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Mexico FAQ

2 February 2010
Dave Clingman

I am recovering nicely from my surgery.  I stopped taking the pain medicine two days ago, and there is little pain.  It turns out that the itching was not merely my incisions healing, but rather it was due to an allergic reaction to the gauze or something else they used in the operating room.  We called the doctor and then drove to his office one morning when the itching was severe.  He gave me an ointment to help relieve the itching.  We later researched and discovered that the ointment he gave me is an antibacterial eye ointment, Maxitrol .  I am pleased with the surgery, but his post operative care seems a bit lacking.  We called him again late that night and asked for a recommendation for a different anti itch ointment, and then Andrew drove to the store to buy it before they closed at 11.  That ointment, Andantol, works remarkably well.  There is still some itching, but it is lessening.  The doctor removed the stitches this past Friday.  All in all, I am doing well.

There was a caravan of nineteen RV's (motorhomes) staying here in our RV park this past week.  They all left yesterday.  Mostly they were quite friendly people.  One couple even joined us for church Sunday.  I met Tony and Diana last week while walking Mela around the park while Andrew was working.  They are interesting people and had perceptive questions about life here in Guadalajara, Mexico.  We very much enjoyed conversing with them both during the drive to and from church and while introducing them to our friends at
St. Mark's Episcopal church .  They have taken off for two years away from their home near Washington, D.C. to live and travel in their RV.  This 42 day caravan is part of their adventure.

After church Andrew and I walked up to what Larry calls a "bodega" (small brick house) next to Larry and Sharon's RV.  The people who own the bodega are wanting to sell, and Andrew and I are considering several options for our future here in Mexico.  I mentioned two weeks ago that we are considering moving further south.  The reason for the move is our desire to have access to a hot tub or hot pool.  The
Chimulco RV Park in Villa Corona has several hot pools which they empty and fill each day from the abundant source of free hot water from the local hot springs.  Every house in Villa Corona has free hot water from this source.  So, Andrew and I are considering moving later this month to that RV park for a few months.

The downside of living at the Chimulco RV Park in Villa Corona is four fold:  First, it is an extra twenty or thirty minutes' drive for Andrew to go to work at
Mundo Bilingue.  We've already decided that whether we move or not, Andrew will reduce the number of days he works to two per week, just Tuesday and Thursday.  He will work three hours at the school and have two or three private clients.  That way, he'll only have to drive to town twice a week plus our drive each Sunday to church.  Yes, we enjoy Saint Mark's Anglican Church so much that we will continue attending there, even though the drive will be longer.

The second downside to moving to Chimulco is the higher cost of renting space there.  Because we will be paying in advance, we'll receive a bit of a discount, but the price will still be a thousand pesos (about $75 US) more each month than we are now paying.

Thirdly, though Chimulco RV Park offers free wifi internet access at the pleasant picnic area between the office and general store, Andrew and I feel we'll need to buy our own internet connection.  We both use the internet much more than will be practical to walk over to the wifi area with our laptops to work.  So, we'll buy a cell phone internet modem by which we can internet through the nearby cell tower.  This will cost us $655 pesos ($50 US) per month plus the cost of the modem.  We presently enjoy free internet compliments of one of the RV park owners who live near us.

Another downside is that we would have to make new friends there, and we would not be able to see our friends Larry and Sharon as frequently.

Since the only reason we want to move is for access to the hot pools, we are considering options for having a hot tub here.  The bodega next to Larry and Sharon's place is one option.  The owners are wanting $15,000.00 US (not pesos).  The problem with buying a building here in the RV park is that you are basically buying only the bricks and whatever is inside.  We would still have to pay the same monthly rent we now pay, and if/when we move, we would have to find another buyer (probably quite difficult) or simply leave the bricks behind.  Also, if the RV park closes, we would be out without any recompense.  We might consider paying half the amount the owners are asking, but we are quite certain they'll decline such an offer.

A second option is to build our own small bodega beside our RV here.  This will cost us approximately three thousand US dollars from what others are saying.  We still have to get a quote from someone who could build it for us, as well as pricing the bricks.

A third option is to rent or buy a different bodega on the property here.  There are a few.  We have inquired about the cost of one and have to make our inquiry on any others that are available.

Another option we might consider is to resume our house search and buy our own little house somewhere near here.  The problem with that option is that the cost will be considerably higher.  All of the nice places we saw back a few months ago when we were actively looking were more than we could comfortably afford, especially since financing is difficult and hugely expensive here in Mexico.  The upside to this option is that it will be relatively easy to sell if/when we move out of the area.

Speaking of our house search, the
place in Mazamitla that we both liked is still for sale, but the owner has raised her price.  When we first were considering buying it from her, the price was $700,000 pesos (near $54,000 US).  While we were communicating with her and then went to look at the place, she raised her price to $900,000 pesos (nearly $70,000 US).  Our offer was less than her original price, and of course she declined.  Since then, we write to her every couple of months to resubmit our original offer, and she always declines.

Of course in our travels we may find an area of Mexico we like even more than here, in which case it would be best to stay in our RV and keep our options open!

Please pray with us as we consider what we should do.  Thank you.


Read update 25 January 2010

Read update 18 February 2010

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