Fiestas de San Andres in Ajijic, Lake Chapala

Today marks the onset of the Fiestas de San Andres in downtown Ajijic.  These fiestas last for 9 days but the rumor mill says they are trying to extend them to 15 days.

 

The Fiestas de San Andres have lots going on every night.  There are wonderful food stands and taco restaurants in the square of Ajijic across from Bancomer.

 

There is music and dancing and castillos (firework towers) every night.  There are rides for the little kids and games for all ages.  All manner of booths selling sundry items pop up.

 

It is a great place to people watch and have a great time getting familiar with the Mexican culture.

 

Beer gardens are open and the traditional drink of ron con pompope ( rum with Mexican Eggnog) is a very lovely, warming drink that is also available as is Canela.

 

Unfortunately, it is very difficult to manoeuvre during the fiestas and one has to choose their route carefully as many roads are blocked off.

 

Many people go every night as there is always something different to entertain the whole family.

 

Some residents find the nightly noise of the fireworks and music annoying but it is a lovely time of year and you are sure to be able to pick up some great gifts for Navidad (Christmas).

 

We live in San Antonio Tlayacapan and can still hear the fiestas from our house.  Not quite like the Fiestas de sa Antonio which sound like they are in our living room.

 

Wear something warm as it gets cool at night.

 

See you there!

Halloween and Day of the Dead (Dia de los Muertos)

Today ( October 31st) is Halloween and November 2nd is Day of the Dear or Dia de los Muertos.

 

When we were first here Halloween was not really celebrated but with the advent of all the expats it as become a huge holiday with many parties, costume contests and parades.  The trick or treaters start to come to your house as early at 4:00 pm and end about 8:00 pm.  The little ones usually come with their parents in cute costumes but the older ones will come to your house over and over again and some do not even wear a costume.

 

If you want them to come to your door have a lighted, carved pumpkin outside if not, keep your lights out and to not answer the door.

 

The Day of the Dead is a lovely Mexican tradition which honors the dead.  There are many lovely customs to commemorate this day.  The festivities usually culminate at the cemetery at the west end of Ajijic, Lake Chapala.  Family members take food, drink, flowers other tokens of remembrance of their loves ones who have passed.

 

There is music, lights, dancing and story telling about those who have gone before.  It is a very nice way to pay tribute and remember the dead and everyone enjoys the spirit of the celebration.  Everyone is welcome.

 

Both tonight (October 31st) and November 2nd there will be events at the plaza in Ajijic, Lake Chapala.

 

Happy Halloween and Feliz Dia de los Muertos.

Uber in Ajijic, Lake Chapala

In May of 2016 we were in Toronto, Canada for he birth of our granddaughter.  Our son had sold his car so we Ubered everywhere on his account and found it to be a fantastic and very economical service.

 

In Toronto you have to have a cell phone to use Uber and I do not know if that is the case here.

 

I do have friends who have used Uber here and have been very happy with the service.

 

Here is how you can contact the Uber Service here in Ajijic, Lake Chapala:   331 702 1932 or 332 177 0018.

 

Happy Trails!

 

 

“The Help” in Ajijic, Lake Chapala

We are so lucky to have had our Viki for the 23 years we have been here.  Luckily we still have her and she is part of the family.

 

Viki has watched or kids grow up and asks about them all the time when they are not here.  She and her family stay here when we go away and our dogs sleep with her and her husband.

 

Viki knew exactly what to do to keep our house clean and got on with it immediately.  Any Spanish I know I have learned from her and she is invaluable to me.

 

She met her husband at our old house and he was the son of our gardener.  They carried out their courtship in our outdoor laundry room and now have 2 lovely daughters.  We were invited to the wedding and sat at the head table.

 

When she had her two babies she made sure that one of her sisters came to help us until she was ready to come back to work.

 

Today it occurred to me again how much I appreciate everything she does for us.  I had bought three blinds for the one end of our terraza that looks onto a house next door and the gardener put them up.  They fell down several times as we are still having some winds.  My gardener fixed them once and they fell down again.  So the gardener (who is normally quite handy) could not secure the blinds nor could my husband.  It was Viki who fixed them securely.

 

I tell Viki often how much I appreciate her and we are very lucky to have her with us.  She is a very sweet and kind person who looks after our entire family beautifully.  She was professionally trained at a hotel and also  runs a business from her house in the afternoons.

 

I know many other people who have wonderful experiences with their “help” and I believe it is in the Mexican’s DNA to be kind and thoughtful

 

We are so lucky to live in paradise and even luckier to have Viki.

 

 

The Seasons are Changing in Ajijic, Lake Chapala

I have mentioned before that I do not miss the seasons in Canada as we have some spectacular seasons here in Ajijic, Lake Chapala.

 

We are in the middle of a seasonal change here.  Sunday, October 15th marks the end of the Rainy Season. Also Canadian Thanksgiving was yesterday and the Canadian snowbirds will be on their way down to our paradise in the sun.

 

We had a magnificent Thanksgiving dinner here at the house with our two daughters, their husbands and our 3 grandchildren, friends of one our daughters from California and our very dear friends who we consider to be family.

 

We did miss our son and his wife but knew they were at relatives in Toronto.

 

I forgot to mention we also had 4 dogs.  My husband and I cooked dinner and our Chef son-in-law, helped and one of our daughters made the dessert which was a fabulous Chocolate Swirl Mousse Cheesecake.

 

We had one of granddaughters here for 5 days and it was a magical time.   She was so happy to be here with us and her cousins and her baby BFF and we all had a lovely time.

 

Our friends brought some delicious wines and I am proud to say we drank them all.

 

We hired someone to help serve, be the bartender and clean the kitchen which was a excellent decision.

 

We feel very blessed to have most of our family here and to have such wonderful friends.

 

Now begins the very social season which lasts into the spring.

 

Christmas or Navidad is wonderful here which we are looking forward to.

 

We also have US Thanksgiving to look forward to and we love celebrating two Thanksgivings.

 

We feel very blessed to live in our little slice of heaven.

 

 

 

 

New Lakeside Hospital in Ajijic, Lake Chapala

The proposed new Lakeside Hospital breaks ground and lays the first stone Sunday, September 10 at their location on the Carretera Chapala – Jocotepec directly across the road from the Chula Vista Golf and Country Club.

 

The ground breaking ceremony was attended by a large crowd of doctors, government officials and local residents.

 

The privately operated health-care facility and medical complex is being built on a 6,400 square meter lot.  The estimated time frame for completing the fist phase of construction is 13 months.  The projected opening date is November 2018.

 

The hospital blueprint show a layout for an emergency room, three surgical theaters, laboratory and radiology diagnosis units, and out patient consultation area, hemodialysis and chemotherapy treatment units, a delivery room and neonatal ward and 8 private inpatient rooms.

 

The complex will also house commercial modules for diverse medical services and ample space for off-road parking.

 

Chapala’s current administration is lending its full backing, including approval of the construction permit.

 

Chapala Mayor Javier Degollado joined renown high-tech medical diagnosis specialist, Dr. Carlos Ramirez Aldrete in sharing the honor of setting the hospital’s first cornerstone .

 

Speaking at the ceremony Mascaras Medical Director and project point man, Dr. Carlos Diaz del Castillo reflected on the partnership of a group of up-and-coming physicians that began 25 years ago and eventually evolved into establishing the clinic situated at the east end of  Riberas del Pilar.

 

Noting how their vision expanded to bring  “first and second tier medical attention the residents of the Lake Chapala shore” he added with obvious pride and joy. “A modern hospital is born today, designed to withstand the present and short term future demands.

 

 

 

 

 

Pasta Trenta in Ajijic, Lake Chapala

Most of us love pasta and I thought this pasta restaurant was definitely worth a mention.

 

Pasta Trenta is located on Constitucion #33A near the corner of Ramon Corona.  Their phone # is (376) 766 1121 their email address is:  pastatrenta@gmail.com, and they are on facebook – Pasta Trenta.

 

Their appetizers are:  Soup of the Day, Antipasto, Bruschetta, Caprese and Garlic Bread with cheese.

 

Their salads are:  Trenta, Nicoise, Caesar and Spinach.

 

The pastas are many of our old favorites and many others.  They are:  Amatriciana, Bolognese, Frutti de Mare, Arrabbiata, Pesto Verde, Pollo Primavera, Gorgonzola, Carne e Funghi, Alfredo, Al Prosciutto, Oleo e Aglio, Polpette, Caprese, Neopolitano, Pollo e Funghi, Pollo e Funghi Rosso, Alla Puttanesco, Quattro Formaggi, Chorizo, Cozze, Molluschi, Gamberoni Rosso and Gamberoni Aglio.

 

Pasta Trenta also has excellent desserts.

 

Pasta Trenta opens at 1:00 pm.

 

It is an Italian restaurant and they take reservations and welcome walk-ins.  They serve dinner and provide take put and home delivery services.

 

Buen Gusto!

Pizza Disco in Ajijic, Lake Chapala

There is another new Pizza place in Ajijic, Lake Chapala and it is called Pizza Disco and is located on the Carretera Oriente # 58 B (across from Jara Hardware Store) and their telephone # is 766-4797.

 

They have a selection of salads and soup of the day which comes with toast and butter.  The salads are Bruschetta, Caprese,Antipasto for 2 or 4 people, Spinach and Artichoke Dip, Pizza Disco Salad and Ceasar with bacon or chicken. The salads come in two sizes.

 

The Pizza’s are Pammy, Burger, Mashed Potatoes, Florentina, Hollywood Hills, Pollo Alfredo, Hunter (meat lovers), Taco, Kari, Garden and Quattro Stagioni.  The Pizza’s also come in two sizes and vary from $140.00 pesos to $120.00 pesos for large (12 inches).

 

You can also create your own Pizza 12 inches for $120.00 pesos for 3 ingredients and $70.00 pesos for 9 inches. Each additional ingredient is $10.00 pesos.

 

The ingredients available for Create your own Pizza are:

 

Pineapple, olive, ground beef, mushrooms, spinach, cherry tomatoes, basil, cucumber, asparagus, tomato, artichokes, dried tomatoes, jalapenos, ham, chicken, pepperoni salami, bacon, clams, tuna and peppers.

 

They deliver for $20.00 pesos and it is not extra for Ajijic, Riberas and San Antonio.

 

Buen Provecho!

Pesky Computers in Ajijic, Lake Chapala

I have known for a long time that computers, laptops, ipads, tablets, cell phones etc. all have a mind of their own.  On any given day they will decide whether or not to co-operate with what you are trying to accomplish

 

Yesterday, however, my laptop was even more temperamental than usual. For some reason three of my sites which have had the same passwords for years decided that these passwords were no longer going to work.

 

First they ask you if you have forgotten your password, if you know your password but it is not working or if you suspect someone is trying to access your account.

 

If you answer that you know your password but it is not working this will cause you no end of trouble in trying to reset a usable password.  If you say that you think that someone is trying to access your account this too will cause you no end of trouble.  Embarrassing as it is, it is better that you say you forgot your password whether you did  or didn’t.

 

You then just have to give them another email address to which you have access and they will send you a code to this email address and you can easily reset your password.

 

I had changed the passwords for all three sites but today for some inexplicable reason none of them worked.  I proceeded to try  to reset my passwords again and they said they would send me a code with which to proceed but no code was sent.  Of course, there is no way of communicating this to them so I kept trying the same thing expecting a different result which I understand is the definition for insanity.

 

At the end of my rope I rechecked the email address again where the elusive code should have been sent and, for some reason, it was in the deleted file.  I can understand this happening by accident once but several times seemed unlikely.

 

Another thing they find amusing, to make sure you are not a robot, is to ask you to cipher some awkward letter compilations which are not as easy as they would seem to be to solve  You then have the choice to try another puzzle or have them read it aloud to you.  This, of course, is designed to make you feel like an idiot as it is not bad enough that you had to admit to forgetting your password.

 

After several frustrating attempts I managed to follow all prompts and have three new passwords for the three sites in question.  One more interesting fact is that one of the the new passwords I chose was, in fact, the same as the old one.  This further proves to me that the entire exercise was just to f… with me.

 

I now can access all of my sites but who knows what tomorrow will bring.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jitomate Gourmet in Ajijic, Lake Chapala

We went to a new pizza place in the west end of Ajijic on Saturday for lunch with friends and thought we would share it with you.

 

We went there because my husband had heard good things about them and especially the Pizza with Artichoke Hearts which is delicious.

 

They have starters of a cheese plate, mushrooms in garlic, portobellos with brie and Mediterranean panela.

 

They also offer lunches of pork leg, panela, queso Oaxaca and calabacita (zucchini).

 

Here is a list of their sourdough pizzas:

 

Marguerita, Vegetarian, Amore mio, Marinara, Mushroom, Heart of Artichoke, Anchovy and Black Olive, 4 Cheese, Salami, 4 Stages which has 4 different flavors (Shrimp, 4 Cheese, Vegetarian and Heart of Artichoke), Pepperoni and Shrimp.

 

Also every day the have Chef’s specials.  Jitomate Gourmet used very fresh ingredients and their tomato is fresh too.

 

The excellent Chef is Gerard Militello and he can be reached at 333 597 3076.

 

Jitomate Gourmet is on facebook – jitomate gourmet

 

They do not deliver yet but they are working on that.

 

Jitomate Gourmet is located on the Chapala – Jocotepec carretera # 976A in west Ajijic just past the old Anchor Restaurant.

 

All four of us very much enjoyed our lunch of delicious sourdough gourmet pizza and cold white wine.  The pizzas come in medium size and we ate three.

 

Buen Provecho.