A Quick Update

In 2010, we moved back to the small town in Colorado that I never stopped missing while we lived in Mexico. Now I sometimes miss Mexico, but I wouldn't travel as freely as we did when we were there, camping out in remote areas and so forth.

Mexico today is in a period of change, and in many ways it is more dangerous now. That said, I have plenty of American friends who still live there very happily, just taking a few more precautions than they did in the past.

Just to say!

Rosana

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Tripbase Blog Awards 2009

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March 17, 2006 — Animal-loving Americans and Canadians living in Mexico, or traveling here, may need to come to terms with the sufferings of many Mexican dogs and cats. Whether you do it by becoming philosophical, jaded, judgemental, or something else, it’s an issue that comes up again and again.

In the Lake Chapala area, there are several programs in which foreigners are very active, both as volunteers and with financial support. The Animal Shelter is on the highway in Riberas del Pilar, between Ajijic and Chapala. Kelly and I made yesterday a day of errands, and my dentist is in that area too.

Now I don’t normally go into animal shelters, as there is too much risk I’d come out with a new family member. But this one is also an extremely well-stocked pet supply store, and we needed several things for our dog and cat, so we stopped. It was a bit easier to do because I knew that the dogs were in another building on the other side of the highway. Still, there was a talkative deep orange cat who fixed me with his bright eyes. I momentarily thought how cute he’d look with Misty, who is a pale orange, before I came to my senses.

But I did come home with a small paperback that isn’t available on Amazon (I just looked) and is probably just available locally here. Tales from the Cat House: A Collection of True Stories, by Barbara Hess, “The Cat Lady” shows one way of reacting to the condition of Mexican cats.

With devoted love which translates into action.

Barbara Hess has done this.

Story after story tells of the cats who have come to the Animal Shelter, sometimes brought in by people, sometimes dumped on the doorstep at night. With the help of a remarkable duo of Mexican veterinarians whose clinic is next door, cats with many terrible health conditions have been saved. The shelter has an amazing cattery right in the middle of it, where you can watch the cats living their daily lives, in a group or in individual cages nearby. You are welcome to go in and visit the cats, which you do through a chain-link entry into a tiny space and then another such entry into the main cat area. There is a warning sign: escape artists present, so close one door before opening another!

It’s a great setup for adopting a cat, and often people come back time and again before deciding on a particular cat. Many times, the cat has already chosen those particular people.

I read the book in one sitting and learned a lot about the Animal Shelter and its denizens. I was inspired by the love radiating from this woman and the others involved with the cats. Maybe I’ll go help out a little next week, when more dental appointments will take me back to the area.

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