News starting September 21, 2009
Mark Your Calendars: September 16, 2010
If you are making plans for September 2010, please note that September 16 (next year) will be the 200th Anniversary of the Independence of Mexico. We have no doubt that planning for this event began immediately after the end of Independence Day this year. For our readers who live here, get ready for the party to rival all parties in the history of Mexico! For our readers who will be visiting, today would not be too soon to make your reservations! We hope everyone comes to Mexico to join in the 200th Anniversary of Mexico’s Independence!
Clements International Awards Expat Student Scholarships
Clements International is a global insurance provider that has served the expatriate community for over 60 years. In 2009, Clements International launched the Expat Youth Scholarship for students between the ages of 12 and 18 who have lived abroad for at least two years. The idea was inspired by the fact that moving to another country helps these children, not to mention individuals of any age, develop rich life experiences that will profoundly shape who they become. After receiving 578 entries from students around the world, Clements has awarded $10,000 in scholarships to the top three winners in two age categories. These students are as diverse as the places they have lived. Please visit Clement International’s Expat Youth Scholarship to view their entries and find out more about this program.
Professional Boxing in Valladolid – Saturday, September 26
We are posting this information both on our News page and in Coming Soon, on our Events page, because it has come to our attention that many people are not even aware that the State of Yucatan has a very active Boxing Association. There are 5 major boxing clubs in the state, in 5 different municipalities, with a boxing roster of 200! If any of our readers are interested in joining this sport, the Boxing Association’s address is Calle 56 # 444-A x 49 y 51, Centro Merida, and their telephone number is 923-5074.
For this particular event, Valladolid will host 4 professional boxing matches, one with 10 rounds, one with 6 rounds, and two with 4 rounds. The 10 round bout features a boxer who is ranked at 15th in the world in his class. There will also be 3 amateur matches. Boxers will, for the most part, be Yucateca boxers from Cancun, Valladolid, and other points throughout the Peninsula, with at least one boxer from D.F.
Location: Valladolid Auditorium
Time: 9:00 PM
Admission: General: $100 pesos; Special seats: $150 pesos
How Many “Planets” Do You Consume?
UADY is getting ready to launch a new Social Accountability Program, in conjunction with the First International Summit of Attorneys and Environmental Tax, which will be held in Merida this week. Specialists from Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay, Honduras, Peru, Venezuela, Colombia, Nicaragua, and Mexico will participate in this event. The problem they will address is that the population of this planet is currently using the equivalent of 1.6 planet’s worth of resources, which is obviously not sustainable over time. Developed nations are using as much as 3 planet’s worth of resources, while undeveloped nations continue to use less than the resources of 1 planet. UADY’s new program will work not only to educate young people on their responsibility to change their lifestyles to include conservation and management of resources, but will also address the ways and means of engaging nations in this effort, including tackling the process necessary to change legislation. Merida and UADY, in particular, are rapidly taking their place on the front lines of more than a few scientific and economic issues and we are very proud of the young Yucateco scientists and their teachers, who are developing this area as a seat of knowledge and change. (source: UADY)
Mexico and Argentina Lead G-20 on Green Economy Goals
From a recent U.N. study, we learn that Mexico and Argentina are the only two of the G-20 nations that are actually improving carbon productivity quickly enough to meet carbon reduction targets. France, Japan, and Great Britain follow closely behind. The remainder of the G-20 nations were not even in the running. This news came at a G-20 conference on this issue that was held in Pittsburgh, PA, US.
High Price for Laundering Lumber
As the world’s supply of old growth fine woods continues to dwindle, the trees that are left are becoming increasingly valuable. This is not lost on several opportunistic groups whose members live in Yucatan, buy illegal lumber in Guatemala, and then drive it across the southern part of out state and parts of Campeche where it is then “laundered” in Tabasco. It is exactly like money laundering, but PROFEPA has a little something for those who take the risk. The guilty parties get a both a hefty fine and a long vacation in prison. The prison term is 1 to 9 years and the fine is between 20 and 50 thousand minimum wages. The most common wood found in these lumber laundering programs are cedro rojo and caoba (red cedar and mahogany). Since more expats than ever are incorporating fine woods into their building and remodeling projects in Yucatan, we caution you to always make sure of the origins of the wood you are using. If it comes from Tabasco, be particularly careful that it didn’t really come from Guatemala. (source: PROFEPA)
Norman Borlaug Died in Dallas
Today, we worry about genetically engineered crops, pesticides, and antibiotics in the food chain. When Norman Borlaug began his work, in the 1940s, there was no time for that kind of worrying. Asia India, and Mexico were facing imminent starvation. Borlaug, dubbed the Father of the Green Revolution, developed a hardy strain of wheat that saved the lives of millions. Using Borlaug’s wheat, Mexico was wheat-independent by 1956 and Borlaug was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his work in 1970. Today, our young scientists understand the dynamics (and dangers) of genetically modified crops and the dangers of antibiotics and pesticides that make their way into our food chain. It is they, with Borland’s blessing, who will lead us forward with a Green Revolution that is safe and sustainable. Borland was 95 years old and died at his home in Dallas. (source: San Francisco Chronicle)
Boom For Pulpo Fishermen, Bust in the Mercado
So far, pulpo fishermen have caught more than 2,000 tons of pulpo since August, but that is not reflected in sales at the local markets, where merchants are often closing before noon now (Source: Progreso Hoy). Part of the problem is that the fishermen had a bad summer and are having to use today’s pesos to put their children in school. Another part of the problem is that many had been living on loans and credit. All of that had to be repaid. Finally, they are afraid to spend the rest of the money they are making for fear of getting caught short again. This is passing the recession on to the vendors in the market, who were already weak from the H1N1 scare and the global economic crisis. It is going to take time for the economy of the peninsula to even itself out again. We only hope that good times come again before merchants begin losing their businesses.
Are You a Rodeo Cowboy (or Cowgirl)?
Do you miss the big rodeos we used to have when we were kids? If you are a cowboy or cowgirl, pull up your online calendar and mark September 14, 2010 as Charro Day and plan to be somewhere in Mexico (we hope in Yucatan) on that day next year. This year, 180 horses, plus 300 riders, cowgirls and niños rode up Paseo Montejo to meet the Governess. A Queen was crowned and received a beautiful new cowboy hat. The Day of the Charro has been celebrated throughout Mexico since 1934. The Charros have their own union and many events, especially in the Fall. If you love rodeo, you might want to check out the Charros of Yucatan website and be sure to click on their Events and Galeria pages while you are there. If you see the young boys in your neighborhood, especially in the villages, practicing with their horses late in the evening, please stop and cheer them on. They are getting ready to compete in some of these rodeos and need all the cheerleaders they can get. Warning: There are a few bad apples still out there so, before attending any rodeo, in Mexico or in the United States, please be certain that there will be no piales en lienzo (horse tripping). If there is, please make your complaints loud and long to every elected official, animal rights group, and newspaper you can find. If you live in the U.S., please work toward making horse tripping a felony in your state. (source: horse tripping )
Stars of the New Graduating Veterinarians
One of the first things people consider when thinking of making a move to Yucatan is whether they will be able to find a good vet for their beloved pets. As a matter of fact, we have one of the oldest and best veterinary schools in all of Mexico right here at UADY in Merida.
This past week, 60 new veterinarians graduated, in a class of 111 biologists and animal scientists, and some of them are the stars of the future in this arena. With overall grade averages as high as 95.25, and barely 3 points separating the top members of the class, the new veterinarians, biologists, and animal scientists include: Cristina Raquel Quijano Álvarez and Brenda Leticia Gamboa Loira, in first place; then ties between Karla Elena Segovia Márquez and Sarai Díaz Sanjuan for second place and Alejandro Carvajal Flores and Sadrac Jefte Baeza Lizama for third place. Make no mistake about it – all of these young people had an “A” average – the only differentiation between them is in how high their “A” was. So – can you find a good vet in Yucatan? Absolutely! (source: UADY)
Izamal: Interesting Historical Documents
Beginning last Saturday and running for 15 days, the State of Yucatan’s Traveling Exhibition of Birth and Death Certificates will be at the Center for the Development of Culture and the Arts in Izamal. This is to commemorate the 150th Anniversary of the founding of the Civil Registry in Yucatan. The birth certificate of Elvia Carrillo Puerto is there, as well as the death of her brother, Governor Felipe Carrillo Puerto. The birth and death certificates of many other famous Yucatecos are also on display. Hours are: Monday through Friday: 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM and 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM; and Saturdays and Sundays, 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM.
Help Stop Pirated Cigars in Mexico
Mercer Cigars’ supplier, Importadora y Exportadora de Puros y Tabacos (IEPT) is the exclusive representative of Habanos, S.A. in Mexico and verifies the legal source of Habanos through a process that only awards certification to those establishments that comply with the prerequisites for authentication. Only the establishments that meet these requirements will obtain “Certified Dealer” status from IEPT. Both Mercer Cigars and the IEPT ask that individual purchasers of cigars understand that, if they purchase pirated Habanos, they are not only harming a national business and honest workers, but are also affecting all of the people who love the real product. Look for the IEPT Certified Dealer logo before purchasing any product labeled as Habanos or “Cuban cigars,” and visit the IEPT website to find a list of approved dealers.
Missing Island in Mexico
Bermeja Island belongs to Mexico. All coastal nations have national and international definitions of where, offshore, any oil found “belongs” to them. The location of Bermeja Island, therefore, has a tremendous bearing on the future production of oil in Mexico. Except – where is Bermeja Island? What happened to it? It was there, clearly visible on national and international maps until the middle of the 20th century…and now, its just gone! This disappearance has led to quite a number of conspiracy theories, as is always the case when this kind of money is involved. The BBC has sent David Cuen in search of “Mexico’s Missing Island” and the video is online. Watch this fascinating video and ponder what you think really happened to Bermeja – Mexico’s Missing Island.
Cozumel 4 You
This week, we received a lovely webletter (newsletter) from Cozumel 4 You, a community forum on the Island of Cozumel. To our surprise, one of their news blurbs was about Merida and recommended Yucatan Living as the go-to place for news, events, and lifestyle information. Thank you Cozumel 4 You! To regularly receive this very nice webletter in your e-mail, sign up with Cozumel 4 You. If you are planning a move to Cozumel or just a visit there, their archives contain a wealth of information about local expat happenings, local culture, and even news of their very active animal welfare groups, and their members can tell you all you ever wanted to know about visiting or living in Cozumel.
Yoga Teacher Certification in January
We have quite a number of opportunities to take classes in yoga here in Yucatan and thought that some of our local readers might appreciate an opportunity to expand on your talents by becoming certified yoga teachers yourselves. This would be particularly beneficial for those who live in some of the outlying communities, since more expats are moving to those areas and local Yucatecos are hopping on the yoga bandwagon as well. Others of our readers may not live here yet, but might want to come down to become a certified yoga teacher. With this in mind, Arielle Thomas Newman will be offering a Yoga Teacher Certification course in Playa del Carmen from January 15 through February 17, 2010. You can find more information, including e-mail, tuition, and retreat info, by visiting More Than Yoga.