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Showing content with the highest reputation on 03/03/2018 in all areas

  1. 16 points
    Back where we lived in the states we had trash pickup once a week but paid 70 USD a month for it. Our home taxes were approx 12,000USD. School taxes were about 4,000. Internet about 100 per month for fibre but you purchased it in increments as in one price for 20 mbps and another price for 50, etc. Gas and electric averaged about 400 a month The potholes on state roads through our town that were fixed were not done correctly thus they were fine for a few months and would reopen and be worse. Our town used to have a big crew fix pot holes and to maintenance and was flush in monies until corruption took over hence all but 2 were laid off and tey made the crew boss with no financial training town manger. I used to say that we didn't own our tires but rented them. Our state is in a fiscal free fall and even had to take bonds out on state liquor stores to help shore up the budget. A portion of state revenues were always set aside to give to school districts and they have dropped significantly and as a result school infrastructures are in bad repair. Our district was ranked 3rd in the state and yet the buildings had become full of mold and in disrepair and will take tens of millions to fix so I hear taxes will be going up again. The state university system over the last 10 years has lost so much funding that it has become a nightmare for parents and students. State schools were designed to teach the poor to middle class. Now room and board is about 40,000 and you can get a better scholarship at a private school. That's a 300 percent increase from when my son graduated about 6 years ago. He lives iN San Francisco now , one of the most beautiful cities in The USA and yet so many streets are riddled with hypodermic needles and human feces and people sleeping on the streets in front of companies like twitter and Pinterest and the homeless population has grown by leaps and bounds. Yet some of the largest tech companies are right on the corner and do nothing to help. The traffic is beyond nightmarish and a recent poll showed that if they could, 75% of the population would leave. The largest outdoor encampment of homeless in all of the US was right by the San Jose airport smack in the middle of Silicon Valley . You could see google and the other high tech companies from this encampment that was destroyed and the homeless dispersed and yet in this homeless encampment were people with jobs and advanced degrees who couldn't afford rent because the area has a 96% occupancy rate and rents would go up and up and up. Leases were 10 months with minimum 20 percent increases. They were based on the markets prices. Many so called wealthy tech hackers live 4 and 5 in a 2 bedroom apartment and the parking lots of google and other high tech companies have hundreds of vans or winnebagos in their parking lots where employees sleep. They wash and eat in their company facilities and these companies know whats going on. Los Angeles and its beautiful suburbs are being overrun by homeless. Venice Beach , the American version of a Pueblo magico is getting so bad that blocks and blocks of businesses and citizens now have guards protecting them. I say this because it isn't much brighter NOB from my perspective. If everyone here wants trash picked up on schedule and the local roads to be taken care of far better infrastructure and a fully functional fleet of what we call garbage trucks here , and faster internet service, etc. are you willing to pay the extra monies in the form of taxes and internet bills? Look at your tax bill. It is ridiculously cheap beyond imagination. Your yearly real estate taxes could not get you a meal for 2 at a white tablecloth restaurant in a major city. I am new here having purchased in October but I see the US going downhill as Mexico is going up hill. Our taxes , HOA fees, water and propane and 24 hour manned security and a crew of 10 or so people to maintain the development is 2200 a year. Our transition apt in the states after we sold our home was more than that and it want anything spectacular. I call it back to the eighties here. Yes , it has changed here but there will be adjustments made and if its so bad why are prices going through the roof into bubble territory. How many have come here because they have realized they can no longer afford to retire in America or Canada and places in Europe and can still live a good life on social security and or pensions and there is no way in hell they could do that back home. Is it getting worse? Depends on what you mean by worse. It can be much better from an infrastructure point of view but are we all willing to have our taxes increase five or ten fold (and that would still be cheap). Speaking of corruption, our town back in the states was corrupt as ever. Borrowed 50 million in the form of bonds to give large landowners (gentleman farmers) monies to have easements put on their properties so that developers couldn't buy and build luxury homes (that no one wants anymore)and the town also froze the taxes on these parcels. Corruption comes in many forms. At least here they are open about it. I would assume many people here cannot leave because their finances dictate that they cannot go back home. If I went back home I could not afford to buy the house I sold 1 1/2 years ago , let alone pay close to 25,000 a year for lousy health insurance (1 1/2 years away from getting full social security benefits at 65 1/2) and perhaps get an appointment with a doctor in 3 months if I am lucky. I believe the latest statistics are that a couple retiring today will need 275,00 USD just for medical expenses in their future years and 3 years ago when I looked the estimate was 235,00. Assisted living median price is 10,000 per month in the states and the facilities are basically owned by private equity firms. You want an extra slice of bread, that will be 50 cents and pharma companies use these places as testing grounds for new drugs. How much is it lakeside? 1500 a month?.Or you can have a live in caretaker for less. Perhaps there is a price to pay for having a roof over your head here in the form of bad roads and internet services and sub par utilities and garbage strewn streets but one has to look at the whole picture. A retired couple can live out the rest of their lives here easily and comfortably with far less in assets if one is prudent. You wouldn't be able to do that NOB where a couple would need at least 2- 3 million or have rock solid pensions and I believe no pension is rock solid anymore. I say the price for the inconvenience is worth it. Many of you have the finances to have multiple homes. I can only afford to have one. Back home we had to get in the car to go for a bottle of milk. Here many expats are getting healthier because we walk so much more and eat healthier food (if we choose to). I know of 5 people who have rented here who are freaked out because their landlords see the crazy prices being offered and have sold their properties and now these people will have to move somewhere even cheaper because of the difficulty in getting suitable living quarters at the price they can afford to pay and they cant afford to buy anymore because they have been told to "rent for 6 months or more to see if you like the place" and they really do but in taking that advice they have been priced out. We looked into buying in Mazatlan and SMA and the real estate agents called the properties investments. The light went off in my head. A house for me is only an investment if its an income producing property. Now the real estate agents here (some who could never be one NOB) are doing the same thing. Calling homes investments. We are competing with the educated middle class Mexicans who don't exactly trust their banks and have always seen real estate/land as a solid investment. GDL is being known as the High tech capital of Mexico with close to 20 billion in revenues. Microsoft and intel and other high tech companies are there and quite a few of their executives live Lakeside which is not considered in any way an exclusive area compared to some in GDL. Many expats here are crying behind closed doors because they know they are in trouble. I would assume whats driving these prices much higher is that the boomers are retiring in droves and are looking for an affordable places to live and are not doing the appropriate due diligence but rather watching some stupid you tube videos on how to retire In Chapala for 1,000 a month or read that god awful International Living magazine that reprints the same article on the area every 6 months, and they flock here and buy andn many get burned in the process. Medicare and Medicaid in the states are at risk, even social security because how do you run a country that in a couple of years will have a 30 trillion dollar deficit. The cut backs will kill many people, especially the elderly and poor and disabled. And its not going to get any better. I cant speak about Canada and its issues but only about the states. It is scary what may happen. The stock market is going up but everything is cyclical and over 50 percent of the population aren't in the markets. Technology is moving at light speed and estimates are that one third of the workforce will be without jobs unless they educate themselves real quick . My 28 year old son can go through the turmoil but people my age with limited resources cannot. I will gladly deal with all the bad things here than back in the states where if either my wife or I got very ill and required to go to a private institution it would most likely bankrupt our family and my son who makes 200k a year at 28 living in silicon valley is barely considered to be middle class (pays close to 50 percent in taxes between federal, state and local and now they are thinking about taxing you based on how many miles you drive.). He cant afford to buy a home and rents a 120 sq foot room in a person's home for 1,000 per month and still drives a 1996 Subaru. He sees the future and it is not bright. I doubt if he will live there in 5 years. The nature of his work is one that he can work from anywhere in the world and connect to his ofice. He came down to visit and was enthralled with our place (One third the size of our home we sold) He saw what so many who have been here a long time do not see anymore. He saw possibility. He saw happy people. He ate some of the best food he ever has eaten. Machima was his favorite place for breakfast and lunch and he made sure he was there almost every day. Its only 3 hours by plane from where he lives to GDL and I have this feeling that he will be coming down every few months to work and play and learn about this wonderful culture. Sorry for the length of this post but I believe being new here I come with a different perspective. Many of us don't have pensions to fall back on. We lost a sizable amount of our hard earned money or lost businesses in the tech collapse of 2,000 and then the real estate banking crisis of 2008. And pensions although guaranteed by law to be paid are in trouble. All we need is one supreme court ruling that will allow states to go bankrupt and it will be a house of cards. How does New Jersey pay pensions to its workers with a ballooning pension deficit closing in on 100 billion (better a bit now than 2 years ago because of higher stock market returns but that's only fleeting). Or how about Illinois where the state cops had to buy their own bullets and Chicago couldn't even afford to pay for its toilet paper in City Hall and the outflow of people from that state is huge.The ex mayor Of Los Angeles said that All City Hall basically did all day was cut pension checks for hundreds of thousands of people. That is unsustainable. Perhaps instead of focusing on whats wrong here we should focus on what is right. Its all a matter of perspective. For me , this will be my year round home. Am I willing to put up with what we all believe to be worsening conditions? Yes I am, because I know that I really can never return to the states to live. Here in this culture, family is so important. We have no family but for one child. I intend to have family here be it with the local folk or like minded expats. To me there is no energy in complaining. The energy is in taking action and doing something about it. When one only lives here but for 6 or 8 months per year , I assume that is different than being here full time. Hopefully I can help make changes. I may be off my rocker but I will give it a darn good try. You won't see me hanging out all day and buying trinkets in Ajijic and then boozing it up and having dinner out 6 nights a week. I plan to be doing lots of volunteering in places west of Chapla on the lake where children are dying because they have kidney disease and can get a kidney only if their parents can show the means to pay 50 dollars a month for medication and they cant. But I have to believe that in order to live out my life here I need to be respectful of the fact that this gvt has allowed my wife and I entry based on fairly minimum requirements which many NOB cannot even meet while my country up north is kicking out fathers and mothers who have lived there for decades and will leave behind children who they will probably never see again. Pretty sobering. I assume I will get pretty nasty responses as I have been called a troll, etc but I am a newbie and am very grateful for the opportunity to be able to learn much from all of you. To me some of you are like family. I love reading some of the posts and banter I have gained so much information from many of you and that has helped me tremendously even though I still cant figure out this whole private health insurance craziness. With all its foibles this is a wonderful forum. All I ask is that you look into your hearts and ask yourselves why you are here? I told you most of the reasons why I am here. I am probably the only one who has never been in a Costco since I found out that the Kirkland brand toilet paper (the number 1 selling item at Costco is terrible for flushing in my development (seriously) Life could be far worse. We are still 6 feet above ground rather than 6 feet below. Its all about perspective. Each and everyone of you is special.There are so many people who read this forum and don't participate for fear of being attacked, etc. My wife and a good friend are two of them. Heck, I would like to ask more questions and participate but I have trepidation . You represent a wealth of knowledge that people like me are looking for. That is something special that you have. In 10 years If I am still here I will make it my point to answer any questions from newbies ( all of you know who we are just by looking at our names) with courtesy knowing I am helping someone who was like me. Confused, a bit scared and don't know who else to turn to. Yes, Some of you , the elders of this forum wield power that you do not know you have. The power to give people like me information in 3 sentences that if not for you would take me 3 weeks or months or more to figure out. I wish all of you a magnificent day and thank you for allowing me to have posted this.
  2. 7 points
    I do not care where anybody finds their happiness, even NOB. To me "trash" are trash talkers here. The highways go north too.
  3. 6 points
    I'm curious Angus. Why is it so hard to just share your view of the topic instead of calling those who may have an opinion different from yours "trash?" Has it ever occurred to you that personal attack rather than just expressing your own viewpoint civilly suggests to others you either can't craft a credible response or find those opinions sufficiently close to home that you feel threatened by them? If the observations in the OP don't bother you or you don't agree with them how hard is it to just say so from your personal point of view? Mexilady just gave us a good example of how to do this. I suggest you learn from it, Angus. Thanks Mexilady. Since we lived in a state (and would return there) where there is only one short stretch of four lane, we aren't big eater outers and housing prices are actually a little less than here none of those are issues for us. But a lot of places up there definitely fit that description.
  4. 5 points
  5. 5 points
    I'd agree with your observation Lakeside7. IMHO there are two primary causes: 1. Mexican car ownership has skyrocketed. In Jalisco for example car sales are increasing annually at a rate around 20 percent or higher. Put that with the renewed popularity of a newly mobile of the city of 6 million we live very close to and that translates to a lot more visitors. I note people observing similar impacts in places like Mazamitla, Tapalpa, Puerto Vallarta and other popular recreational destinations. The Tapatios have wheels and money in their pocket and they like to get out of town. 2. Unfortunately this influx has not been met with increased and better services and management locally. Quite the contrary. Whether it be trash removal, road repair, addressing traffic issues outside of Chapala the local government is AWOL. It is noteworthy the Pueblo Magico visitation committee commented on the general trashiness and obvious failure to manage solid wastes and other environmental issues. And they've been handing out building and business permits for ugly and damaging projects like candy not to mention the ear shattering concerts. Look at the broken benches and the rotting bridges on our Malecon. Together with the trash and the potholes the overall presentation of this town has gone down. Way down. When we moved here 10 years ago, street repair was systematic and consistent. Yes we had cobblestones but those were kept in far better repair. As for trash removal you could set your watch by it. Major streets like the carretera and around the plaza were swept regularly. No more. Jalisco in general has gone backwards in environmental protection and road maintenance. Let's face it Chapala highway is a bone jarring, car wrecking nightmare. Just about every road in this state is nearly as bad or getting so other than those pricey toll roads. The current Jalisco government cut road maintenance nearly 30 percent and it shows. It shows locally too since they are responsible for the maintenance of the carretera and there basically isn't any at all. After two years of failure to provide reliable and consistent trash service Ajijic is a lot trashier than it used to be. The Pueblo Magico people noticed it, my visitors notice it and we notice it. It is a regular occurrence to have to bring the trash back in on missed pick up days. Unfortunately not everyone does that so the stuff gets scattered all over the place. No, if we came today for the first time and saw this we probably would have looked elsewhere. The situation is manageable IMO but this local government isn't going to do it. Given the reformers can't seem to understand that running 5 candidates is a sure bet for reelecting the current regime I don't see a lot of hope for a better municipal future here.
  6. 4 points
  7. 4 points
    Every time I feel frustrated driving East into the village I am still appalled watching most;y local vehicles throwing trash out the window. When I feel very frustrated I take a trip back to the US. I am terrified of driving on 4-8 lane highways. I cringe at restaurant prices. I quake at housing prices. After four days I long for Ajijic again with all its faults.
  8. 3 points
    Michael’s sincere Post is one view of the USA and Lakeside. What he writes, I’m sure, is very real to him as he sees it. I hope he finds his Nirvana Lakeside. I, however, see things through other and not nearly so “glass mostly empty” lenses. Those lenses are not rose colored but I don’t see living in the US anywhere near as horrific as is conveyed in his Post. I first came to Lakeside in 1997. Have never moved here for various and sundry reasons but am generally here several times a year.... sometimes for just a week and sometimes for months (Mexico in general). Given the right circumstances I would move here in a heartbeat. Over the years I have seen similar Posts about how life in the US is unbearable and how there is no hope and how no one cares a hoot about anyone else and how expensive it is, and and and. I travel a good bit in the US mostly in an RV, have relatives in various places and read a lot also. While I am sure that there are hell holes, and that there are people who will take advantage of you etc, this is true everywhere and especially if one does not do their due diligence in life. While I am not rich, I can live comfortably in my home in Colorado (which has a high standard of living but is also pricey!). I am WELL past retirement age. In my travels I ‘look’ to see how much it would cost to live there vs the reasons to live there. I have, doing that, found MANY places where I could live that would be generally no more costly than buying a house Lakeside and living there. I have, however, NOT found a place that for its size, has all that Lakeside has. And, for me, nowhere has the year-around climate that approaches that at Lakeside. I’m in Florida as we speak and I could easily BUY a really nice house, some even furnished, for $150,000. Hell, I could even buy a 3/2 manufactured house fully furnished for $45,000 if I wanted. Problem is.... Florida is nice in the winter but hellishly hot and humid much of the rest of the year. Anyway, I often see Posts that comment on how bad things are in the US, how much it costs to live here, how Medicare cannot possibly last more than a couple more years, how one cannot see their doctor without a 3-month wait, how people don’t care about each other here, etc etc etc. I must just be living/observing another Universe than others.... or maybe some just need to marginalize what they left and idealize where they are now. Maybe. YMMV
  9. 3 points
    As an ex-Californian who moved to Mexico 14 years ago, I hear Michael loud and clear. It was a fine place to grow up, but that was long, long ago. I can't imagine the level of stress the younger generation there is having to deal with. People who fear the "attack dogs" have observed something which has, unfortunately, become all too common on internet forums: people who hide behind anonymity and can't wait to put someone else down without fear of reprisal. They usually stick close enough to the rules to avoid being banned, but the intent is clear. Ignore them. If you have a question, try PM'ing someone who doesn't come across as a bundle of negativity on the forum. The worst that can happen is that your query will be ignored. Most people do want to help others. Nearly everyone on here was a "newbie" once.
  10. 3 points
    Okay, back to the topic? Y`all have been talking about Ajijic but for me Chapala is just fine and I`m a`stayin`. San Antonio seems fine for the moment but it`s gonna get busy pretty soon, I reckon. Next up for fillin` up would be Riberas. But it seems kinda nice for now. Still nice and quiet-like. Some nice amenities coming in. Joco is just fine. Ajijic is too busy and noisy to live in for me and the traffic is unbearable but now that I`m living in Chapala, it`s a nice place to visit for a couple of hours. Now, Chapala may fill up in a year or two and if it does, I`m gonna high-tail it to Joco or over the hill to Ixtlahuacan.
  11. 3 points
    Hello everyone: Ginger was adopted today by Wookie and Scamp and their humans. Many thanks to her new family and to everyone else that helped us in this difficult time of our lives. Love you Ginger, be a good girl for your new family.
  12. 2 points
    Over the past couple of years there has been a noticeable increase in congestion, noise and dirt at Lakeside, particular this year with all the new "improvements" in Ajijic. Give this year was a good selling period for the Real Estate business, I wonder how much NET gain there has been, I think "most" ( maybe not) homes sold had people who for the most part winged their way back to the USA or Canada. On reflection, If it was me looking around at Lakeside today, I do not think I would stay....Would you?
  13. 2 points
    Okay, so here's a start to a list of things to check when renting or buying. Please feel free to comment on additions or deletions. And please remember that you were once a newbie here. Be kind. If you don't understand something on the list then it is something that you need to further check on. You can use the search feature at the top of the forum and will, most likely, get multiple hits on things (or terms) that you don't understand. Heads Up for Buyers and Renters: There are no building codes or inspections done here. Anyone can build a house with the correct permits to build. So, check the reputation of the builder and arrive with 1) a marble or golf ball 2) a surge protector that has a light that shows “grounded” 3) a laptop or iPad to check the speed of the existing modem. Water: Municipal? Well? Quality? How often? Metered? Aljibe? Pressurized? Submersible pump? Tinaco? Both? When last cleaned? Purification system? Softener? Electrical: Grounded (check every outlet with surge protector)? Frequency of power failures? Length of power failures? Voltage regulation and surge protection? Check previous bills. Roof: Waterproofed (impermiabilizante)? When? With what? Does roof slope correctly to drain pipes (use marble or golf ball)? Telephone/Internet: Is there already a landline with Telmex? If not, length of time to installation? If there is already a modem hooked up, take your laptop, connect and check the speed. If no modem, then talk to neighbours about speed. Invest in an old fashioned phone from Walmart… you can’t report power failure if your phone requires electricity. Septic system or Sewer: If a septic system, when was it last pumped out? Where is the access lid in case of need of future pumpings? Talk to neighbours about what happens in the rainy season. Is there a vent stack (which greatly facilitates flushing)? Drainage: Are there drain pipes from the roof? Is there drainage away from the house? Is there drainage from interior open patios or exterior patios? Again, check slope direction with marble or golf ball Propane Tank: Location? Age? Check previous usage bills. Check for salitre on walls and on those lovely boveda ceilings. Be warned! Are there screens on the windows? Does the security on the house meet your standards? Talk to the neighbours about “Eventos” or “Tallers” or Restaurants with music in the area. ALL can be NOISY
  14. 2 points
    I grew up on the Jersey shore and saw the population explosion from the 50's to 2000. Much here is the same. Every lot / house in Ajijic that is subdividable is being cut in half and resold. I'm seeing remodels of single lots with 6 to 8 electric meters going in. The municipality has been fined three times for lack of transparency ( failure to answer questions relating to facts and figures of operations). This data will be made public by a legal team during the upcoming campaign. The mexican population is not oblivious to to the conditions they too live under. The expat population's financial contributions has enabled a middle class to develop among the local population. These people want a better life for their families, not just the politicians who clean out the bank every three years. With some hope, change is coming. The changers would love to see more expats become citizens and join them in the effort.
  15. 2 points
    Angus, the poster has a legitimate question. The person wants to know if others feel as (he..she) does. Isn't that the purpose of this forum to inform, get ideas and suggestions? This is not the first time you have tried to make something turn nasty and to bring attention to yourself and not offer anything constructive. There are some legitimate concerns here. I have been here over 10 yrs. and definitely seen changes. Some are good, like more entertainment, better restaurants, and specialty programs like children's art and language more developed ways to help the poo,. incapacitated, abused etc.to name a few. I am not, however, blind to the very possible problems on the horizon. Water, especially if there is a dry season, will become a serious situation. Many energy sources will be strained. I totally agree that most street are incredible bad if not dangerous as people try to avoid large and often deep pots holes. I know a street where rebar is poking up. Driving up Madero to Sorriano is like being on a roller coaster. Prices will certainly go up.If these things are not important now with the Magic city drive, what will make them more a priority ?The question the poster asked was what was the net gain or loss of people. Is the net gain really a wash with people leaving? When people leave they often say they have illnesses, miss family or spouse or partner passes. The op is asking what is the percentage of people just having enough of the Mexican experience as well ? I would like to know that as well. Looking at two new hospitals, a many high rise apts and condos, some investors are expecting a mass influx of people. Have investors really looked or care what happens to infrastructure? I suppose we could move out further west or east but in truth, the traffic might be better but so many things we enjoy now, will not be available. Maybe there are people on the board who have some answers to these concerns.
  16. 2 points
    Herman, Chapala has a nice mercado on its town plaza. Many places inside and on periphery to eat in.
  17. 2 points
    Thank Dog that Ginger has a new home. She has had a lot of change in her short life. I hope she has found the place she may remain forever. Thank you to the OP for working to place her in a loving home. I am sorry for the circumstances that are taking you away from here and such a beautiful companion. Thank you, Wookie, for your loving spirit. This community has many loving, compassionate people and you are one of them.
  18. 2 points
    We pay Telmex and CFE and Telecable at least a year in advance..Been doing it for several years..Never an issue, you can use a U.S. credit card at Telmex and IZZi, CFE requires to load the bills in their machine outside the office..There is usually a man there to help you use the machine for a few Peso tip..To many we know have had the bank or realtor screw up their payments...
  19. 2 points
    And just where would anyone go to find a "better" place? NOB? And I'm curious, Angus: which expats would you consider "trash"?
  20. 2 points
    So?... Move the trash elsewhere, even NOB. The definition of "trash" includes expats.
  21. 1 point
    I hope no too many "quote" this post we will run out of space on the internet....
  22. 1 point
    If you trade in the bottles, why is the cost of the empty garafon even part of the equation or your post? You seem to be having a hard time making a simple question understandable.
  23. 1 point
    I am yet to encounter these huge traffic delays, yet i travel at different times 5 or 6 times a week between sat and west ajijic. Occasionally traffic snarls up when refuse truck is working or bus stopping and the bike lane works might add a couple of minutes,but an hour ??? Worst is walmart lights and s.a.t maybe 5 minutes at peak times. Weekends between 1 and 3 pm can be busy but 15 minutes tops.
  24. 1 point
    Lots of thoughtful posts here, from newbie MIchael's epic rant to much-valued insight from the likes of reliable stalwarts such as gringal and Mainecoons (and RV - we miss you!). We started visiting this area in 2004 and have logged a cumulative 4+ years here as full-timers since 2009 albeit with way too many moves back and forth to the U.S. We never wanted to be here year-round but pre-Obamacare were health care and insurance refugees, and being early (honestly - premature) retirees such access is still the #1 factor in us being here since we are a long way from Medicare eligibiity. We were happily ensconced in Tucson ourselves last year and enjoying spending summers in Mexico but post-election realized that writing was on the wall in the very "red" state of Arizona that our access to health insurance would likely go away. I don't want to drag this fine thread into a discussion of NOB politics but suffice it to say that I'm quite sure that a large percentage of the newbie invasion Lakeside has been experiencing over the past 18-24 months is from people fleeing the U.S. without a very clear idea of what awaits them here. They know what they are fleeing from, but aren't aware that joining a few Facebook groups, spending an hour or two perusing forums like this and maybe poking around on rental web sites and "International Living" may not be sufficient grounds to move down here lock, stock and barrel. As Mainecoons wisely points out Tapatios are far more of a factor in life here than we gringos will ever be but both groups drive up prices and increase congestion. Traffic in low season now is worse than it was during high season last year, while high season traffic is so bad that many friends who live in close-in West Ajijic commonly spend the better part of an hour getting from, say, the Waffle House to Wal Mart at off-peak weekday times. Far from thinking about investing in new buses, maybe requiring taxis to work something beyond banker's hours, etc. the local government's response to the infrastructure crisis is the Ajijic bike lane boondoggle, Chapala's "Waiting for Godot" street repair project and handing out a few more building permits for massive projects that will exponentially magnify existing problems. I know people who have lived here for 30 years who are throwing in the towel - some moving to other parts of Mexico, some headed to Spain, others moving back to the U.S. simply because the quality and pace of life they came here for is gone. In just the past year we have seen rents - and not just for gringo-owned places but also for peso-priced places in Chapala that used to be only for locals - increase by 30-40% or more, while the inventory of homes for sale under 200K has pretty much vanished. With the peso being so weak during this time frame food both at the mercados and at local (Mexican) restaurants is amazingly cheap for those lucky enough to be buying their pesos with U.S. dollars (and ditto with out-of-pocket medical and dental care) but otherwise it is very easy to live well in many desirable places in the U.S. (albeit NOT the coasts) for the same or less than things now cost here. People rightly celebrate Lake Chapala weather but northern Baja's near Ensenada is arguably as good or better while real estate and rentals are cheaper and it's a 2 hour drive on a 4 lane highway to the border. Who knows how long this will last but I mention it by way of pointing out that the relentless publicity for Lakeside and San Miguel don't mean that everyplace in Mexico is going down the tubes at the same rate as we are. If I were looking for a place in México to move to now I'd make sure to choose one with significant barriers to entry for those who just want to be down here for weather and lower costs - meaning a place where decent Spanish is required, the expat community is small and there are weather and/or cultural barriers that limit the influence expats can have. Pátzcuaro and Colima come to mind immediately but there are many others (the names of which I ain't sharing ). Rick did a good job of talking about Fort Collins but it, too, is yet another one of those places that has been endlessly touted by the likes of AARP and Kiplinger's as an ideal retirement location, driving prices through the roof. There are other places in the Soutwest (Cañon City, Colorado, Silver City or Las Cruces, New Mexico, Tucson [provided you have a summer escape plan] come to mind - where one can easily live on the same or less money than we do as budget retirees here, and while the weather year-round isn't as good there is hiking (dangerous and limited here) biking (suicidal), much cleaner air and water, infinitely superior infrastructure and actual rule of law - as well as the magical ability to deal with climate issues by flipping a little switch on the wall (which need not be a whole lot more expensive than fleeing NOB in the hot months or heading to the beach in the cold ones as many do here at Lakeside). The only problem with living in a place like that and then snowbirding or sunbirding down here is that the demand for rentals locally is such that finding a short-term place has become nearly impossible. Good friends of ours who lived here for decades but had to move back to Portland OR now winter in Thailand because it's so much cheaper than Lakeside - even with ~$1000 roundtrip airfare. My crystal ball is at least as hazy as anyone else's but my guess given what is happening in the U.S. is that the intense newbie invasion Lakeside has been experiencing the past couple of years is probably still in its early stages. Surely a significant number of those who have simply fled the U.S. without really knowing what they were fleeing to will return NOB, but I think it's likely each one who does will be replaced by two or three others, and that in any case the off-the-charts rental and real estate prices, traffic gridlock and filth will get much worse before they get better - unless of course the real estate and financial market bubbled NOB burst, which seems quite likely. We can't afford to buy anything here and are now priced out of the rental market too so we will be letting our temporal visas expire and moving back to New Mexico (where we have a 2 bedroom casita awaiting us at $200 less a month than we are paying in Chapala). We'll still be close enough to a walk-across border crossing to get our dental work done in Mexico. We will miss a great deal about Lakeside - the amazing expat community, the weather, the kind and dignified locals, great fruits and veggies and (last not least) affordable, accessible medical care, and we also know that further erosion of the health care and insurance system NOB may force us down to Mexico for good. When and If that happens we'll make sure to get permanente visas from the get-go and move to a city far off the gringo and International Living magazine radar.
  25. 1 point
    My friend has been to Salas, done that 'nough said, and he and his wife swear by Dr. Briseno.
  26. 1 point
    First of all I would like to say that I have over a half century experience with dentists due to a car accident in my misspent youth that claimed a number of my teeth. Recently after reading nothing but positive posts here regarding Dr. Candy I went there and decided to have replacements of both upper and lower partials. I can only say that in all my years this was the most professional dental experience and the partials were of the highest quality that I have ever obtained, all at a fraction of the prices that I had paid El Norte. As far as the poster that had the extensive report on his/her not good experience with what sounds like an ongoing dental problem, it sounds like there might have been extenuating circumstances there as well. Not knowing all the details I cannot comment more except to say that this is the first real negative report on Dr. Candy's work itself that I have heard of or seen on this board. Now getting to "the brother". He never claims that he is other than a dental student, but is a dental hygienist, technician or whatever you want to call someone who is trained to clean teeth and does minor denture repairs in the lab. Those who complain that Dr. Candy was not the one who did their teeth cleaning simply are out of touch with reality. Again after all these years in the "real world" I have never had my teeth cleaned by the dentist whose name is on the door. Now, I am not saying that this is always the case, but as others on this thread have said this is a virtual reality. Let me conclude by saying that I am happy, happy, happy with my experience with all the folks at Dr. Candy's office including Cristina, the receptionist up front. I wish Dr. Candy and her 3rd. generation dentist baby all the best.
  27. 1 point
    Paul Ehrlich's "Population Bomb" has detonated...and there's no escaping the fallout.
  28. 1 point
    I'll just note that Michael is describing a place that we wouldn't want to return to in the U.S. Where we come from there has been very little change. The environment is still clean, the taxes low, living costs really not all that much higher than here, the environment of air, water and land is far cleaner. There are plenty of places to live in the U. S. that do not have $12,000 property taxes. For starters, stay away from the coasts. As far as being an active member of this community and spending a lot of my own time on community betterment I'll just suggest that a simple look around and noticing what the walls of this town are not covered with should suffice. You can add to that picking up trash in the streets almost daily and helping a number of truly talented Mexican youngsters go to college. Doing so does not blind me to the unfavorable trends. Lakeside7 and others have made an observation here that conditions are not changing for the better. I agree and feel that being in denial about the growing dirtiness, crime, air pollution, over amplified noise and congestion, and the corruption of government here that is also growing and making these problems intractable, is not performing a civil service. I appreciate your opinion Michael and trust you appreciate ours. Being realistic about what is in front of one's eyes and just being candid about saying so is not necessarily complaining. Each of us get to make our own decisions about what is before our eyes and when it just becomes too much. Everyone here deserves acknowledgement for the civil discussion of what is a topic that hits very close to home.
  29. 1 point
    Thank you, Michael, for your well written and thoughtful post. We are among those who, for health reasons (Medicare and VA services) now find ourselves unhappily living back in the USA. We have no family, and finding friends here at our advanced ages is almost impossible. We are getting decent medical attention and medications, but not as good as the caring treatment from the doctors and dentists in Chapala. Our 13 years there (2001-2014) were some of the very best of our lives, and we miss it a great deal. Sadly, most of our old friends are now departed, suffering dementia, or are also octogenarians, or close to it. As such, staying in touch with “home in Chapala“, on the various boards, helps to pass the time. I can only hope that folks will take the time to read your post in its entirety, and that it will be saved to be read again. ¡Saludos!
  30. 1 point
    I think they had to move the seats closer together to make room for all the animals people insist on being able to fly with. I would expect the same thing to be happening soon in the restaurants.
  31. 1 point
    I have been here 12 years now. Yes there are a lot of changes Some I like some not so great, but I will never go back North. The good far outshines the bad in my experience.
  32. 1 point
  33. 1 point
    No, not yours the ones next to you... to gain some leverage... ?
  34. 1 point
    Perhaps when I said. “ you get what you pay for” I should have mentioned a little uncommon sense ,ingredient knowledge and a modicum of intelligence .One of my criteria for moving here ten years ago as a professional Chef for fifty years was the availability of first class ingredients. The main reason I can still teach such a diverse range of cooking classes are great ingredients at a good price.
  35. 1 point
    Standing-seats? What would brace for contact mean, grab yer nuts?
  36. 1 point
    Thank you so much for your recomendations. We had each one come over and give us a quote and then we picked one to do the job. We chose Gustavo, his quote seemed more reasonable and we liked his knowledgeable answers to our questions. Thanks again.
  37. 1 point
    I heard that they are thinking of removing the seats for body harnesses ... ?
  38. 1 point
    It is possible, but rare, for people on the same street to get different maximum speeds. That being said, I don't know what's going on in the decision-making offices of TelMex these days. Certainly, at lakeside, and now even with some tech support in Mexico City, they have slithered down the greasiest slopes of excuses, B.S. and inanity in the last couple of years. Refusing to trade made modems for good. Lieing about what is available where. Refusing to expand the infrastructure with the growing population. Making deals with people who have "connections". Dutifully taking reports and then not sending them in. Forcing customers to find a TelMex lineman on the street and paying a bribe to get basic servicing. Throwing the wrong switch during repairs and not doing follow-up checks to ensure everything is as it was. Providing excuse after excuse about why things are broken (hang in there... another few months and we will be getting the "rainy season" stories again...), offering higher speeds and then declaring they are not available, changing the plans almost monthly, charging people for unwanted insurance and "charities", and just this week upping a customer's rates without telling him until the bill came in (yes, and ironically, he got twice the speed, from 10 to 20, but didn't want to pay the extra hundred pesos. Just think of the people who would gladly trade places with him. Screwing up their own email services, and not acknowledging the fact, and not repairing it for months. Making customers call Mexico City support because in Ajijic they are too lazy to help, seeing as how it's all pensionable time. Last but certainly not least, spewing a line about no more phones available, and no new Internet contracts available. This is a company who finally introduced modems that can handle VOIP (like Vonage or Skype), add network printers, and provide dual-band WiFi, and then simply refused to impletement the options. How much money can Slim possibly not want to make? Or maybe it's just lakeside and the damn gringos they don't like. Everywhere else seems to be okay. As for your situation, McT, can you clarifiy "I get a message"... is that a recorded message or from talking to someone in Mexico City, or... ?
  39. 1 point
    Tears of joy! Bless you all!!!!!!
  40. 1 point
    Absolutely not!! It's just too congested.
  41. 1 point
    Ferret, please start a new thread to post your checklist for new buyers. As for this discussion it just re-emphasizes how important it is to really do your homework before buying here or entering into any other major financial transaction. Folks from NOB are accustomed to the almost universal provision of all utilities including land line telephone in homes up there and just need to know that is not the case here at all.
  42. 1 point
    Both primary moderators have gotten a number of questions as to why several threads on this topic have been deleted. We have asked Admin for an explanation. I want to make it clear this deletion was not done by the moderators and we do not see any problem in what was posted, but apparently the board's owners do. If you want information on this matter, the Guadalajara Reporter has a full page notice on page 4 posted by the El Dorado owner's association detailing the decision. Also there are translations of the decision posted on Inside Lakeside. IMO the full page notice is easier to read and understand and I suggest it is the better source for further information. It appears to me the decision is focused on who controls/has authority over the elements of El Dorado and the validity of previous actions based on that determination. There is no mention of specific individuals or monetary matters in the GDL notice. I hope this will address any concerns that the Board's moderators were responsible for removing the previous threads and also will assist you in finding out more about this matter if you choose.
  43. 1 point
    I live in Puerta Arroyo. We bought our lot and had our first casa built in 2010. We came back and forth from the US for three yrs. before we retired in 2013. it took a long time to get a phone number and internet, especially the 766 number. We had the realtor from Puerta arroyo use his know how to get it done for us. Then we moved to other side of same development and kept the same line. You have to know someone who can push it for you and get it done. Relax, Maybe pay a little. I gladly did. I learned to take the bus and go somewhere where they have internet and have a meal. And carried a smart phone. You will figure it out if you care too. Good luck
  44. 1 point
    OP...you can also go to tripadvisor for Ajijic and search lodging for those with pools.
  45. 1 point
    Quinta del Sol has a pool as well
  46. 1 point
  47. 1 point
    There a lot of pretty and obliging young mexican girls who wouldnt be opposed to coming to an arrangenent !!
  48. 1 point
    I grew up on the beach in Southern California. I LOVE the beach, and miss it. As much as I would love to live near the ocean again, I did NOT move to Mexico to experience living day-to-day in shit weather six months out of the year. (That's what I left in Seattle, my last stop in the U.S. before moving to Mexico.) So Mexico and I have a happy agreement. I visit the spectacular beaches of this beautiful country on my terms. When it's comfortable for me and I can enjoy it. It's easy!
  49. 1 point
    Remember Richard Burton and Liz Taylor escaping to PV when they were both married to someone else? (Yeah, if I remember that, I'm really old.)
  50. 1 point
    Once you have all your papers in order, you can take the exam(s). The paperwork is the easy part. The problem is, the exam questions are no longer provided. This topic is an attempt to address that particular problem, not the rest of the process (which is pretty self-explanatory). Please no spam, Sonia.
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