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Lisa, I moved here after spending a week’s vacation in 2008. I had not heard of local web boards or Facebook then. I knew nothing more about Chapala than I had learned during that visit from the friends I came to see and the people they introduced me to. I got on the web boards and joined Facebook after living here awhile. The online world has changed a lot in 10 years. Now people want to know everything about life here before they decide this is the place for them. You certainly can learn a lot of nuts and bolts and how other people live their lives here. What you can not know without living here is how living will work FOR YOU or for your father. You can not know how it will feel day after day after day, how you will react and feel about life here: the good, the bad, the beautiful, and the ugly. You can not know how you will feel about what you give up and what you gain. It has been worth it for me, but it may not be worth it to you. 

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On the other hand, after happy hour they may be more likely to tell the truth.

It's probably a good idea to visit, talk to people etc. before making the decision to move here.  But there's also the "jump in the water and hope to swim" approach.  My spouse and I did that fourteen years ago.  We agreed that if one or both of us couldn't handle it and were unhappy, we'd go back "home" after one year of honest "tryout".  First, we did our research in the library and online, joined Mexconnect (which was lively back then) and finally, put nearly everything in storage and headed south in a stuffed pickup with a camper cover.  It all worked out. We've only been back NOB once for a family funeral.  After four days, we were ready to return to our real home right here.

The main issue for the OP  will be convincing her father that it's a good idea.  So, best of luck and welcome!

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