Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Isla Mujeres Daily News & Events Wednesday, Dec. 27

This is the live webcam at North Beach / Playa Norte.  HERE is a timelapse version, that you can set to slow or fast (fps-frames per second). It takes a few seconds to load.
Follow Isla Mujeres News & Events on Facebook for highlights of news & events, and more photos & videos
 Isla Mujeres History on Facebook or Website   

MaraVilla Caribe Bed & Beach on Facebook or Website

Isla Mujeres Charities on Facebook  


From the Municipal Facebook site.....  (  FB page link)

Crime prevention program  
   The municipal government provided information about crime prevention. Tania Galera Gomez, coordinator of the Crime Prevention Program, of the Department of Public Safety and Municipal Traffic, headed by police chief Jaime Ongay Ortiz, said that the program includes personnel trained in crime prevention issues, which is taught to students, entrepreneurs and island families.
      She said, "Municipal president Juan Carrillo Soberanis is working to ensure that the families of the municipality are safe, and that is why it is our priority to provide them with the necessary tools and information so that they themselves can also ensure their welfare." 
        The coordinator of the ​​Crime Prevention division, encouraged the community to participate in these talks, workshops and activities, which are carried out free of charge throughout the municipality, as a preventive measure to strengthen and maintain their welfare and safety .

There is a video and article about the property tax discount program, with photos of residents paying taxes at the Town Hall. This information has already been translated. LINK  

During 2017, Isla Mujeres received about 3 million visitors, improving the economy for the islanders. LINK 
José Castillo Magaña, general director of Tourism in Isla Mujeres, said that throughout 2017 there were about 3 million visitors, taking into consideration the statistics of the Integral Port Administration (API), where (an estimated) 60% of passengers that come from the boats are 'daytrippers' (paseantes). He spoke about Isla Mujeres being one of the most important destinations in the Mexican Caribbean, with a high demand for its attractions and services.


The 'big' news on FB today is the arrival of a freighter with three Ultramar ferries, our car ferry that will provide service between Isla Mujeres & Punta Sam and the other one or two are for Cozumel.  TVIM said it took 22 days to arrive here from Greece. A Por Esto article said our new car ferry has a capacity for up to 70 cars & 300 passengers.

YouTube video by TVQRoo of the new Ultramar car ferry from Greece, Orion II  LINK to Video 

Photo from a boat posted by Jorge de la O Pino showing there are three ferries on the freighter, and you can see the size of the freighter and of the new ferries by comparison with the 'old' ferry in the water


From Tvisla Mujeres ( link to photos & articles)

Crime prevention program LINK   See City Section above

 "Those parasites that make you itch..."
There is an article about Cutaneious Larva Migrans (CLM), which is caused by hookworms & is prevalent in tropical and subtropical areas of the Caribbean, including the Mexican Caribbean.

 Here is an article in English which explains: CLM is acquired by walking barefoot or sitting in sand or soil that is contaminated with dog or cat feces containing hookworm larvae. Prevention is to avoid walking barefoot or sitting directly on the sand/soil in areas frequented by dogs. Sit on a towel (and wash it after each use) and wash your hands & feet with soap & water, or an alcohol based sanitizer.  The larvae penetrate intact skin of feet or buttocks, causing itching, mild swelling, and redness, which can occur within days or may take weeks, and can cause secondary bacterial infections. Usually the infection disappears after a few weeks, and treatment may include anti-itch creams and anti-worm medications.
      Routine veterinary care of dogs and cats, including regular deworming, will reduce environmental contamination with zoonotic hookworm eggs and larvae. Prompt disposal of animal feces prevents eggs from hatching and contaminating soil -- which makes it important for control of this parasitic infection.
  The CDC (LINK) describes the symptoms:  The most common symptom of CLM is intense pruritis (itching), which usually develops first, followed by the appearance of an irregular raised track with erythema (redness) , presumably marking the progress of the larva from the site of penetration. The track may move in the skin over time, but it is important to note that the location of the track does not necessarily relate to the location of the larva which is randomly moving ahead of the track formation. Typically, the track moves several millimeters per day and is about 3 mm wide. Single tracks or multiple tracks may be present, depending on the severity of infection. CLM is usually found in parts of the body that have had unprotected contact with contaminated soil or sand, often bare feet or skin not covered by clothing. There are photos at the CDC link

Ultramar Car ferry for Isla Mujeres-Punta Sam route arrives, with two other ferries for Cozumel
There's an aerial photo of the freighter showing the three Ultramar ferries more clearly, at the link. TVIM reports that two will serve the Playa del Carmen-Cozumel route and the other is the car ferry for the Punta Sam-Isla Mujeres route. The freighter, Xiang Yun Kou traveled 22 days from Greece, and is currently anchored to the northeast of Isla Mujeres. The ferries are expected to go into operation in January, after completing paperwork & permits.


From  por esto Link to their Isla Mujeres articles & photos

Port remains closed for small boats  
Se mantiene el puerto cerrado[+] Ver masFull article at this link 

  Dec. 26   Small boats under forty feet were allowed to navigate within the Bay and between the island and Puerto Juarez, but were restricted from going out into the open seas. This is due to east northeast winds of 25-35 km/hr causing waves of 1.2 to 1.5 meters, which could continue for the next 24-36 hours.
    The Harbor Master also explained that they have been reviewing documents and safety equipment since Dec. 15 and about 70 vessels have been verified to date at the docks of the various cooperatives. He also mentioned that they have rendered aid to two private vessels that experienced mechanical failures. 

Nautical activity
        According some members of tourism cooperatives, demand is quite good and they expect it to increase in the next days, although they regretted that with the current climatic conditions their activity is quite limited because they can only sell tours to "El Farito" in the Bay. 
         The current east and northeast winds favor the fishermen because these winds cause an increase in the production of lobster, which was explained by some men of the Justicia Social cooperative, who had just arrived from the Contoy fishing camps to deliver the catches they had obtained in the last days. 
      Although sailing from Contoy to Isla Mujeres could be considered a flagrant violation of the law considering the closure of the port, the state leader of the fishing sector and president of the Social Justice cooperative, Baltazar Gómez Catzín, said that at times, conditions could represent a risk to Nautical tourism are not risky for the fishermen, much more experienced and knowledgeable about the sea. 
        "The fishermen themselves take their precautions, sometimes the port opens in the Caribbean but they do not leave because they consider that there is still a lot of swell, however, if it is closed but they see that there is no danger, they leave".  
         He clarified that this is always done with prior knowledge of the Harbor Master's Office and the Mexican Navy, in the sense that they first ask these authorities if they can leave.  "Of course, at times, we will not ask for permission to dive because it is risky, but we will go  out to pull nets, to look for them or to return from Contoy, as in the case of the fishermen who have just arrived". 
       Regarding the production in the cooperative, Mr. Gómez Catzín commented that in the previous week, three tons of whole lobster were brought in, both alive and dead, and approximately 50 kilos of tail, as well as about a ton of assorted fish products, were delivered to the

Occupancy expected to reach 100% 
Isla Mujeres alcanzará el 100 %[+] Ver masFull article at this link

Irregularities in high season  
Temporada alta con irregularidades.. [+] Ver masFull article at this link
   Por Esto points out that some tour boats are having their passengers disembark directly on the beach, to avoid paying the fees for using a pier, although they are causing risk of injury to their passenger, who could fall moving from the boat to the beach. It is also noted that there are boats which are only licensed as tour boats, who are transporting passengers with luggage, who offer rates slightly below the high rates for tourists charged by the Ultramar and Marinsa ferries. Boats that are violating the rules include those operating out of Puerto Juarez, and could be observed on Tuesday unloading passengers at Playa Centro, near the "Barrio de los Pescadores".
      Lanchero (small boat operators) who are complying with the regulations say they have complained about these irregular activities to the Harbor Master's office, but the officials rarely intervene, and tourists are disembarking on the beaches in plain view of everyone.

Medical evacuation at sea by Navy   
De vacaciones al hospital . [+] Ver masFull article at this link
 Although the headline says "Vacations at the hospital", the article is about the Naval evacuation of patient with symptoms of appendicitis. I'll translate that article tomorrow. A previous article said the Community Hospital of Isla Mujeres would be open 24 hours, but would only be treating emergency cases on Christmas & New Year's.

Christmas Eve without incident  
“Saldo blanco” en la Nochebuena+] Ver masFull article at this link

Doubling the number of hotel rooms in the municipality 
Se duplicará la oferta hotelera.. [+] Ver masFull article at this link

     Due to construction in the Continental Zone, the number of hotels rooms in the municipality is expected to nearly double in the upcoming year. At the end of 2017, new construction is underway on four luxury hotels and two expansions for a total of 3599 new rooms. If all of these are inaugurated in the upcoming fiscal year, the municipality of Isla Mujeres will have a total of 7685 rooms which is nearly double the current  number of 4086. The new hotels are Hotel Lúxury, with 498 rooms; Riu, 753; Gran Palladium, 753 and Atelier, 593. Resorts undergoing expansion are Fines Hotel with 500 rentals and Villas del Palmar with 105. Riu will begin construction in January and the others are currently in progress, and expected to be completed in 2018. 
   Currently there are 2371 hotel rooms in the Continental Zone (which would indicate there are 1715 on the island, since there are a total of 4086 in the municipality).

Christmas Eve without incident
 “Saldo blanco” en la NochebuenaVer masFull article at this link

Isla Mujeres news briefs  
Breves de Isla Mujeres] Ver masFull article at this link


 Noticias de  Diario de Quintana Roo's Isla articles & photos LINK
  This blog is brought to you by....
View from the rooms.

MaraVilla Caribe   Bed & Beach    Three rentals with large glass doors overlooking our white sand beach and the beautiful Caribbean sea, with  kitchenettes & free WIFI. In the coastal neighborhood of  Bachilleres, among upscale villas & boutique hotelitos, convenient to downtown or the colonias, yet separate.  Quiet & Private.   
 Kitchen in a large studio. (Sur & Norte are identical)
Kitchenette in small room, Medio. There's a table & chairs across from it & a double bed.
A large slider opens from each of the 3 rooms onto the patio where each has a table & chairs, hammock & clotheslines. The BBQ is behind the pole, and the outdoor shower is outa the pic at left.
Large studio (Norte), I'm standing in the kitchen. A queen & single bed.

Free amenities such as hammocks, bikes, outdoor shower, portable beach chairs & beach towels, washer, loungers. Breathtaking panoramic views from the rooftop terrace. Upstairs room also available.   Downtown is  ~ a mile away; if you don't feel like walking or biking, flag a $2 taxi. Parking. You can enjoy the music & crowds downtown, then come home our quiet neighborhood of Bachilleres where you'll  sleep to the sounds of the sea.$275/$325/$425 wk   $40/50/$65nt  Monthly Discounts

Large studio (Sur) with Queen & Single bed. Slider door & view are behind me.

Fine dining a few steps away at Da Luisa or try the traditional neighborhood eateries a couple blocks farther. Within ten minutes walk are the restaurants Mango Cafe, Brisas, Manolitos,  Green Verde, Kash Kechen Chuc, and the large department store-grocery Chedraui. Visit marinas, bars, & beach clubs that are minutes away by bike or on foot. Attend Yoga classes a couple villas away at hotelito Casa Ixchel. Fresh juice, produce & tortillas a few blocks away in the village, as well as a variety of other stores and small local restaurants. It takes 20-30  minutes to walk downtown.


December Events
Provided by MaraVilla Caribe & Isla Mujeres Daily News & Events

Nov. 28-Dec. 8 Annual Festivities honoring the Patron Saint: Our Lady of Immaculate Conception
  Which include a small carnival, a bullring, nightly performances on the Town Square (which start at 8p), and a boat procession on Dec. 8th, as well as private celebrations by the 20+ groups involved in the festivities.  The horse procession is scheduled for Dec. 2, starting at 1p going to the colonias & the Sacred Heart Church, and finishing at the ring at the north end of the runway, where there will be cowboy-horse performances. Events at the ring begin at 6:30 except Nani Namu.

 The comic bullfights with matadors of diminutive stature are Tues. 5th & Tues. 12th. There's a Lasso tournament on Sun, Dec.10th. All events at the ring at the north end of the runway start at 6:30p, except Nani Namu & the horse procession.

Fri & Sat. Dec 1 & 2  M.C. Mala Noche will celebrate their first anniversary this weekend at the Casa de la Cultura starting at 11 am on Saturday and at Playa Centro on Sunday with live music, competitions, and other fun activities.

Sun. Dec. 3 Noches Magicas 8p Town Square with the DIF Senior Citizen Dance Troupe and singers Rebens Garcia and Aldahir Davila

You can drop off donations of toys at Rueben's restaurant, across from the Mercado on Guerrero. Kids in Mexico receive presents on King's Day/Dia de los Reyes on Jan. 6

Full moon Sun. Dec. 3
                                                                    Sunset ~6p
Dec. 3  6:30
Dec. 4  7:30
Dec. 5   8:33
Dec. 6   9:37
Dec. 7  10:39
Dec. 8  11:39
 Wed, Dec 6 at 5:00 p.m. Casa de la Cultura   Zumba class for 1 Billion Rising to Prevent Violence Against Women

 Thurs. Dec. 7 Artist Fair Casa de la Cultura 3-8p

Fri. Dec. 8 at 4:30pm Christmas Youth Lightning Tournament on the Comex soccer court for Futbol Rapido soccer, in colonia Salina Chica.

Thurs. Dec. 14  at 9am Public Audience with the Governor at the El Pescador baseball field

 Sun. Dec.10 Noches Magicas 8p Town Square

Mon. Dec.11  There will be a gathering in the evening at the coastal chapel dedicated to Guadalupe in Salina Chica, probably with Mariachis, to sing Las Mañanitas and honor her. 

Mon. Dec. 11 Town Square 6p. Lighting of the Christmas Lights and performance by the Academy of Jazz, Passion, & Dance

Tues. Dec. 12 Dia de Guadalupe, the Patron Saint of Mexico.There is usually a run in the morning from the downtown church to Punta Sur to the Guadalupe Chapel.There is usually a procession in the afternoon with children dressed up as Juan Diego, shepherds, and shepherdesses, probably between the Chapel Guadalupana and the downtown church,

The holiday period in Mexico from Dec. 12 to Jan. 6 is called Guadalupe-Reyes (from Dia de Guadalupe to Dia de los Reyes/King's Day). 

Thurs. Dec.14 Artist Fair Casa de la Cultura  3-8p

Dec, 16-24 Posadas Navidenas
During the Posadas, there is usually a dance on the Town Square, featuring regional dances & costumes from different states of Mexico. The schools may have Posada plays, which are reenactments of Mary & Joseph being refused shelter. Posada means 'inn'.

 Sun. Dec. 17 You're invited to join the Christmas Caravan on Sunday with your decorated vehicle, starting in front of the kindergarten "Enriqueta Camarillo" at 6p. (That's where the road is very wide by Casa Ixchel hotelito prolongacion Aeropuerto, just north of col. Salina Chica. & just south of MaraVilla Caribe B&B & the Bachilleres dome.)

Sun. Dec. 17 Boxing Event Sunday at 7pm at El Pescador 

Sun. Dec.17 Noches Magicas 8p Town Square the final Noches Magicas performances for 2017. You are invited to enjoy Christmas dances performed by the students of the Women's Institute of Quintana Roo, live music by Hiraldo & his Cuban Big Band, and a comedy show. Free.
Thurs. Dec. 21 Artist Fair Casa de la Cultura 3-8p

Thurs. Dec. 21 Winter Solstice  

Sat. Dec. 23 5:30p - 8:30p Golf Cart Parade with residents tossing toys & treats to children

Sun. Dec. 24  Christmas Eve  Usually the last ferry is cancelled and some businesses may be closed, especially in the evening, while families celebrate together.Noches Magicas is suspended.

Mon. Dec. 25 Christmas Usually the first ferry is cancelled.

Thurs. Dec.28 Artist Fair Casa de la Cultura 3-8p

Thurs. Dec. 28 Wednesday  Dia de los Santos Innocentes A day of practical jokes, similar to "April Fool's Day"

Sun. Dec.31 New Year's Eve celebration on the Town Square. Tables can be purchased in advance, details TBA. The last ferry is usually cancelled.Noches Magicas is suspended.

Jan. 1 New Year's Day People observe the sunrise at Punta Sur The first ferries are usually suspended.

 Celebrating New Year's in Isla Mujeres
   To celebrate New Year's Eve, some families set up tables in the side streets with pinatas strung overhead, and dine on turkey stuffed with seasoned ground meat, while others crowd the Town Square for live music, dancing, and fireworks. Each neighborhood brings in the New Year with a bang, and the skies explode with color in all directions.
     During the NYE countdown, there is a tradition of eating twelve uvas de buenas suerte (grapes of good luck), each representing a month, with a toast of champagne or cider. The party on the town square continues all night long. At the other end of the isle, people gather at Punta Sur to greet the first rays of the sun at the eastern-most point in Mexico.  
     Other customs include cleaning your house on New Year's Eve & sweeping out bad luck. Wearing red underwear could bring you love in the New Year, or  your white undies may bring you peace, while yellow represents wealth. Those who hope to travel should grab an empty suitcase and carry it around the room or the block, and set it by the door. If you drop a shoe on New Year's morn and it lands "boca arriba" (face up)  you will enjoy good luck in the upcoming year. 
The old year is represented by a life sized character called El Viejo, The Old Man, who is later filled with fireworks and set ablaze. He may resemble a politician, and he is usually holding cigars & tequila. Fireworks are everywhere, and their names are metralletas (literally "machine guns" – but it means fire crackers), cañones (larger fire crackers), voladores (rockets in many different sizes), chifladores (whistlers), and barre pies ("foot sweepers", that spin on the ground & shoot sparks).
      Kids receive toys on Dia de los Reyes, January 6, when families, friends, and coworkers share rosca de reyes. King's cake, usually with hot chocolate. If you get the Baby Jesus,it means you'll be hosting a party & providing the tamales on Candlemas Day, Feb. 2.

 Wednesday, Jan. 3 at the Town Square at 8p: Ballet Folkloric Fuego Nuevo de Encarnacion Diaz Jalisco, with live music. Free. Special Noches Magicas performance.

Jan 7-17 Art Festival & Exhibition “Festival de Arte Mutuo” / "Mutual Art Festival". 17 artists creating six murals at various locations around the isle, children's workshops, and an exhibition at the Casa de la Cultura with art on sale.
  Sources for Weather Information:
LINK to Civil Protection Q Roo weather bulletin  (Spanish)
LINK to Mexico National Weather Service (Spanish)
 LINK to satellite images for the Mexico National Weather Service (Yucatan peninsula is under Satellite GOES Este, I recommend "Animacion" (it used to be in my blog margin, until Blogger became incompatible with it).
LINK to a private weather station on Isla Mujeres   

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