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September 2015:

Familiar sight takes flight

 

Some say Trump the man to beat

By Staff
Clown Prince Donald Trump, the prime entertainer of the 2016 US presidential race so far, is drawing mixed reviews from Mexicans, some who see him as a crass buffoon heavy on insults with nary a grand design, and others who shrug and view his candidacy as a joke where serious discussion should be taking place concerning cross-border diplomacy.

The Trump Pinata Craze was launched in the border city of Reynosa by craftsman Dalton Avalos in a family workshop right after Trump’s tirade branding Mexicans as “rapists” and sprouting other insulting pejoratives. Reportedly, Avalos used extra layers of papier-mache so the effigy could be whacked “real hard.”

As the majority of their friends in el norte, most Mexicans see Trump as a self-aggrandizing blowhard who is everything but a serious contender for the US’s top job. On the positive side, though, Trump’s insensitive adjectives are spotlighting US voter fatigue with the Washington crowd’s  blather. Will the real candidates please stand.

 

Mexico’s heroin production rises

to meet demand from the US

By Staff
Death by overdose of heroin increased 175 percent in the United States between 2010 and 2014, the US Center for Disease Control (CDC) reports. Meanwhile, Mexico’s poppy growers, mostly in the violence-ridden state of Guerrero where 43 students went missing last year and presumed dead, have increased production to meet US demand for the illicit product by 50 percent in 2014. The CDC has labeled heroin use in the US as “epidemic.”

Increased use in the US is spread across men, women and age groups and income levels. The largest increase in use was from non-traditional addict groups such as women, the privately insured and people with higher incomes who are presumed smart enough to avoid addiction…but are not.

Meanwhile, doctors at the Providence Crosstown Clinic in Vancouver, Canada, are expected to be the first to offer prescribed heroin as a treatment for the addiction when other traditional remedies fail.

 

Calls for new Maya Riviera airport

revived after cave-in on the 307

 

By Staff
A roadway cave-in on Route 307 between Cancun and Playa del Carmen last week prompted a renewal of efforts to resume plans for a new airport serving the Riviera Maya and construction of an alternate seacoast route besides 307.

 

The sinkhole, presumably caused by an underground flow from a cenote or river, confounded traffic to and from the busy Cancun airport causing many visitors to miss their flights despite commendable response by the police and public works to set up detours and repair the roadway.

Repair was accomplished in 24 hours. At least two injuries were reported while one pickup truck barely avoided being swallowed by the hole left in the highway. Two people on a motorcycle were injured because of the road collapse. Laudable efforts by airport and airline personnel also were noted in helping passengers and airlines link up with later flights.

Spokesmen for businesses and hotel associations in particular said the event underscores the importance of resuming federal efforts to build an airport in the Tulum area – a planned project that was scuttled last year by  President Pena Nieto’s administration in favor of another airport in Mexico City.

Manuel Paredes Mendoza, executive director of the Riviera Maya Hotel Association, pointed out that the Riviera Maya has 10,000 more hotel rooms in the aggregate than does the Cancun area, highlighting what the association says is a need for an expanded transportation infrastructure.

 

Commerce Corner…

 

Women wing it over Pacific;

feat sets a plane terrific record

By Staff
Aeromexico completed its first transcontinental flight with an all-female crew on Aug. 19 when the huge Boeing jet piloted by females made the record setting flight from Mexico City-Tijuana-Shanghai, a 15-hour jaunt over 11,049 kilometers (6,865 miles) with 170 passengers aboard.

In addition to a female pilot and two co-pilots, there were 10 stewardesses completing the crew of 13 on Aeromexico’s historic flight, which is intended to set the stage for a new norm of using female crews as part of regular operations. The flight was made with the agreement of the Association of Airline Pilots in Mexico and the Association of Flight Attendants (ASSA) of Mexico.

In another flight of fancy, the Mexican Air Force base on Cozumel – Island of the Swallows – will receive eight new and modern airplanes to replace the current Pilatus PC-7 and will be used to help control and combat organized crime, according to air force officials.

Mexico, Canada tell US

they fear Pacific Rim deal

Mexican and Canadian auto parts makers say they  are worried about the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact proposed by the US because it could negatively affect some one million workers in the two American nations.

They are concerned mostly with a concession sought by Japan that would allow Pacific Rim partners to ship Mexican and Canadian-made auto parts in Asian made cars to the US duty free despite substantial parts content from Mexico an Canada.

Ed Fast and Ildefonso Guajardo, Canadian and Mexican trade ministers, said they fear their respective sectors would suffer severe economic damage.

Agents representing the two countries’ manufacturing sectors issued a joint statement noting that: “If this provision were to come into force, our companies and workers would be placed in a competitively disadvantaged [position] in the North American market. [It] would seriously compromise our operations in the North American region, and we may be forced to significantly reduce our operations.”

 

Let the snowy north know

early that you’re waiting

It won’t hurt for the Mayan Riviera tourist industry to blanket the northeastern USA and nearby eastern Canada news outlets and internet social pipelines with the Farmer’s Almanac weather predictions for this coming winter.

The venerable 199-year-old almanac sees another “deja vu” winter blanketing states from Maine to Montana with piles and piles of  snow somewhat like the record-breaking 100 inches that buried Boston last winter.

How bad was it? Friends and acquaintances around Boston are already weighing get-way options. We tell them we think Jet Blue Airways has pretty decent fares for non-stop flights to Cancun out of Boston during the high season. We suggest they might want to consider a now escape to the Mayan Riviera where there are plenty of great villas, small and large and or(all inclusive hotels to choose from.

We suggest they start with Pelican Free Press sponsors Akumal Villas (see logos in left  hand column of this page), Roguez Realty and the unique Gaia Hotel in Tulum for great choices of shore-front villas that can be shared by families and friends. They all guarantee “no snow.”

And as luck would have it so far, Hurricanes Danny and Erika gave us a pass and forecasters don’t see much of a threat as the Atlantic hurricane season rolls gently by without any overt threats. Of course, weather is unpredictable to a degree. Plan accordingly.

 

Briefly Noted…

Umbrella time – The National Water Commission (Conagua) says September will be the wettest month of the year and that from the 15th of the month to Oct. 15 has the most potential period for a hurricane… Drug Stop – The US has sanctioned 15 Mexican businesses – one in Playacar – and six individuals for supporting a major drug cartel’s operations by laundering drug money. The action freezes assets held in the US and prohibits US firms from doing business with the companies and individuals… Meanwhile, US authorities implicated the Xaman Ha Center on Playa del Carmen Blvd., south of the Playa town center, as one of a number of businesses laundering drug money. Local businessmen here said it was a shame the illegal operation had to be routed by US rather than Mexican authorities…

While use of drones in this area has drawn a few complaints concerning invasion of privacy issues, Mexican authorities will be using them to guard against a reported increase in turtle-egg poaching… The peso hit its lowest point against the dollar last month at 17+ as authorities cautioned against increasing local prices for goods and services in deference to the local consumer… Akumal Bay was hit again with a major patch of sargassum recently just after cleaning up a previous invasion. Sargassum remains a problem to the point that a political party sponsored a contest offering a prize to whoever could remove the most sargassum in a given time period… Two 13-year-old girls visiting in Playacar last week were struck by lightning and died while on the beach. One other girl taken to a hospital survived…l

Rising profits – The Cancun area’s director of tourism reports the domestic tourist market grew from between 5 and 7 percent. Spending by that segment is about 38 percent of total tourist spending there…But small hotels saw a drop in business, some of it attributed to cancellations because of the sargassum invasion… Police recruits, male and female between the ages of 19 and 35 are being sought by the municipality as the municipal administration sustains courses for police to learn English and take continuing-ed courses at local schools… Compulsory medical checks for drug use will be made in November for some 500 drivers of public transport vehicles…

HIV cases in Playa del Carmen exceed the national average by five times, reports the Positive Life Association… PA poblado parents made their case when they blocked a teacher previously accused of raping a student in Playa del Carmen, from being transferred to a school in Puerto Aventuras poblado at the start of this school year… Employees burned when their Pepsi truck slammed into the concrete base of a sign at the Calica bridge a few miles north of Puerto Aventuras last week causing a fire. Two employees suffered major burns over 50 percent of their bodies. It was raining at the time, resulting in poor visibility – and reminding officials to assure continued lighting along 307’s black stretch from Akumal to Playa…

The federal consusmer protetion agency has conducted gasoline station inspections in Q. Roo and found  a small number of them falling short of proper “liter to liter” –or accurate – delivery of petrol to consumers, usually falling short of the paid-for amount either by design or malfunctioning pumps. Twelve locations were sanctioned in Q. Roo, but most of them in the Benito Juarez (Cancun), and Othon P. Blanco municipalities. None were reported in Solidarity…

Resurfacing of Arco Vial  roadway in Playa began last week and is slated to take three months to complete. Officials warn users of that roadway to leave early or use a detour of their choice… The second step up in the state’s minimum wage will rake effect in October with a slight increase to 70.10 pesos per day from 66. Inspectors will check to assure businesses meet the minimum pay or face fines up to 350 minimum wages… Reminders Drivers face fines for driving cars without liability insurance on federal highways… And – Licenses are now required for the practice of real estate business. Mexlaw in Playa del Carmen ( see logo on this page) has more information…

 

Nature Watch…

Not a Paamul Jack Photoshop joke!

And wait until you read

what happens next

By Staff

“Mommy, do goats grow on trees?”

“No, son. Wherever did you get that idea?”

The boy shows his mother the picture. She’s flabbergasted. It has to be Paamul Jack playing around with Photoshop again like he did with the crocodiles last April Fool’s Day, she thinks. (See April issue of Pelican Free Press).

Not so. It’s real..and these goats, looking every bit like branch managers, actually form a sort of sure-footed production line of grooming products. This photo was taken in the Moroccan village of Tamri where the agile goats perform a balancing act on narrow “argan tree” limbs to  access the argan fruit, which they obviously love to eat while performing their balancing feat.

But that’s not all there is.

After gorging on the argan fruit, the goats leave droppings under the tree containing the fruit’s seed. The seed kernels are collected, washed out (thoroughly one expects), ground and pressed to remove the argan seed oil…which is then used mainly as an ingredient in local culinary and cosmetic products. Moroccans dip breakfast bread in it, or spread it over couscous and other foodstuffs.

The oil is also gaining international favor as an ingredient in cosmetic products such as moisturizing creams and hair treatments, leaving us to muse about humans using oil from goat bottoms to groom the top of their heads. That’s nature for you.

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Mid-August Special edition

 

SCARY SARGASSUM SURPRISE !

 

Sargassum invasion spurs

widespread call to arms

By Staff

The sargassum invasion of the Riviera Maya’s beaches this summer became the talk of the town and a priority problem facing the various governments, scientists, waterfront service providers, hotels, vacationers, publicists, and residents of various beachy resort communities.

But, so far, it appears the brownish blight – like the 16-1 exchange rate – has not impeded continuing investment in the area or caused undue concern of individuals who are already stakeholders in Paradise.

For the moment, it has not been established whether the invasion is a temporary fluke event or a long-term problem. In reply to waterfront businesses losing profits over the invasion, federal, state and local governments, volunteers and workers hired by coastal businesses have been in the process of freeing beaches of the sea-borne scourge along 112 miles of the Caribbean coast and studying possible actions to prevent further landings.

An expensive development

The federal environmental department is monitoring the situation by air and sea trying to find a root cause for the phenomenon. The agency believes the "unusual" seaweed blitzkrieg stems from either high levels of nutrients in ocean water, climate change, or variations in ocean temperatures, currents or wind patterns, all of which can vary from year to year on the whim of Mother Nature.

Besides efforts by local beachfront resorts and communities to maintain clean beaches using regular employees, the federal government reportedly budgeted $9.1 million to hire 4,600 temporary workers to clean beaches without damaging turtle nesting sites or the environment, as has some heavy equipment reportedly used by some hotels in northern Roo.

Solidaridad’s share of the federal grant was reported as $2.7m pesos ($164,754 USD), enough to hire a temporary workforce of some 950 that began Aug. 1.

In addition, an international symposium is being scheduled in Cancun for September, date uncertain, attracting international scientists to determine cause(s) for the troublesome incursion. This is being done in conjunction with researchers from Mexico’s National Polytechnic Institute and the Friends of Sian Ka’an organization.

A long stretch to clean

The removal efforts cover Holbox in the north through Cancun, Isla Mujeres, Playa de Carmen, Cozumel, Akumal, Tulum and (presumably Puerto Aventuras?) and as far south as Mahahual. Sargassum is a brown algae that blooms in the Sargasso Sea, a large body of warm water in the mid-Atlantic, but is also believed to now exist in huge floating independent patches riding the currents as well.

Nearby Akumal Bay and environs have been hit particularly hard, mixing a massive new hotel complex opening in November, political turmoil over local dissatisfaction with limited beach access and recent establishment of a fish sanctuary that prohibits fishing and possibly curtails some traditional waterfront services.

The situation in Akumal has inspired involvement by some stakeholders including one who located a U.S. company that offers possible help keeping kelp from landfall in some situations. The company, “Elastec/American Marine” of Cami, Illinois, USA, maker of oil skimming systems, also offers floating custom protection barriers to capture seaweed, seagrass and sargassum before it reaches shore.

Floating barriers used

The company’s floating protection barriers are designed to deter invasive marine plants like seaweed and debris from recreational, agricultural and industrial areas while maintaining a natural, balanced ecosystem. (Learn more at Elastec.com)

Some stories have emanated from the Mayan Riviera on use of floating barriers that prevent kelp from making landfall, but require the use of boats to remove the buildup of sargassum from the floating devices and nets for deposit farther out to sea. The process thus remains labor intensive but supports the tourism industry with clean beaches.

For the moment, absent snowbirds can be assured much is being studied and done to control, remove and find use for the weed. (More information is available on sargassum by contacting sargassum@gcfi.org.

Not feeling well? Call the House Call Doctor for relief

Briefly Noted…

PA poblado residents have filed complaints with Aguakan, the water provider in the village, for charging higher prices and delivering but a trickle of sometimes dirty water. The resort has its own water provider… PA abstract artist Laura C. Kramis is having a solo show of her work at the “Insituto de la Cultura y de las Artes” in Cancun now through September 4. She studied art in Houston under Sally Babbit and for many years split her time between Texas and Mexico…

Area contruction workers are getting a break as the local governments are ordering hydration centers on work sites to prevent deaths from heat stroke. The sites will keep a supply of fresh and maintained bottled water along with information on heat stroke prevention…

Neighboring Yucatan state businesses are contemplating price increases for products between 6 and 8 percent in view of the decreasing value of the peso, registering an exchange rate currently of about 16 pesos to the dollar…

Mosquito spraying schedule has been changed by the PA Colonos to accommodate evening tennis players. The spray schedule now is Mondays and Fridays from 6 to 7 p.m…. New restaurant is reportedly moving into the Centro space formerly occupied by Tiramisu and is expected to be called “Guacamole’s”…

Pinata Politics – A California retailer has profited from U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump’s disparaging remarks about Mexican immigrants by selling look-alike pinatas that are now a “must-have” at local “bashes”… The local press reported this month five cars that lose the most value on resale in this area are the Volkswagen Jetta, Chevrolet Camaro and Aveo, Nissan Altima and Toyota Camry… Of seven cases of chikungunya reported in the state of Solidaridad so far this season, only one was reported in nearby Playa del Carmen, and that one carried by a person visiting from another state…

Murder capital – The state of Guerrero, where 43 students went missing last year and are presumed dead, recorded 1,514 murders in 2014 and 943 so far this year capped by 15 more murders last weekend including that of an activist near Acapulco who helped lead efforts to find the missing students last year. He was found shot dead in his taxi. Guerrero has the highest murder rate in the nation…… Nonetheless, and national violence notwithstanding, Mexico’s first-quarter tourism activity rose 3.5 percent in the first quarter and spending by 2.5 percent compared to the same time last year, reported the National Institute for Statistics and Geography (INEGI). Spending by domestic tourists dropped 0.20 percent but rose 2.5 percent in the foreign tourism sector… A planetarium is scheduled to open in Playa del Carmen sometime in October, giving visitors and locals an added tool to view the stars from “Paradise”…

Flying high – It was only a matter of time. Two California teens pleaded guilty last week to smuggling 30 pounds of heroin on drones from Mexico to the United States It was the first drug seizure involving a drone along California’s border with Mexico. A spokeswoman for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement in San Diego said the agency was unaware of any other drone-related seizure on the 1,954-mile border.

Raccoon Boon – The Colonos continues to implore residents to put rubbish barrels out in the morning and not at night to discourage the nocturnal marauders known in Mexico as coati, or trejon, cholugo and moncun. It makes a mess tipping over barrels or ripping open bags, thereby attracting other vermin. PLEASE! Be a good neighbor and help keep your neighborhood clean… Free cross-border calls – AT&T is now offering free cross-border calls to Mexico and Canada from the U.S., but if you’re price conscious, read the fine print and look before you leap. Meanwhile, Carlos Slim’s America Movil announced free roaming for some 400 million Mexican pre-pay customers to counter AT&T’s move… The U.S. has approved limited crude oil trading with Mexico, softening the U.S. ban on crude exports that has drawn objections from U.S. energy producers. Mexico’s state-run oil company Petroleos Mexicanos,(Pemex), will trade heavy crude for light crude from the U.S. Mexico wanted to import about 100,000 barrels of light crude a day and proposed a deal last year. A major crude exporter for decades, Mexico has seen its oil production fall in recent years…

 

 

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Commerce Corner…

Making a will in Mexico;

foreign wills also valid

By Gerardo Gonzalez 
   A will helps to secure the heritage of a person after his death. In this regard, it is important to know that, just like all other legal tools, a will has several variations and approaches.

In the case of wills made abroad, they are valid in Mexico as long as they have been certified by the notary or the heirs, before or after the death of the testator.

The different varieties of wills are adapted to each person based on their needs, economic situation and the type of inheritance at stake. Note that in Mexico a Notario Público must draw up all wills.

Open Public Wills: These are done before a notary and three witnesses. They consist of a signed and certified written statement. The notary issues an original copy known as a testimony of the public instrument, keeping the original signed copy for backup records, which is kept safe until the event of your death.

Closed Public Wills: They are written by the notary or by another person of the notary’s choosing, where each page is signed and kept in a closed envelope. The envelope is then handed over to a notary who remains unaware of its contents till the moment it is revealed to the heirs.

Holographic Wills: This is a will handwritten by the notary, who keeps a copy of the will in a sealed envelope. This is the cheapest option although holographic wills run the risk of being deemed invalid when the notary does not have the necessary knowledge to draft it.

By law, the will must be drawn up in Spanish, which is the reason you may require a translator if your Spanish is weak. Unfortunately, you cannot bring a friend along to translate, as state law requires the translator to be someone recognized by the federal and or state authorities.

It is important to note that when a will is made, anything that was previously done by the person beforehand will be made totally or partially invalid, especially in the case that the conditions regarding a specific asset differ from the latest will.

The main reason why you should consider making a will is, first of all, to safeguard your heritage after your death and to be able to ensure your heritage is passed on to loved ones and avoid a cumbersome trial that would delay the process of handing over your assets and would increase the cost of the procedure, which often ends in a family dispute.

The best approach is to consult a lawyer on the necessary guidelines for making and managing a will with a notary.

(Gerardo González is a lawyer specializing in corporate law at MEXLAW. See the website by clicking on the Mexlaw logo)

 

Roguez Real Estate representing

UK’s 7th Heaven Properties here

Roguez Real Estate has signed a partnership deal with 7th Heaven Properties Ltd., a London-based international brokerage firm that exclusively focuses on high-end Caribbean luxury properties.

David Zannoni, co-founder of Roguez Real Estate said, “We are delighted to represent 7th Heaven Properties, and to provide property owners, developers and partners in the Mexican Caribbean a new clientele specifically seeking a Caribbean lifestyle and investments”.

Seventh Heaven Properties is based in London, UK. It has emerged as one of the world’s leading independent Caribbean property specialists. Its extensive portfolio spans the entire Caribbean region, including the Central American countries with a Caribbean Sea coastline such as Belize, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, and now also the Mexican Caribbean. Their listings include residential property and commercial real estate from across the Caribbean.

Roguez Real Estate is based in the exclusive beach/marina/golf community of Puerto Aventuras on Mexico’s Riviera Maya located between world famous vacation hotspots Playa del Carmen and Tulum. Its core business is providing real estate brokerage services for foreign buyers and investors in the Mexican Caribbean, focusing mainly on high end luxury properties. (View the website by clicking on the Roguez logo in the left hand column.)

Let sunshine power your ride quietly – Put Solar Top on your cart.

 

Major solar company buys

toehold in Mexican market

   NEW YORK/MEXICO CITY – SolarCity, the largest solar installer and financier in the US, has announced that it has entered into an agreement to acquire Ilioss, a major Mexican solar developer with a toehold in the commercial and industrial markets.

The company described Mexico as "one of the most promising solar markets" worldwide due to its high electricity rates, favorable solar economics and massive solar resources.

SolarCity did not disclose the value of the deal but media reports claimed it will pay up to US$15 million including earn-out of some US$5 million for Ilioss. The transaction is expected to be finalized imminently.

Ilioss will operate as an independent business unit of SolarCity, the San Mateo, California based company announced.Ilioss co-founder and Chairman David Arelle and co-founder and Chief Operating Officer Manuel Vegara will lead the new business unit as President and General Manager, respectively.

As a combined entity, SolarCity and Ilioss expect to be able to allow many commercial and industrial customers in Mexico to pay less for solar power than they currently pay for electricity.

Marco Krapels, SolarCity Senior Vice President of Strategy and Global Expansion, said the acquisition is expected this month, subject to customary closing conditions.

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Editorial-ito…

Of guns and booze

Dutch beer brewer Heineken recently noted that its profits soared in Mexico in the first quarter, attributing the rise to the success of its Mexican packaging and distribution division. On the same day, local newspapers reported the death of a young man who drank too much alcohol and fell from the roof of his abode in Playa del Carmen onto the hard cement below.

A similar event occurred a month ago in Puerto Aventuras town, also resulting in death. In addition, the local press covers an unceasing number of area auto accident fatalities involving drunk drivers, and less frequent but horrid incidents of death involving fights among inebriated citizens.

It would be an interesting national study to learn whether alcohol is complicit in killing more citizens and innocent bystanders than the well-publicized and fear mongering drug war gunslingers.

 

 

 

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The Mail Bag..

What about Omni beach?

image Dear Editor:
How come it only took 9 months or so to find out about the permits for the Phase 4 beach, but it’s been years waiting for a decision regarding the Fatima Bay beach? Also, instead of the Fatima Bay beach restoration waiting for money from building permits, why doesn’t the developer pay for it (as he has the money) and let him wait for the funds from the building permits?

Signed/ Ron Hurst

 

Golf course work pleases

Dear Editor:

Thank you to Arq. Roman Rivera Torres for following through on his promise at the annual meeting in December to begin and continue the work on the second 9 holes of the Puerto Aventuras Golf Course. It has been a long time coming and we look forward to it continuing! Thanks again,

Signed/David Perry

Police extortion ruins stay

Dear Editor:
   We own a Condo in Puerto Aventuras. Our building is Marina Turquesa. My wife and I visit once or twice per year and always enjoyed our stay. Unfortunately, our recent vacation from July7-15 proved to be less desirable. If the Sargassum doesn’t get you, the Policia will!!!

On July 15, at about 8:30AM, we were headed to the Cancun Airport after a nice stay. Went past the Police filter just to the south of Playa. We were going slower than the other vehicles, next car ahead was 400 yards or more away and they were all pulling away, going much faster. Police truck with 3 Police officers came up from behind and told me to pull over.

An officer requested my license, took it and would not give it back. Said the speed limit is 80, not 81 or 82 it is 80 and I would have to go downtown to get my license back. I told him I would miss my flight, I could not do this. Then he asked for 1500 pesos. I gave him the cash and he said “go”.

Nothing ever written. I know the rental cars are marked and the Police know this. They could see our luggage in the car. They knew we were headed for the Airport and didn’t have time to do downtown or mess with this situation. We were doing nothing wrong. This is a total Tourist Cash Grab.

Very unfortunate, made us feel worse than second class citizens. This is complete extortion, and the practice needs to stop. People are not going to want to visit Mexico and spend their vacation dollars if you are targeted and extorted by the Policia.

Signed/ Robert Rosania

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Reminder…

Ambulance phone numbers listed

Red Cross ambulance: 065; Puerto Aventuras Security: 873-5173 and 51-73. Tell them what your emergency is, and whether you want the Red Cross ambulance or a private ambulance. If a private ambulance, they will send the one which is closest. Ambulance at the Barceló: 044-984-876-2250; Ambulance at the Hard Rock: 044-998-214-4132. The Red Cross ambulance is without cost (although they would appreciate a donation, based on your ability to pay), and will take you to the hospital of your choice. The private ambulance will bill you for the service and both will take you to Hospiten.

See the sea. Plan a dive by clicking on Aquanauts

Nature watch…

There’s more to house plants

than fragrance and decoration

 

Plants grace homes aesthetically, but that is not their only raison d’etre. Some science holds that plants purify the air and also promote good health. Some plants, it is believed, transmit positive energy. By placing one or two of the following fragrant plants at home helps promote good vibes. The Labioguia.com web site, identifies them as:

Sage is known for its amazing cleansing properties and ability to say goodbye to negative energies. According to studies conducted at the University of Georgetown, it is antibacterial, antifungal, antiseptic , antispasmodic, astringent, carminative, diuretic, hypoglycemic and has estrogenic effects.

Rosemary reportedly contains essential oils that help stimulate brain activity and increase alertness and can also relieve pain, help with digestion and freshen breath.It is excellent for cooking using it, for example, fish and chips, and is amazingly aromatic. Keep the plant near a sunny window and remember not to water it too much to keep it healthy.

Jasmine is a plant that represents compassion and love and has been used in health to promote immunity and reduce fevers. Its sweet fragrance is known to be a powerful aphrodisiac. If you decide to have it in your home, place it in a south-facing window.

Bamboo is an extremely versatile grass and has a long history in healing. Known to reduce phlegm and fever, bamboo is an ancient plant and a proven source of medical power.It is also a symbol of luck in Feng Shui and is said to increase mental flexibility, spiritual growth , good health, happiness and wealth. Bamboo’s tough stems can survive in pots or vases with water and stones, or planted in soil with a wide range of sunlight conditions.

Basil is known as "The Incomparable" in India and has been valued for centuries for its healing benefits for the mind, body and spirit. It is a natural anti-inflammatory , antidepressant and is loaded with antioxidants that help protect your skin from damage caused by free radicals. It is also a great herb for cooking and provides living quarters with an indulgent scent.

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