a horse is going to decide that my wall is the next one he thought he could climb over as happened before we moved into this neighborhood. No way! Razor wire & thorny flowers buddy will find your bottom! Maybe you don't want dusk to dawn lights, it's pitch dark here at night & the street light is hidden by our wall, if it's working. We get cows & other critters so lights help the dogs and us figure out whats looking for a place to sleep at night. Also makes great night lights if you happen to get up to go potty ;o) If you feel isolated, my suggestions are good ones. I feel very fortunate to live here. I love it and I'm so happy to have my peace back & enjoy the view, hear the peacock cries & the country breeze! Relax in the hammock or cook up a storm in my kitchen with herbs from my garden.
Posted 27 April 2012 - 07:42 PM
We firmly believe that the dogs make an impression. They're big, noisy, and don't like strangers one bit. We're 'dog people' and have always had big dogs. Down here, they have a more serious job......but they still line up in the morning for hot-dog-treats and like to sleep under/over my feet. If you have never had dogs or don't really love dogs, please secure your property another way. They require time, money, training, and love.
Posted 27 April 2012 - 07:58 PM
Posted 27 April 2012 - 08:20 PM
In Mirasol the houses are attached so there are only 2 ways to break in - the front or the back.
Posted 27 April 2012 - 08:35 PM
It's true that many very humble homes have been robbed, but many very high end homes have not. Let's consider the reason for this.
Let's say you live in a high end property in Canada or the U.S. You have perhaps ADT or other security. The problem is, what you do not have is an effective deterrent.
Here we have electric fences (legal) attack dogs (legal) plus bars on the windows etc.
These will most certainly be more than effective deterrents.
Imagine if you will, living NOB with no effective deterrents whatsoever. No attack dogs, no electric fences, no bars on windows and the list goes on. Not allowed by law.
What is going to happen? For example Spain now has a 25% unemployment rate, when the economy continues down the tubes and you have nothing between you and the criminals, what are you going to do?
Where would you rather be? There or here?
Denial isn't going to help you in an emergency. Active protection IS.
I have been robbed, armed, also threatened with firearms. I do not plan on allowing anyone who is not invited on my property.
Makes sense to me. Many others may disagree. To each his own.
Posted 27 April 2012 - 08:37 PM
Depends on where you live and what your needs are. We've lived in the city and now we live in the country. If I were a single lady that traveled a lot, unless I had the means to always take my dog with me, I'd probably not want a dog either. We went through our season of traveling, I'm home most of the time now. Country girl without a horse.
Posted 27 April 2012 - 08:50 PM
Posted 27 April 2012 - 08:58 PM
Posted 27 April 2012 - 08:59 PM
I know someone who's backyard butts carretera a Chapala...actually, several living that way but this man has been living here for 100 years ;o) He said they've always had 2-4 rotties and never a problem. His walls are high & have broken glass glued on top as well. Now his neighbor, 5-10 houses down, also has a house w/the backyard butting the carratera a Chapala. That neighbor had a home invasion and bad men climbed their back wall, obviously no razor wire or protection on it. Those folks were renting & I've seen both a for sale and now a for rent sign & no sign of the dear people it happened to. They had a dog but the dog wasn't big enough to help them. Another resident in our area was robbed before we moved here. Their house is able to be seen from the road. Walls or fencing has some barb wire but what really is protecting them is their shepherd. That dog ain't gonna let anyone mess with his house! It'll bark you right outta town! I don't think they have an alarm or electric fence or security cameras, but they have a darn good guard dog. Remember, I'm the most paranoid, and I like my privacy. If I feel like having my coffee on the terraza in my pj's, I don't want my neighbor's walking their dogs to see me However, if my dogs alarm me that somethings out on the street, I want to be able to see that ground squirrel run across the road through the security camera or the neighbors pack of loose dogs that are playing hide and go seek in the lot next door. I like to see out, always have. Not used to being walled in but feel most relaxed living in the country. We can see out, but we can't see the street in front of our house. Now I can see cars down the street or who's looking through the trash. A lot less to worry about since I can see that the street activity is pretty boring.
Posted 28 April 2012 - 01:39 AM
Posted 28 April 2012 - 02:35 AM
I am headed to Chapala from South Africa - sounds like it will be home away from home! But because we have to laugh I dare you to take alook at my home in South Africa - could I build the same home in Lake Chapala? Go on take a look and have a laugh!
I think you could make a fortune building houses like this in Mexico. I love it!
Posted 28 April 2012 - 04:23 AM
Posted 28 April 2012 - 05:50 AM
Posted 28 April 2012 - 08:25 AM
Posted 28 April 2012 - 09:01 AM
Posted 28 April 2012 - 11:08 AM
Those fortress homes are amazing feats of engineering and I can appreciate that. But I prefer living in a modest middle class mixed neighborhood (Mexicans and foreigners) with high fences, a bit of razor wire here and there, and yappy dogs, except for one doberman. When I downsized twice in the states prior to retiring here, I committed to not escalating again into owning lots of stealable goodies and frankly, I don't miss a thing. I wouldn't want to lose life & limb or my dog in a home invasion, but everything else is replaceable (ok, even the dog, sad to say). Even the stuff on my computer is in the Cloud and available for replacement should I have to. I love living this "light" and it makes me feel more secure than any amount of anti-burgler weaponry I could amass for my rented house. Call it "when you got nothin', you got nothin' to lose" - and I know that contradicts all consumer prescriptions to buy, buy, buy; but one can live quite happily - and with style - in simplicity, once you learn how. It's actually kinda fun to live below one's means. It's experiences, not stuff, that count.
Amen. I'm all for the simple life. The last house I owned in Canada, I sold furnished. And as for the "stuff" I had, I let family and friends take what they wanted and gave the rest away to Goodwill.
Now I have almost zero "stuff." Instead of "Sleepless in Seattle", I am "Stuffless in Chapala."
Perhaps the best insights into "stuff" came from the late comic genius George Carlin. Check out the video....
Posted 28 April 2012 - 11:12 AM
Our mini schnauzer barked at everything that moved and didn't move & was not enough of a threat to keep robbers from breaking into our house while we were away. Great alarmist!!!
People are going to do what they want to do and I'll have compassion on those who may have a problem but don't say you weren't warned & the solution pretty simple, a guard dog.
Spoke w/the owner/trainer of Wolf's again this morning. It's really too bad that it's so hard to change the mentality of so many who are uneducated about trained protection & guard dogs. Even he mentioned they get them confused with a sentry dogs, which are trained to guard warehouses & will kill. He mentioned how he worked with expats before and all they want is obedience, none of them, until recently were ever interested in protection & guard training. He said that so many want their dogs to be friendly with everyone and that's not good. You should not let your pet be petted by everyone & you should tell people that it bites. He said how you feel about your dog will transmit to the dog. If I feel my dog is valiant, he will act valiant. If someone is considering Mexico or thinks there's nothing they can do to protect themselves, there is. A potential robber will look at two houses. One has a good guard dog, the other doesn't. Guess which one he'll choose to enter? I'm done blowing a horn about it on here. Build a cement fortress & close the hatch! ;o) Did you get a response time for closing that crypt?
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