Sunday, January 3, 2010

Guanajuato, Mexico -- Weather, Water, Crime


It's cold, it's rainy, it's dreadful, and I am in pain.

No matter where you go on the planet, Guanajuato or where ever, when the barometric pressure changes, and the temp goes south, and you've got Fibromyalgia Syndrome, you are in for a pain attack until it warms up.

But, such is the uphill struggle of my life.

It is cold. It began raining last night and the temps dropped like a rock. Our move has taken a mental and physical toll on so we decided to stay in and hole up in our new place. I had to turn on the space heater to fend off mass convulsions from shivering.

Many folks write and ask us about the weather in Guanajuato. What to wear is the main theme, it seems, of the emails we get.

You would swear that the local's dress is more appropriate for Alaska. When it is 60-65 degrees you see locals with parkas, scarfs, and gloves. I bet if I was to go outside right now, and it is 50 degrees out as I write these words, not only would the streets seem deserted, anyone outside would be dressed for a blizzard.

If you get on a bus on a sunny day, nice spring temps, there will be winter dressed Mexicans with all the bus windows shut creating a steam bath environment inside the bus.

There is a superstition, according to some, that the wind will bring you sickness.

A friend who is Canadian and married to a Mexican and they have three kids told me this:

Though Mexican women take their kids for vaccinations, and though the child is as healthy as a horse, on a windy day they will tie a red piece of yarn around the wrist of the child so as to war off the evil spirit the wind brings. I have seen this in Guanajuato too.

Maybe I should be looking for some red yarn?


On the Trip Advisor forums there is thread going around about Guanajuato's water shortage and they are in a bit of a snit over it.

Forums, in my view, can be some of the biggest disinformation dissemination sources on the Net. Rarely is anything accurate and that includes information on the water rationing.

Water rationing has been going on for years. It is nothing new. However, Gringos coming to Guanajuato for study at the Spanish schools, or whatever, are freaking out over the idea of water shortages as if this is a new thing.

New? It is not!

Years ago one of my wife's ESL students told us of the water shortages and consequent rationing in her barrio. To flush the toilet her husband and young, strapping teenage son would have to walk down their callejon to the water truck to collect huge buckets of water to flush the crapper. They had to bath from the bucket. To wash clothes they had to go to his parent's house in Irapuato.

This is nothing new to the residents of Guanajuato, that is the Mexican residents, but the sissy Gringos are getting their panties all twisted into a knot over it.


But anyone (#2) who can write that violence is not an issue has their head up their fundament. Here in San Miguel there have been at least two high-profile kidnappings in recent weeks, admittedly involving people with business interests here. A friend of mine was mugged outside her house on Christmas Day and other friends had what they think was a rifle bullet hit the windscreen of their car. Petty crime seems to be on the increase, mostly opportunistic and possibly related to the economic downturn, since many people are now without work. San Miguel is a 'small' town so these things get talked about a lot on the gringo network. We are not going around fearing for our lives, but a little extra vigilance is called for.

Londinense in San Miguel de Allende


Check out my newest book: A WALK THROUGH MEXICO'S CROWN JEWEL

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