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barrbower last won the day on May 22

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  1. Laws change and it has been a few years ago, but we had a US plated car down here for almost two years. When we crossed the border we had bought travel car insurance online which one year policy went into effect the day we entered Mexico. Our State Farm was cancelled on the same date and they refunded some money based on the time left on the policy. Every time we drove the car back north, we called State Farm, bought another 6 month policy effective the day we crossed and then when we got back down here our Mexican policy for traveling in Mexico was still in effect. We would call State Farm and cancel again and they would give us back money based on what time was left on the policy. They didn't have a better way to manage all that and didn't seem to mind doing it for us. Just Google Mexican border car insurance. There are quite a few in all border states. Alan
  2. We had Seguro Popular for many years until the fractured efforts by Amlo left us unsure what to do. When it gets all worked out we'll sign up for the new program and use it only for things like Chillin describes. I find paying "out of pocket" for things to be quite reasonable. We even paid for an emergency heart stent because we didn't have time to deal with Seguro Popular and it was not expensive and was an amazingly good experience. It cost less that what Parts B&C would cost yearly even if we could have returned to the states to get it done there. We don't have B&C because they are useless here and we won't return to the US for care of any kind. We are Mexican residents and decided from the start to work within those parameters. Alan
  3. Just this kind of fraud being used by LMG to bill for services illegally at a much higher rate than would be charged locally is one reason that Medicare and Part C will probably not ever be available outside the US. Add in the AMA and Pharma lobbies and you can see why it will never be legally allowed. Even if it was, it isn't cheap. Part B is about 150.00/month per person and C could be 200.00/month per person. For a couple that is 8,000 dollars a year plus any applicable deductibles. And the the way it is now, the whole thing could unravel when the fraud is detected and payback is requested of those who have submitted claims (even unknowingly) and guess who has to pay it all back. LMG will be gone. Quacks like a duck...so beware. Alan
  4. Nice of you to point out that we have things falling off...But the facts are that most of us can't get Mexican insurance because of age or pre-existing condition. So the desperation and fear are overcoming common sense. There is no legal or moral method for residents of Mexico to get Medicare Part C or any other portion of the Medicare plans to cover your expenses while you are in Mexico. No matter what somebody tells you in a meeting or what some person you know has experienced...it is still fraud. You can travel back to the US and get things done (like to repair parts that are falling off) but not here. Some very expensive private plans from US companies might cover you for all medical expenses while you live here but I'd hate to think what that might cost. All of this should have been considered before moving here. We all knew we were only going to get older. Those limited medical options are exactly why many folks give up "paradise" and return to the US even though they might otherwise not like living there. In the meantime be thankful that medical care here is good and comparatively inexpensive. Save money every month and have a good credit card limit and hope for the best. Enjoy paradise while you can. Stressing about the unknown can cause illness also. Alan
  5. I just spent about an hour doing a live chat with several folks at Medicare.gov. There is no change as to the coverage or limitations to any Medicare Part C plans. That means you can't legally use that Part C for anything if you are living outside the US or places like Guam or Puerto Rico. If you don't reside in Mexico but are traveling outside the US for less than 60 days and have a legitimate emergency while traveling here, then the Part C use is legal. There are a few exceptions but those won't apply to this discussion because we are not a border town or traveling from Alaska through Canada. Please don't perpetuate fraud and run the risk of having a bigger bill bounce back on you. There is an organization called NBI MEDIC that investigates fraud, overcharging, theft, etc. on behalf of the Part C insurance providers. Even if you've had luck in the past with this scam it doesn't mean you will next time. Several folks here locally have discovered that the hard way and got bills for many times more than what they would have just paid out of pocket. Alan
  6. You might try searching for Finca La Estramancia in San Luis Soyatlan. I contacted them and it looks like a lovely place. Problem is that they only take groups of six or more and are otherwise not open to the public. Food and wine available for a cost and the tour cost 500 pesos each person. Not the typical winery business model we are all used to seeing. It is actually located just past SLS on the lakeshore side of the highway. Looks beautiful. Wines are all on the expensive side and I don't know if they are good. I think they need a marketing person. Alan
  7. In English "lagoon" is normally used to define an area of salt water separated from the ocean by a sand bar, for instance. In Spanish Lake Chapala is called "Luguna de Chapala" on Mexican maps and in common usage. Mexican Wiki says the same. They define it that way by virtue of it's characteristics...primarily it's shallow depth and propensity for dramatic expansion and shrinkage depending on seasonal weather. Just like Lagunas de Cuitzeo and Yuriria which are just north of Morelia. All are destined to one day be wetlands and then seasonally verdant plains. Many, many years ago Guadalajara was a laguna. When it rains really hard, parts of it can still require a boat. I have read that all of this part of Mexico was at one time a single huge body of fresh water. Nobody was around then so I don't know what they called it! Alan
  8. Normal and average are two different things. If the average drops over several years of lower levels then that becomes "normal." With this being a lagoon as opposed to a deep lake, fluctuations are "normal" and are very dependent on climate conditions. I've seen the shore all the way up to 16th of Sept. in Ajijic and I've seen the shore a mile out with the exposed land being used for football fields, farming, and even fenced for livestock. Both conditions were normal but not average. Whatever the average is, it's good to see it now coming up a little. We could still have several more inches of water this season or...no more rain at all. Either would be "normal." Alan
  9. Yes, and it was resurfaced less than a year ago. The entire highway is already breaking up. Not properly bedded and thin coat of asphalt spread on top of unstable base and old potholes. But it was smooth and pretty for a little while. The main problem is the amount of bus and heavy truck traffic required to use that road. Dump trucks and delivery trucks hauling tons of rock, sand, cement, beer, and dirt. On the plus side, the crappy roads (and poor traffic lights and crazy weekend traffic) might keep more of us gringos from moving here... Alan
  10. In the US, the "inflation rate" is calculated (generally) by looking at goods and services not including food or energy costs (like utilities.) Also not included are taxes, higher education, healthcare, credit card interest, and home prices. So basically all the things people know are zooming upwards are the things that make life just existing day to day for many people. I'm sure the actual cost of living increases each year are actually not the 2.5% quoted but are easily four times that. Wages have been flat since the seventies making it seem even more worse that it truly is. I'm sure the same is true in Mexico. Every country needs a "working poor" class to stay a little afraid and therefore easy to manipulate, to keep the economy stable. Just buy what you need and try to keep everything you've bought for as long as possible. And try to think of those less fortunate than most of us are. Alan
  11. I'm pretty sure that the Tecolutas soccer field on the west side of Ajijic is built on federal land which was filled in to make the municipal field. Also pretty sure some additions to the malecons in the area were built in spite of federal encroachments. I'm thinking of the "restaurant" on the Ajijic pier, the bridge and Jesus statue in Chapala, and almost all of the Joco malecon. So if municipalities allow those things why should they get too worked up over some rich guy wanting to do the same if there is bribe money to be made? There are MANY homes, on the west side especially, that have expanded, filled, and built out on to the shore of the lake. By federal statute all waterways and shorelines, as determined by high tide or full lines, are the property of the Mexican public. No hotel can declare a beach in front of their property to be private. No private development can prohibit passage onto their grounds if that is the only access to the beach. But rich folks are more important than average folks so they act with impunity in most cases. I don't see much difference here in Mexico than what happens around the world. Money talks and the rest of us whine helplessly. You could be talking about forests in Brazil being removed for private exploitation, pipelines across sacred Native American lands, tourist hotels built on world heritage sites in Peru, wetlands being filled in for golf courses in the southern US, or scarce water resources used to fill swimming pools or grow almonds in California. There are many examples of corruption for the benefit of the few to the detriment of the many. It has always been that way and, as the world heads to a tipping point, it doesn't seem to be slowing down. Alan
  12. One thing to keep in mind is that we all have opinions about many things but not all opinions should carry the same weight. I have an opinion on almost any subject but I'm an expert on almost none....including vaccines and Covid 19. So I would consider myself an :() to proclaim my opinion on , say, astrophysics, has the same value as the opinion of somebody like Neil Degrasse Tyson. You can find "peer reviewed" papers online about the "flat earth" or "big foot" but that doesn't mean that those papers have much merit or should be considered at all next to current scientific expert opinion. When science changes, it is based on new information coming to light...not on dogma and stubborn personal prejudice. But that is just my opinion... Alan
  13. I think MC might just be afraid of needles...Maybe if the doc offered a lollipop afterwards he'd get vaccinated! Alan
  14. The government requires several vaccinations to get into public schools and well as some instances for military duty. They required everybody to get a polio vaccination back in the 50's and 60's. Everybody complied. During the big surge of the 50's, there were something like 15,000 cases that resulted in some kind of paralysis (me included) and 3,000 people died. There have been 200 times that many deaths from Covid, so far, and some people still seem hesitant to take a vaccine that will keep you out of the hospital. Sometimes the government makes you do things, that some individuals might not like, for the betterment of society at large. Like speed limits, seat belts, workplace safety requirements, fire drills, clean air standards, food inspections, paying into Medicare and social security, etc. There are many examples. Because some are too stubborn, greedy, ignorant, or politically self serving to just do the right thing, government has stepped in for the benefit of the majority. A day might come when this Covid vaccine will be required. It might be a new and improved one...let's hope so. But the un-vaccinated are causing great harm right now and it affects everybody including in non-health related ways. Mexico has a little more room to be excused due to lack of access. The USA has no excuse. Alan
  15. Currently the states with the highest rates of Covid infection seem to be those with reduced focus on mask wearing, lockdowns, vaccinations, and controlling group activities like sporting events. I know that wearing a mask is not a perfect answer. Neither is a vaccination or never being in a large crowd or staying off of public transportation. Washing hands frequently is fine but won't protect against all transmission of viruses. But I tend to believe that we all should try to be part of a solution rather than being part of the problem. Delta and other variants are developing and spreading in part because of relaxed efforts to control Covid. ER's are filling up in parts of Texas. Kids are starting to get sick in larger numbers. Folks who have been vaccinated are still getting ill and spreading it to others without being aware. The lockdowns and related efforts are taking a horrible toll on normal life in many ways but to pretend there isn't a problem only makes the problem drag on longer. I sure hope this isn't the new normal but it will be if there isn't a unified effort. We are learning as we go along and "facts" change as new evidence emerges. As individuals we have to take personal responsibility for our own health and safety and sometimes it is inconvenient. More so if we care about others. That is just the way it is for now...hopefully it will change for the better soon. Alan
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