Friday, December 27, 2019

Isla Mujeres Daily News & Events Friday, December 27

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 Foreign tourists pay 265 pesos round trip on the new 200-seat Naveganto catamaran ferry which departs hourly from Puerto Juarez (API pier) at 15 minutes before the hour and from Isla Mujeres at 15 minutes after (6:15a-8:45p). The frequency should increase when their two other catamarans arrive, probably in January.
Round trip tourist tickets on the Ultramar ferries from Gran Puerto are still 300 pesos, but it looks like a hike to 360 pesos is in sight, probably after the start of the year.
#1 photo from Por Esto, #2 from Isla Fun Tours-Thanks!
The other Naveganto prices are here...

Trash pickup on New Year's Eve is 1p, and the collection crews will be off in the evening.

Tickets for tables at the New Year's Eve celebration on the Town Square will be sold at the main entrance to the Town Hall/Palacio Municipal 10a-8p on Monday & Tuesday, December 30 & 31. They generally include noisemakers & cider & will probably cost at least 1000 pesos and seat ~6-8 people, but that's a guess based on the past. Tickets may sell out early. Two bands. .
I'll be on the roof watching the midnight fireworks downtown & on the mainland. The party goes all night & there will be islanders greeting the first rays of the '20's at Punta Sur. Photo #2 is last year, by Joao.

From the City....

  A posada Christmas party involving local young people and children was held by personnel with the municipal police department in La Gloria, entitled “Una Navidad Mágica con la Policía, and three others were held in the mainland part of the municipality. The Director of Crime Prevention, Tania Galera Gómez, explained, "On the occasion of the holidays we are doing these activities and we want to raise awareness of the importance of maintaining an environment of peace and cordiality inside and outside families as well as strengthen the ties between police and citizenship"
From Proteccion Civil y Bomberos Isla Mujeres Dec. 25, posted ~1p: 
Civil Protection and the Red Cross working together to rescue a young man who fell off the cliff in front of Isla 33. The caption notes it is important to be careful & stay back from the edges of these areas to avoid putting yourself at risk.
 The City will accept natural Christmas trees from January 7th to February 15, 2020 at its collection center next to Mundaca Hacienda between the hours of 9:30am and 3pm, so that they will be recycled and reused in an environmentally friendly manner and won't accumulate along the roads. This is the third year for this program, which involves crushing the trees and the product is later used to enrich soil. 

Due to the work done by this administration for tourism promotion, security, and cleaning, hotel occupancy is high in Isla Mujeres and expected to reach 100% by the end of the year, in the 7000 rooms on the mainland and the island, together. The Director of Tourism spoke about efforts that have been made this year and which will continued, with additional promotion and work to retain the islands impeccable image as a safe and clean destination in 2020.  He said 2.8 million tourists visited Isla Mujeres between January and November 2019, and the total is expected to exceed 3 million by the end of the year. 

Islanders are invited to participate in the 20% property tax discount that continues thru the end of the month and then is 15% in January and February, at the Town Hall or the Police station Monday thru Friday 9a-3:30p

TVisla Mujeres    

VIDEO of rescue The young man's name is given at the end and his family is being sought, and the reporter said he has fractured femurs

   Noti Isla Mujeres     

VIDEO from Dec 22 ~5:30p about the Christmas caravan which was about to depart from downtown (this is another caravan, there was also one on Dec.21st)

VIDEO from yesterday afternoon of Playa Riito.

From  Por Esto :

Young man fell from a cliff  

Joven cayó en el acantilado

On Christmas morning, young man from Honduras, Nixon, 23, who resided in Amplicacion La Gloria, was rescued from a fall from the cliffs in front of Isla 33, which is a distance of about 10 meters and fractured both his femurs. A tourist heard his moans/complaints and emergency services were notified, and with help from Civil Protection and the Bomberos, his rescue took place around 11am. Officials said he was apparently drunk and went too close to the edge of the walkway while walking along the path when he lost his balance and fell onto a beach full of rocks, where the strong impact was apparently cushioned by sand, although not enough to prevent fracturing his legs. Municipal police kept onlookers back while emergency personnel rescued the injured man, with the use of at least five ropes securing the emergency stretcher which was hoisted up a ladder, with a harnessed paramedic assisting. The injured neck and head were secured (as well as his injured legs), and there was about 25 minutes of maneuvering to ensure he was safely up the cliff without sudden movements. He was immediately transferred to the Community Hospital and it is assumed he would be necessary to transfer him to the General Hospital in Cancun.  Allegedly, the  tourist who discovered him said that he made visual and auditory contact with the injured man, who reportedly asked him not to shine his lights on him, speaking from the bottom of the cliff, saying that some people had tried to assault him and ended up pushing him off the cliff, and asking the tourist to call the Red Cross...a conversation that occurred around 11am, supposedly after he had laid there on the coast for several hours.

Total of over 3 million visitors expected for 2019

Más de 3 millones de visitantes

 The total number of visitors to Isla Mujeres in 2019 is expected to exceed 3 million, with around 60% of the passengers who arrive at the Maritime terminal being day-visitors.  Restaurateurs who are members of CANIRAC said their sector is operating at 80 percent, which is expected to increase to 100% by the end of the year.

Many islanders celebrated late on Christmas Eve and slept in on Christmas Day

Despertar isleño al medio día

Dec. 25  The island was quiet on Christmas morning and busier in the afternoon. Many resident families enjoyed their Christmas dinner outside their homes and extended the celebrations afterward, some beyond sunrise.

Accumulation of trash at Transfer Facility  

Rebosando de basura esta Navidad

   Although the Trash Transfer was cleaned out for a short period of time, work on the wastewater network affected the road, and the large trucks that transport the trash to the mainland were unable to enter. This caused the facility to fill again with about 1500 tons of garbage.

Good weather for nautical activities  

Benevolente clima para náuticos de la isla

Dec. 24  Many of the fishermen stayed in port due to the waves farther out to sea, while others fished nearer to the island.  Although the small boats weren't restricted to port, which was opened for general navigation at 7:30a on Tuesday, the recommendation was to be extremely cautions and keep an eye our for changes and hazardous conditions. The temperatures were cooler than expected from the forecast, but were generally pleasant and tourists were enjoying the beaches. It is noted that the local residents are more affected by the cooler weather, because they are accustomed to a mild climate.

Fuel depository installation by CFE

Instalan depósitos de combustible de la CFE

The Federal Electricity Commission began installing two fuel tanks  next to the electricity generating plant at the airfield, for a capacity of 100 cubic meters. The installation should be completed before the end of the year.
    The generators have been used during various electrical interruptions, and the line from Punta Sam that runs underwater supplying the island is scheduled for replacement in 2020. The generator will be available until that work is completed.  The plant may remain after the completion of the submarine cables, which will be installed by an international company.
     The 100 cubic meters of fuel stored there will be sufficient for 24 hours of service. However, replacement trucks can arrive in less than 12 hours.  As of Sunday, there appears to be six tanks with a capacity of 32 cubic meters each, for a total capacity of 196 cubic meters.

Isla Mujeres teams win tournament  

Equipos de Isla Mujeres ganan Copas

The female and male teams of the Club Trigueños, category 2004-2005, won the Copa Yucatán 2019 in Mérida, Yucatán.  Their coach said that several clubs from the southeastern and central parts of Mexico participated. The Most Valuable Player is Delmer Bacelis with 50 points.


  This blog is brought to you by....

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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.

Free amenities such as hammocks,bikes, BBQ grills, safes, portable beach chairs & beach towels, washer & dryer, loungers. Breathtaking panoramic views from the rooftop terrace. Large sliding doors open to a patio & our backyard-beach, overlooking the Caribbean sea. Upstairs room also available. Downtown is  ~ a mile away; if you don't feel like walking,  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
Fine dining a few steps away at Da Luisa or try the neighborhood eateries a couple blocks farther. We provide a list of links & direction to over 20 eateries within ten minutes walk, including Mango Cafe,  Mike's Pizza, Brisas, Rosa Sirena, Manolitos, La Chatita, Green Verde, Kash Kechen Chuc, and the large department store-grocery , Chedraui & local craft brewery.  Visit marinas, bars, & beach clubs that are minutes away by bike or on foot. Attend Yoga classes a couple villas away at Casa Ixchel. Fresh juice, produce & tortillas a few blocks away in the village, as well as a variety of other stores. It takes 20-30  minutes to walk downtown.
Full moon rising over the Caribbean 
December 12   6:46
December 13  7:42
December 14   8:42
December 15  9:44
December 16 10:46
December 17 11:48

Painting by Pamela Haase at MVC
 Sunset  ~6:04-6:16p (start-end/mo) 
Sunrise ~7:08-7:24a (start-end/mo)
December Events 
Provided by MaraVilla Caribe & Isla Mujeres Daily News & Events

Wednesday nights at 8:45p, the group "Isla en Bici" bike around the isle, meeting at Juarez &  Abasolo. Lights required, helmet recommended. LINK

Thursday afternoons ~3p-8p Artist Fair on the Paseo de la Triguena off the Town Square at the malecon by the food trucks. 

Thursday, Nov. 28 The Festival for the Town Saint, Our Lady of Immaculate Conception began
when the icon was removed from her niche. 
 The Cabalgata horse procession is Saturday, Dec. 7th at noon & Por Esto says it will travel from downtown to the colonias. That evening at 7pm is the vehicular caravan around the isle, and at 9pm is the Mass of the Mañanitas with Mariachi.
On her Day, Sunday, Dec. 8th are the Communions (10a) and the procession by the boats in the Bay (3p), with the closing Mass and return to her niche at 6p.

Sunday, Dec. 1 at 7pm on the Town Square--Lighting of the Christmas lights & dance troupe performances!
The Guadalupe-Reyes holiday period begins with the celebrations for the Virgin of Guadalupe, whose day is Dec. 12 and continues thru Dia de los Reyes, Three Kings Day on January 6th.

Wednesday, Dec. 11 The run is after the 7p Mass and here is the route. It begins at the Catholic Church on the Town Square, going toward Mundaca as usual, but then they will go into Sac Bajo, past Dolphin Discovery, returning on that same street, then going right to the Sacred Heart Church in La Gloria and along the Caribbean coastal road to the Capilla/Chapel of Guadalupe in Salina Chica. Singing of Las Mañanitas outside the Chapel of Our Lady of Guadalupe in colonia Salina Chica at ~10:30

Guadalupe pilgrims
Dec. 12. Dia de Guadalupe, patron saint of Mexico. At 3pm is the procession with children dressed up as Juan Diego, and shepherdesses, from the downtown Catholic church on the Town Square to the Guadalupe Chapel in Salina Chica overlooking the Caribbean. Pilgrimages are made in honor of Guadalupe, sometimes adults carry her statue on their back, which is blessed before they return to their homes. 

Thursday, Dec. 12 Full moon rise just after sunset. Some meteors will occur between 8p and dawn, but tomorrow will be the main event. 

Friday, Dec. 13-Geminid Meteor shower peaks and is considered one of the best & "most reliable", because the individual meteors are bright, and they come fast and furious, often in "spurts". This year the fainter ones will be invisible because of the full moon.They begin slowly at ~8p, peak around 3a, and continue until dawn, radiating from a point left of the moon, near a bright star called Castor. Look out over the sea, there's less light pollution, and since they may come in  ~15 minute bursts, there may also be 15 minute periods of inactivity or low activity. 

The Posadas Navidenas take place Dec. 16-24 and usually include at least one event on the Town Square, featuring regional dances and probably costumes from different parts of Mexico. Schools, businesses, City departments, and individuals celebrate the season and comraderie at posada parties. "Posada" means "Inn" and the term commemorates Joseph and Mary seeking shelter for the birth of Jesus, but it's a general term for these seasonal parties. During this period, you'll see groups of children caroling and carrying a branch, singing "La Rama", which is a regional tradition & it's appropriate to reward them with coins.

Saturday, Dec. 21 Winter solstice is December 21

The Annual  "Elmo Christmas Golf Cart Caravan" is Saturday, Dec 21st,  meeting in front of MaraVilla Caribe Bed & Beach (in Bachilleres, in front of the dome, just north of Salina Chica on prolongacion Aeropuerto aka Jesus Martinez Ross) and Casa Ixchel at 5:30, facing south. The procession of decorated carts is led by characters in costume, Elmo, Mickey & Minnie & Santa, and the participants toss candy & toys as they wind south thru the colonias, and then head downtown. Both foreign & Mexican residents participate & everyone's invited...BYOCart & Candy/Toys 

Saturday, Dec. 21 Ursid meteor shower

Tuesday, Dec. 24 Noche Buena, many businesses may close early so employees can celebrate with their families.

Wednesday, Dec. 25 Christmas  Most tourist-oriented businesses will be open 

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

NYE on Town Square by Eduard Joao
Tuesday, Dec. 31 New Year's Eve celebration on the Town Square with a band. Tables can be purchased in advance, and are usually put on sale after Christmas, but they sell out quickly & there's not a lot of advance warning before they are available. The last ferry is usually cancelled, and the first one or two on New Years Day. The celebration begins before midnight and continues until morning. It is traditional for many islanders to greet the dawn at Punta Sur, where the sun touches Mexico first. Some businesses may start late, or be short staffed until later in the day.

 In December, Ruben's charity (link) is very active collecting toy donations & putting together hampers for low income families, to be distributed on Three King's Day, January 6th.

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. .
      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.

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
 LINK to GOES East Band 16 GIF (animation)
LINK to a private weather station on Isla Mujeres

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