Welcome to Mexico!
By Victoria Schmidt
It’s cold out there!
I am moving to the beach! OK, I’m threatening to move to the beach. I hear it is warm there. 2013-2014 has turned into the longest and coldest rainy season I have spent in Mexico. Yes! It is good for the Lake! I am happy for the Lake! But my bones ache! I miss the sunshine! I haven’t had arthritis pain like this for 7 years. I don’t like it. I want my warm weather back. Yesterday! And I know I am not the only one feeling this way! Expats all over Lakeside are complaining and arthritis medication and aids are selling like crazy.
Oh, my friend in Minnesota, is so understanding. Not! “Well it is -44 degrees with wind chill today.” Yes, it is true. Many people living in Mexico cannot begin to comprehend that kind of cold. But please! “You have in-floor heating in your basement! YOU have central heating!” I say to my friend. “We have a fireplace that is a block away from our bedroom! I’m sleeping in flannel sheets, socks, flannel nightgown, a scarf, every spare blanket in the house, a heating pad and gloves!” No matter how cold it was in Minnesota I never wore gloves to bed. I never designed a nose mitten to wear in bed! (Yes, I’ve designed one.) This rainy cold weather goes straight to my bones.
When we moved to Mexico, I sold the special Seasonal Affective Disorder lamp I had to sit under because there is not enough sun in the winter. Ha! I was so smug. I was so pleased with myself. Now, I want my light back! That’s what I get for being smug. I wanted to live somewhere that would allow me to wear flip-flops year round. Now I’ve had to lie in a wardrobe of toe socks to keep my feet warm. We’ve gone days with no sun. We added over 2” of rain during Christmas week. As I write this in January, there was thunder and two quick storms today.
I admit. I’ve become acclimatized to Mexican weather. My blood has thinned, and I now believe that a down jacket is the only answer to 50-degree Fahrenheit weather. My son thinks I am a wimp, and by Minnesota standards, I am. At 50 degrees, they are out barbequing and playing golf in the snow with little orange balls, and no, they aren’t even wearing sweaters.
I love Lakeside. I loved the climate. Why does the forecast show sun, but the sky is grey? Who hijacked it? What is the ransom? Who do I pay my share to? Did some super secret bad guy devise a weather machine and is holding our sun ransom like a plot in an Austin Power’s movie? Is this a once in 20-year cycle? If so, how long is it going to last??
All sarcasm aside, I live in Centro Chapala, in the valley. Those who live in the upper barrios are extremely cold. Many of the homes have no windows and dirt floors! These mountains are cold. There are people here at Lakeside who are truly suffering due to the cold. Please, in between our complaints about the weather, make sure that any old jackets, coats; blankets, shoes, socks and warmer clothes are donated to the area shelters. Make sure your maids, gardeners and their children are keeping warm. These are a proud people, and they may not always ask for what they need.
Meanwhile, whoever took our nice warm weather please bring it back? I won’t even complain in May…I promise!