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AlongTheWay

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  1. I've inquired of various Mexican professionals lakeside, on this exact topic - workers who don't show up (or call to let you know). Several of my contacts told me that, when they need (reliable) workers, they bring them in from Guadalajara. They also told me that it isn't a problem everywhere in Mexico, but the kind of thing that is commonly found outside of major cities. Many of us come here in part, because life tends to be more relaxed. The problem mentioned by the OP is just another part of living this relaxed life - for better or worse. As others have already commented, I don't chase the various workers I try to hire. I let them know I'll be waiting at the time we've agreed to, and, that if they don't show up on time, I'll find someone else. I doubt my comment affects the behavior, but it gives them a chance to understand my expectation. Most still don't show up. On the other hand, I recently set an appointment with a local Architect, and was quite surprised when he called me saying he'd be 30 minutes late. He was actually about an hour late, but, since he'd called, I felt he'd gone above the local norm and didn't make anything out of it. Funny thing, he was supposed to get back to me with his estimate of price, but I never heard from him again. If you've been here more than a few days, you've had these experiences. To whatever degree that upsets us, it's OUR response that determines our own attitude. I get angry, but that's just me trying to swim against the current... While it's common to say "all Mexicans" it does more disservice to the speaker than to the Mexicans. And if the Mexican you're trying to hire senses this kind of attitude, they probably never intended to show up in the first place. Culturally, they want to please, and in this light, tend to say or make agreements based on wanting to please you in the moment, without really understanding (or caring?) how much not showing up will displease you tomorrow. Ask for referrals (of good workers) from Mexicans who you know or other gringos, and you will probably get more satisfying results.
  2. The Pogo Stick style, also known as: Jumping Jack, Earth Tamper/Compactor. Quite similar to a Jack Hammer and nearly as fun to use...
  3. Commonly, when a transformer "blows", you hear the dreaded "bang", it is simply a fuse, not the transformer itself. Fuses are quite cheap, usually 1 or 2 amp is used, and there are usually a sufficient number of locals who can replace it for you. I keep a few extra fuses on hand along with a couple of phone numbers. But only had to replace one fuse in the last year. A transformer itself is unlikely to "blow" or require "fixing". Mine is many years old and still handling the (reported) 23,000 volts per hot - times 2 - off the CFE mains. EVERY option has trade offs, compromises. No single option is always right for everybody. For many, having their own transformer has more benefits than detriments.
  4. If the pump and air conditioning will be new additions to your house system, it can reasonably presumed that, as a result of adding and using these items (regardless of either 110v or 220v) you'll be using more electricity. More usage = higher total CFE bill. Residential connections to CFE commonly have three rate levels. If your usage exceeds the maximum for level one, you'll be pushed into level two. And if you exceed level two maximums, you'll be pushed into level three. If you are interested in keeping your monthly bill low, aside from the obvious, "use less electricity", there are a few options... The one many here choose is adding solar panels and an inverter, some even have back up batteries for emergency. The initial investment pays off over some years (local solar companies can calculate that for you). Or, if you have a Casita (and even if you don't) you might be able to get a second meter. This is also quite common here. Under this plan, you might carefully "balance" electrical usage between the two meters (done by choosing which items are connected to each meter). You might have two meters that are both in rate level one, instead of having one meter, that might be pushed up into rate level two, or even three. By looking at your current CFE bills, you can see your routine, current usage level, and by reading the specifications on the (if new) new pump and air conditioning units, and estimating how many hours per day each might be expected to operate, you can estimate what your new level of usage might be, and thereby, determine if you'd likely be exceeding maximum usage for any of the three rate plans. Another option, with a higher initial cost, is to purchase and install your own "transformer", which can be sized to your expected usage. This is allowed for residences as well and commercial/industrial. (I have one.) When you have your own transformer, the three rate levels no longer apply. Instead, you'll have a fixed rate, commonly mid-way between the kilowatt rate levels one and two, regardless of how much electricity you consume. No rate level bumps for usage. There is a company about two miles east of Tuxcueca (south shore) that builds transformers to your specifications. In Guadalajara there are commercial electrical supplies companies which can offer you various other transformers (Schneider & DESA are two). Personal transformer = flat rate/single tier pricing structure. Solar systems owners can end up paying next to nothing after the purchase and installation costs.
  5. It's possible that the system (MiTelcel) that shows how much data you've consumed, may not be a "real time" measurement. It might take a few hours or longer before that system is updated. If so, when you shut down the modem and then check MiTelCel, if you check it later (maybe in the morning) before turning the modem back on, the data may have changed. Is your Telcel modem a Huawei model? Is Wifi turned on? Do you still use the original Huawei password? There is talk of apps available that can provide the original passwords used for (all/some) Huawei modems. Having the app and a little time, a person may be able to determine your password, and then possibly using your Wifi for their own needs. Even if you've changed from the original, a determined knowledgeable person can probably figure out your password by using other tools available. There are various programs that can offer you some information, "whosonmywifi" is one. A program for Windows, it can scan your modem's Wifi connections and tell you the ID of each device connected. You can learn the ID number of each of your devices by checking them individually, or, you turn on the modem, make sure no one is connected, and scan with the above program. In this fashion, there shouldn't be any devices connected, and the program should tell you there are no connections. Then you can add devices one at a time, and rescan between each one connected, and write down the device ID's the program shows you. Another option might be to (get help) set up your modem so that only the devices you approve, can connect via your Wifi.
  6. Several years ago I talked with the LTH in Chapala (near/across from the 7-11), they said it might take them a month to get the batteries in. I didn't wait. I stopped at several LTH location in Guad and was unable to help them understand what I was looking for. But, up in N.W. Guad, near the Home Depot there, I stopped in a LTH and after clearing the confusion (what is a deep cycle battery?), they said it would take about an hour, they could send somebody to get them for me. It took two hours, but I bought and took home two of the 6 volt deep cycle batt.s that day, and returned a couple of months later for another pair. Seems like price was around $150 or more, each, but again, several years ago. Plus a core charge if you're not giving them the old batteries. If you go to Sam's or Costco, you might be able to order what you want through them? You probably know what you're doing, but in case not, let me just say, don't let anyone sell you a "Marine deep cycle" battery, that's not the same thing and won't perform nearly as well. Also, if I buy again, I won't buy these "wet" lead acid batteries, instead, I will go with one of the newer dry options, which cost a lot more, but offer plenty for the money, longevity being one such benifit.
  7. The distance between those two points is approximately, seven miles, and varies quite a lot with changes in the lake level. (more water, farther shore to shore, longer travel time) A small open boat with a smallish engine, similar to the style many of the lake's fisher-folks use, might travel eight to twelve miles an hour (52 / 23 minutes), which would be a similar for sailboats with a good wind. A nice ski boat with a larger engine is probably able to travel 20 to 30 miles an hour (21 / 14 minutes) to. Headwinds, broadside winds, rain, changes in the lake surface, hidden sub-surface ... impediments (generally more trouble when the lake is lower) and visibility issues could easily make those times much longer, or as has occasionally happened out there, possibly ending the trip before it's completed. Plenty of small boats for sale locally, a few places to park them, and an amazingly underused lake at your doorstep. (your speeds may vary) The distance between those two points is approximately, seven miles, and varies quite a lot with changes in the lake level. (more water, farther shore to shore, longer travel time) A small open boat with a smallish engine, similar to the style many of the lake's fisher-folks use, might travel eight to twelve miles an hour (52 / 23 minutes), which would be a similar for sailboats with a good wind. A nice ski boat with a larger engine is probably able to travel 20 to 30 miles an hour (21 / 14 minutes) to. Headwinds, broadside winds, rain, changes in the lake surface, hidden sub-surface ... impediments (generally more trouble when the lake is lower) and visibility issues could easily make those times much longer, or as has occasionally happened out there, possibly ending the trip before it's completed. Plenty of small boats for sale locally, a few places to park them, and an amazingly underused lake at your doorstep. (your speeds may vary)
  8. I am not specially knowledgeable regarding data transfer speeds, so, take the following with as much salt as needed... Speed tests are comparable to snapshots, whereas using the internet might be comparable to a movie. And I want to see the movie, not have to take time from what I am doing in order to see what my "possible" internet speed is for just a given instant in time. Nearly everyone wants to know what speed they are getting from their internet source but using a speed test to answer that question, isn't so different from taking a single frame (snapshot) of a movie and thinking you might know what the movie is about. A speed test tells you a number at one point in time, and just like bandwidth in general, can be affected by numerous factors, all for the worst. It's certainly a nice tool, but it doesn't really answer the question with great accuracy, as is demonstrated by using various speed test sites - each one commonly gives a different answer, and, using the same test again and again and again over a few moments, will often give as many different answers as the number of tests you run. Knowing this, I still run a speed test from time to time, but, what I want to know is, "what speed am I getting when I am using the internet for all the regular things I do", be it reading the news, downloading or perhaps streaming. And I believe it's a fact - a speed test don't answer this question. Instead, I use the well known and well regarded software product called DU Meter. It is not a "Speed test" (snap shot) it is a Bandwidth Monitor (real time movie). Having mentioned this product and using it's data to inform various internet service provider's technical people, in multiple countries over a few decades, nearly all argue that it's just a speed test, but they'd never used it themselves. It's not. A small window shows me "live" action, every minute I am on the internet, what bandwidth speed I am experiencing (both up and down), and that number is changing all the time. If I notice a stall while streaming, for example, with my 10Mb Telcel or the 10Mb AT&T cell system based modems (I have both), a glance will tell me what the bandwidth is in the moment, live, without having to pull up a speed test site. I have no connection with or financial interest in DU Meter (sadly) but, I do recommend it for the inquisitive. You can try it for free for 30 days. https://www.hageltech.com/dumeter/about
  9. Near the top left corner of an Amazon page, you may notice a smallish indicator titled: "Deliver to" which includes a "location". Example.: Deliver to Audubon 08106 This information is based on either, 1) the I.P. address (local or VPN) that Amazon sees for your computer connection, or 2) if you are signed in, commonly, lists the most recent shipping address you used. Moving your mouse over that spot may cause a highlight, surrounded by a dashed-line "box" around the location data. You can left-click on that box, which triggers a "Pop Up" window titled: "Choose your Location." There, you can, 1) if not signed in, enter a different country and/or zip code, or, 2) choose to sign in, and then choose between the/any addresses you have listed, as the poster above indicated.
  10. After $5,000 (USD) worth of dental work from Dr. Don, around 2008, I couldn't chew anything. He was the nicest guy, like your best friend (think Velvet Glove). Then was introduced to a dentist in Chapala, who looked in my mouth for 1 minute and said, "I can't fix this, but I know who can", and I was introduced to Dr. Eloy Barrangan. Eloy worked out a repair plan, and I confronted Dr. Don in a gentlemanly fashion. He told me he'd refund my money, he just needed to meet with his accountant... Good thing I didn't hold my breath. Mutilple additional contacts, NO refund. It cost more than $6,000 additional (USD) to get it all fixed. He doesn't get my recommendation either...
  11. ExpressVPN is streaming Amazon Prime video using D.C. locations. Some devices (computers/notepads/etc) may leak your local IP address, which Amazon would then see and block viewing based on Prime (you can still watch if you pay extra). A search of "solving IP leaks" (or similar) and a few adjustments to settings might improve your results, as does contacting Express by 'chat' on their web site if things aren't working as you want expect.
  12. Go to the Telcel customer service office and they will be able to help you solve the problem.
  13. Looking for contact information for Lakeside lawyers or accountants that handle business setup and/or on-going reporting/ forms/details.
  14. VMITCHELL: An alternative option, I don't suggest it's better than going with solar, is to install your own electrical transformer. When using the standard electric set up, you're using power from a transformer, owned by the electrical company here, CFE. As you've read here, there are three rate/price levels depending on total Kw consumption. Some people get by with level one, many are in level two, and those who consumer higher fall into the third. Installing your own transformer, sized for your projected needs, "locks" the Kw rate/price between rate level one and rate level two - regardless of your total Kw consumption. This isn't for everyone, but it's an option that many people don't know about. Another detail, many folks have more than one meter. Might be one for the main house and one for the guest house. I know one, single house, that has three meters. In this way, consumption costs are spread across more than one meter, and the home owner might have things wired so that items using the most electricity are split between two or more meters. There's also the reality that some people live in homes where the meter itself, doesn't "go around". Electricity is on, but the meter doesn't measure it. In such a case, there is only a tiny minimum cost for service. Years ago, I lived in a house in Rancho Oro with such a meter, though it was nearly 6 months before I knew it. That's after having spent a couple of hundred dollars to replaced all the incandescent bulbs with compact florescents. I'm not advocating stealing from CFE, simply pointing out things that occur, commonly, in Mexico. glitner68. Sounds like you might get value from having some testing done to see if you might be sharing electricity with someone else, or have some unknown leakage that might easily be rectified.
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