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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone!! My husband is considering moving us all to Ajijic or lake chapala for his job. I have to say I am very skeptical about it all. I worry about our safety and where our kids will go to school. They are 7 and 3. I also worry about pests such as snakes, spiders, and scorpions!!

If anyone has kids, where did they go to school. I don't really want to live in Guadalajara, but I know there are good schools there. Any good schools I. Lake chapala?

Also, how am I not supposed to worry about all the animals I mentioned?

I am paranoid about it all. My husband is all gung-ho with it but I am the one who is hesitant and afraid. Any advice? Thanks!

Faith
 

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I don't live in the Guadalajara/Chapala are so I can't answer the school question.

Bus as for the critters; I live about 3 hours away from the Guadalajara area and I have never seen a snake, see very few spiders (less than what I had in my previous house near Chicago) and the scorpions are the tiny ones whose sting is barely even noticeable. You say "ouch" and it mildly stings for five seconds and then goes away. We only find one every six weeks or so in the house and we just sweep it out the door. I was only stung once in three years and it was nothing.
 
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Many of the posters here are retired, childless or old farts, so it might be hard to find info for kids in Chapala. :D:D (I don't live in the Chapala area, but I do have a 10 yr old. She couldn't get the same education for twice the money somewhere outside of MX, unless it was in the form of high property taxes and a public school)

From other blog posts on the web, I have seen the names of Instituto Loyola de Chapala for school, and Centro Escolar Decroly for little ones. Both were described as bilingual and the poster and their kids were very happy. Just a start for you.

(P.S. - before any more posters jump on you, the town is "Chapala", and the body of water next to it is "Lake Chapala". Good luck in your research, and stop getting all sweaty worrying about the small stuff like bugs or snakes or scorpions. The move will be great for your kids.)
 

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Hello everyone!! My husband is considering moving us all to Ajijic or lake chapala for his job. I have to say I am very skeptical about it all. I worry about our safety and where our kids will go to school. They are 7 and 3. I also worry about pests such as snakes, spiders, and scorpions!!

If anyone has kids, where did they go to school. I don't really want to live in Guadalajara, but I know there are good schools there. Any good schools I. Lake chapala?

Also, how am I not supposed to worry about all the animals I mentioned?

I am paranoid about it all. My husband is all gung-ho with it but I am the one who is hesitant and afraid. Any advice? Thanks!

Faith
This may sound downright silly. In fact, it may well BE downright silly.

But I had an irrational fear of scorpions my entire life, despite never, to my recollection, seeing one in person outside a zoo--I've always lived in very northern climes.

Along came hidden object games you can download from the internet. Many of them have a "dark" look to them, and frequently, the list of things to find includes a scorpion.

For some reason, seeing them, over and over, even just the pictures, helped to acclimate me to their scariness. Garter snakes and harmless black snakes were frequent visitors to my yard years ago. We'd built a house near cornfields, and they loved the easier slither of manicured grass, I guess.

You got it; I'm no longer frightened of snakes.

Look at lots of pictures of what you are frightened of. Find out which ones are native, not to MX, but to the area where you plan to move.

YES, there are nasties in MX. There are also rattlesnakes in southern MN.
 

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Don't take any scorpions lightly ... like mentioned above. Some say small one are the worst but there are three or four types in Mexico. When building my house we would find them in rock and brick piles so always check things outside that you pickup. Been living in the house a year and not one inside. They like their peace and quiet so will shy away from active clean places.

Know where your local Centro de Salud (Free Clinic) is because they have anti venom injections
 

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A word about scorpions I learned from RVGRINGO - they are very territorial. IF you build a house on their migrations path they will go over, under and through it, they do not change their course or give up their territory very easily.

Saying that, it is why when we chose a place to go and live (although it was not a major consideration) we took a well established area, which had proven scorpion free.

But, that is not the point - Lakeside is a sleepy area, and those, like me, want that. There is much more to be concerned about/study about than scorpions. With all due respect, it cannot be done on the internet, you need to come, see, live and then decide. I previous poster noted that Lakeside has many, many old farts, of which I will be proud to be one. I must also assume that there must be good schools, but who knows. I have read here that a private school costs less than $5000 USD a year! You can't beat that with a stick. Medical coverage is a major asset.

Oh, if you want culture for your kids, Lakeside is so close to Guad that you can take them to concerts, theater, the opera and museums. Guad is a city of 8.2 million people, you are not stranding your kids in adobe huts with burros. (There is a really upscale mall there - unbelievable!)

Your kids will still have the internet, satellite TV and Vonage - so they won't feel too isolated. But be aware, Ajijic is a town that goes to sleep at night, relatively early. Restaurants close at 9:00 pm in general. If I had kids, even teens, I suppose I'd raise them there: they would find out about the world I was raised in, where life was slower, people were friendlier and respect was rampant.

Good luck to you.

BTW - is you use the SEARCH function on the Forum, you'll tie into a lot of information and the people who supplied it. IT is a good tool.

Faith - you need to live up to your name - your kids will be in a clean environment, with healthy air and good fresh food, they will find kids will be friendly (after a while) and you and your husband will find adult people that are friendly. A word of advice, don't let hubby fall so much in love that he goes and buys a house right away - rent one long term first - it is a cardinal rule. [read more about that on the thread Buy or Rent]
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thank you for your heart felt post, FHBOY. I am creature of habit and do not like to leave what is unknown to me. My husband really wants to come due to the opportunity for his career and for the life it could give our kids. I do not want to let him down because I love him with all my heart, but I am not sure it is right for us. He said he would support my decision, but I would feel terrible about it if he really wanted to go and we didn't because of me, know what I mean? I still have so many questions and so many doubts. He is trying so hard to answer them for me and he has left the decision up to me. I know I just need to do it if we are going to do it. At this point, I am totally unsure about what I want to do. Thanks again for your reply.

Faith


A word about scorpions I learned from RVGRINGO - they are very territorial. IF you build a house on their migrations path they will go over, under and through it, they do not change their course or give up their territory very easily.

Saying that, it is why when we chose a place to go and live (although it was not a major consideration) we took a well established area, which had proven scorpion free.

But, that is not the point - Lakeside is a sleepy area, and those, like me, want that. There is much more to be concerned about/study about than scorpions. With all due respect, it cannot be done on the internet, you need to come, see, live and then decide. I previous poster noted that Lakeside has many, many old farts, of which I will be proud to be one. I must also assume that there must be good schools, but who knows. I have read here that a private school costs less than $5000 USD a year! You can't beat that with a stick. Medical coverage is a major asset.

Oh, if you want culture for your kids, Lakeside is so close to Guad that you can take them to concerts, theater, the opera and museums. Guad is a city of 8.2 million people, you are not stranding your kids in adobe huts with burros. (There is a really upscale mall there - unbelievable!)

Your kids will still have the internet, satellite TV and Vonage - so they won't feel too isolated. But be aware, Ajijic is a town that goes to sleep at night, relatively early. Restaurants close at 9:00 pm in general. If I had kids, even teens, I suppose I'd raise them there: they would find out about the world I was raised in, where life was slower, people were friendlier and respect was rampant.

Good luck to you.

BTW - is you use the SEARCH function on the Forum, you'll tie into a lot of information and the people who supplied it. IT is a good tool.

Faith - you need to live up to your name - your kids will be in a clean environment, with healthy air and good fresh food, they will find kids will be friendly (after a while) and you and your husband will find adult people that are friendly. A word of advice, don't let hubby fall so much in love that he goes and buys a house right away - rent one long term first - it is a cardinal rule. [read more about that on the thread Buy or Rent]
 

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Thank you for your heart felt post, FHBOY. I am creature of habit and do not like to leave what is unknown to me. My husband really wants to come due to the opportunity for his career and for the life it could give our kids. I do not want to let him down because I love him with all my heart, but I am not sure it is right for us. He said he would support my decision, but I would feel terrible about it if he really wanted to go and we didn't because of me, know what I mean? I still have so many questions and so many doubts. He is trying so hard to answer them for me and he has left the decision up to me. I know I just need to do it if we are going to do it. At this point, I am totally unsure about what I want to do. Thanks again for your reply.

Faith
I understand your hesitation about moving to Mexico, especially since it would involve your children as well as you and your husband. Have you traveled much out outside the US? Have you ever been to Mexico? Before you and your husband come to a decision, would it be possible for you to visit the area where you might move to get at least a superficial idea of what it's like?
 

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Thank you for your heart felt post, FHBOY. I am creature of habit and do not like to leave what is unknown to me. My husband really wants to come due to the opportunity for his career and for the life it could give our kids. I do not want to let him down because I love him with all my heart, but I am not sure it is right for us. He said he would support my decision, but I would feel terrible about it if he really wanted to go and we didn't because of me, know what I mean? I still have so many questions and so many doubts. He is trying so hard to answer them for me and he has left the decision up to me. I know I just need to do it if we are going to do it. At this point, I am totally unsure about what I want to do. Thanks again for your reply.

Faith
I know that it seems dangerous to move to a place that you don't know.

But I truly believe that it's more dangerous to stay where you are comfortable all your life, because you never get the chance to feel comfortable anywhere else.

If I were you, and I'm not, I would tell my husband that I want to take a trip to the Lakeside area to feel what it's like for myself.

Make a point of arranging to meet some of the people who are on this forum, who live Lakeside. Google "Lake Chapala expats" and get in contact with some of the many, many Americans and Canadians who live in the area.

As several have said, most are older. But not all.

This is not just the chance of a lifetime for your husband. It's the chance of a lifetime for you, too.

When you are old and gray, I promise that you will be more proud of the times that you took a leap of faith, than of the times that you huddled down in your safe corner.

I promise.
 

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I understand your hesitation about moving to Mexico, especially since it would involve your children as well as you and your husband. Have you traveled much out outside the US? Have you ever been to Mexico? Before you and your husband come to a decision, would it be possible for you to visit the area where you might move to get at least a superficial idea of what it's like?

I believe too, that if you can, at least come visit the area where you might move to at least get a superficial visit idea of what you like and to see if could work for you and your family. That is what our family did.

We stayed where we thought we wanted to live for two months. We then came a year later, with a three and six year old, and lived in that country for a year. It was not what worked for all of us, and we moved to Mexico. I have nothing bad to say about our journey and very much appreciate how we all have grown and the wonderful places we have seen along with the amazing people we have met.

Your children are young and will adapt very quickly. Fortunately, with young children language is not a barrier.
 

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Faith: There is a middle ground between total commitment and none: a long extended stay. With your kids as young as they are, a bit of missed school will not affect them. You seem to have never lived anywhere else, and that's OK, but I need to share a story with you.

When our sons were going off the college they both had similar decisions to make. Stay where we lived and go to the fine schools or go off somewhere. The older one we sent to Santa Fe after he'd assumed we'd want him to stay local. The younger went to study and then return to live for three years in Japan. Why did we encourage them? Because, we told them, if you miss this opportunity now, when you're young, when you've got less responsibilities, one day, when you are older you'll have a regret of not doing it.

Faith, I'd rather live my life regretting what I have done then not what I haven't done. It means you make mistakes, it means facing your fears but I point you to a quote by Eleanor Roosevelt you can find on the web about that called The Encouraging Thing.

Do not say yes to your husband because you love him and want to please him, which is a good thing (really a good thing), but use the compromise of an extended stay to see if you can say yes to the hidden adventurer you have inside you. Will it be right? Will it be comfortable? You will never find out at your keyboard, in your house, in your city...life is not a dress rehearsal, it is not a spectator sport - to really live you must try.

And to show your kids that looking and trying, and possibly failing is not something bad or scarey. We only really learn from our mistakes and the only mistake is not learning from them

Buena Suerte - and go for it!
 
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