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Saw you in the Ojo

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Saw you in the Ojo

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 DIRE C TOR Y  PUBLISHER Richard Tingen

EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Alejandro Grattan-Domínguez Tel: (01376) 765 3676, 765 2877 Fax: (01376) 765 3528 Associate Publisher David Tingen

Index...

FEATURE ARTICLES

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COVER STORY

Carol Bowman fondly remembers an unauthorized college trip into New York City that has some of the undertones of J.D. Salinger’s classic Catcher In The Rye.

COVER STORY

VOLUME 36 NUMBER 7

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Graphic Design Roberto C. Rojas Reyes Diana Parra Morales

Cover by Krishna Estrada

26 MAKING LIGHT OF THE DARKNESS

Special Events Editor Carol D. Bradley

Margaret Van Every finds humor in a topic most people would rather not discuss.

Associate Editor Victoria Schmidt

44 MENTALLY SPEAKING

Theater Critic Michael Warren

Kathy Koches on a fascinating topic: Dreams and how to interpret them.

Book Review Panel Margaret Van Every Margaret Porter Clare Gearhart Roving Correspondent Dr. Lorin Swinehart

Sales Manager Bruce Fraser Carmene Berner Office Secretary Rocio Madrigal ADVERTISING OFFICE Av. Hidalgo # 223, Chapala Mon. thru Fri. 9 am - 5 pm Sat. 9 am - 1 pm Tel. 01 (376) 765 2877, 765 3676 Fax 01 (376) 765 3528

48 LOCAL TRAVEL

Pag. 34 LAKESIDE LIVING

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Gail Nott recalls her first high school prom, and left to her druthers would rather not have remembered it.

El Ojo del Lago / March 2020

12 Jaltepec 14 Bridge By Lake

60 TEENAGED ANGST

Reserva al Título de Derechos de Autor 04-2011-103110024300-102 Control 14301. Permisos otorgados por la Secretaría de Gobernación (EXP. 1/432 “88”/5651 de 2 de junio de 1993) y SEP (Reserva 171.94 control 14301) del 15 de enero de 1994. Distribución: Hidalgo 223 Chapala, Jalisco, México. All contents are fully protected by copyright and may not be reproduced without the written consent of El Ojo del Lago. Opinions expressed by the authors do not necessarily reflect the views of the Publisher or the Editor, nor are we responsible for the claims made by our advertisers. We welcome letters, which should include name, address and telephone number.

10 Profiling Tepehua

54 MEMORIES

Daria Hilton writes of an undaunted mother who made a long and difficult journey to save her son.

El Ojo del Lago aparece los primeros cinco días de cada mes. (Distributed over the first five days of each month) Certificado de Licitud de Título 3693 Certificado de Licitud de Contenido 3117.

Editor’s Page

16 Mirror to the Universe

56 TRAVEL (sort of...)

PRINTING: El Debate

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Queen Michele recalls a recent ride on a local bus, and remembers all over again how wonderful the people of Mexico can be.

Jeremy Monroe’s story of recollections, symbols and faces that all help to make for something we call: a life

Send all correspondence, subscriptions or advertising to: El Ojo del Lago http://www.chapala.com elojodellago@gmail.com ojodellago@prodigy.net.mx Ave. Hidalgo 223 (or Apartado 279), 45900 Chapala, Jalisco Tels.: (376) 765 3676, Fax 765 3528

COLUMNS THIS MONTH

18 Ramblings from the Ranch

24 Welcome to Mexico 28 Front Row Center 32 Mexican Grace 34 Lakeside Living 58 Vexations & Conundrums


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COLUMNIST

Editor’s Page By Alejandro Grattan-Dominguez (From the Ojo Archives) HELPFUL HEALTH TIPS (Gleaned from various sources)

H

ave coffee In an amazing flip-flop, coffee is the new brain tonic. A large European study showed that drinking three to five cups of coffee a day in midlife cut Alzheimer’s risk 65% in late life.  University of South Florida researcher Gary Arendash credits caffeine: He says it reduces dementia-causing amyloid in animal brains. Others credit coffee’s antioxidants. So drink up, Arendash advises, unless your doctor says you shouldn’t.    Grow new brain cellsImpossible, scientists used to say. Now it’s believed that thousands of brain cells are born daily. The trick is to keep the newborns alive. What works: aerobic exercise (such as a brisk 30-minute walk

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every day), strenuous mental activity, eating salmon and other fatty fish, and avoiding obesity, chronic stress, sleep deprivation, heavy drinking and vitamin B deficiency. Drink apple juice—Apple

El Ojo del Lago / March 2020

juice can push production of the “memory chemical” acetylcholine; that’s the way the popular Alzheimer’s drug Aricept works, says Thomas Shea, Ph.D., of the University of Massachusetts. He was surprised that old mice given apple juice did better on learning and memory tests than mice that received water. A dose for humans: 16 ounces, or two to three apples a day.  Meditate—Brain scans show that people who meditate regularly have less cognitive decline and brain shrinkage - a classic sign of Alzheimer’s - as they age. Andrew Newberg of the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine says yoga meditation of 12 minutes a day for two months improved blood flow and cognitive functioning in seniors with memory problems.   Take D—A “severe deficiency” of vitamin D boosts older Americans’ risk of cognitive impairment 394%, an alarming study by England ‘s University of Exeter finds. And most Americans lack vitamin D. Experts recommend a daily dose of 800 IU to 2,000 IU of vitamin D3.    Avoid infection—Astonishing new evidence ties Alzheimer’s to cold sores, gastric ulcers, Lyme disease, pneumonia and the flu. Ruth Itzhaki, Ph.D., of the University  of  Manchester  in  England  estimates the cold-sore herpes simplex virus is incriminated in 60% of Alzheimer’s cases. The theory: Infections trigger excessive

beta amyloid “gunk” that kills brain cells. Proof is still lacking, but why not avoid common infections and take appropriate vaccines, antibiotics and antiviral agents?   —What to Drink for Good Memory— A great way to keep your aging memory sharp and avoid Alzheimer’s is to drink the right stuff.  Juice—A glass of any fruit or vegetable juice three times a week slashed Alzheimer’s odds 76% in Vanderbilt University research. Especially protective: blueberry, grape and apple juice, say other studies. Drink Tea—Only a cup of black or green tea a week cut rates of cognitive decline in older people by 37%, reports the Alzheimer’s Association. Only brewed tea works. Skip bottled tea, which is devoid of antioxidants. Caffeine beverages—Surprisingly, caffeine fights memory loss and Alzheimer’s, suggest dozens of studies. Best sources: coffee (one Alzheimer’s researcher drinks five cups a day), tea and chocolate. Beware caffeine if you are pregnant, have high blood pressure, insomnia or anxiety.  Red wine—If you drink alcohol, a little red wine is most apt to benefit your aging brain. It’s high in antioxidants. Limit it to one daily glass for women, two for men. Excessive alcohol, notably binge drinking, brings on Alzheimer’s.   Try to avoid: Sugary soft drinks,  especially those sweetened with high fructose corn syrup. They make lab animals dumb. Water with high copper content also can up your odds of Alzheimer’s. Use a water filter that removes excess minerals.  Love life and your friendships.  It is your gift for this day—to have and to share.  We  never know when our time is up so make the most of each day. Note: We publish this article periodically as a reminder to our many wonderfull Alejandro Grattanreaders. Dominguez


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The Freshman Rebellion By Carol L. Bowman bowmanl@prodigy.net.mx

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hile I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping… rapping at my chamber door.” Strange that in the middle of dissecting Edgar Allen Poe, there really was a rapping at my door. But this was no faint tap, no gentle rap. It sounded like an authoritarian whack. “Tis some visitor, I muttered,” as I beckoned for my roommate to see who had come with ill intentions. The Assistant Dean of Women at Kutztown State University, accompanied by her Snoop Squad, entered, clipboards in hand, on their random search of freshmen women’s dorm rooms. It was 1964, but this university employed strict, quasi-parental control. Kutztown, a rural district populated by conservative, Pennsylvania Dutch, Mennonite and Amish, needed protection from these hussy, college girls. Rules for female co-eds included no red light bulbs, no patent leather shoes, lest males might look up your dress in the reflection, and a knee length raincoat in every closet, to be worn on front campus, so the town’s residents could be shielded from sashaying buttocks. A thorough search by the Disciplinary team turned up no red bulbs, no shiny shoes and yes, two raincoats. Asst. Dean Sanders, with her sickening, fake smile said to us upon leaving, “You know girls, we have a responsibility to maintain the dignity of all female co-eds attending Kutztown,” And so this environment set the stage for my first taste of college campus life, but oh, what was to come. Sunday nights, most of us flocked to the Student Center to dance, dance, dance. I drooled over Dominic Messina, a slick, raven-haired Italian from the coal regions of Pottsville. He could do the Twist and Jitterbug and the topper, he drove around in a dark green TR3. I flirted, smiled and tried to be coy for months until the Sunday night we all returned from Thanksgiving break. When he asked me to dance, my knees collapsed.

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We both worked as servers in the formal dining room, where students ate lunch and dinner family style, guys in sport jackets and suitable dress for girls- the whole maintaining dignity thing. That week, I worked as many meals that fit into my schedule, in case Nick might also have tables. Well, I worked, he worked and it worked. By Friday, he pulled me into a corner in the kitchen. “I have a great idea.” He bubbled. “Let’s go to New York City tomorrow. It’s only a two-hour drive and we can go to the Village, see the Christmas tree and the lights, we’ll have a blast. What do you say?” I almost blurted out, ‘Are you kidding? This naive girl, raised on a nearby Christmas tree farm, who has never been anywhere, going to New York City, with Dominic Messina in his little sports roadster, I say Yes, Yes, Yes.’ Instead, since we never had been on a formal date, my guilt-ridden upbringing required that I offer to help with expenses of our adventure. I uttered this stupid response: “I’d love to, Nick, but other than my waitress pay, I don’t have much money.” “Oh, no sweat, I don’t have much either, but I’ve got it covered. Just wait, you’ll see,” he assured me, with those intoxicating dark eyes. “I’ll pick you up in front of Old Main at 8 am.” A cardinal dorm rule required signing out with a destination when leaving campus. The truth would never fly and I couldn’t ask my mother to cover for me. Purebred Lutherans and inherently German, my parents laid down strict guidelines about their daughters’ dating choices. Heated arguments had already erupted between them and my older sister, a sophomore at Kutztown, about her current Italian Catholic boyfriend. My God, a fainting couch would be needed if Mom found out her second daughter went to NYC with another Italian Catholic. Safest bet, I signed out for ‘home.’ Mom never visited me at school. A crisp, clear December morning prompted the ‘crazy’ idea to put the TR3’s top down. Bundled in scarves,

El Ojo del Lago / March 2020

hats and gloves off we went. How lucky could a girl get, being with a guy who had everything covered and a convertible to boot. When we got to Allentown, Nick drove into St. Mary’s Hospital parking lot. “Hey, listen to this,” he said. “I read in the newspaper that with the Viet Nam War, there’s a big call for blood donors. The local hospitals are paying $25.00 a pint. So we just go in, give some blood, grab our cash, and then spend, spend, spend in New York.” He spilled his plan out with such enthusiasm, I was hooked. A nun approached us and offered profuse thanks for thinking of our soldiers, young men our age who needed blood. While the plasma drained from our arms, we giggled about all the things our found money could buy. Afterwards, as we sipped orange juice, Sister Catherine walked over with forms and a pen. She asked if we wanted to donate our pints to a specific US wounded GI. Dominic’s olive skin paled to a green shade of puke. “Oh, we’ don’t know anyone in particular, so we’ll just accept the standard rate of $25.00,” he spewed the words, shaking. “My dear, boy,” said Sister, “this is a Catholic Hospital and we only receive donated blood. Allenton General is offering payment, but you will need to wait at least a week before you give blood again.” We staggered to the car, empty handed and missing a pint of life’s petrol. Oh, the resilience of youth, as Nick let out a sigh, seemed to gather his thoughts, and announced, “Well, let’s move on to Plan B. We’ll pool all the money we have, figure out what we can pay for and NYC, here we come. The pot seemed meager, but it would cover gas, tolls for the Holland Tunnel, and maybe hot chocolate and a burger in the Village. Off we sailed into the wind, laughing about the wrong hospital all the way. Two hours later, my small, pathetic world exploded. I felt electrified by NYC, Greenwich Village, shoppers, mounted police patrolling Bleaker Street, their horses decorated with bells and red ribbons, hawkers selling scrubby Christmas trees on every corner. A light flurry of snowflakes magically started to fall. I was in love, in love with adventure, in love with fairytales, in love with rebellion. As the early shadows of dusk darkened the city, we knew we had to head back. I needed to sign into the dorm before 11 pm curfew. When I arrived at Old Main’s front desk, the dorm’s housemother waited to pounce. My fairytale day was about to be fractured. “Good evening, Carol. How did your visit at home go?” Mrs. Morrison seemed cryptic, with a sarcastic tone.

“Oh I had a nice time. Thank you for asking” “Well,” she retorted, as she piled a bag of items on the counter. “Your mother visited you here today, to bring some things you forgot last weekend. She seemed shocked that you signed out for ‘home.’ Dean King wants to speak to you in her office Monday morning at 8 am.” An audience with the dragon, Marietta P. King, the 5’2” white-haired Dean of Women that all the girls feared. I scurried to my room before the conflicting emotions of the day crashed upon me. I called my younger sister to get the real scoop. “Boy, Carol, you should have seen Mom today. When the girl on the desk told her that you were ‘at home’, she put her hands on her hips and made a real scene.” Donna imitated Mom perfectly. “‘Well, I am her mother and I think I should know if Carol is at home and I can tell you, she isn’t. So where is she?’” Donna continued to relay the ugly account. I was busted, but the memory of NYC took away the sting. On Monday morning, Miss King shook her crooked finger at me, while delivering her stern reprimand. “Your punishment for deceit, for defying the dignity of a Kutztown co-ed is a week of Dorm Campus,” she barked.“For seven nights, immediately after dinner, you must remain in your room or be studying in the library. House mother Morrison will make frequent checks as to your whereabouts.” That would be my first experience with Dorm Campus, but not my last. I spent many an evening in Franklin Library during my freshman year. As a sophomore, I moved off campus. I was done with their control; quoth the raven, ‘Nevermore.’ Bio for Carol L. Bowman--After a life-long profession of treating the mentally ill at a PA psychiatric hospital for 33 years, Carol retired to Lake Chapala, Mexico in 2006 with her husband, to pursue more positive passions. Her family thought that she too had “gone mad.” Today, she teaches English to Mexican adults in a program operated by Lake Chapala Society and writes for local and international, on-line and print publications. Using her adventures to over 110 countries, Carol has captured a niche in travel writing. A frequent contributor to El Ojo del Lago, she’s won several literary awards from that publication. Her psychiatric field work netted a contribution to the anthology, Tales from the Couch. Carol L. Bowman


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COLUMNIST

PROFILING TEPEHUA By Moonyeen King

President of the Board for Tepehua

moonie1935@yahoo.com

M

ary Bellis wrote: ‘In the beginning people bartered, swapping that which they had plenty of for that which they needed. It was called ‘commodity money’, like tea, coffee, tobacco, and cattle, basic items everybody needed, but it made doing business difficult. Europeans sailed the seven seas bartering fur and crafts in the East for perfumes and silk’. Metal objects were introduced as money around 5000 BC, and by 700 BC the first metal coins appeared in the Western world. The Chinese invented paper money by 960 AD. Even so, Quid Pro Quo still remains today.  A Latin quote mainly used by lawyers meaning “This for That”. It has no socioeconomic boundaries, exchanging things will always be something societies do.  It is more prevalent in the world of poverty, and as there will never be a world without poverty, it is here to stay. A much maligned phrase recently in the political world, at a guess the writer also thinks it is a phrase people listen to without knowing its meaning. In the world of plenty Quid Pro Quo appertains mainly to exchanging favors. This for That. In the Tepehua Barrio world, we are always swapping ‘this for that’, it is a way of life.  In our Habitat program (repairing homes for the rainy season) we use this system - we repair your home for your labor on the next one, we send your child to school but you have to volunteer at the Center in some capacity. In the small bazaar at the Community Center, if you

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El Ojo del Lago / March 2020

are a volunteer you get a free shopping voucher, Quid Pro Quo.   Quote from Barter News.com “Doing business without cash is one of the world’s best kept business secrets”. Tepehua Treasures’ Riberas store relies heavily on donated items to sell for monies that send children to school. What you consider your trash is a treasure to someone else.  Dr. Todd Stong, when talking about corruption and a wasteful system in Mexico said, “It will be the rising generation of the educated, with a world view via the internet and social media that will begin to replace the old guard that now staffs the counties.” Educating the young of today guarantees a tomorrow of questions and demands for more equality, less corruption and a freedom of choice. The one thing corrupt governments fear is a mass of educated people.  If you want to keep a people under control, deny them education. The Tepehua Team in a very small way, with your help, is changing a generation through education, it is the only way. By providing the children with books, uniforms, shoes, bus and breakfast money we can change a corrupt system and nepotism in local governments; we can bring education and pride to the barrios and they will push for change from the bottom up. One thing the governments can do is allow children free bus rides to school, if they show their registration card. Every school kid has one. The burden of the family would be partially lifted with this one small act. Having spoken to the local talking heads it is not about to happen. The Tepehua Team thanks you for the incredible support Lakesiders give the local communities, which has made rapid change in many barrios - if not by ‘doing’ it is by ‘giving’. The sky did not fall in Jan 2020. It is going to be a good year in spite of politics. Awareness, like a soft blanket, is settling in. Awareness that if the masses are not educated it will affect those who are educated in a negative way, that if we don’t care for our planet we are slowly killing ourselves, that we are responsible for social injustice. Change is inevitable. Let’s make it for the better and do it faster because by being involved, we can.


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A Centro Educativo Jaltepec Graduate Whose Dream Came True

Centro Educativo Jaltepec celebrated its 50th Anniversary in February 2019. Alumni and special guests attended from all over the USA and Mexico and it included many from the local Lakeside community. A special moment occurred when Lulu, (Lourdes Tinoco), a 1990 graduate who is the Assistant Guest Services Captain at the Dodgers Stadium in Los Angeles, came to say thank you to Linda Buckthorp, Community Facilitator, for helping girls like her achieve success and go beyond their wildest dreams.

Lourdes Tinoco, Jaltepec Graduate 1990 Lourdes submitted her testimonial to encourage others to recognize and contribute towards Jaltepec, the Hospitality and Hoteleria School that transforms young women for life by granting a Technical University degree in Hoteleria. From Lourdes - “I had a great privilege after my graduation. All the skills and training that Jaltepec provided helped me in all aspects in my life, including guiding my daughters in all facets of their lives. Professionally I currently work in the Dodger Stadium in the City of Los Angeles, California, USA. I am employed by their Hospitality Department and I can proudly say that due to the valuable knowledge I learned at Jaltepec I am able to give that special touch to everything I do. That knowledge means success wherever we are. It is wonderful how everything we learn in Jaltepec influences practically all areas of our lives, family and professional life as well as an individual citizen. I feel it is important to provide my testimony as I perform my job to the best of my ability, and always with love. I sincerely want to express my great appreciation for this Institution. Thanks to you my beloved Jaltepec. Thanks to you I have been able to reach success. Lourdes Tinoco Jaltepec Graduate 1990

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COLUMNIST

BRIDGE BY THE LAKE By Ken Masson

This month we have a guest columnist, the highly regarded bridge writer, teacher and administrator Barbara Seagram. Barbara and her husband Alex Kornel will be in Lakeside for all of March and will be giving lessons at the Lake Chapala Duplicate Bridge Club on the 17th and 19th.

you have permission to open the bidding. Let’s call points including distribution: TOTAL POINTS. The value of your hand is in a constant state of flux. Once partner starts bidding, your hand is like a flower: it either blossoms and grows or it wilts and dies. e.g. If you have a short suit in your hand and partner now names that suit, you are depressed. Your hand has wilted. It is NEVER good to have a shortage in partner’s suit. We are constantly searching for FITS, not MISFITS. If partner bids spades and you have a shortage of spades in your hand: 2 or fewer, subtract: • up to three length points from your hand, if you have a void in partner’s suit • up to two length points from your hand, if you have a singleton in partner’s suit • up to one length point from your hand if you have a doubleton in partner’s suit If you had not added any length points because you had no long suit, you will not subtract at all. But you need to realize that your hand has gone downhill. It is devalued.

HAND EVALUATION AND RE-EVALUATION by BARBARA SEAGRAM Many students have great difficulty with the concept of hand evaluation. I believe that it is right to count distribution even as an opening bidder. Most people now count long suits (1 point for 5th card in long suit and 1 extra point for 6th etc.) That is counting distribution. You need 13 points including distribution to open the bidding in 1st or 2nd seat. Some books say 12 only but then they are not including distribution. You need to know the Rule of 20 when you are in 1st or 2nd seat and only have 11 or 12 points. If you find yourself close to an opening bid but feel you don’t have enough points to open, use the Rule of 20. Count your HCP and then add the length of the two longest suits. If this totals 20, then you have permission to open the bidding. For example, if you have: ♠Axxx♥Axxx♦Axxx♣x = 12 HCP plus two four card suits = 20. Now

DECLARER POINTS ♠3

♥AJ65432

♦AK4

♣76

Counting TOTAL points on this hand, it totals 15. If we open with 1H and partner bids 1S, this hand has now dropped in value and we only have 13. We should now bid 2H as our rebid as this is now a minimum hand. BUT If instead (see hand above again) partner has bid 2H after our 1H opener, then our hand now grows up. We must add 1 extra point for the 5th card in the suit which has been supported and TWO extra points for each remaining card. (Yes, you might call this double dipping.) YOUR hand has INCREASED in value, now that you know you are going to be declarer. If you do not do this, then you remain with the same old 15 points and will have to pass partner’s 2H bid that showed 6-9 points. How can this be right? In the above example, we now have 20 points (after adding the extra 5 points) and after partner has raised us to 2H (showing 6-9 points) we should now bid 4H. If the opponents have bid a suit in which you have a singleton K or Q, or even a doubleton Qx or Jx, count nothing for these cards because they are most unlikely to win any tricks. DUMMY POINTS When you are going to become dummy, if you have THREE card support for partner, then use the 3-2-1- dummy points method. Short suit points will be worth 3-2-1 (3 for a void, 2 for a singleton and 1 for a doubleton). When you are going to become dummy, if you have FOUR (or more) card support for partner, then use the 5-3-1 dummy points method. Short suit points will be worth 5-3-1 (5 for a void, 3 for a singleton and 1 for a doubleton). When you are going to become dummy (because you have three card or better support for partner’s major suit or five or more of partner’s minor suit), then long suit points go away and short suit points come in. ALWAYS REMEMBER to revalue your hand.

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Mirror To The Universe By Rob Mohr

M

irror to the Universe is a new column wherein I share the implications of artistic, philosophical, and scientific understandings which impact our lives, relationships, and dreams. My intent is to convey ideas, concepts, and imaginings in ways that stimulate and engage members of the Lakeside Community in topic- related conversation. Dimensions of Consciousness Like most of you, I often assume my life is under control, yet too often my dependence on high evidence decays into surprise, and my organized life no longer exists in a meaningful way. Many physicists agree with this encroachment and conclude that, given time, everything in the universe gravitates towards chaos. However, a unique level of con-

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sciousness gives humans the capacity for self-awareness and self-judgement. Our conscious and unconscious states are an ever-unfolding process that reveals the unexpected. In his poignant analysis of how this happens, Daniel Dennett, an American philosopher and cognitive scientist, wrote, “...it is possible to have design in the absence of a designer, competence in the absence of comprehension, and reason (free floating rationales) in the absence of reasoners.” All of which throws a wrench into our preconceptions, our thoughts about life and death, and the determining doctrines set by organized religions. We find ourselves in a world where the expansion of human understanding has no limits, and surprise is the norm, one where creation and creativity, in a state of flux, becomes

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humanity’s constant. Current scientific and philosophical understandings of universal consciousness reveal our consciousness is part of a universal reality in two important ways. First, all living organisms are conscious in degrees, and, second, the universe as a whole is a conscious entity. Scientific studies indicate that plants, trees and flowers, and even individual cells and their components, communicate with each other and with humans on a sensory level. Flowers in neighboring pots defy the pull of the sun and reach out to touch one another. Our own consciousness, which we like to believe functions at the highest level, is the result of cellular awareness, input from the whole organism, from our genetic memory, and from the flow of universal consciousness. Add to this our unconscious reality, and the result is our ‘universal mind’. In this complex milieu our brain, which we once thought played the leading role, actually plays the small but essential role of processor.  Unconsciousness, which has a spiritual component, is a vast, and little understood field of study that also plays a significant role in understanding who and what we are. The spiritual mind which connects with the whole of the universe and its universal mind, is manifest in dreams, visions, out-of-body ex-

periences, and in our essential role as an active part of a living, and aware creation. This universal connection is a goal of all meditative states. Mysticism, which takes many forms, reflects understanding of this direct experience with the universal. In the practice of living a life balanced between the organic and the spiritual, our personal and societal rituals play an important transformative part. Both Victor Turner and Bobbie Alexander understood the liminal role of ritual and what it means when we become liminal-persons engaged in the discovery of broad new understandings of what living a creative, universal life can be like. We are released from humanity’s common structures and move through a liminal process towards new understandings and roles which constitute ‘communitas’ within a new enlightened community. This transformation is critically evident in all of the arts where the transformed writer or artist sees (understands) creation in complex, multidimensional ways. Within the dimensions of our conscious state, one’s capacity to infer causes and effects also has a direct correlation with our awareness and understanding of life. With each new experience, our organism and consciousness engage in inference that fits what is happening into a discernable pattern.  Being able to infer results of actions and make suitable adjustments is a key for our successful navigation of life. Liminal transformations and our inference capacity, together, open multiple doors into a more intellectual, creatively satisfying, and complex life. As you reflect on these emerging understandings, consider, how conscious are you? What limits your conscious engagement with creation? And what might you undertake that would change your engagement with life in creative and intellectuRob Mohr ally stimulating ways?


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RAMBLINGS FROM THE RANCH By Christina Bennett

Senior Dogs for Senior People

H

ey, how about adopting a puppy? It’ll jump all over you, bite you incessantly, pee on your carpet and then chew up your shoes and couch. Oh, and if you’re a person of a “certain age,” the puppy might outlive you, too. If you yearn for canine companionship but get a headache when you think about puppies, maybe a senior dog is the perfect solution for you? At any given time, The Ranch has several gray-snouted sweethearts who would love to join your family. Advantages of senior dogs are many: 1. They don’t need a lot of exercise. A trip around the block is probably enough. 2. They are usually house-trained or learn in a snap.

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3. They’re unlikely to chew up your shoes (or you!). 4. They’re grateful, really grateful, for a warm safe home. A dog named Indi was recently adopted from The Ranch (by, um,

me). She is at least eight years old and was owned by a family who had her since she was a puppy. When they came upon hard times they surrendered her, in tears, to The Ranch. She’s a dream dog and is again well-loved. She can’t go on many walks but she adores her ball and other toys and takes inexpensive medicine for her joints. Indi is a lover who has added so much to our lives and we hope to have several years with her. Other fine mature canines are waiting for YOU at The Ranch. Ruben, an eight-year old shepherd mix, was removed from a bad situation. He came to The Ranch after a three-week stint in the hospital. He’s a real sweetie! Or there is Garret, an eight-year-old Cocker Spaniel. He’s at a foster home now, as the shelter terrified him. But he’s ready for a forever partner — maybe you? Senior dogs for senior people, it’s a match made in heaven. For more information on adopting, volunteering and escorting dogs to their new homes North of the border visit our website www. lakesidespayandneutercenter.com or email us at adoptaranchdog@ outlook.com


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Moving Forward While Looking Back By Christy Wiseman christywiseman@me.com

M

y oldest son died last year too. I had everything in his name as I was sure I would go first and he could handle things fairly. Losing a child is a similar, but different kind of grief from losing a treasured spouse. Both are so devastating and yet life goes on. The mountains haven’t changed. The sun still rises. The sky still turns beautiful colors at times with one less person to see and appreciate them. The house is empty without my sweetheart in it.  Nothing I can do, say, offer, will bring him back. Eternity never seemed so immense or uncaring.  I can’t expect anyone who hasn’t been thru it to understand and they don’t and I hope they never have to,

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but if they love, it is the price they or the one they love will someday pay and while worth it, I keep wishing I had just one more day with my beloved, while knowing that isn’t going to happen. Sort of like the alcoholic for whom “one drink is too many and a hundred not enough.” This grief makes no sense to me.  I’m learning to focus on friends and on positive things in my life, but there is always that secret part in my heart that is healing, but ever aware of loss and wonders where I fit in this new paradigm—this time and space in between what was and what is.  We truly were synergistic and now I need to learn to be whole as one. I am grateful for each day, but I am forever changed. What’s ahead? I have learned to be independent. I love my dear friends and family. New adventures await. It is still “my time” to be here and to find where I fit and who within this context I might be able to help. I am eager to find a new and joyful “now.”  Is there a risk in that? Of course! That’s part of the  adventure held in the future that I now feel strong enough and positive enough  to experience and handle, hopefully with grace. Christy Wiseman


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Autumn Years These last forty years you and I’ve been together. Spring has past, Summer’s gone, now Autumn weather. Note wrinkles, furrows, graying hair grown thin, Paunches, spare tires, flabby thighs, drooping skin. Our voices familiar, thoughts left trailing … Forgetting a name - call something a “thing.” Small kindnesses shown reveal that we care, Hurt feelings let go, still moments we share. Things left unsaid, sometimes deeds misconstrued; Sadness dispersed with a joke understood. Winter’s approaching, be mindful of cold! Keep home fires burning, as all must grow old. Smiling and laughing, we cling to the fun. For light-hearted joy’s kept loves web re-spun.

Gabrielle Blair

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COLUMNIST

By Victoria Schmidt

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any of our readers are new to Mexico, so I decided to repeat some advice I have peppered through previous columns. I learn everything the hard way, so, hopefully it will help you through your transition. First of all, we lived in Chapala. Which is seen more “Mexican” than Ajijic. Fewer expats, fewer “Fraccs” (the Mexican term for Housing Associations.) We lived right on the street with only a door between the sidewalk and our living room. The first thing we learned that it is considered rude to walk past strangers without acknowl-

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edging them. It’s even worse if you don’t recognize your neighbor. Courteous greetings are: “Hola, Adios, and Buenos Dias, Tardes, or Noches.” Which leads me to telling time. In this case, “Dias, Tardes and Noches” roughly translate from morning, afternoon, evening/night. Now the tricky part here is the assignment of time. “Dias” is morning. “Tardes” usually starts at noon. But the line between “tardes” and “noche” is up for grabs. For me, if it is dark it’s “noche.” As I said, it’s rude to walk past a person and not acknowledge them. That is part of the culture. Any busi-

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ness transaction is the same. Walk into the store and say “Buenos Dias” to anyone, everyone. If you don’t purchase anything, exit with a “Gracias.” If you do purchase something, place your payment into their hands. Not on the counter. Mexicans take it as a sign of disrespect, as if you don’t trust them, or do not wish to touch them. A successful transaction ends with them giving you the Mexican equivalent of “have a good day.” Where you respond with “Igualmente” meaning to you as well. The transaction does not include loud or angry words even when you are frustrated with yourself. Loudness is just plain rude. Babies. What mother doesn’t love it when you “oooh and ahhh” at their child?In the USA you, as a stranger, are not to touch someone else’s children. Here, it is OK to touch, but do not just stare into their eyes. Give a little touch on their cheek and you have told the mother you are not giving her baby the “evil eye.” I usually ask, and then brush their cheek. If you have a business relationship with a Mexican, ask first how they are, ask about their health, their family, then get down to business. Unlike NOB, business is not first. Families and people are first. If you are addressing someone for

the first time, and you don’t know their name, use “Señor or Señora”, and stay away from slang. That is considered rude and disrespectful. If you have just met an adult, older, Mexican woman, don’t call her “Chica.” Once you have a relationship, then you can call her “Amiga o Chica.” OK, next, for those selling their wares on the street. They usually initiate conversation. And if you are not interested, simply say, “No Gracias, y Buenos Suerte.” If they are persistent just walk away saying “Lo Siento, No Gracias.” My final piece of advice is this. If a Mexican offers to help you, try to allow them the opportunity. They are more than happy to help. It is a gesture of caring. They may be offended by your refusal of help. In the Mexican culture, elderly people are to be respected, people with disabilities are to be aided. This was hard for me to learn, so try to let go and respect. There is one guy at Wal-Mart who looks to be in his 90’s and he always wants to help me. I’m very independent and I’m used to carrying my things, and crossing the street, and I use my cane. I’m younger than him, but he is always there making sure I get into and out of Wal-Mart and all the way to my car. Of course he gets a tip. Most of the people who work parking lots, valet part parkers and restaurant help all depend on tips. Some of those workers are paid only with tips. If you received bad service, talk to the manager because the waiter’s tip is split between the other staff, the bus boys, and the kitchen staff. Restaurant behavior is a future topic. And even if your Spanish is not very good, there isn’t a Mexican here who doesn’t appreciate you trying to use the language. If they help or correct you…the right anVictoria Schmidt swer is Gracias!


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How To Dispose Of Yourself Once You’re Gone By Margaret Van Every

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t was easy to check the box that offered cremation because the alternative was far less attractive. You could either make an ash of yourself or occupy a plot of earth forever while rotting in a sealed box. Most of us probably agree that land should serve a better purpose. If you choose instead to go up in smoke you can display your remains in an attractive wooden urn or perhaps scatter them on the lake at sunset. The only problem with cremation in Mexico is it leaves no specific gathering place for the family reunion on the Day of the Dead. You forfeit the party and savoring the tacos and tequila. The practice of cemetery burial implies preservation of identity as an objective and requires a marker so descendants can, if in the neighborhood, stand upon the grave and think “Poor Yorick” thoughts. You’ll need a reservation and a worm-resistant coffin so you can rot at your own tempo. You must pay for the plot, box, and stone in advance, plus transportation to the cemetery. Your gringo friends aren’t likely to shoulder your coffin while dancing behind a brass band to the grave site. Then there’s grass, flowers, perhaps an evergreen to garnish the otherwise stark mound of earth. These, of course, require maintenance unto perpetuity, which may translate into five years if you’re lucky. They will disturb that not-so-final resting place

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you imagined eternal, evict you, toss you into some communal bone dump, and deposit fresher flesh in your vacated space. Because waste disposal by funeral “homes” is a stable and profitable business if limited to burial or cremation, we are never given the following six options when we entrust them with our remains. green, natural, or woodland burial (worm food) sea burial (fish food) sky burial (bird food) burlap bag burial (waiting for rebirth) cryonification (freezing yourself) corporeal gemification (becoming a gem) I. Green, Natural, or Woodland Burial Feeding worms your mortal coil is the approved green choice and requires neither money, maintenance, nor marker. No embalming chemicals allowed. Your relatives will never find you. You yield to the way of all flesh speedily, dust direct to dust, though some natural burial sites will wrap you first in a simple cotton shroud or place you in a biodegradable coffin of recycled paper. When you go under naturally you simply join Mortals Anonymous and immediately dissolve all class, race, and gender differences. In the meantime you are walking compost, proud knowing that one fine day you’ll be food for worms . . . and waste for worms as well. You’ll give back to your planet at last, making up for your years of gross consumption. I was a virgin when I first heard Andrew Marvell’s lyrical threat to his coy mistress: “There [in the grave] worms shall try thy long preserved virginity.” Marvell convinced me I’d better hurry up. II. Sea Burial Feed fishes. Nothing could be simpler, except for transportation to the shore. You’ll need a friend with a boat to drive you to the beach and launch you out a ways. Maybe best to tie a message to your big toe explaining your drifting is intentional so please do not disturb and do not call the Coast Guard. Make yourself a tasty tidbit in the primordial soup from whence all life emerged, feed fishes. III. Sky Burial Sky burial is an oxymoron, the exact opposite of a burial, namely defenseless exposure under the great canopy of the heavens. Here you offer yourself to large carrion birds—condors and vultures—that feast on fresh flesh. A butcher who includes humans in his trade will cut you into bite-size pieces your toothless feathered friends can manage. This way you can sustain some aerial life and also fertilize the earth. This method is practiced mostly in dry mountainous regions above the tree line where flesh would dry out without decomposing and the ground is too rocky for burial. Also trees can’t grow in high elevations, which precludes cremation in places like Tibet, Mongolia, parts of India, and the Andes. IV. Bag Burial Those who wish to be reborn can curl into the fetal position inside a burlap bag/ womb, criss-crossed securely with rope and dropped into a hole in the ground until the day they are once again given light. V. Cryonification Some say the world will end in fire, but a poet named Frost thought ice is also nice and would suffice. At a savings over freezing your entire body, you can now freeze only your severed head and have it maintained in a special lab at a very low temperature until the time arrives when technology figures out how to download the contents of your brain to a USB. No kidding. They’re still working on it but once they’ve solved the USB part, they will then have to sort out which of all the thoughts you ever had were worth saving. Probably not many. VI. Corporeal Gemification You’ve always been told you were a gem. Now why not prove them right and materialize that metaphor, convert your otherwise useless cremains into a diamond? This is possible because carbon is the second-most-abundant atomic element in the body, and diamonds are made of crystallized carbon under extreme heat and pressure. There are numerous approved labs for this practice around the world, and people have been diamondizing themselves now for about 30 years. Do you really want your ashes consigned to an urn on the mantelpiece of guilt ridden heirs who frankly don’t want them? Supposedly, becoming a diamond costs less than a funeral and burial up north— a mere $2,200 to $9,000. As a diamond you will literally be your heirs’ best friend, just as the song asserts. All you need do is have at least a pound of your remains (more for larger carats) sent to a lab that grows diamonds, specify the number of carats you want to be, select a setting for the gem you’ll become, and pay. The lab will accomplish in a few weeks what took Mother N. millions of years. Unfortunately, you’ll never get to admire the final result, and it’s not returnable. However, you could see some samples first on the internet or try it out with your beloved Fido. Yes, people often Margaret Van Every gemify their pets. Just think how far we’ve come!


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FRONT ROW CENTER By Michael Warren Lettice and Lovage By Peter Shaffer Directed by Peter King (at Bravo!)

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his humorous play was written by Peter Shaffer in 1987, specifically for Maggie Smith who originated the lead role of “Lettice Douffet.” Here at the Bravo! theater, we had visiting actress Vanessa McCaffrey giving us a sparkling performance as the extraordinary and extrovert Lettice. The opening scenes feature Lettice as a tour guide at historic Fustian Hall. Nothing of note has ever happened at the Hall, though Queen Elizabeth l is supposed to have slept there on one occasion. So Lettice enlivens the tour by exaggerating the drama of certain events. This delights the tourists and helps Lettice as she solicits their tips at the end of the tour. “Lotte Schoen,” who is the Administrator for the Preservation Trust which owns the building, appears on one of Lettice’s tours and is outraged by her fanciful embellishment of historical facts. The next day Lettice is summoned to Lotte’s office, and is fired. Monnie King plays Lotte with some skill, presenting her initially as rigid and humorless, and then warming her up as the play progresses. And Peggy Lord Chilton offers a delightful cameo as “Miss Framer” who is Lotte’s ancient secretary. Subsequent scenes take place in Lettice’s London basement flat, which contains the remains of theatrical scenery. There is also a cat which plays an

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important role in the play. I really enjoyed Vanessa McCaffrey’s interpretation of Lettice – it would be so easy to overact the role, but she is simply herself and lets the author’s very entertaining dialogue do the work. In the second Act, Lotte feels guilty about firing Lettice and comes to visit her with the intention of finding her a new job. The two gradually become friends, especially after drinking Lettice’s potent homemade Lovage wine. They share a common interest in English history, and reenact key moments including the execution of Mary, Queen of Scots. At this point Peter King appears as “Mr Bardolph,” who is a court-appointed lawyer. It appears that Lettice is accused of attempted murder, as the execution scene was too realistic. Peter King is suitably confused and also a bit pompous, in fact a typical British lawyer. I enjoyed this very wellwritten play, though the ending was rather strange, as the two ladies embark on a celebration of architectural ugliness. It is true that for a while in Britain there was a fashion for very ugly buildings – the mantra was “Form Follows Function” and some hideous concrete structures appeared on the scene. No doubt Peter Shaffer agreed with Prince Charles that this was a big mistake. Thanks to Bravo! for providing this delightful entertainment. I congratulate director Peter King and all the cast and crew. I should also mention the ingenious set design by Dana Douin. Margo Eberly was Stage and House Manager. The next show in March at Bravo! is “The Book of Will” by Lauren Gunderson, which tells the story of how two aging actors saved the First Folio of Shakespeare’s plays. Michael Warren


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Could a bad design in your home make you sick?

“Sick Building Syndrome”, the effects of a bad design on your health. By Arch. Hector Solórzano

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e spend a lot of time inside buildings, whether in the office or at home. The spaces we inhabit influence our lives, perhaps more than we can imagine. This is why it is important that they have an adequate design in order to allow us to develop our activities. The human being has created shelters to defend himself against the hostile climate, achieve a space of thermal equilibrium and ensure a favorable productive environment. Microenvironments within buildings can be an extremely relevant variant of the effect of buildings on occupant’s health, according to a WHO (World Health Organization) study when symptoms affect more than 20% of the building occupants, it can be considered “Sick building syndrome.” Here I tell you how it can affect you and how you can avoid it. BUILDING DESIGN Design is an action that we have in charge to improve the conditions of the interior spaces that we will inhabit. Ventilation. Cross ventilation improves air quality. The use of air conditioning vitiates air quality. A constant flow of air stream will purify the interiors of suspended substances. Distribution. Appropriate distribution of spaces can help protect the environment from street noise and minimize interior noise, to achieve better rest and reduce stress. Humidity. Moisture in buildings can favor mold growth, excessive moisture can cause respiratory irritation, allergies and infections. The spaces with good lighting and ventilation help prevent

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mold growing, closed places such as wardrobes, bathrooms and service patios are the most exposed to the growth of molds in their delimiting walls. Finishes. Several studies show a correlation between certain materials used on surfaces in closed environments, among the materials are PVC floors and walls made of chlorine and / or petroleum, new linoleum, synthetic carpets and chipboard. Children are the most sensitive to these substances, generating bronchial obstructions, wheezing, symptoms of allergy to materials containing plasticizers. Ceramics and brick tile could be an option. Paints. Insulating materials and most oil-derived paints are also highly toxic. There are paints that are obtained from vegetables or minerals and have a less harmful impact on our health. TOXIC SUBSTANCES Your home is a place of protection; however, the opposite can happen because the same building can accumulate a large number of disease-causing toxins without the occupants being aware of them. The products used in its construction create an environment in which complex chemical emissions and reactions can occur. The first direct emissions are those of the newly used materials, once the construction is finished. Second emissions and those considered as achronic diseases effect are from the life of the material, for example, moisture, alkaline substances in the concrete mixture, ozone from electrical equipment or cleaning substances. I encourage you to check your home and office, the information is available here, and just do not forget that, the project taking into account the optimal orientation, adequate ventilation and the choice of materials is our responsibility, which we must demand from the architect.


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Mexican Grace Mexican Grace is new regular feature column inspired by the September 15th 2019 Open Circle. El Ojo is looking for anecdotes that relate the many encounters, whether initiated by expats or locals, that exemplify the special manifestations of mutual giving and receiving that define the Mexican Grace that brought us to this unique paradise and that keep us here. Please email articles of up to 900 words, typed in Times Roman 14-point font with a Title and your name at the top of each page to both grattanmx@gmail.com and loretta.downs@gmail.com. Photos are welcome.

Mexican Moment By David Bryen

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he context for this moment of Mexican Grace occurred shortly after we arrived to live in Ajijic in 2010. My new neighbor asked; “Do want to ride to Copper Canyon with another motorcyclist friend of mine and I?” Visions of camp-

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ing on the edge of the splendid canyon at sunset overcame my sensibility and I agreed immediately to the trip. Bad mistake! However, by the third day following an errant hand drawn map, riding on the desolate, cliff hanging dirt back

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roads, through horrible conditions, rain, mud, many times crashing on what were barely roads, we were lost, tired and scared to death. I crashed my motorcycle on a particularly steep and rutted boulder strewn section. Pinned under my broken motorcycle I realized I had broken my ribs. My resources to continue exhausted. I was hoping to hitch a ride and after waiting an hour, we heard a truck struggling up the steep, rutted and boulder strewn incline. A young man, with seven Mexicans jammed into the twin cab of his Ford Lobo jumped out of his truck and asked us if we needed help. He agreed to haul me and my wounded bike to Morales, many hours away. We loaded my motorcycle into the pickup bed, I said good bye to my two motorcyclist friends and I crammed my body onto the center console of the pickup. After driving an hour or more, we descended another steep downhill, crossed another washout, and bounced his 4 x 4 pickup back up the other side. Enrique stopped his truck and shutoff the engine. A surge of panic shot through me when he demanded that I step out of the truck. Defenseless and with my jackhammering heart pounding in fear, I slowly extricated myself as the searing hot icicles of pain shot from my side. The hackles on the back of my neck jumped to attention as he walked me over to the edge of the cliff! Was this the place where they would push me off the cliff, steal my bike, and leave me to die? He pointed to a demolished truck 750 feet below that had rolled off the road. He lifted his eyebrows: “Muy peligroso.” This was the second truck I’d seen today that had plunged off the edge of these cliff hanging roads. “Comprendo,” I nodded. Of course I understood the danger. In my imagination I’d tumbled down one of these steep cliffs a hundred times. He then turned to his right, looked out over the view, and spread out his arms in a grand gesture of worship. Stretched before us was a particularly beautiful valley. We all stood rapt in silence, basking in the splendor of this view filled with verdant green V-shaped canyons and ridges that seemed symmetrically stacked as far as we could see. Reverently, with tears in his eyes, he said: “Es muy bonita, muy, muy bonita.” I was stunned! Their wonder in the face of nature’s beauty was identical to mine and they swelled in pride that this dirty, mud-caked, wounded white guy swooned with them at the beauty below. We belonged to the same misty-eyed tribe! After returning to the cab, I thought what a waste fear is! When I imagined

that they were going to push me over the cliff, my body immediately went into adrenalin-shrieking trauma. However, Enrique simply wanted to share the beauty of his land with me! I wanted relief from the searing pain that ripped through my body every time the truck rolled from side to side. I had a crick in my neck from being crammed sideways against the roof of the truck and I was falling deeper into shock. All I wanted to do was sleep. Enrique stopped at a small farm an hour later. A well-kept house with a modest yard was up to my right, and a barn with some horses, goats, and chickens to the left. I was struck by the cleanliness of this place—no trash, an actual gate, and no auto carcasses rotting on the property. Several eagereyed children ran up to the truck to see who had stopped by. Enrique got out and talked briefly with the farmer who went to the barn and returned with a 20-foot section of rope. The motorcycle had worked loose and they needed another rope to secure it. One of the guys crawled under the truck to find a better place to tie it off. They rearranged the stuff in the bed and adjusted all the straps and ropes. The care for my bike inspired me to reach into my tank bag and offer my last Snickers bar to the children riding in the back seat. The bike was now secure to travel again. Just before we pulled away, the matron of the house, wearing a long skirt and immaculate white blouse, her hair pulled back with a colorful barrette, walked towards us. She looked softly into my eyes, wrapped her warm brown hands around mine, and offered two pills that she had taken out of their wrapping. The glass of water she offered was crystal clear and she indicated that these pills would help with the pain. I remembered the mantra drilled into us ever since we came to Mexico, DON’T DRINK THE WATER! I imagined the horror stories of Montezuma’s Revenge, dysentery, and the dreaded parasites and wondered how could I manage the pain in my ribs if I began to violently vomit. Caught again between an inner voice that said you will suffer if you drink this and the genuineness of this Señora’s hospitality, the kindness of her eyes won out and I guzzled the entire glass of water, savoring its mountainspring freshness like a parched man in the desert. She tucked six extra pills into my pocket. In just a few minutes the pain tablets kicked in, and for the first time in hours I began to feel relief. I don’t know when I’d ever experienced such grace.


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Carol D. Bradley

Email: cdbradleymex@gmail.com Phone: 33-2506-7525

The Lake Chapala Society hosts Open Circle every Sunday at 10AM, a popular community gathering in Ajijic every Sunday morning to enjoy a diverse range of presentations. For more information see their website: opencircleajijic.org Open Circle Presentations for March: March 8  How the US and Mexico Came Together to Defeat the Last Empire in The Americas Presented by Michael Hogan Historian Michael Hogan returns to present his latest work, GUNS. GRIT, AND GLORY: How the US and Mexico Came Together to Defeat the Last Empire in The Americas.  In Hogan’s 4th  appearance on our stage he will discuss this little known period that marked the end of the French Occupation of Mexico and entertain us with anecdotes and character sketches of the historical figures of the day. Among them will be a Mexican general who brought camels to the Sonoran Desert to transport US artillery to Mexico, and a 24-year-old Mexican lad who raised millions of dollars selling Mexican bonds with the help of Mary Todd Lincoln.  Hogan is the author of 25 books including one that inspired an MGM movie and six documentaries. Following the presentation, please join Professor Hogan at a book signing Michael Hogan and luncheon at La Nueva Posada just a few blocks down the road. March 15  Dr. Stong’s Annual “State of the Lakeside” Address Presented by Todd Stong This 17th year addressing Open Circle, in addition to rural village water supply/wastewater treatment, Dr. Stong will focus on his efforts to define the causes of and identify actions to retard the advance of kidney disease in 2000-3000 children in villages west of Chapala. He will soon be conducting briefings of parents in 8-10 village plazas. Jobs, children’s health and adequate safe water (some households receiving less than 6 hours per week), are the key needs of Lakeside’s rural poor earning less than $10/day. He will also offer his views on the future of Lakeside and Mexico. Dr. Todd Stong’s 27 years in humanitarian service have focused on water-related projects in rural Africa, Asia, and Latin America. As a West Point graduate, Colonel Stong served as a construction engineer for 15 years in Korea, Vietnam, and Germany, followed by 15 years directing research in federal laboratories. He has six engineer sons. This session of Open Circle will begin at 10:30 and conclude at noon.  March 22  12th Annual Talk on Global Warming, Climate Change,  and the Rapid Growth of Renewable Energy Presented by Donald W. Aitken, Ph.D.  Dr. Aitken will give an overview of the startling impacts of the continuing increase in international emissions of greenhouse gases and the rapid and increasingly extreme global responses of climate change to those. He will discuss the horrors in Australia, which may be an example of what is in store for the rest of the world. He will also note the unequal international responses to what is now acknowledged as a global crisis and will review the rapid increase of renewable energy and its impacts globally and locally.   Dr. Aitken, a 13-year resident of Ajijic, is a former Research Professor of High Energy Nuclear Physics and Astrophysics at Stanford University, and founder and long-time Chairman of the Department of Environmental Studies at San Jose State University. He served as the Executive Director of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Western Regional Solar Energy Center, and as the Senior Staff Scientist for Renewable Energy Policy and Economics with the Union of Concerned Scientists.  Dr. Aitken’s important Power Point address will be held at Club Exótica in the rear of El Jardin Restaurant in the Ajijic Plaza. This session of Open Circle will begin at 10:30 a.m. and conclude at 12:00 noon. March 29  Building Community Presented by Dr. Benjamin Franklin

Dr. Benjamin Franklin

This week we welcome Dr. Benjamin Franklin to Open Circle. You will hear how Dr. Franklin helped build his adopted hometown into the greatest city in Colonial America. We ask that you turn your minds back in time to June 1775. You are citizens of Philadelphia. The city is alive with the energy of immigrants and talk of war. Dr. Franklin has spent 15 of the last 17 years in London acting as the agent for the Colony of Pennsylvania. Both Philadelphia and Dr. Franklin have changed during his absence. The Colonies are on the eve of revolt against their British masters. In a rare public speaking appearance, Dr. Franklin will reflect on his life and his efforts to shape Philadelphia and Pennsylvania. Dr. Franklin holds honorary degrees from the universities of St. Andrews, Cambridge, Oxford, Harvard, and Yale.  April 5  Back to the Basics Presented by Susan Weeks Susan Weeks will be offering us an opportunity to examine our personal values. The only constant in the physical world as we know it is change. As we grow and mature through life experience and knowledge, our own values may have evolved. When was the last time you took an inventory? Together let’s explore the endless possibilities.  Susan remains a life-long learner. Having declared seven majors, including international relations, history, and psychology, she finally received a BA in Liberal Studies. Her interests remain far flung and she is currently working on attaining a “Rev. Dr.” designation. Susan’s professional background includes acting, editing, domestic/international tour directing, and life coaching. Prior to moving to the Lake Chapala area in 2016, she was the Spiritual Leader of Unity on Cape Cod.   PAGES FROM HISTORY The Lake Chapala Community Orchestra is, once again, gearing up for another exciting concert presentation on Sunday March 29 and Monday March 30. This time the audience will be taken on a musical journey through history. Entitled “Pages From History” the concert will feature orchestral works written to commemorate famous historical events. “Before film music gave us a musical background to history, composers such as Beethoven and Tchaikovsky composed orchestra works depicting significant historical events” says Michael Reason, the orchestra’s conductor. 1812 by Tchaikovsky is perhaps the most famous of these but Finlandia by Sibelius and Egmont Overture by Beethoven are equally appropriate in their respective appraisal of history. Reason believes that an orchestral concert should appeal to a wide audience and his ability to program concerts with works from diverse musical genres is a hallmark of the orchestra’s presentations. Guest artists include Judy Roberts singing a World War 2 song medley and the orchestra’s principal clarinetist in Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto. Music from the cinema will feature prominently with James Horner’s magnificent score to Apollo 13 and John Williams moving theme to Oliver Stone’s JFK and all the music being complemented with video projections. Since its inception in October 2008 the Lake Chapala Community Orchestra has sold out every concert well in advance and this promises to be no exception. This enterprising concert will take place on Sunday March 29 and Monday March 30 both at 3pm at the Lakeside Presbyterian Church located at 250 San Jorge, Riberas, Chapala. Seating is limited to only 175 people per performance so early booking is highly recommended. Tickets are $250 ($150 Students) and can be reserved/purchased by emailing LCCOtickets@gmail.com. For more info contact: Michael Reason (Conductor), Lake Chapala Community Orchestra, mjrmusic01@gmail.com BARE STAGE THEATRE PRESENTS, These Shining Lives, By Melanie Marnich, Directed by Phyllis Silverman, Dates: March 27th, 28th & 29th “Strength, Determination, Accountability & Friendship” Cast: Amalia Crocker, Frank Lynch, These Shining Lives, a drama by Melanie Dick Miller, Gisele Phipps, Darlene Marnich and directed by Phyllis Silverman. Sherwood & Claudine Weinfeld

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Performances are March 27th, 28th & 29th. The plot revolves around the true-life circumstances of women in the 1920’s, just newly accepted into the world of work but still considered expendable. A story of love and survival in its most transcendent sense, as the women refuse to allow the company, that has them painting glow-in-the-dark watch faces using the radium that steals their health, to kill their spirits or endanger the lives of those who come after them. Cast: Amalia Crocker, Frank Lynch, Dick Miller, Gisele Phipps, Darlene Sherwood & Claudine Weinfeld Tickets $150, Reservations: barestagetheatre2018@gmail.com, Showtime 4 p.m., Box office & bar open at 3 p.m. Seats are held till 3:50 p.m., Located at #261 on the mountain side of the carretera in Riberas del Pilar across from the Catholic Church. Please, no parking inside Baptist Church lot. Please Like, Follow & Share our Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/barestagetheatre2018/ Cast: Seated, Dick Miller. Standing L to Rt, Claudine Weinfeld, Gisele Phipps, Amalia Crocker & Darlene Sherwood. (Frank Lynch not pictured). PUBLISHED LOCAL WRITERS READ THEIR WORK:  MEXICO is the topic of the  Tuesday, March 24 (4-6pm)  event from Lakeside Published Writers Read their Work. Several local authors have written about Mexico, or about travel in Mexico, so this will be an interesting reading. Arrive by 3:30 to get your drink & take your seat / Upstairs* at El Gato Feo Café  (next door to Barbara’s Bazaar) / Parking at Ajijic malecon** / *We will have a helper for anyone who needs assistance in going upstairs. / **If you cannot walk from the malecon to Independencia, phone Patricia 331-790-5028 and we will arrange for someone to drop you off at the Café. Reminder: this monthly event--every 4th Tuesday--is held upstairs at El Gato Feo Cafe, next door to Barbara’s Bazaar. Each month we present a different topic, so please join us. And El Gato Feo is now offering food, so you have a choice of light meals to enjoy with your wine or other drink. Come by the café anytime to browse our bookcase just inside the front door! Lakeside Living apologizes for repeating El Gato Feo’s Januarys text, last month. LAKE CHAPALA FARMER’S MARKET TURNS 10! 10 years ago, a small group of local women saw a need to bring organic fruits and vegetables to one place for sale, to help a friend  with cancer. So was born the Tuesday Lake Chapala Farmer’s Market. Now housed at La Huerta Salon De Eventos in West Ajijic, the market will celebrate it’s 10th anniversary in March 2020 with a month-long celebration of food and craft giveaways, special presentations and good cheer. Come celebrate with us every Tuesday in March. Lake Chapala Farmer’s Market, Tuesday 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., La Huerta Salon De Eventos in West Ajijic Musical Schedule: Day

Date

Time

Group/Performers

10:30 to 11:15 a.m. Children's Mariachi of SJC

Folk. Dance

11:30 - 12:15 p.m.

Tuesday 3/10/2020 10:30 to 11:15 a.m. Trialogo

11:30 - 12:15 p.m.

Yanin y Gil

Jazz Bossa Nova

Tuesday 3/17/2020 10:30 to 11:15 a.m. Tommy Banks

Rock covers

Jazz

11:30 - 12:15 p.m.

Juan y Blue Velvet

Tuesday 3/24/2020 10:30 to 11:15 a.m. Pura Pinia

11:30 - 12:15 p.m.

Victor & Ignacio

Tuesday 3/31/2020 10:30 to 11:15 a.m.  

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11:30 - 12:15 p.m.

Lola La Tequilera

El Ojo del Lago / March 2020

By Peter Quilter, Directed by Peggy Lord Chilton, Show Dates: March 27 – April 5, 2020 Show Sponsor: Susie Patch, in honor of her late husband, Glenn. A touching, hilarious, yet bittersweet comedy about an actress making her farewell performance. The dressing room of a theatrical star is as full of conflicting emotions as exist on stage. In this delightful and light-hearted play, the famous Lydia Martin sweeps in for the final performance of her long and glittering career. Around her are her dresser, her agent, her daughter, her ex-husband, her new fiancé and the company manager, bringing with them a flurry of goodbyes, tears, insults, laughs, recriminations, kisses and regrets. On stage she takes her final bow to storms of applause before returning to the dressing room to make a final decision on her future. Reviews: “A huge success...the applause just didn’t want to end... The play is full of witty dialogue that is also philosophically profound... A smart, intelligent and very amusing play.” – (Der Merkur at the German premiere) LLT Box Office: 10am to noon, every Wednesday & Thursday. During Mainstage shows, 10am to noon, every day but Sunday, & one hour before curtain. Show Times: Evenings 7:30pm Matinees 4 pm. First Saturday and both Sundays are matinees. Cuota de recuperation – 350 Pesos Email: tickets@lakesidelittletheatre.com

Type

Tuesday 3/3/2020

THE MET LIVE HD 2019-20 SEASON Join the Chapala Opera Guild ... Local dues $1,300p. Richard Wagner’s El Holandez Errante – March 14. Individual performance tickets are available at the MovieSpace taquilla / Box Office. Select the season shows that best fit your calendar and order them for only $300 pesos per Seat.  See special pricing for Guild members. Tickets are available daily at the box office.  Mon - Fri 3pm - 10 pm / Sat - Sun 1 pm - 11 pm  Location: Carretera Chapala - Jocotepec 206 A1, Col. Centro; Chapala, San Antonio Tlayacapan, C.P. 45922, Teléfonos, (376) 766 2580, Email: hola@moviespace.com.mx MovieSpace is in the Centro Laguna Mall across from Walmart. Ample parking lot nearby.  English and Espanol Sub-Titles:  Pick your language sala! Premium Foods and Beverages: Enjoy the renovated spaces with upgraded coffee bar, offering coffees, teas, wine and beer.  LITTLE LAKESIDE THEATRE PRESENTS:

Bossa Nova Violin/Harp   Rancheras

Cast: Front Rosann Balbontin, Jennifer Wisniewski, Candace Luciano, Georgette Richmond.  Rear: Ron Mikulicic, Patteye Simpson, Brian Mattes.


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Messing Around With Rocks By Gabrielle Blair

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here is nothing – absolutely nothing – half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats.” said the Water Rat to Mole in Kenneth Grahame’s timeless children’s book The Wind in the Willows published in 1908. One is never too old to enjoy this story. Being a person who prefers to be on dry land than on water, there’s nothing quite as much fun as simply messing around with rocks. In the summer when we return to Canada from Ajijic, we spend three months in a cabin in Quebec beside a pristine lake. Courtesy of the last Ice Age that sent tons of ice scraping its way down from the Pole, there is no shortage of rocks of all shapes, sizes and colours for a “rockaphile” like me to mess with. Having exhausted the possibility of building inukshuks around the cabin to ward off evil spirits, I decided to try my hand at something more creative. A flat piece of clay-like ground presented the perfect place to do a rock installation and I settled on a heart shape. Wandering along the shore with a bucket, like a child searching for shells at the seaside, I collected larger, flat rocks, set on edge, to outline the heart. Once the shape and size was established, I chose smaller rocks and pebbles with as much variety of texture and color as I could find and set them into the clay, working from the outside into the centre, like a snail tracing the pattern of the heart. Using stones of decreasing size, I ended with tiny pebbles, like jewels. Finally, a beautiful, fifteen inch high, rose-quartz rock, shaped like a pyramid became the centre-piece to my rockheart installation that has a circumference of fourteen feet and that I proudly show to the occasional visitor who happens to drop by. Recently I made a new friend, Sandi from Florida, to whom I sent a photo of the rock-heart. She replied with a story of her own about a ‘rockaphile.’ With her permission, I share it with you: “My paternal grandparents lived in Georgia. Their front door opened into the family room in which there was a big fireplace constructed out of rocks, the average being roughly dinner-plate size. My grandfather’s idea of treasuring the places he’d visited in the U.S. was to collect a rock from every state, and there

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was one representing each, excepting Hawaii. He cheated a bit and ordered some by mail. Oh, how I adored sitting on his knee as a little girl and having him point out to me the various rocks and which state he had obtained them from. He had a photographic memory and knew the origin of each one without a moment of hesitation. That was my first introduction to the various states and geography of America. In my mind I can still see him point straight ahead across the room and say, ‘Now that stone to the left of the hearth came from Michigan. The darker one under it is from California, and the rock directly above the mantle is from the mountains of Tennessee’ and so on. After my grandparents died, the family who bought the house was made aware of the state rocks, but by then I had moved away and after the sale I didn’t go back to see the house or fireplace. The new owners are a family with three young children and I often wonder if their mom and dad have told them about the fireplace rocks.” When I think of my rock-heart installation, I wonder if someone else will take care of it when we no longer spend our summers in the cabin. Will they treasure it, clean the debris and replace the stones that have sunk into the clay? And will they admire the jewel-like pebbles and shiny, rose-quartz centre-piece? Ed. Note: Gabrielle is a South African who made Canada her home during the Apartheid Era. She and her husband divide their time between living in an Ontario cottage and a remote cabin in Quebec during the summer and Ajijic in the winter. As a former professional ballet dancer, she now finds her creative outlet in writing poetry and reflections on the world around her. Gabrielle Blair


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Dental Intermissions There’s nothing quite so fundamental when it comes to matters dental as the fact that teeth gone missing mar the esthetics of kissing. It’s doubtful that a dental gap would land a lass upon the lap of any lad whose reminiscing will be done with s’s hissing. Potential lovers tend to hate suitors of the toothless state. Better they should duplicate those teeth that happened to vacate those facial places deep inside the mouths wherein they should reside. Teeth should be natives of the jaws that reside within the maws of suitors that might deign to woo— to hug and kiss and bill and coo. In short, what lass does less than censure a suitor who forgets his denture? * Judy Dykstra-Brown has lived in San Juan Cosala, Mexico since 2001. In addition to four of her own books, her most current work is found in Veils, Halos and Shackles: International Poetry of the Oppression and Empowerment of Women, Chicken Soup for the Soul: Dreams and the Unexplainable and The Poeming Pigeon: Cosmos. She publishes daily at https://judydykstrabrown.com/

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My Dreams: What Do They Really Mean? By Kathy Koches

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have always been a dreamer. Not just a “day dreamer” but I dream almost every night. Usually I don’t remember my dreams the next morning, or only retain a wisp of memory of them. However, occasionally I dream so vividly that I remember all the details. Often I have a recurring dream of being “lost.” Sometimes it is in familiar surroundings and I can’t find my way out and sometimes in a totally new place. Because these “lost” dreams have been occurring throughout most of my life, I wanted to know if there was any significance to them. One theory states that dreams don’t actually mean any-

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thing. Instead they are merely electrical brain impulses that pull random thoughts and imagery from our  memories. The theory suggests that humans construct  dream  stories after they wake up. This is a natural attempt to make sense of it all. Once in a meditation workshop I was asked to look deeply into my reflection in a mirror and say the first thing that came to mind about who I saw. My response was “a little girl lost.” I now wonder if that was a reflection of my childhood trauma of losing both my parents to a drunk driver. I thought I had coped well with the loss, but perhaps, buried

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deep in my subconscious mind, there still lived that little lost girl, even after more than 50 years. I did a little online research, and found that most dream interpretation sites say that usually being lost in a dream denotes being anxious or scared. It doesn’t always mean this though, and actually it comes back to the situation where you dream about the things you’re scared of. It’s like your mind is just playing tricks on you and saying ‘you know that thing you’re terrified of? Here’s what it feels like’. Sometimes dreaming about being lost can mean that you’re lacking direction in your life or you’re feeling like you don’t have any goals or achievements. According to the Dream Dictionary “To dream that you are lost suggests that you have lost your direction in life or that you have lost sight of your goals. You may be feeling worried and insecure about the path you are taking in life. If you try to call for help, then it means that you are trying to reach out for support. You are looking for someone to lean on. Alternatively, being lost means that you are still adjusting to a new situation in which the rules and conditions are ever changing.” I don’t feel this is an accurate interpretation of my dreams. I have made many goals in life, worked hard, and achieved them. I am very happy about the path my life has taken and I don’t feel I live in a “new situation” anymore. So what else could they mean? I looked up “rescue” because many times my soulmate appears in my dreams to show me the way. The Dream Dictionary says that “To dream that you are being rescued or rescue others represents an aspect of yourself that has been neglected or ignored. You are trying to find a way to express this neglected part of yourself. Alternatively, it symbolizes a subconscious cry for help. Perhaps you are too proud in your waking life

to ask for assistance.” Well, maybe, but I don’t feel neglected or ignored, quite the contrary. I feel loved and cherished. Hmmmm… Sometimes I dream that I am lost on a city street (either familiar or unfamiliar). One interpretation of this dream says that having a dream where you become lost and confused on a city street, particularly if you were searching for a particular building or address, reflects a particularly ambitious and adventurous aspect of your personality that you may have been ignoring or putting off recently. You may wish to travel to some faraway and exotic location or participate in some extreme sports. If, by the end of your dream, you found the place you were looking for only to get lost inside the building itself, it means you should rely more on your own experience and intuition to guide you in your decision-making processes, particularly if you are working on a task or toward a goal that is important to you.” Travel to a faraway place, sure, but extreme sports? Me? Now that one made me laugh! Another dream interpretation source says that “Being lost in dreams is often a reflection of your current state of mind. You could be feeling direction-less and unsure about your next steps both in terms of your chosen career and personal development. In addition, this dream symbol could also be a reference to being overwhelmed by a ton of responsibilities and commitments. The sheer number of the things you have to attend to could be affecting your ability to prioritize and tackle problems in an efficient manner. Perhaps you need to take a breather from all the stress so you can find your center again and clear you mind. Once your mind is uncluttered, you can begin to figure out how to focus your efforts towards doing what needs to be done.” Now this interpretation hits a little closer to home. I have taken on some additional responsibilities and commitments of late. While I don’t feel direction-less or unsure I do feel somewhat overwhelmed by the sheer number of things I have to attend to. I have taken an online job recently and have much less free time than I had before. However, I do like the part that says I need to take a breather, find my center and clear my mind. Now we’re getting somewhere. I need a vacation! Kathy Koches


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“The Sedge Is Withered From The Lake, And No Birds Sing” By Dr. Lorin Swinehart

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his morning, Raven serenaded me from his perch atop the wintery branch of a nearby evergreen. Native peoples, particularly those of the Pacific Northwest, say that Raven carries a message from the spirit world. I was unable to decypher his message on this cold and dank mountain morning, but, nevertheless, I was happy to make his acquaintance. Birds occupy a vital link in the food chain, controlling insects, pollinating blossoms and spreading seeds, but, according to recent reports from a number of sources, our feathered friends are not doing so well. An estimated three billion songbirds, twenty nine percent, have vanished from US and Canadian skies since 1970. The population of goldfinch-

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es and sparrows is down by fifty percent, and even the number of robins seems to be diminishing. Species common to forests are down by one billion, and grassland species are down by fifty percent or approximately seven hundred million. One fifth of our shore birds have also vanished. Europe is experiencing a similar phenomenon. Not everyone loves blackbirds, but I grew up thrilling to the songs of redwings as they perched atop cattails in my grandfather’s pasture. Even the population of blackbirds has dropped. While warblers have suffered among the greatest decline in numbers, an estimated six hundred seventeen million, those less beloved species like the common starling have also experienced losses.

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The starling is an exotic species in North America, introduced by Eugene Schieffelin, a New York businessman, who in 1890, somehow convinced himself that the continent should host all of the birds that appear in the plays of William Shakespeare and released sixty specimens into Central Park. Most people regard starlings as a nuisance. Be that as it may, even the population of starlings has dropped by forty nine percent. Grassland species seem to be the hardest hit, with an estimated seven hundred seventeen million having vanished. One cause of this massive disappearance may be the expansion of agricultural land, together with sprawling urban and suburban real estate development. Climate change has been suggested as one cause of plummeting songbird numbers. Perhaps more likely is the extensive use of pesticides that include such ingredients as nionicontinoids. Ingestion of nionicontinoids limits birds’ ability to gain weight, rendering migration more challenging. Then, too, the shrinking insect population deprives many birds of their main food source. The fatal effects of nionicontinoids upon honey bees has been well documented. Nionicontinoids disrupt bees’ intricate navigational abilities and limits their reproduction. The European Union, always, it seems, more alert than the US to environmental threats, has banned the use of three insecticides that contain nionicontinoid: Clothianidain and thiamethoxam, as well as Bayer’s imidacloprid. According to Steven M. Drucker in his book Altered Genes, Twisted Truth, nearly one hundred percent of the US corn crop as well as one third of the soy bean crop is regularly saturated with pesticides containing nionicontinoids. Nionicontinoids are absorbed by plants and continue to be present in pollen and nectar. Given that nionicontinoids are a mild but insidious neuro-active toxin, one ponders the long term effects upon the human population. Another factor in the deteriorating

bird population may be the growth in the number of feral cats. Cats prey upon birds and other creatures. It has been discovered that 20% of the diets of urban coyotes consist of cats. Perhaps we need more coyotes to keep the feral cat population in check. This suggestion will, of course, not set well with cat lovers. It doesn’t really set all that well with those of us who are dog lovers either, given that coyotes sometimes make off with our smaller canine friends. The Migratory Bird Treaty Act is in need of strengthening at a time when President Trump is attempting to weaken it. Stronger habitat protection would be another step in the right direction, particularly in places like the Great Lakes. One step might be to expand lands under protection as national parks, wildlife refuges and wilderness areas, but, once again, President Trump has launched perhaps the greatest attack upon public lands in history. We humans on the whole continue to do a poor job of caring for our island home. The environment that sustains us all is threatened by methane pollution, plastic rubble in the oceans, blue green algae in places like Lake Erie and Florida Bay, destruction of forests and wetlands, wild fires, fracking for natural gas, poaching of endangered wildlife, seismic blasting and offshore drilling for petroleum, rising sea levels, and the growing menace of climate change. Perhaps all birds serve as the proverbial canary in the coal mine, warning us of impending ecological disaster, as if more heedless warnings seem to make a difference. If we are doing such a thorough job of poisoning our environment that birds, as well as other creatures, like frogs and honeybees, can no longer thrive, then are we next? Not all is glum. Some species, like the bald eagle, are experiencing rising numbers. Waterfowl populations have increased, and the number of falcons has grown by thirty three percent. Crows and ravens seem to be ever present, as are turkey vultures, those that I cannot make myself refrain from referring to as buzzards. Wherever I happen to be, I seem to see more and more of those persistent scavengers, nature’s garbage collectors, whose DNA reveals them to be closely related to swans. Perhaps they know something that the rest of us choose to ignore. Perhaps they await the arrival of the Four Horsemen, hoping to satiate themselves on the resulting heaps of carrion. Perhaps that is the message that Raven tried to share with me on this frosty mountain morning. Lorin Swinehart


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Bus Riding Lakeside By Queen D. Michele

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can walk most places I need to go in my small town. I’m nuzzled in between two other towns and I could walk to either one of them as well. However, if I need to go into those towns it’s usually a 15 minute bus ride in either direction. There are two types of buses that come down the main road, called the Carretera. One stays on the main road that connects all the towns along the north shore of the lake. The other turns off the main road at certain junctures and travels through the neighborhoods before returning to the main road. Bus fare is inexpensive ranging from .35 to .47 US cents. I often hop on either one not caring about taking the scenic route through the neighbors, I’m usually in no hurry. The buses that go through the neighborhoods are smaller and red or yellow in color. They tend to be more rickety than the buses that stay on the main road. The main road bus is only red. I have never waited more than 15 minutes for a bus, and there are times when I’ve walked 50 ft out of my gate and straight onto a bus. There are also times when I have been passed up because the bus is too crowded. Being passed up is a rare occasion. I’m always amazed at how bus drivers continue to pull over and pick up even when the bus is packed. Most occasions when the bus is too crowded on the front end, bus drivers pull over and open the back door for people to load. It’s a good thing to have exact change when boarding from the back, because it’s customary to send your fare up through the hands of 10 or more people. I’ve often wondered how the bus driver knows if it was me or my fare as others who board through the back send their fare up as well. The bus system in my area and from my perspective runs like a welloiled machine. There are even times when entertainment is provided on bus rides. Mexicans from outlying villages along with their parents make their way into the North Shore towns early morning, and take their stations for the day. The women mostly sit out front of stores and businesses with their children too young to venture out on their own. They may be selling anything from stitch work to vegetables or sometimes nothing at all, just a cup in hand…needing. The men and

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able-bodied children who entertain on bus don’t appear to pay. I assume it depends on the bus driver, some allow the entertainment on their bus, and others don’t. There are guitar players, clowns who tell funny stories (all in Spanish), singers, and bongo players. The children (ages appox. 7-11) tend to only sing or screech depending on my proximity to them, out songs, all in Spanish as well. Recently, I stepped onto a bus during the day that was crowded with teenagers coming from school. I was fortunate enough to grab an aisle seat as someone stood up to exit the rear as I made my way to stand in an empty space. There was a teenage girl standing and holding on to a seat, in front of me when I noticed a harem of bracelets on her wrist. They were colorful, sparkled, and varied shapes. I looked at them admiringly, then up at her. Our eyes met and I put my hand to my heart, and quickly glanced back at the bracelets then back to this young Mexican girl and smiled. Hoping my smile conveyed how much I admired her bracelets. Soon, my stop was nearing so I began to stand up. As I put my hand on the seat in front of me to balance myself, the teenager I had locked eyes with, and smiled at gently took my hand in hers and slipped one of her bracelets onto my wrist. Before I could wrap my mind around what had just happened, the bus screeched to a stop and I had to exit hurriedly. This happened to be the stop where the bus turns into the neighborhood. As I stepped off, I quickly looked up at the bus and into the eyes of this young teenager who had just blessed me (a total stranger) on a bus, with a bracelet off her own wrist. In the split second as the bus turned the corner, I put my hand over my heart smiled and nodded, she in turn did the same. Never was a word spoken between us. Just kindness, just love…just Mexico.


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“Walnut” By Kathy Price katcandu@ymail.com

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ave you ever had a pet hamster? They’re cute, furry little things but they ARE nocturnal so one of the most important decisions when you bring one into your home is to decide where to put the cage. When you’ve lived in a house for awhile, you become attuned to it’s noises: the furnace kicking in, the hum of the refrigerator, the tick of the old grandfather’s clock in the hallway. The noises disappear into the background and you just don’t notice them anymore. The house where I’m staying is not my home, but I’ve visited often enough that I have my own room. I am familiar with the home’s rhythm, with its heartbeat, with its quirks. Last night, however, there was something new. The Friday before Thanksgiving I got a call from my son to ask if I could return to Utah. He was going through a tough

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custody battle for his daughter and life was hard for him as a single dad to a five-year-old. The challenges of going through it alone were almost overwhelming, so what’s a mother to do? I caught a plane the next morning and found myself in Salt Lake City. Instead of enjoying the winter in warm, sunny Mexico, I’d be spending it in Utah, where it had already snowed and been freeze-butt cold. The upside was that I’d be spending the holidays with family. My granddaughter is, of course, as any grandparent would say, the smartest, cutest, most adorable little girl on the planet although she can, at times, be quite the handful. Her parents’ separation has been hard on her and she has been having behavioral issues in school

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as well as at home. Perfectly understandable. She wants things to go back to the way they were, when her mom and dad lived together in the same house and took care of her. Reality sucks. I am not a substitute for her mom and cannot be a spouse/intimate helpmate to my son, but I can provide some stability and basic housekeeping services along with patience, understanding, and a lot of love. When I was growing up, I always had pets of one sort or another and thought my granddaughter would benefit from having a furry friend. A cat or a dog was out of the question, considering the situation, but Lydia enjoyed watching hamsters navigate intricate, complex mazes on YouTube. I thought it’d be great to get her a hamster of her very own – a living, breathing creature for which she could be responsible and provide care. We went to her favorite pet store and chose the dark brownish-gray one with a black stripe down it’s back. She named him “Walnut.” The living room was designated as the best location for the Crittertrail hamster habitat – a place where my son and I could keep an eye on it (if truth be told, a location where we all could enjoy watching him) and his nighttime activities might not be too disruptive. When my son assembled the cage, he spun

the hamster wheel and it seemed very quiet. I had been worried about that but also wasn’t sure how much time a hamster would actually spend running in a wheel. About 1 AM, though, I found out. Now, my bedroom is in the basement at the far end of the house. The living room is upstairs and about as far away from my room as you can get. Still, I was awakened by a grating, rattling sound. I instantly knew it was the hamster wheel spinning in the metal cage. I went upstairs to watch Walnut for a bit and he was definitely enjoying his new home: spin the wheel, race up the tube to the upstairs viewing compartment, back down the tube, spin the wheel, scamper across the bedding and up another tube to the second floor where his food bowl was located, then back down and onto the wheel. I must have watched him for 15 minutes before returning to my bedroom to try to get some more sleep. I managed but was awakened again at three o’clock. This time, I stayed in bed, trying to just let the sound blend into the background. Four thirty. Okay, at this point I figured I might as well get out of bed, go over to the office and write. I think, however, that today we’ll go back to the pet store and spend another $20 for the ultra-quiet, stand alone hamster wheel.


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Happy Birthday By Steve Griffin

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he last time I sang “Happy Birthday” was at Peggy Swanson’s 14th birthday party. After that disastrous event, I swore off celebrating birthdays, my own or anyone else’s. When we graduated from high school four years later, Peggy was voted the best looking girl in our class. She probably would have had that distinction at 13 too if we had held a vote. She was blessed from an early age with “prettiness.” Her good looks appealed to both sexes. She was cute rather than beautiful, so disarmingly nice and with such a cheery mien, the other girls did not feel threatened, and the boys were not turned into tongue tied awkwardness. Everyone

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liked Peggy and Peggy seemed to like everyone. She distributed her sunny smile to her popular classmates and the near outcasts, for which I qualified with my knee patched jeans and volatile temper. I was surprised and elated to find among our mail a few days into our summer vacation before entering high school, an invitation to Peggy’s 14th birthday party. My older sister, Sharon explained the RSVP to me. I called Peggy and told her I would be there the following Saturday. Then began the dilemma, what kind of present to get for this girl who had everything? Her family was among the wealthiest in town, and it was evident Peggy

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and her brother Paul, a junior in high school, lacked nothing. The day after his 16th birthday, he had driven to school in a brand new shiny red sports car, conspicuous among the older model Fords and Chevrolets. Penny dressed like a model in one of the teen magazines the girls read so avidly. My mother’s suggestions were no help. A book, hair berets, a box of candy were three of the lamest I rejected in horror, imagining Peggy opening them in front of the other kids. I decided to call Peggy back and tell her I had contracted a rare, possibly fatal disease, and regretfully would be unable to attend her party. “Don’t be such a dickwad,” my older sister said. “You’re very talented. I love the jewelry box you made me for Christmas. The beautiful hummingbird with its beak in the Magnolia blossom you made out of broken colored glass is magnificent. All my girlfriends think it is the coolest and would love to have one. I told them you did not want to make anymore. I want to be the only one to own something so beautiful, but I guess it’s o.k. if you make one for your little girlfriend’s birthday, if it will stop your moping around.” “She’s not my girl friend! but thanks for the idea.” The next few days I spend hours, sorting through the waste lumber

scraps at construction sites and sifting through the bottles at the dump for just the right combination of wood and glass to construct my masterpiece. I sanded and lacquered and polished until I had accomplished what my sister acclaimed to be a real work of art. She marveled at how smoothly the drawers opened and closed and especially at the glass collage unicorn on the lid. “It’s better than expensive stained class,” she said. ”I bet if this was sold in a fancy store, it would cost a small fortune. She will love it.” I swelled with pride, and gave my big sister a hug. She wrapped it for me, and the following Saturday I carried it to the party, dressed in my Sunday School slacks and white shirt. I laid my gift on a table already piled high. Mrs. Swanson brought out a big cake with fourteen candles. We sang “Happy birthday. Peggy blew out the candles. We ate cake and ice cream. Penny began opening her gifts. She oohed and ahhed over each and thanked each gift giver with a hug and a kiss on the cheek. There were necklaces, bracelets, scarves, pins, gift certificates, and then, just before she came to mine, she tore the wrapping away from a very large jewelry box, covered in white satin, and when she pulled open the large top drawer, music played and a little ballerina spun in circles. She gave Craig Benson a hug and a kiss. ” It’s wonderful, the perfect place for my jewelry “ She opened my much smaller package next. She hugged me and kissed my cheek.”It’s lovely,” she said, “just lovely.” I made it myself,” I stammered. “You’re too cheap to buy her something, Ronald MacDonald,” Craig taunted. “What a loser.” I turned and punched him in the nose. Blood erupted all over the front of Peggy’s birthday dress.“ She began to sob. “Ronald, how could you? Craig was just teasing.” Peggy’s mother came running into the room and grabbed me by the arm. You have to leave, Ronald,” she said, “and you can be sure I am going to inform your parents of your boorish behavior. I should have known something like this would happen. I’ve heard you have been in several altercations at the school in the past. I tried to convince Peggy not to invite you, but she is just too nice for her own good. Now, run along you wretched boy!” I take some solace now, years later that my hand crafted jewelry boxes and furniture have made me a rich man, and try not to gloat when I see Craig and Peggy Benson, bickering in public about his dead end job and the condition of their dilapidated Ford, but I still cringe at the sound of that song.


Saw you in the Ojo 53


The Ring By Jeremy Monroe

O

n Karen’s dresser rests a small silver bowl, a trophy won by her grandmother for first place in a golf tournament at a north shore Chicago country club back in 1934. It is engraved with her grandmother’s name, the club’s name, and “First Place Fall Tournament - 1934.” The silver bowl has been on Karen’s dresser for many years serving as a repository for the day’s detritus: pocket pennies, rubber bands, broken-off buttons, errant paperclips and the like. This morning it is empty. Karen has yet to fall into her new life and its inevitable routine, the source of such items. She moved into her new apartment yesterday. Her last task after the movers left was to polish the bowl. It glints as the late morning sunlight flashes through the large leaves of the magnolia tree outside her bedroom window. Karen is glad to be back in Eugene where the

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sweet smells of growing things complements the luster of the newly polished silver. The lawyer is a strong woman. She is in command, confident, competent, experienced, knowledgeable. She will take care of everything. The lawyer told Karen that, from now on, all contact with him should be through her office. Karen would not have to negotiate. “If he calls, just refer him to me,” the lawyer said. “I’ll take care of everything. What you are doing is the right thing for you.” The lawyer assured Karen that it was all right to think of her own needs. “In this process, you must always think of yourself first.” That’s what Meg said, too. Meg is the most wonderful friend she ever had. Even though she hadn’t seen or spoken with Meg for some thirty years, when they met up again last Christmas it was like they had never parted. The two of them just fit together. Perfect friends, soul mates. Even after all the years, they completed one another’s sentences, laughed all night. Meg gave Karen unconditional love. He loved her too, she knew he did, but he thought of himself, he competed with Meg. Meg selflessly gave support, comfort, and most important, affirma-

El Ojo del Lago / March 2020

tion. He wanted her, supported her in order to possess her. In the recesses of Karen’s mind, he was unclean. Meg’s love was untainted and pure, unconditional and selfless. Despite the comfortable September weather, and despite the fact that she had risen after a good night’s sleep and had showered and washed her hair before meeting the lawyer at 9:30 this morning, and despite it being almost noon now, she felt the need to shower again. She would wash everything away. She would wash away the fierceness of the lawyer too—it was like a meeting with an assassin and was somehow unclean, unclean but necessary. In the bedroom, she stripped off her clothes. Without intending to, she saw her reflection undressing in the mirror on the sliding door to the closet. Meg told her she was beautiful, that her body was beautiful and sensual, more beautiful and sensual than anyone. Meg wrote her love poems. He said he loved her too. He said he had always admired and been attracted by her athletic figure. He said she was beautiful, but he also said she had boyish good looks. He meant it as a compliment. She wondered if she didn’t have a boyish look about her. Weren’t her hips narrow, her breasts small? Was it true? Is that what Meg sees too? Did Meg think of her as a woman, a man, or both? Did he think of her as a woman and a man? Was she in reality a woman and a man? How do we know these things she wondered? Meg gave her the confidence to be whomever she was. When he got the letter from the attorney, he would hurt because of the rejection, not for losing her. That happened months ago. That happened morning she left. They agreed it would be a trial separation. He would stay in Montana to finish his last year of law school and be ready to start a new career. He would have a new life. She had moved back to Oregon. He would come back when he graduated and they’d try to make it work. That was the agreement. But it couldn’t be. Karen needed a new life too, and it couldn’t wait. It was only fair that she take what she needed from life, finally take what she wanted, now that she knew what that was. She wanted to live alone with nobody tugging at her. She just wanted to be left alone, even by Meg. He’ll just move on in his new life. And Janie. She was twenty-one years old. She was grown up and living in Chicago. Janie would do fine with it. Janie loved him as much as her. Janie was their daughter, neither hers nor his. To Janie, her parents were like gods. Meg told Janie

how wonderful her mother was. Meg told Janie that Daddy was a good man. Meg gave Janie suggestions on how to live, how Janie could care for her own soul and be a strong woman. Meg carried a photo of Janie along with a photo of Karen in her wallet. He told Janie Meg was wacko and a meddler. He just doesn’t understand. Meg is her soul mate. It doesn’t matter that Meg stayed with Ron. Free and beginning a new life, a new uncompromisingly pure and independent life, Karen felt released, as if with just a gentle push, a great iron door formerly locked had swung open letting pure, healing light pour in. Karen felt the soft, new carpet under her bare feet as she stepped to the linen closet for a fresh towel. She would use a fresh, new, white towel, a thick, soft towel that would comfort her skin after her shower. Opening the linen closet door with her right hand, she reached in with her left hand for the towel. Karen looked at her hand, her slender fingers. Her hand was tan and showed little sign of her fifty-five years. Her gold ring glowed on her tanned skin and against the soft, snowy white field of the towel. The white-gold-tan contrast was sharp, as though seen through polarized lenses; the tan, more tan, the gold more gold, the white more white. She had selected the ring, the heavy, thick, solid, substantial ring, the ring that would endure a lifetime. She carried the towel to the bed and sat a moment. She opened her hand before her, then placed it like a glove on the field of white that was the towel on her lap. With the fingers spread wide, she examined the back of her left hand. Her open hand revealed small age wrinkles. She inspected the skin. With her right index finger, she lightly drew the skin back to tighten it. The signs of age smoothed away. She held her hand out before her and examined the heavy gold ring. She turned her hand several times for different angles of view. Karen took the ring between her right thumb and index finger and slowly worked it off. She rose and padded the three short steps to the dresser and, from a height of several inches, dropped the heavy, gold ring into the silver bowl. The bowl rang out a clear, high, enduring tone. As it faded, it seemed not entirely unlike a distant church bell announcing the passing of time. Karen closed her eyes and cocked her head a little to listen as the ring faded. She could have been listening to the song of a distant bird. She wondered for a moment if anyone else could Jeremy Monroe hear it.


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FROM THE MIDWEST TO MEXICO: The Unlikely Journey of an Undaunted Mom By Daria Hilton daria_hilton@hotmail.com

S

ipping cold Dos Equis cervezas in the shade of the threadbare umbrella that rests a tad cockeyed in the center hole of the glass patio table, no one would suspect that my neighbor Marianne began her almost thirty-year relationship with Mexico because of a tragedy. Marianne’s pragmatic optimism radiates from her being as surely as her easy smile and infectious laugh brighten our casual get-togethers. It was a surprise then to see the shadow that crossed her eyes when I asked what I thought was an innocent question. “So what brought you to Chapala?”

“My son was injured in a motorcycle accident in 1979. He died in 2007.” The doctors said Michael was lucky to have survived the accident. Left wheelchair-bound and incapable of caring for himself, in fact often incapable of coherent thought, Michael did not agree. He attempted suicide more than once. He flew into fits of rage that ended only when Marianne flipped him from his wheelchair to the floor in desperate acts of self-protection. He ended up committed to now shuttered Singer Mental Health Center in Rockford, Illinois. This arrangement would not last. Michael’s violent temper, brought on by his traumatic brain injury, made

him ineligible for care in countless institutions. Marianne’s search for the right care for her son led to facilities in Texas, Louisiana, Michigan and Tennessee. He was ultimately rejected from all of them. Michael’s final placement in the United States came with a $13,000 a month price tag. The math wasn’t hard. At that rate, Michael’s modest settlement from his accident would be gone in less than four years. A depression era baby who had also been stricken with polio as a child, Marianne was no stranger to adversity. Her life as a working-class, Catholic, mother of six had taught her to be resourceful, but resources were scarce and the whole situation with her son Michael seemed unfixable. Then one day, while watching something forgettable on television, a charity ad came on showing a Mexican woman collecting cardboard from a dump. “Lupe can live on just the pennies a day she earns selling this cardboard, won’t you help?” Not unmoved by the plight of her Mexican sister, the takeaway for Marianne was that help was cheap in Mexico. Maybe she could find affordable care for her son south of the border. She was not deterred by the fact that she had never been to Mexico and didn’t speak Spanish. There were very few Mexican residents in her small town of Belvidere, Illinois, and she didn’t know any. Marianne did, however, know Leia, the owner of the local bar, Draugh One Tavern. “Hey Leia, do you know any Mexicans?” Marianne inquired as she sat down at the bar. If Leia though the question odd, her face didn’t show it. “Manuel is Mexican. He works at the Chrysler Plant. Let me introduce you.” Marianne explained her predicament to Manuel who immediately agreed to connect her with his brother, Sergio, who lived in Guadalajara. Plane tickets were purchased and Marianne and her grown daughter, Julia, headed for Guadalajara to do a reconnaissance

mission. They were to meet Sergio at a hotel but immediately slammed into the language barrier. The Charros, back in the early 1990s a barely legitimate AAA baseball team, were at the hotel and one of the players noticed Marianne’s struggle to communicate. He spoke perfect English and offered to help. True to his word, he accompanied Marianne and Julia all throughout the hotel until they at last found Sergio. “Thank you so much,” Marianne said, “What is your name?” “Fernando Valenzuela,” he answered. The name sounded familiar, but Marianne wasn’t a huge baseball fan. Sergio suggested they drive to Chapala (“where the gringos are”) to scout for a care provider. After a somewhat terrifying drive, in which Sergio did not differentiate between sidewalks, shoulders and roadway, the trio arrived in Chapala. Beautiful, close to an international airport and much more village-like 30 years ago than it is now, Chapala seemed like the right fit for her son. Michael’s life, and his care in Mexico did not always go as planned. Care providers, mostly expats who needed the extra income, couldn’t commit for the long term. Unscrupulous landlords would evict Michael after Marianne had upgraded their third-world rental properties to properly accommodate her son. One particularly heinous care provider transferred Michael to little more than a shack, unbeknownst to his family. Michael escaped from this untenable situation and was found pulling his wheelchair slowly forward down the side of the carretera with an awkward shuffling of his compromised legs. An ex-pat horsewoman named Kathy offered to take over Michael’s care and the two eventually settled in a small house Marianne purchased in Ixtlahuacan. They lived there together for almost ten years surrounded by horses, dogs and kind neighbors. Michael passed away in 2007 with just under $2000 of his settlement left. Marianne donated it to Villa Infantil, a Catholic orphanage on the south shore of Lake Chapala, in Michael’s name. Michael’s life in Mexico had ended but Marianne continues to live here every winter. Her son’s tragedy may have been the impetus to come here, but, drawn in by the good people, the fine climate and the wonderful experiences, Marianne, like many of us, has made Mexico her second home. Daria Hilton

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Saw you in the Ojo 57


Tales From the Funeral Parlor

D

eath! Oh, the finality of it. Or so one thinks, while they are wallowing in the numbness of grief and tears. However, death brings with it the responsibility of discarding the human vessel in which our souls reside. Burial in a plot, storage in a mausoleum, cremation. Huge emotional decisions must be made through a fog that may later turn to amnesia, so blurring is its effect on thinking. I’ve heard of many horror stories related to family behaviors after the loss of a loved one. I too have experienced firsthand the labyrinth of decisions

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faced at the loss of a loved one. Here are a few examples of experiences encountered by the living dealing with death’s aftermath. Family: Once someone has passed, the remaining relatives immediately begin, to varying degree, wondering what will happen to the deceased’s worldly possessions. Will they inherit money or prized possessions? Their expressions sometimes appear less consumed with grief than with curious anticipation. They query when the will shall be revealed. Then there are the necessary techni-

El Ojo del Lago / March 2020

cal arrangements. Who will decide how the body will be disposed? How much will it cost? Differences in opinion are bound to occur. I experienced a situation involving my husband’s mother’s death. He was operating as if he were in a parallel universe. His stepfather was so stunned, that he left the arrangements to us. I found myself stepping up to fill the void. That takes us to the Funeral Home. Arrangements: Almost no one prearranges their service and funeral plans. What a great idea this is. My husband and I learned the hard way the myriad decisions that had to be made. We went to the“X” funeral home and met with the funeral guide whose title I can’t remember. I’m sure the title was fancy and designed to give us solace. What a bizarre meeting. It lasted for hours. Occasionally we had to stop to cry, with overflowing grief at the reality of our loss. We broke for lunch and reconvened afterwards. I could have sworn there was the sweet whiff of bourbon from our planner’s direction. (I would need a stiff shot to deal with this kind of drama daily, so I reserved judgment, as I sniffed the air to distract myself.) A pre-purchased plot guided our first decision. There would be a burial. A casket would have to be selected. This decision was fraught with emotional risks. If we spent too little, his mother’s surviving sister would explode at our frugality for such a lovely woman’s passing. If we spent too much, my husband would be accused of squandering the estate for the surviving family members patiently waiting their share of the leftover money. We surveyed the well-lit casket sales room, which resembled a new car showroom in its fanciness. All the caskets were costly. The mahogany one looked elegant. It cost thousands. My husband kept thinking of his aunt’s potential wrath. He was flummoxed. I asked our guide to help us in our decision making. “At our death, we employees will all be provided this extraordinary blue stainless-steel vessel, with the lovely chrome handles, very stately,” he somberly shared. It cost a bloody fortune. My husband decided it would be good enough for his aunt’s critique, and we chose that one. Next, we had to decide on the salon, the refreshments, and finally on how the deceased would be dressed and groomed. I had to answer what color nail polish she would wear, not remembering if she polished her nails or not. Nail polish is like lipstick, very difficult to get the right shade for oneself, let alone to select a shade that will look anything but gruesome on a dead, embalmed person. We did the best we could, signing lots of financial commitment pages in a blur.

The funeral service: The church service went rather quickly and smoothly. I had found (left purposely I’m sure) the receipt for my father-in-law’s service, in a safe. I knew how many limousines to hire for the family, how many police escorts were required, and the address of the burial site. I thought I’d sewed up the details. Wrong. After church we went to the funeral home. We had decided only immediate family would view the body, and then we would close the casket for the public. I allowed forty-five minutes and sent out a note. Forty-five minutes passed and my mother-in-law’s sister had failed to appear. We instructed the casket to be closed. The director came up to a small group of us and asked, “What do I do with her jewelry?” I froze. Why hadn’t this been in our hours-long meeting? I would have loved some of her ruby rings, square and custom-made. I turned to my husband’s stepfather, who was somberly contemplating the question. He emotionally stated, “She loved jewelry. Leave it on her.” I said, “That’s that. Bury her in it.” Minutes later, the aunt rolled in late in her wheelchair. “Where is my sister?” she belted out loudly. The casket had been closed, in what sounded like a detailed legal proceeding done in private. I told our director the casket would have to be reopened. His skin turned ashen and his body stiffened. I could only imagine some staff pulling out the Crisco to get the jewelry back on the deceased’s stiffened fingers. All plans were delayed so that the sister could have a private goodbye. I secretly cursed the omission of such an important question as what to do with diamonds, wedding rings and such. I was pretty sure this wasn’t an accidental oversight. ******* My husband and I are making an appointment this week to arrange our cremation and celebrations. We are going to ensure that we, not our emotional, possibly feuding relatives, make these plans. My control freak personality finds peace in this option. Writer’s Bio: After a twenty-year career in telecommunications management, Katina took early retirement to pursue personal goals. She returned to a long-shelved love of writing, currently addressing the myriad ways we all cope with life’s dilemmas. Ed. Note: This is a brand-new column and with it we welcome Katina to our roster of monthly columnists and wish her the best of luck. Katina Pontikes


Saw you in the Ojo 59


Prom Night By Gail Nott

R

ecently, I was accused by one of our ex-pat matriarchs of “throwing my breasts on the shoulders of a married man to sexually entice him.” I was very flattered by this false accusation; I had never considered it possible to throw my chest anywhere. But this incident triggered memories of my first prom. I was a freshman and the man of my dreams was Bruce, a junior from another town. After endless discussions with Mother, rules the Geneva Convention hadn’t thought of, a lengthy and confusing lecture about sex, I got approval to accept Bruce’s invitation. The home-fire coffers were empty;

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the search for a prom gown and shoes began with my classmates. Eventually, the older sister of my friend, Lynn, agreed I could borrow one of her gowns and matching shoes. The fact that Lynn’s sister was extremely wellendowed never fazed me; I was 14 years old, and going to a Junior Prom! The dress was pale blue. Four crinolines had to be worn to fluff out the mid-calf length skirt, the mid-section was row upon row of tight little pleats and it was strapless. Undaunted, I tried on the dress. If I pushed my stomach out, I could keep it from sliding over my hips to the floor. I glanced down at the cavernous bodice of the dress; only cold air filled

El Ojo del Lago / March 2020

the space. Half a box of Kleenex later, we made contact. Cotton balls were stuffed in the toes of the shoes. Still 1 1/2/ sizes too big, but I was ready to attend my first prom. Princess Di didn’t have as much help for her wedding as I did, getting ready that evening. Four friends teased and sprayed my hair. Even if there wasn’t a roll bar in Bruce’s car, there would be no chance of a head injury. We all stared in the bathroom mirror at the “zit” on my chin that had tripled in size since the previous night. A Band-Aid was too obvious, and Clearasil didn’t cover it; Cover Girl delicately applied with a putty knife was the only recourse. Then the Kleenex and cotton balls were strategically placed and I just knew that I resembled Jackie O. Bruce looked so handsome in his powder blue tuxedo jacket, but the cummerbund looked a little out of place down around his hips. As he reached toward me to pin my corsage on, I panicked. I knew the front of the gown would not withstand any extra weight. Bruce blushed, thinking I was being modest as I grabbed the corsage out of his hand, and pinned it to my purse. The auditorium was decorated with blue and white crepe paper, small white lights and an archway of toilet

paper tissue flowers. As we walked through the archway, I could see heads move toward each other and hands covering mouths. Let ‘em eat their hearts out. Bruce had brought me to the Taneytown Junior Prom! Slow dancing to Little Anthony and the Imperials was magic. But when the DJ played Jerry Lee Lewis, disaster struck; as I boogied to the left, my dress moved to the right. It was as if two sink holes had suddenly materialized. The Kleenex had compressed and was slowly moving down my ribs and toward my back. Bruce, ever the gentleman, made no comment until I danced out of my shoes. The cotton balls had wedged into the pointy toe of the shoes. It is likely I wasn’t the only girl stuffing paper into the front of her dress in the Ladies Room, but I knew Bruce would never ask me out again. Because my curfew was midnight, all our wonderful plans to go to a round of after-prom parties were wiped out. Bruce was extremely romantic on the drive home, his arm around my shoulders; only when he had to shift gears did I repeatedly hit my head on the dashboard. While I was anticipating our first kiss, the fear that Bruce would attempt to touch the bodice of my dress and find only toilet paper dampened the moment. Lips ended up on chins and noses, and thankfully, the porch light was going off and on. This provided me an excuse to slide out of the car, with Bruce quickly following. As I moved into his arms for a “Good Night” kiss, his hug tightened. Even through four crinolines, I felt a bulge against the front of my leg. Though mother had made it clear that making contact with specific areas of the male anatomy was dangerous, I held tight to Bruce, glowing with the knowledge that I had actually sexually enticed a man! Gail Nott


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The Ojo Crossword

ACROSS 1 Bloc 5 Debilitating influence 10 Boggy ground 14 Location 15 Run away and marry 16 Charge card 17 Dominican Republic/Haiti Island 19 Slit 20 Picnic visitor 21 Build 23 Beginning 26 Odor 28 Behind 31 Kimono sash 32 Assumed name 33 Ball holder 34 Always violates law 37 Water retention 39 Ensign 40 Active 42 Moses´mountain 45 Tall, thin beer glass 49 Flightless bird 50 Type of phone 53 Undergarment 54 Words per minute 55 Cut of beef 56 Bird noise 58 Tops 60 Food and Agriculture Organization (abbr.) 61 Chomp 63 Handiness 69 Cut the peel off 70 Sego lilies´bulbs 71 Leg joint 72 Cold War antagonist 73 Brims 74 Clique DOWN 1 Fire remains 2 Caesar´s twelve 3 That (possessive) 4 Floral leaf

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5 Confined 6 Boxer Muhammad 7 W.C. 8 Internal organ 9 Every 52 weeks 10 Artist Chagall 11 Mock 12 Game official 13 Extension (abbr.) 18 Some 22 Glue brand 23 Aurora in Greece 24 Alphabet 25 River (Spanish) 26 Snare 27 Cut grass 29 Female (abr.) 30 Beverage 32 Wing 35 Farming club (abr.) 36 Leads on 38 Change color 40 Beget 41 Wooden sheet 42 Fasten 43 Pixy 44 Digits 45 Pot´s pal 46 Compass point 47 Before, poetically 48 Tap 51 Angle greater than 90 degrees 52 Thrown in the air 556 California (abbr.) 57 Beeps 59 Pitcher 60 Worry 61 Computer part 62 Owns 64 Scrambled food 65 Opponent 66 East northeast 67 Part of a min. 68 Prepare a Place


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Service

DIRECTORY

* BED & BREAKFAST

* ADVERTISING / DIRECTORY - EL OJO DEL LAGO Tel. 765-3676

* ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS - ALCOHOLICS ANONYMOUS Tel: 766-5961

www.tel.chapala.com

Pag: 63

* ANIMAL CLINICS/PET SHOP - BIO MAXCOTA Tel: (376) 762-1486, Cell: 332-115-0076 Pag: 58 - CLINICA VETERINARIA SAN ANTONIO Tel: 766-0808 Pag: 54 - LAKESIDE FRIENDS OF THE ANIMALS AC Tel: 765-5544 Pag: 15 - MASKOTA’S LAKE Tel: 766-0287 Pag: 48 - PET PLACE Cell: 333-1964-150 Pag: 16 - PET FOOD AND GROOMING Tel: 766-3062 Pag: 12

- CASA DEL SOL Tel: 766-0050 - CASA TRES LEONES Cell: (045) 331-350-6764

Pag: 12

Pag: 61

* BOUTIQUE / CUSTOM SEWING

Pag: 15

- CHAPALA DENTAL CARE Tel: 765-5584, 766-3847 - DRA. ANGELICA ALDANA LEMA DDS Tel. 765-5364, Cell: 33-1351-7797

- ALFREDO’S GALERIA Tel: 766-2980 - ART21STUDIO Tel: 33-3170-6135, 33-3677-3482 - DIANE PEARL COLECCIONES Tel: 766-5683 - MARIA ELENA JASSO Cell: 331-766-8699 - PENTHOUSE GALLERY

Pag: 10 Pag: 55 Pag: 55

* AUTOMOTIVE

Pag: 03

Pag: 42 Pag: 06

Pag: 31 Pag: 24

* ELECTRONICS/ TECHNOLOGY

Tels. 766-0599, 766-0630

- LONAS MEXICO Tel: 766-0045, Cell: 33-3956-4852

- EFFICIENT WEALTH MANAGEMENT Cell: 333-451-8139

- ANGIE’S - Beauty Clinic Cell: 33-3800-8773, Tel: (376) 688-3366 - CHRISTINE’S Tel: 106-0864 - EDITH’S SALON Cell: 33-1310-9372 - MAGNIFIQUE Tel: 33-1172-5450 - NEW LOOK STUDIO Tel: 766-6000, 33-3950-9990

Pag: 46

* CHURCHES - ST. ANDREW’S ANGLICAN CHURCH

Pag: 40

Pag: 10

- AXIXIC SPRING CLEANING Tel: 766-5140- Cell: 33-1075-7768 - STEAM CLEAN Tel: 33-2385-0410

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Pag: 57

- FUMIGA

Pag: 61

Tel: 688-2826, Cell: 331-464-6705

Pag: 59

* FURNITURE - HABITAT GARDEN

Pag: 53 Pag: 44

* COACHING

Tel: 33-3684-5081 - NOMAD Tel: 765-6602 - UOU Tel: 106-1618, 333-149-4536

Pag: 59 Pag: 50 Pag: 41

* GARAGE DOORS OPENERS

Pag: 29

* HOTELS / SUITES - LA NUEVA POSADA Tel: 766-1444, 766-1344 - OPXIC - Boutique Hotel Cell: 333-502-6555

Pag: 03 Pag: 49

- HEALTH INSURANCE Tel: 766-0395, 1-888-449-7799 Pag: 19 - LAKESIDE INSURANCE - EDGAR CEDEÑO Cell: (045) 33-3106-6982 Pag: 26 - PARKER INSURANCE SERVICES Tel: 765-5287, 765-4070 Pag: 43 - PROTEXPLAN U.S. Toll Free 1-800-608-5743 Mexico Toll Free 01-800-681-6730 Pag: 20 - TIOCORP Tel: 766-4828 Pag: 14

* INVESTMENT - INVESTMENT Tel: (387) 763-0782

- SOLBES & SOLBES Tel: 331-520-5529, Cell: 333-676-6245

Pag: 42

- L&D CENTER

Tel: 765-5973

Pag: 18

Tel: 766-1064

Pag: 56

- RAINFOREST

Pag: 31

Cell: 331-241-9773, Tel: (376) 766-4534

Pag: 62

* GOLF

* LUMBER - MADERERIA CHAPALA-Hardware for Carpenters Tel: 765-2404, 765-3404

- COMFORT SOLUTIONS Tel: 33-1228-5377 Pag: 28 - GENERAL HOME SERVICES - Amancio Ramos Jr. Cell: (045) 331-520-3054 Pag: 63 - LAKE HOME SERVICES Tel: (376) 688-2888 Pag: 53 - PISOS Y AZULEJOS DE LA RIBERA Cell: 331-250-6486 Pag: 46

El Ojo del Lago / March 2020

Pag: 58

* LIGHTING

- GARDEN CENTER

* CONSTRUCTION

Pag: 32

* HEARING AIDS

* GARDENING

Pag: 43

Pag: 40

Pag: 70

* LEGAL SERVICES

- AUTOMATIC GARAGE DOOR OPENERS Tel: 766-4973 Pag: 62

Pag: 03

* CONSIGNMENT SHOP - TEPEHUA TREASURES Tel: 763-5126

Pag: 20

Tel: 766-0880, Fax: 766-2440

* INSURANCE

* FUMIGATION

* CLEANING SERVICES

- ISHOPNMAIL

Pag: 30

- FERRETERIA Y TLAPALERIA GALVEZ

* FISH MARKET

Tel: 108-1087

* COMMUNICATIONS

* BEAUTY

Pag: 10

* CANOPIES

* BANK INVESTMENT

Pag: 13

Tel: (376) 766-5640

- M.D. CARLOS ALONSO FLORES VALDOVINOS

* FINANCIAL SERVICES

Pag: 57

- TRANSITIONAL DIRECTIONS - Life Coaching Tel: +52 331-435-7080 Pag: 52

Pag: 07

* HAND LOOMS

- STEREN

- FRATS Tel: 331-139-8539 Pag: 22 - MULTISERVICIO AUTOMOTRIZ ESCALERA Tel: 765-4424 Pag: 63

- INTERCAM Tel: 766-5978 - MULTIVA Tel: 766-2499

766-1760 765-4444 766-5555

Tel: 766-5126, 766-4435

- CUGINIS BOUTIQUE Tel/Fax: 766-1790 - LA BELLA VIDA Tel: 766-5131 - MI MEXICO Tel: 766-0133 - SO CHIC BOUTIQUE Tel: 331-762-7838

Pag: 61 Pag: 39

066 765-2308, 765-2553 766-3615

* HARDWARE STORES

- COSTALEGRE

* ART GALLERIES/HANDCRAFTS

EMERGENCY HOTLINE AMBULANCE - CRUZ ROJA FIRE DEPARTMENT POLICE Ajijic Chapala La Floresta

- TELARES LOS REYES

Pag: 63

DENTISTS

Pag: 11

* BEER & LIQUOR STORES - BETO’S WINE & LIQUOR Cell: (045) 333-507-3024

- ROBERTO MILLAN - ARCHITECT Tel: 766-3771, Cell: 331-340-3758 - SIKA Tel: 766-5959

EMERGENCY NUMBERS

Pag: 60

- ATLAS COUNTRY GOLF COURSE Tel: 33-3689-2620

Pag: 21

* GRILLS

- CENTRO LAGUNA Tel: 766-5514

- NAPOLEON Tel: 766-6153

* MALL / OUTLET

Pag: 18

Pag: 35


* MEAT/POULTRY/CHEESE - TONY’S Tel: 766-1614

Pag: 10

* MEDICAL SERVICES - ALTA RETINA - Dr. Rigoberto Rios León Ophthalmic Surgeon Tel: 766-1521, 688-1122 Pag: 23 - DERMIKA Tel: 766-2500 Pag: 11 - DR. BEN - CERTIFIED PLASTIC SURGEON Tel: 766-4871, Cell: 333-105-0402 Pag: 17 - DR. HECTOR G. MIRAMONTES - SPECIALIST IN COSMETIC SURGERY Tel: (332) 203-6398 Pag: 22 DRA. CLAUDIA LILIA CAMACHO CHOZAOphthalmologist Tel: 33-3403-3857 Pag: 51

* MOVERS

Pag: 71 Pag: 56 Pag: 61 Pag: 47 Pag: 17

- TEPETATE THAI RESTAURANT Tel: 766-2020 - THE PEACOCK GARDEN Tel: 766-1381 - TRIP’S BURGER - YVES Tel: 766-3565

Pag: 20 Pag: 42 Pag: 19 Pag: 53

* RETIREMENT/REST/NURSING HOMES

Pag: 43

- LA PUEBLITA Tel: 376 688-1705 Pag: 49 - NURSING HOME LAKE CHAPALA S.C. Tel: 766-0404 Pag: 29

Pag: 33

* SATELLITES/ T.V.

Pag: 62

- AJIJIC ELECTRONICS S.A. DE C.V. Tel/Fax: 766-1117, 766-3371 - SHAW SATELLITE SERVICES Tel: 33-1402-4223

Pag: 53

Pag: 45

* STAINED GLASS - AIMAR Tel: 387-688-0570, Cell: 33-1741-3515

Pag: 12

* STREAMING TV - 7000 WIFI TV Tel: 387-761-1101

Pag: 29

* TAXI / TRANSPORTATION - ARTURO FERNANDEZ Cell: (045) 333-954-3813

Pag: 06

* TOURS Pag: 20 Pag: 28

- CHARTER CLUB TOURS Tel: 766-1777 - LYDIA’S TOURS Cell: 331-535-6022, Tel: 765-4742

Pag: 09, 13 Pag: 57

Ajijic Resort, Spa & Residences

- BEST MEXICO MOVERS US/CANADA: (915) 235-1951 US Cell: (520) 940-0481 - LAKE CHAPALA MOVING Tel: 766-5008 - STROM-WHITE MOVERS Tel: 766-6153

Pag: 24 Pag: 06 Pag: 18

* MUSIC / THEATRE / EVENTS - BARE STAGE THEATRE - D.J. HOWARD Tel: 766-3044

- EAGER & ASOCIADOS Tel: (376) 766 1917, 1918 - FOR SALE BY OWNER Tel: 766-5267, 333-903-6056 - FOR SALE BY OWNER Cell: 332-289-3474, 376 763-5314 - FOR SALE BY OWNER Cell: 332-182-6472 - JUDIT RAJHATHY Cell: (045) 331 - 395 - 9849 - LAGO MONTAÑA REAL ESTATE Tel. 376-108-2657 - LORI FIELSTED REALTY Cell: 331-365-0558 - MONTELAGO Tel: 33-2536-9370, 33-1279-4190 - OPEN HOUSE Tel: (376) 766-3157, Cell. 33-1833-5771 - PUNTAMINA REALTY Tel: 766-4312 - RADISSON BLU

Pag: 52 Pag: 20

* OUTDOOR EQUIPMENT - MAQUINARIA Y HERRAMIENTAS PROFESIONALES Tel: 387-763-1232, Cell: 33-1892-2142

Pag: 44

* PAINT - QUIROZ-Impermeabilizantes Tel: 766-2311 - QUIROZ-Pinturas Tel: 766-2311

Pag: 14

Tel: 766-4525, Cell: 332-255-5972 - RAUL GONZALEZ Cell: 33-1437-0925 - SANTANA RENTALS & REAL ESTATE Tel: 315-351-5167 - TRINITY REAL ESTATE Tel: 376-688-2769, 376-688-2670 - VERONICA NAVARRO Cell: 333-380-4377 - VISTA ALEGRE Tel: 33-2002-2400

Pag: 02 Pag: 03 Pag: 58 Pag: 59 Pag: 30 Pag: 05

* RENTALS/PROPERTY MANAGEMENT - COLDWELLBANKER CHAPALA REALTY Tel: 766-1152, Cell:(045) 331-386-7597 Pag: 63 - FOR RENT Pag: 42 Cell: 333-667-6554 - FOR RENT Cell: 33-1115-6584, 33-3196-9679 Pag: 44 - HACIENDA PMR Tel: 766-3320 Pag: 61 - SANTANA RENTALS & REAL ESTATE Tel: 315-351-5167 Pag: 58 - ROMA Tel: 766-3163, 766-5171 Pag: 11

Pag: 16

* RESTAURANTS/CAFES/BAR

* SCHOOLS - INSTITUTO TERRANOVA Tel: 766-3033 - INSTITUTO THOMAS MORE

* TREE SERVICE Pag: 36-37 Pag: 45

* SOCIAL ORGANIZATIONS - FAR Cell: 331-321-6969 - LOS NIÑOS DE CHAPALA Y AJIJIC Tel: 765-7032 - SCHOOL FOR SPECIAL CHILDREN

- CHAPALA TREE SERVICE Tel: 762-0602

Pag: 30

* WATER - TECNO AQUA Tel: 766-3731, 688-1038

Pag: 42

Pag: 48

Pag: 64 Pag: 60

* SOLAR ENERGY - SUN QUEST ENERGY Tel: 766-6156, Cell: 33-1603-9756

Pag: 39

* SPA / MASSAGE - GANESHA SPA Tel: (376) 766-5653, 331-385-9839 - TOTAL BODY CARE Tel: 766-3379

Pag: 45 Pag: 31

Saw you in the Ojo

* PHOTOGRAPHER - HEIDI LANE Cell: 322-111-5821

Pag: 51

* PUBLIC ACCOUNTANT - JOSÉ MARTÍNEZ RUBALCAVA Tel: (376) 688-2683, Cell: 332-255-2040

Pag: 54

* REAL ESTATE - AJIJIC HOME INSPECTIONS Tel: 33-3904-9573 Pag: 55 - AJIJIC REAL ESTATE Tel: 766-2077 Pag: 27 - ALL-IN-1 Tel. 766-1161, 766-2115 Pag: 57 - BETTINA BERING Tel: 766-1049, Cell. 33-1210-7723 Pag: 25 - BEV COFELL Cell: 33-1193-1673 Pag: 63 - CIELOVISTA Tel: 33-2002-2400 Pag: 05 - COLDWELL BANKER CHAPALA REALTY Tel: 766-1152, 766-3369 Fax: 766-2124, Tels: 765-2877 Fax: 765-3528 Pag: 72 - CONTINENTAL REALTY Tel: 766-1994 Pag: 31 - CUMBRES Tel: 33-2002-2400 Pag: 05

- AJIJIC TANGO Tel: 766-2458 - ALFREDO’S CALIFORNIA Tel: 33-1301-9862 - BAR JAMON Tel: 33-1862-8442 - EL SOMBRERO Tel: 376-688-2662 - GO BISTRO Cell: (045) 33-3502-6555 - GOSHA’S Tel. 766-2121 - HUERTO CAFÉ Tel: 108-0843 - LA CASA DEL WAFFLE Tel: 766-1946 - LA NUEVA POSADA Tel: 766-1444, 766-1344 - “LA TAVERNA”DEI QUATTRO MORI Tel: 766-2848 - LOS MOLLETES Tel: 766-4296 - MANIX Tel. 766-0061 Cell: 33-1065-0725 - MOM’S DELI & RESTAURANT Tel: 765-5719 - PIAN - Cocina Thai Tel: 766-2881 - SIMPLY THAI Tel: 766-4767

Pag: 70 Pag: 63

The Ojo Crossword

Pag: 55 Pag: 61 Pag: 16 Pag: 59 Pag: 30 Pag: 11 Pag: 03 Pag: 28 Pag: 60 Pag: 18 Pag: 07 Pag: 24 Pag: 48

Saw you in the Ojo 67


CARS FOR SALE: White 2013 CX-9, Grand Touring, tan leather, navigation, all the usual options. Approximately 110,000 km, new tires recently, regularly serviced by Mazda, excellent condition. $235,000 pesos. Call: 331-787-8252. WANTED: Cargo Trailer Good Condition. Minimum 6 x 10. Email: monrio1@ yahoo.com. WANTED: I live in San Antonio, Texas. But visit my brother in Chapala couple times a year. I am looking to purchase a u.s. Plated vehicle for my daughter. I will consider all offers. Please write me or call: 210-374-5641. Email: Elijo707@yahoo. com. FOR SALE: 2016 Honda HR-V Epic. White with black interior. 55,000 K, mostly highway driven. High 30’s mpg. Door edge guards, front bug deflector, all weather floor mats, auto-dimming mirror. $235,000. Available April. Call: 766-4716. FOR SALE: 2016 VW Golf Sportwagen TDI $15,500 PHOTOS. Black with White Leatherette interior. SE Model. Very practical. Fun to drive. 1,200 miles, bought this year through VW Mexico. 4+ years remain extended warranty. Mint. Car was treated with a ceramic coating (Sonax), making washing easy, and no fading. 40 to 45 mpg. MSRP $28,400. Selling $15,500 U.S. 332-610-5542. FOR SALE: AUTOMOTIVE 2019 Mazda CX-3. Selling car - had to move back to the States.  Car has sunroof and 18 inch wheels. Perfect condition. Contact USA Cell 772-485-0783. $15,000 USD 3000 miles on it. WANTED: We are seeking an economic car or SUV with US plates. We are looking for something in the $3000-6000 US price range. Please email Donny at stymiebop@gmail.com. FOR SALE: Dodge Attitude 2013. Atomatic, AC. Motor: 1.6 Hyundai. Good condition, km 119,000. new tires, all the services, $113,000 pesos or $6,700 usd. chuster_ac@hotmail.com 333-598-5058. FOR SALE: 1973 volkswagen thing, good running, condition motor and transmission rebuilt, new paint, driven every day. asking $3500.00 us dollars obo. phone Frank 332-954-3206. WANTED: looking to buy a single cab 4x4 pickup. Email: afern4141@gmail.com. WANTED: Cargo Trailer Good Condition. Minimum 6 x 10. Email: monrio1@ yahoo.com. FOR SALE: 2006 Kawasaki 900 Vulcan cruiser in mint condition reasonability price has been serviced by bike club mechanic in Chapala please email me at lorne.ehrlich@gmail.com. FOR SALE: Mercedes Benz 2005 model C320 in very good condition with only 99000 km. The asking price is $6500 US. Any reasonable offer may be accepted. Phone number: 331-545-8333.

COMPUTERS FOR SALE: HP 46 Printer Cartridges 3 color & 4 black. All can be yours for $700 pesos. Regular price at Office Depot is $259 pesos each. Call Donna at 766-4636 if interested. FOR SALE: two 952xl black for hp of-

68

fice pro 8710. Bought at Costco was over $900 pesos for twoworks on USA 8710 printer. $400 pesos for both. Wayne 7661860.

PETS & SUPPLIES FREE: Neutered 2-year old, handsome and affectionate gray and white male cat needs a forever home. His name is Boomer. He is feline leukemia free and has had shots with paper health certificate from his vet. This guy adopted me last year. Unfortunately, my cranky old lady cat wants nothing to do with him, my house is on the market, I will be leaving in six weeks and cannot take him with me.  My two options: find him a  home or put him down. I don’t like the second one. Email: slickrock39@yahoo.com. FOR SALE: Pet Crate. 24” fits dog 6 kilos to 11 kilos (13 lbs. to 24 lbs) Black metal wire w/2 doors. Total visibility on all sides. New condition. Paid $1000 pesos. Purchased @ Lakeside Friends of Animals. Has carry handle. Dimensions in cm: 62 X 44 X 51. Price: $750 pesos. Email: patriciahemigway@gmail.com. FREE: I have (5) 6 week-old kittens from a stray mom who chose my bodega to have her kittens while I was away! All tabbies, 2 girls, 3 boys, 3 appear to be long-haired. Healthy. Not quite weaned, but they should fine in a week or so. Socialized and very sweet. I need to give them away soon. No shots or neutering yet, too young. Email: honorandfaith@runbox.com. FOR SALE: Thundershirt. Great to calm your dog for thunderstorms, fireworks and separation anxiety. Size XL fits dogs from 65 - 110 lbs. $500. Call: 331-7857185 / 376-765-6161. Email: ejndrjnsn@ gmail.com.

GENERAL MERCHANDISE FOR SALE: BH FITNESS MULTIGYM, Good as new. $300 pesos. To pick up in Ajijic Centro. Cel 333-394-9770. Email: malecone@cloud.com. FOR SALE: Guardian elevated toilet seat, new in box. Raises height 5 inches. 250 pound capacity. $700 pesos. 376-7664320. FOR SALE: New Oral B Vitality Sonic electric toothbrush with charger--350p. Waterpik water flosser--350p. (if you purchase both items, I’ll include a free Neti Pot) Please pm me if you’re interested.  FOR SALE: Gently used men’s clothing. Lucky enough to wear man’s size 38. 2 pairs jeans, 1 slacks, 1 denim shorts, 4 shirts, lg. 100mx each. Thermals, joggers, bathing suit. 60 Mx each. Gently worn. Email: Doted4474@gmail.com. FOR SALE: over 50 paintings for small and very large all sizes, price right to sell, some you can canvas you can paint over to may to post pictures. Todo Bueno Resale Shop. Email: rvhowardrenz@aol. com. FOR SALE: Please pm me for more info if you’re interested in Warren Hardy Workbook #2, plus audio . In good condition, no writing in the workbook. 500 pesos. Includes audio. Email: v.v.kaskow@ gmail.com. FOR SALE: 2 identical red 4 wheeler SKYWAY expandable carry ons. Pull up

El Ojo del Lago / March 2020

handle. 21 inches x 13 x 8. Good condition. All zippers work. $400 pesos each or 2 for $700 pesos. Call: 766-4032. FOR SALE: Dog crate: Guliver #6, 92 cm X 64 cm X 66 cm h, with wheels, good for Husky, Labrador, Boxer, etc. Price: $1,800. www.stefanplast.it for more details. Call: 331-785-7185 – 376-765-6161. Email: ejndrjnsn@gmail.com. FOR SALE: Practically brand new medium size dog crate for sale, purchased at Lakeside Friends with two door openings for dogs 12 to 18 kg. $25 US or $462 MXN. Call 331-746-1288. FOR SALE: A rear mounted carrier that will carry one motorbike or small motorcycle. Up to 500 pounds, fits into a class 2 hitch. Is located in Roca Azul RV park. $5000 pesos, price is firm. Text or call 332726-5718. I am posting for a friend, please contact him, Larry. FOR SALE: Grey Micro plush blanket 90 inches x 88. 10 hour auto off. 10 heat settings. $2000 pesos. 376-766-4032. FOR SALE: 1500 Litre LP tank, no rust w/ remaining gas. Must be willing to move it.  Call Phil  3313408115 or email preitano@netzero.net. FOR SALE: We’re selling 2 really nice, swiveling metal bar stools that have never been used. The measurements are: ht fm ground to top of backrest: 66.5cm/38in. ht fm ground to base of stool: 54cm/21.5in. cushions: 41cm/16in. cushion thickness: 4.5cm/1.75in. Please note that we’re selling these as a package (both) for $800mxn. 376-765-5085 or 332-617-3588. FOR SALE: Inversion Table Deluxe Model ITX 9600, like new, with Owners Manual, $5,500 pesos o.b.o.  331-7590331 or email to romecmpuppy@gmail. com. FOR SALE: Lipitor 800 mg #90. Not outdated. 25% off best Lakeside price. Email: 1988jeopardychampion@gmail. com. FOR SALE: Shaw 630 PVR receiver with remote, HDMI and power cord. Free and clear to be activated.  Record one channel while watching another $3800 pesos. 376-766-4032 FOR SALE: Selling my 52-bottle Magic Chef wine fridge for $2,000 MXN. Cost about $10,000 MXN new. Dual zone cooling, easy to read internal thermometer. Works great. I built a wine cellar so no longer need the fridge. Contact Randy at randy4475@hotmail.com. WANTED: Juicer new or used. 766 0660. WANTED: Looking to purchase a Shaw Direct satellite dish. Would like to get ASAP. Email: jgriff1954@gmail.com. WANTED: I am looking for a large used hot tub. Cell: 331-942-9321 John. FOR SALE: 2 - Oversized Mexican chair, excellent condition. Changing furniture out. $4000 or B/O. Call Phil 331-3408115 or email: preitano@netzero.net. FOR SALE: I have an almost new 88 key Casio piano for sale. The keys are weighted and it sounds great. Casio CDP S100 digital piano. I am in town February 6-11. Price is $300 US or equivalent pesos. Call or text Danny at 208-938-7966. US number. FREE: I have a used US doctor ordered back brace available for FREE!. It is

especially designed for post spinal fusion surgery but also for anyone with lumbar pain. You can contact me at 331-746-1288. WANTED: I have recently lost my VA connection for CPAP supplies and will need to begin sourcing them locally. If you have unused supplies you would like to pass on for cheap or free to a needy Vet, please message me with what you have. I use a Resmed S9 with humidifier, but some things like hoses and masks and nose pillows may be universal. Yes, I know of the many online sources, but my budget is tight and I prefer this method as many people buy CPAPs and end up not using them. There’s no sense wasting good medical supplies. Email: carlabuchanan1@gmail.com. FOR SALE: Shaw 600 receiver with remote and power cord. Free and clear to be activated. $2200 pesos. 766-4032. FOR SALE: WANTED Gas BBQ Grill. In good condition. Email: sunnyvogler@ yahoo.com. FOR SALE: Looking for a 6 drawer dresser (no mirror), buffet or sideboard preferably in ivory or light color finish. I appreciate any help. Email: silkfleurs@ outlook.com. WANTED: Small chest freezer. Email: sunnyvogler@yahoo.com. FOR SALE: special countertop dishwasher requiring no carpentry or plumbing. comes with manual. Only year and half old. Also small whirlpool microwave. Call: 376-766-2489 dishwasher $295 usd,  microwave $45 usd. Call: 376-766-2489. FOR SALE: Portable G2 Oxygen Concentrator. Has 5 levels of oxygen. Call Helen at 766-1072 if you have questions. It is an inigen One Machine. 2 4 1/2 hour batteries. Carrying case. pull trolley with wheels. Manual instruction. I have the receipt the cost was $49,9000 pesos. Bought in October and used for a week, your price is only $30,000p. Email: julieywayne@yahoo.com. FOR SALE: Dinnerware set, Napoli pattern, hand painted, dishwasher, microwave safe. 1 large platter, 8 dinner plates, 8 salad plates, 8 coffee cups, 7 cereal/soup bowls, 2 dip  bowls. $350.USD. Call 331-065-9193. WANTED: 2 matching end tables or nightstands. Email: kimanjo@gmail.com. WANTED: We need a comfy occasional chair for an empty corner of our living room. Neutral color or pattern, style not very important as long as it’s not plaid Herculon from the 1970s. Email: kimanjo@ gmail.com. FOR SALE: 2008 SUZUKI DR200 $2,000 usd, 38,000p; 332-610-5542. 376765-3668. 4,500 miles. Doble Proposito. On road and off road. Email: monrio1@ yahoo.com. FOR SALE: Stained glass panel. 10” W x 31” H. Needs to be cleaned up a bit, hangers soldered on the top or can install as is $300 MX. Call: 331-857-0798. FOR SALE: Moving and selling mattress and wooden base for just $2,500 pesos. Please contact me at patricktimothymullikin@hotmail.com. Located in Guadalajara centro. FOR SALE: An on-demand 5 litre per minute water heater. Cal-o-Rex. Lightly used one year, in great condition. Decided


to get bigger one for the whole house, saving gas. $2,750 mx obo. Email: mike 4v@ mac.com. FREE: Combination Locks 2. Email: egweiss@outlook.com. WANTED: Baker’s shelf. Smaller two shelf for bathroom. Office chair. Office desk or suitable table. Microwave and stand. Ken PM, email - ken.zakreski@ gmail.com or call Mx cel: 331-888-9876. FOR SALE: Farberware 20 piece knife set in wood block. Brand new in box $1200 pesos. 766-4032. FOR SALE: Zapotec rugs. Large area rug 13.5 ft x 6.5 ft with pad. $10,000 MX. Matching runner 12 ft x 2.5 ft. $3,000 MX. In Chapala 331-857-0798. FOR SALE: Set of 5 stainless steel bowls (size 13,11,9,8 and 6 inches). 4 piece measuring cups. $750 pesos. 7664032. WANTED: ELECTRIC SKILLET – Phone: 332-242-8648. email: allfred38@ gmail.com. FOR SALE: Texas Horse Saddle. $275. $400 saddle used maybe a dozen times. 17 inch. RR is the saddle maker. 332-610-5542, 376-765-3668 (can leave msg here). FOR SALE: We have 3 toilets that are less than a year old that we need to sell. We only want to change to white. They are $280 USD new and we would be willing

to sell them for $150 USD each. You will need to pick them up. Please contact medavis5208@gmail.com. FOR SALE: We have many brands of golf balls, they have been used only once by the pro,s. Brands include TITLEIST, WARBIRDS, CALLOWAY, LADY too many to mention. Call: SUZI or DAVID 376-7664456. Cell: 331-824-5205. WANTED: recliner in excellent condition. No leather. Email: jmm46@gmx.com. FOR SALE: New Shaw 630 PVR, $4000 pesos. 1.2 meter dish with LNB, $1500 Pesos. John, 331-942-9321.   FOR SALE: 12 place settings of Sango China, Persian Wood pattern, minus 1 coffee cup, plus serving pieces. $5,500 MX. In Chapala 331-857-0798. FOR SALE: Two wooden hollow core doors used as closet doors (2 x) 28 in (70 cm) x 85 in (216 cm) not painted all natural. Ready for your decorating. Call Bill 376-106-2160. Email: sanbt69@live.com. FOR SALE: Original Prada Shoes, size 24.5 Mexican, Only 1 time was used, price $3000 pesos. Call to Alma 331-0053109. FOR SALE: Individual Brass Headboard, Price $2,200.00 pesos. Call to Alma 331-005-3109.

Saw you in the Ojo 69


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El Ojo del Lago / March 2020


Profile for El Ojo del Lago

El Ojo del Lago - March 2020  

Ajijic and Chapala magazine devoted to news, interviews, history, culture and art.

El Ojo del Lago - March 2020  

Ajijic and Chapala magazine devoted to news, interviews, history, culture and art.

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