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Everything posted by dichosalocura

  1. Cold this year? I think this was the warmest, dryest, most pleasant winter we've had in the 6 years I've lived in Chapala. Now last year was the coldest I remember, it was bitter cold, very long and rather wet during the coldest periods.
  2. The weather here is pretty good but many years ago I lived in the nice Venezuelan city of San Cristobal de Tachira State. The city was half way up in the green Northern Andes. The mountains were always green, it always rained for about 30 mins from 5 to 6 pm. There was always a gentle Andean cool breeze. It never felt as hot as Chapala gets in Spring time (as in now) and it never got as frigid cold as it can get in Chapala in the winter months. On most nights a long sleeve shirt or very light jacket would be all you need year round. I realize that most people reading this North of the Border probably don't belive we have the 4 seasons at Lake Chapala, but those that have been here for at least a few years would agree that we most definately have the 4 seasons here, but they are a little different than NOB. But in the tropical Andean cities there are not 4 seasons, only 2, the rainy and the dry season, but honestly it will rain year round, just a little less in the so called dry season. I actually enjoy the Andean climate much better than this one, just remember, altitude is everything in the high Andes, some cities are much higher than others, cities like Cuenca have a cold wet climate. Popayan (a smallish colonial city) and Medellin (a large modern city) both in Colombia, have near perfect climates if that is what you are looking for.
  3. We also had hail in Chapala. My neighborhood also experienced about an hour long brown out.
  4. It is raining and thundering in Chapala. It almost never rains in March. What does that mean for our summer rainy season?
  5. We bought a small portable one at Super Lake last year that still seems to do a good job.
  6. I don't know if you have already visited this area yet or not, but check it out real well google Earth and street views. Look for the carretera the main road that connects all the towns. That is the road that the buses mainly travel on. Some go down past and around the plaza in San Antonio Tlayacapan, and some go a little bit into Ajijic, but they mainly stay on the carretera and Avenida Madero in Chapala.
  7. I always thought botete was puffer fish too. Are there any local sushi guys that are trained in this fish? In Japan it requieres a trained pufferfish expert to prepare these fish and even with their trained expertise accidents and poisonings occur from time to time.
  8. According to the above posted article from the Informador, it happened en El Molino which is pppast Joco on the road to Guadalajara.
  9. I bet she is asking where and how to get her acta de nacimiento......or in other words her birth certificate.
  10. Part of what you say is true. The majority of the population here is not as well educated as in other parts of the world, and lots of people here have poor spelling and poor grammar skills. But if you remember your old high school English teacher, I'm sure she would say the same thing about many Americans today. High School English teachers are generally nazis, and I'm sure many here are the same. But to suggest that Mexicans speak the language poorly is a terrible exaggeration, I don't think they butcher it any more than what the average american does to English. And not every thing you probably hear and think is slang is really slang, most of it is just normal Spanish. I learned the extremely fast speaking Venezuelan Spanish, first, many years ago and I was never very familiar with Mexican Spanish. Since I have been living here, I don't find the two so terribly different. They all speak the same language, Spanish. No more so than an American vs an Australian. Spanish is Spanish, once you learn it fluently you will be able to converse and understand anybody in the Spanish speaking world fairly easily. A term here and there might be different, just like between us and England, but it doesn't create severe problems in communicating. It is exactly the same way in Spanish.
  11. I totally agree with Bmh, the Mexican Spanish or it would be better to say the Spanish spoken in the Jalisco accent is as good a Spanish and equally correct as what American English is. The local people here have a very good grasp of their language and speak it equally as good or better than how a Texan speaks English. There is no problem with a Mexican speaker, the problem lies with the listener. As far as Latin American Spanish goes, Mexico has one of the slowest, best enunciated, and easiest to understand for a begining Spanish learner than most of the accents spoken in the entire region. If you are having trouble with understanding Mexican Spanish, take a little trip to the Dominican Republic, Cuba, Venezuela, or even Chile. The only problem with Mexican Spanish is that they have some vocabulary that comes from Nahuatl that is different than in the rest of Latin America which uses a more standard vocabulary.
  12. A ceiling fan on low will deter most of the mosquitoes, many people use mosquito nets on their beds. We live downtown Chapala and have a decent sized garden. I might spot one scorpion a year. Once we put rubber strips under all the doors to our house, in the past 5 years we haven't had any scorpions get in our house (knock on wood). For us, spiders aren't a problem in the house, the house geckos keep their populations almost nonexistant. Outside their are some, but nothing extreme. Black widows get pretty large down here, I just step on them when I see them. If you have every lived in the country in the south east US, there is no comparison. Compared to our lives in NC, their are much fewer bugs here than there. And also, bees are rare and usually not agressive and rarely will chase you. In NC the bees were so many and so agressive we could barely us our porches. The German hornets and wasps in NC were terrifying, here I almost never see them. If you live further out of town or live in a newly developed area the scorpions could be bad.
  13. We always found them near or on the checkout area. But when buying batteries at Walmart, always make sure them make it to the bag. Sometimes, for us, they have a bad habit of disappearing before we get home.
  14. If you search mercadolibre look for asiento para inodoro de madera and one comes up imported from the US and is for sale for $1912 or a little under $100 dollars. It sounds high, but quality imported products usually are.
  15. Unfortunately, the numbers of street dogs are growing in Chapala. Does this program also apply to the street dogs? Many of them appear very happy and are mostly sweet dogs, and surviving fairly well on the streets (?¿). Most look like they are not starving in the least, specially if you look at the most notorious local perro callejero named Negro (he is gigantic!) but probably the majority of the males need neutering and the few females lurking around severely need spaying. But sincerely thanks so much to those working so hard on this project, it sounds like it was quite successful this year!
  16. No, thats not them, those are undeniaby eggs. My dots look like pin head shaped drops of black paint in a line. I'll try to see if my camera can take a close enough picture tomorrow. They are very tiny dots.
  17. I don't think it is poop, they look too well layed, the same distance apart as if they were eggs of some kind. There is no drippage like in gecko poo. They are perfectly round, tiny, FLAT, little black dots usually forming a line. Its weird.
  18. I have been noticing over the years of living here that something is leaving tiny little black dots on my patio furniture, tables, and such. I have a terrace bathroom, I've been noticing it going up the mirror, on the toilet, even going up the walls. They are generally very small, flat little black dots, usually in a somewhat vertical line. They wipe off pretty easily, they are not droppings that I can tell. I thought perhaps they might hold eggs of some kind. Has anybody else noticed them? They can usually be found on things that are open up to the outside. I was just wondering what insect could be making them.
  19. If you like Guadalajara and prefer a centro historico ambience, but find Guadalajara's centro too intense, check out the centros of Tlaquepaque (which is very nice, pedestrian friendly and beautiful) or that of Zapopan, both are nice and full of charm and are considered part of the Zona Metropolitana de Guadalajara.
  20. I think you will find this area to be very beautiful, with a wonderful climate. The area is very small, everything is sqeezed on a very narrow strip of land between the lake and the mountains. Some of the towns are more Mexican feeling than others, but each town will have a different vibe and different things to experience. Guadalajara is a wonderful city with a lot to offer, it is huge and can be overwhelming. But for anybody who has traveled around Mexico, if you compare Guadalajara to Mexico's other great cities, more than likely, you will find much more beautiful and more culturally inspiring cities. Although, the Tapatios may think Guadalajara is one of the prettiest cities in Mexico, I beg to differ. Queretaro, Morelia, Puebla, and Cuernavaca (the other larger cities located in the central heart of Mexico) are much more attractive and nicer in my opinion with a lot more interesting cultural and historical destinations close by.
  21. Does any company around sell clean washed sand, that will be free of saltpeter and black dirt? I am sure there are methods of washing sand to remove the salts and dirt. We gutted much of the inside of our house and have been allowing it to dry out for almost a year now, soon we will have the money to re-plaster it and paint it again, but where can we get washed sand? Also, another technique I've heard about is mixing loose fiber glass fibers into the sand mixture, that is supposed to strengthen the walls. We will be trying that also. We live next to the arroyo and we have serious salitre problems. We had to sacrifice parts of our garden and fill it in with cement sidewalks to cut down on the moisture. When they mix cement NOB they don´t mix sand in it, they just poor the cement mixture from a bag and add water, and they don´t have salitre.
  22. I will say that sand of poor quality will cause you problems. You can have all your walls knocked out and have it filled back in with that river sand and much of it will be ok for a while, but unfortunately, in a few places within a month you may see small sections or spots that are not fairing well, that are puckering up. Even if that is on a wall that you know that there isn't any moisture problem. True salitre takes time to build up. Dirty sand you will see problems very soon. Well, that is my experience and we have been building on our house and remodeling it for the past 6 years. Sometimes the sand will have an over abundance of that salty saltpeter mixed in it or black dirt and with just a little natural occurring moisture it will melt out and bubble up within a month or so of repair. Home Depot sells bags of premixed cement like we get NOB, has anybody ever tried that? Or is that too brittle for walls?
  23. The salitre in the walls is one thing and the crappy river sand is another culprit. The natural ocurring salt peter mixed with black dirt found in all the sand here causes unnecessary problems. Why doesn't a company here sell washed pure sand for construction? Wouldn't pure clean sand work a lot better than the dirty sand they bring you straight from the river banks?
  24. We have been down here about 6 years and we are raising two American kids down here. One is 4 the other is 13, they are both fluent in Spanish now. The little one we put in a Maria Montessori school and the older one we decided to put him in an all Mexican school, Colegio Chapala, where he would more likely be the only English speaker. He was 8 when we got here and we knew that if we had put him in one of the expensive private schools where most expats send their children, he would have probably latched on to kids that spoke English and would have been slower at picking up the language. He did real well, by 6 months he was already speaking Spanish. We live in downtown Chapala, and we really like living here. It is true that Chapala is the largest town in the area and has much fewer expats living here. It is flatter here, with much wider and smoother sidewalks, and for basic day to day items, the shopping is probably the best since there are more stores and shops here. But if we need something exotic or should I say imported, Ajijic, Walmart and Super Lake are just 10 mins down the road. We very rarely take the car out, we just walk everywhere. I wouldn't say there are a whole lot of expat kids living here, but there are probably a lot more than you think. Anyways, once they learn Spanish, they won't need to be around expat kids, they will have their own Mexican friends. A good thing about Chapala is that if your kids do go to school here and live here, they will probably be within walking distance to most of their friends homes and every time you walk down the street they will pass by kids they know from school. In Ajijic people are a little more well to do and live spread out a lot more through out the gated communities and different neighborhoods. Chapala is a real Mexican town and is not surrounded by gated communities, what that means is that everybody in town lives fairly close to each other and you really get to mingle with the locals.
  25. If you are wheel chair dependent I think Chapala would be the best place to stay due to it being flatter with much wider and smoother sidewalks. I know at least two expats I see frequently in Chapala that seem to get around by themselves pretty good in their wheelchair. One takes daily trips to the malecon. I also recommend San Francisco due to its location with good sidewalks, but I don't know how wheel chair friendly it is.
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