Restrictions Loosened in Chapala

Friday afternoon the governor of the State of Jalisco, in which Chapala, lakeside and Guadalajara are located, loosened the restrictions he imposed some four weeks prior. Public spaces were opened and, thankfully, stores were re-opened to adultos mayores (senior citizens, defined here as 60 years of age or older).

Not surprisingly, people turned out over the weekend. The weather was beautiful and the malecon was busy.

People were out enjoying the sun and the clear views up and down the lake and the pelicans. Everywhere, people were posing for photos.

During the four weeks people weren’t allowed on the malecon, a large flock of pelicans gathered on the west side of the malecon. Beautiful!

Moreover, it turns out that lots of work was accomplished on the malecon during the lockdown. Lots of cleaning and sprucing up. The beaches were cleared.

Fisherman’s Pier was given a facelift.

On the west side of the malecon, the stone wall of the malecon was thoroughly cleaned.

One of the most iconic spots on the malecon is a statue display that over the years had become both damaged, with parts of it broken off, and thoroughly tarnished. Two local artists treated it with some TLC and it’s been restored to full glory.

On the west side of the malecon, a group of bikers gathered to enjoy the day, laughing and taking photos along with so many Mexican families.

Perhaps the biggest surprise was yet another extension of the bridge to nowhere. And it’s no longer the bridge to nowhere. It’s now out in the lake.

Local reports say that the pier is funded entirely by the restaurant on the malecon from which the pier extends. Construction projects like this often happen over the course of time. As builders have the funds, they build. If they run out of funds, they wait until they have them and the construction continues.

Supposedly, this pier will be used to deliver boating passengers to the restaurant. We’re looking forward to seeing how far out the pier ends up being.

Yes, it was a lovely weekend! And hopefully the worst of the virus is behind us here in Mexico (and all around the world!)








Restless in Chapala

And the covid played on.

We’re in the middle of another (sort of) lockdown here in our state, Jalisco. This time, seniors, persons over 60 years of age, are not allowed into stores. Guards are posted to police this policy, at least in Guadalajara, as my neighbors and I learned a couple of weeks ago, much to our disappointment and chagrin.

Even invoking “woke” culture, saying that I may be over 60 but only identify as 59 didn’t work here in what is arguably more sane Mexico!

Still, life goes on.

Down in el centro, a bright new shoe store opened after months of building. And I do mean bright!

While parks and some outdoor areas are open, the malecon and other popular areas where folks tend to congregate are still closed and pretty closely patrolled. The locals here seem to be getting a little restless with it all.  At the very far end of the malecon with a boat ramp and launch and several restaurants there’s a pier that is still open. Lots of folks turned up there presumably to re-assure themselves that both the lake and the malecon are still there despite being unable to use either.

It’s sort of pathetic to see people huddled around the one small area where they can be near the lake and see the pelicans.

Meanwhile the lakeshore off the malecon is deserted.

How much longer this uneasy truce can hold is to be determined. Not that it feels sinister or that there’s the potential for riot or protest. Just a sort of disquiet hangs in the air.

Here in Mexico the government doesn’t have a magic printing press and thus cannot simply send checks or bank deposits to citizens. Here, people have to work or they don’t eat. It’s an uneasy balance.

We’ll see what happens as we go through February.