News Starting September 27, 2010
Merida’s Hurricane History Now Online
Finally! An answer to the most common question we hear when someone new first begins to consider moving or retiring to Yucatan: “What about hurricanes?” Hurricane City has everything anyone could ever want to know about hurricanes in Merida online. We particularly like that they have identified, in a separate list, each incident with whether we were just brushed by a hurricane, experienced a tropical storm, or were hit by a storm coming overland from the opposite coast. Hurricanes themselves have their own list, beginning way back in 1888. It is nice to know that we have not been affected by a hurricane since 2005, but maybe a little disconcerting that we are statistically overdue for one by one year. Even with that having been said, remember that we live in concrete houses, most of us have concrete roofs and tile floors, and we have a Civil Defense program that is extremely effective. This leaves us, even in the face of a hurricane, in a far better position than our friends on the northern coast of the Gulf of Mexico. Be sure to visit Hurricane City’s Merida, Mexico’s history with tropical systems and be sure to click on the eyewitness account from Hurricane Isidoro. Its an old post from Merida Insider. To view pictures of Isidoro’s damage in Merida, visit Yucatan Living’s Photo Gallery. While devastating to southern Quintana Roo, Yucatan Living’s Hurricane Dean Video will give you an idea of what it is like to only be brushed by a hurricane in Yucatan.
Volkswagen Investing $550 million in Mexico
The Volkswagen Jetta, the Golf Estate, and the New VW Beetle are all produced in Puebla. Beginning next year (2011), a new VW sedan will be produced in Chattanooga, TN. In order to meet demand, VW’s new Silao, Guanajuato, plant is expected to be complete and producing 330,000 engines a year by 2013 and sales are expected to go to 1 million per year in the U.S. alone by 2018. Approximately 700 new jobs are expected to be created in the new plant, as well as increases in jobs for suppliers in the surrounding area. This is wonderful news for the folks in Guanajuato, who have too often watched as their young men were forced to leave the country to find work. We might also add that this is a great coup for technical schools in the State of Guanajuato because they are the ones who are feeder schools into the automobile industry for young people in the area. Congratulations to Volkswagen and to the people who have worked so hard to bring them to their state.
“Day of the Dead” Activity Begins
The first of October marks the beginning of a month-long cleanup-fixup-paintup for the cemeteries throughout the State of Yucatan. Municipal employees will be doing major work, such as repairing walls, installing lights, and spraying for pests on plants. Soon, family members wil begin to arrive for the annual cleaning, painting and decorating of individual tombs. If you have not been to Yucatan during the Day of the Dead (Hanal Pixan) celebration, you have missed one of the biggest events of the year. Read Yucatan Living’s Day of the Dead or Hanal Pixan? to see just some of what’s in store in Merida during this holiday.
Progreso’s Teen Graffiti Artists in France
Progreso and Saint Nazaire, France, have formed a close bond over the past year or two and that now extended to an invitation for two of Progreso’s best graffiti artists to attend the Urban Culture Festival known as Sanifresque in Nazaire from September 18 through 26. Participants in the festival were provided with plenty of walls to paint and their work gave the people of France a view of life in Yucatan that many would not otherwise have seen. Congratulations to Marvin Chan Ricalde Marin and Gerardo Figueroa, Progreso’s two best teen graffiti artists and now world travelers with their art.
Congratulations to Progreso Hoy! Video in Top 10
As you can well imagine, YouTube was flooded with videos from Mexico during the entire Bicentennial Celebration, so moving even into the top ten is a monumental feat. Yet, Yucatan’s own Progreso Hoy managed to do just that with their video of the accidental fire following El Grito at City Hall on September 15. Even at the close of the day, when all hits were counted, Progreso Hoy’s video still held its ground as the #9 most viewed videos in all of Mexico for that day. According to YouTube, the 21,396 visits to the site is a record number in the category of journalistic videos. Even as Progreso Hoy thanks their loyal readers, we at Yucatan Living would like to congratulate Progreso Hoy for a job well done! Be sure to visit their video Incendio en Progreso durante el Grito. Note that there was minimal damage to the building and no serious injuries reported. Oddly enough, this fire came at the beginning of Civil Defense week, which included fire drills for schools and businesses in Progreso, as well as classes related to first aid and smoke inhalation.
Progreso Water and Garbage News
Local government and environmental officials from Progreso have returned from a week of workshops in Saint Nazaire, France, with a solid plan for how to successfully deal with the water and garbage situations in the rapidly growing beach municipality. Two French technicians are expected to arrive soon to assist in the implementation of the plans. These plans depend heavily on citizen education and participation, so residents are encouraged to watch for workshops, seminars, and news reports related to what they can do to help. This has been a long time coming and we know that everyone who lives in the Municipality of Progreso is ready, willing, and able to do their part to solve the water and garbage problems that have plagued them in the past.
Cigarette Warning Labels in Mexico
Philip Morris-Mexico makes 13 brands of cigarettes and sells them all over the country. As of Saturday, September 25, 2010, all 13 brands will carry approximately the same warning labels as those in the U.S. Mexico is trying to save the lives of the approximately 5.5 million Mexicans (of 10.9 Mexican smokers) who are expected to die from illnesses related to smoking. Our friends who smoke say this will probably not stop them from smoking but might help deter new smokers from developing the habit. In any case, this is a move in the right direction that Mexico’s Secretariat of Health insisted must be taken.
Phishing e-mail Phone Scam
If you receive an e-mail that offers free or reduced TELCEL time for signing up for their service or renewing your service – and all you have to do to obtain the free or reduced price air time is sign-up online with your credit card, TELCEL has announced to its users that this is not an acceptable method for receiving additional air time. It is a phishing scam and users are warned against giving their credit card numbers via these e-mails.
Best Photos This Week: Elizabeth Medina, Telchac Wedding
Elizabeth Medina, a U.S. native who has lived most of her adult life in Yucatan, has an eye for dreams and it shows in every photograph she takes. We have looked through her wedding photographs for years, many in Merida but, as her fame grew, her locations began to be in both national and international wedding hot spots. This summer, she was at home in Yucatan and the wedding she photographed was in Telchac Puerto. Visit the Wedding of Pierre and Andrea on the beach in front of Las Tunas. Scroll down to the picture of Mom and Dad and you will see why we love the work of photographer Elizabeth Medina.
Best Short Film This Week: Tequila Tales
If you don’t have an account with YouTube, you’ll have to sign up for one because this is a short film about Olmeca Altos Tequila. The producers want to make sure you are of legal age to drink alcohol before allowing you access to the film. Once you are signed in to YouTube, you can go here or do a search for “Tequila Tales from Olmeca Altos: Los Altos, Mexico.” This is the beginning of a series of short films about the production of tequila in Los Altos, Jalisco. The film is very well made, very informative, and we hope you will enjoy it.