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Yucatan News: 2012 is NOT the End. Really.

News starting October 19, 2009

Pulpo: What a Little Conservation Can DoMayan Octupus
Usually, pulpo (octopus) season begins in August and ends in December in Yucatan. For the past several years, there have been bans on pulpo fishing during certain times of the year to ensure the quality and quantity of the harvest. Well – it worked! The pulpo catch, only 2 ½ months into the season has almost reached the legal limit for the year! This means that the catch is approximately double what it was last year at this time! The result is that the state and federal fisheries folks have taken off the limit of how much pulpo can be fished this year. This is wonderful news for our more than 15,000 fishermen and their families, as well as for the tradesmen and merchants who depend on the fishermen’s pesos to keep their own businesses running. We would venture to say that an expected catch worth $22.4 million USD is going to be quite a shot in the arm for our coastal towns and villages this year. Congratulations to all who have respected the bans on pulpo fishing and to all who now benefit from just a little conservation right here on our own coast.

Mayans Getting “Fed Up” With 2012 Predictions2012 Mayan Predictions
Mayan experts, both archaeologists and historians, have had enough and are beginning to appear in the media to deny that Mayans ever predicted the end of the world in 2012. As Yucatan Living has already reported, 2012 is simply the end of the Mayan long-count calendar series. The next day is to begin again with day 1 of cycle 1. One Mayan elder has called the predictions rubbish and a product of Western folklore. Experts say that the predictions are based on a faded picture of a Mayan god of war found on a partially-eroded monument ruin. The only things they seem to have been able to read were the year 2012 and the picture of a god of war. Somehow, that just doesn’t translate into Armageddon for us… how about for you? No doubt the end of an era will have certain consequences, but the complete end of the world probably isn’t one of them.

Mexico City Puts 1,300 Policemen on a Diet


Socialized medicine at its best… an ounce of prevention is worth saving a pound of health care pesos later. When Mexico City realized that 70% of its police force is overweight, and headed straight for strokes and heart attacks, they put on the brakes by consulting nutritionists and making those nutritionists available to the policemen. Mexico is a democratic “free” country, so they cannot force the policemen to go on a diet, but they can – and have – mounted a huge educational program designed to not only save the lives of the policemen, but save taxpayer dollars as well. Congratulations to all of the Mexico City policemen who take advantage of this program. We know they and their families will benefit from it.

Who Makes Up These Stories?
Here’s a new myth we discovered on the internet: The Cantarell oil field, when it produced 40% of the Mexican budget, paid to restore the churches in Yucatan. According to the article, because Americans bought – buy – oil produced from Cantarell, they were the reason for all of these wonderfully restored churches right here in Yucatan. Never mind that in actuality, the churches are being restored by a foundation, Adopte Una Obra de Arte of Yucatan, created for that purpose. Never mind that the State of Yucatan, wealthy Yucatecos, and even immigrants to the U.S. fund that foundation – and continue to do so.
Foundations just like this now exist throughout Mexico and are doing a wonderful job of restoration on many of the finest churches in the world. The largest contributor to this effort, nationwide, is the Cathedral in Mexico City.
And yet, the other day, we found an article that claimed it was the AmericUayma Church has been Restoredans, through their purchase of oil from Cantarell, who actually paid for the restoration of our churches. The story in question was actually a fairly decent one until the writer just couldn’t resist embellishing it with “facts not in evidence.” For those who are not aware of the activities of the foundation that is restoring churches throughout Yucatan, please know that restoration continues – even without Cantarell money and even without American oil purchases. In fact, the beautiful church at Uayma and the one at Mani are both beneficiaries of this program.
Who makes up that stuff? …and who prints it without fact-checking?

Looking for a Campground or a Hostel?
We opened our e-mail to read about a hostel in Piste and cannot help but laugh, remembering a few years ago when a friend’s college age daughter decided to take off through southeastern Mexico – alone – riding the bus and staying in hostels. She scared her parents half to death, but e-mailed daily and had the time of her life for two solid weeks.
For any of our readers whose children announce that they need $4 a night to stay in a hostel in Piste, plus a couple of bucks a day to eat, take heart. They are not headed off into the “jungles” of Yucatan. Piste is near Chichen Itza and has at least two very nice hacienda/spa resorts nearby. They will be just fine in Piste – really. Let them go. Better they should get their wanderlust out of their system in a place where you know they are safe and will be well taken care of. Read about Posada el Carrousel on TravBuddy.

Conspicuous By Their AbsenceWild Animals in Yucatan
When we first came to Yucatan, there would be an occasional story in the papers about snakes and other wildlife wandering into the villages. This was a danger to children, who tended to want to play with whatever creature they found. Less than a decade later, we just realized that we never hear such stories anymore. Does this mean that the animals are gone? – or does it mean that they have simply moved farther from civilization? We don’t know but, as we read National Geographic’s story about the effect of the Chicxulub asteroid incident’s effect on the growth and habitat of the largest snake in the world (in Colombia), we cannot help but wonder about the fate of our own snakes and other wildlife that used to wander into villages all the time.

Wanted: Piano Noodler
A group of local extranjeros is wanting to start a singing club. We feel we need someone who can accompany us on the piano. Does that sound like something you want to do? If so, please contact Lorna Gail Dallin at lg5050 [at] hotmail [dot] com. Want to sing? Contact Lorna Gail if you want to do that too!

International Regatta to End in Progreso
The mayoress of Progreso, Reina Quintal, has gone to the port of Saint Nazaire, in France, to participate in ceremonies on the opening day of the International regata known as La Ruta Solidaria del Chocolate. The regatta will end in Progreso with all kinds of sporting events and celebrations. This is the reason so many Yucatecos have been so busy taking crash courses in French. At one time, it was estimated that over 600 French people will arrive in Progreso to see the end of this 30 boat race. Look for more next week in our Events. We hear it is going to be quite an occasion!

First Real Norte of the Season
As temperatures drop and the winds of winter begin to blow, it is brought home to us, once again, that Yucatan most certainly does have "Winter." It may be only for 2 or 3 days at a time and it may not happen very often, but our blood has, as the old timers say, "thinned out" and we perceive the cool air as if it is freezing. Our friends in the city are blogging about freezing to death. Our friends at the beach are blogging about blowing sand and freezing wind off of the water. …We check the weather and discover that it is 84 degrees and only going down to 64 degrees tonight. So – does this mean that we’re really not freezing to death? You couldn’t prove it by us! We think the end is near!


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7 Responses to “Yucatan News: 2012 is NOT the End. Really.”

  1. I really enjoy reading ” Yucatan Living”. I think that it’s an excellent publication that keeps up with all the changes in Yucatan. Yucatan is such a beautiful place to live, visit and do business. Keep up the good work.

  2. Greetings Gringos!! I hail from Southwestern Ontario, Canada — home of humid summers and chilly winters. The winters have gotten rather painful over the past few years and I’ve decided to leave and head for the south at some point in the near future. I prefer warmer weather and wish to live in an area that is predominantly hot & sunny.

    I’m a teacher by profession and greatly interested in moving to the Yucatan Province to work, live and experience all the area has to offer. (There sure is a whole lot to offer in the Yucatan, isn’t there??)

    I have a question about the typical elementary & high school year in the area of Merida (where I wish to move): Because I’d like to return home in the summer to visit family and friends here, I wonder when does school commence and finish each year?

    I’d also love to know: What might be the typical professional qualifications necessary to teach Music, French or English as a Second Language in private & public schools in Merida? I have an Ontario Teaching Certificate, a 60-hour TESL certificate from Oxford Seminars and I’m currently working towards a Conversational French Language certificate at the college in my area.

    Any information that could be passed along by those ‘in the know’ would be of great value to me as I look ahead… Keep up the great work with this online magazine — I read every article start to finish! Thanks for your time.

    Sincerely (eager to move to Merida!),
    Rachel

  3. Thank you very much for having this magazine and website, I am a Yucatecan living far, far away from home, in the State of Washington, and this magazine and its stories and information keep me close to home and bring memories to my mind, and pride to my heart.

    I will be home again very soon, december 12, I go home every year and I hope my son learns to love the place he belongs too, my husband is from here but fell in love with Merida since the first time I came back and took him with me, now he wants to move as soon as possible, and hopefully soon we will be able to.

    again thank you and keep the awesome good work, and thank you for loving my beautifull home so much :)

    Ana Romero
    Tacoma, WA

  4. To Rachel…

    I read your question about the school system in Merida, Yucatan, and beign a graduate from college in law back there and having studied there my whole life, I think maybe I can give some answers to your questions:

    The school year starts in September. I think they have moved it a little bit since I left but not too much. there are 2 weeks off a year called “semana santa” around Easter. Winter vacations start towards the end of December and end the first week of January, and summer vacations towards the end of June till the end of the summer in September.

    I know that at the University of Mayab where certain levels of English are a requirement to graduate, they really like foreign teachers with degrees in education. I think with your qualifications it shouldn’t be hard for you to find a good job, especially teaching French and English. I had to study French in high school and English in college (and Latin and Greek in high school too, but that is not really a requirement).

    I wish I could give you more information but that is what I know having grown up there; I hope it helps somehow.

    I also want to go back there and teach at a university, hopefully where I graduated from and where my dad is also a philosophy and law teacher.

    Ana R.

  5. Love Yucatan Living!!! I read it often as we are coming there to Telchac Puerto for a month and can hardly wait. We are from the Chicago area and hate the winters here as we are retires and can’t take it anymore!
    We are seriously looking into moving there in the future & this will be a “fact finding mission” as well as a great vacation. You have already answered many questions as well as giving us food for thought in other areas. Every time I read your articles I get more ecxited & want to learn more. Keep up the great work!

  6. Have you guys checked out the temperature of Fargo North Dakota lately? It use to make Ariadna (my Yucateca wife) mad at me, because I would laugh at them. You think they were living in the Artic or Antartica the way they were dressed. :-)

  7. I read with great amusement your article about people “believing that they are freezing to death” when the temperatures drop into the 60′s. Although I am now living in the Banana Belt of Canada, southern Ontario; I have just recently moved from Saskatchewan where we had one morning in January 2006 that the overnight temperature (with the wind) was -62 C or -78F. Nothing moved except vehicles that were in garages or had very good engine warmers. It hurt to breathe.
    I read Yucatan Living and the various real estate ads every day knowing that in the very near future, I will be moving to the Progreso area. While waiting for another winter to begin, I truly eny you living there now.

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