11/30/2007

Random Observations

There are tons of things I love about Mazatlan. Some of them are probably unique to Mazatlan and some are similar throughout Mexico. Here are a few:

  • Bike Cops - Mazatlan has a ton of them. They wear t-shirts and shorts with a gun clipped to their belt. They ride all over, not just on the malecon, and they are friendly to everyone. I don't know why, but they just make the city feel more approachable and friendly.

  • Mosquitoes - I have only been aware of a couple of mosquitoes in Mazatlan, ever! That's a really surprising thing, really, given the heat and humidity here. But there is a good reason for the lack of mosquitoes, and that is the city's program to reduce mosquito populations. They have trucks that go around the city spraying at night. They also go door to door pretty frequently and come inside and to your patios to check for standing water. If you have a fountain they will test it and put a treatment in it if necessary. A chalk mark goes next to your front door when they've checked your house. This is obviously a very successful program.

  • Tortillas - they are just so good! Need I say more? Those plastic bags full of tortillas in supermarkets in the US are a pale imitation of the real thing. Talk about flavor, and texture - and versatility. Yum.

  • The Malecon - We are just in love with the malecon, or the sidewalk beside the ocean that in Mazatlan is 6 1/2 miles long. Every day when we walk the dogs we marvel at how great it is to have this nearby. People walk, jog, do sit-ups, chat, rollerblade, bike, and a lot more every day there. It has been extra busy the last few days because the marathon is here this Sunday and people are already starting to arrive. Part of the marathon route is along the malecon (but in the street) and we will crowd in with the rest of the city to cheer them along.

  • Food - The baked potato guy on Zaragosa. The yummy handmade gumdrops. Tortillas. Salsa. Aguachile. Roasted zuchinni. Raspados. Bread from the health food store.

  • English Library - It isn't large, but it is good. Real fiction, not just paperback vacation reads. It's a wonderful resource - one I have already enjoyed and where I hope to volunteer soon.

  • The beach - This should be obvious, but needs to be included. It is so wonderful to live in a place where when you have a couple hours free you can spend it in the ocean. Put your swimsuit under your shorts, throw a book, a towel and some sunscreen in a bag - grab your boogie board and off you go. Drive down the malecon until around the Pacifico Brewery monument....park, and walk down the beach until you see a beach restaurant you like. Sit down, buy a beer, swim. Repeat as many times as you desire.
Can you tell that we are enjoying ourselves? Isn't that what retirement is supposed to be?

11 comments:

midorik said...

Tortilla - is it corn one in Mazatlan? I've heard northern mexico prefers wheet flour one.
Probably bike cops are better in shape than those on cars/trucks with tight uniforms.

Paul said...

We get corn tortillas at the local tortillaria, but restaurants often ask whether you prefer maiz or harina. We prefer maiz.

CancunCanuck said...

Mazatlan sounds lovely, I wish we had something like the Malecon and I am sooo envious of the English library! And having the beach near the Pacifico brewery? My mouth is watering, yum, fresh beer!

bloglogger said...

Hi, Paul&Nancy: I'm a mazatlecan, was born here and lived my entire life in Mazatlan. I just want to thank you for your wonderful description of my hometown. Now that you've been living here for a while, tell me: Which side of the Rio Bravo is the true Land of Freedom? May you have a pleasant stay in Mazatlan.

SuzyQ said...

Hello Nancy and Paul

My wife and I fell in love with Mazatlan in Ocober 2007 when we vacationed there. We toured the town and loved the old city. The thought of retiring and moving to another country is a bit daunting. But we are plodding our way through it. Congratulations on your home and the best of luck with you renovations. We have thought about possibly buying a house in need of renovations and tackling the job. It seems many people do it. I understand there are many stories about the construction business there, both good and bad. We are not yet sure which area to buy in but are planning to go back this year and look at real estate. The prices seem to be a bit high in Mazatlan but we are determined to get there. I have written to several blogs in an appeal for information concerning contruction costs and the cost of health insurance in Mazatlan. If you are interested in sharing your knowledge with us it would be greatly appreciated. Our e-mail address is sueandme@hotmail.com.
Thank you

Sue and Fred

mexpat said...

Oh MAN! I'm totally living vicariously through you! We'll be in Mexico this week and planning to move first week of Jan if everything wraps up properly.

In the meantime, I loved your post, in fact, I think I gained three pounds just reading about the food (of course then I ended up in my swim suit in the last point)! :)

mOOners in Mexico said...

Hola Paul y Nancy
You picked a great winter to leave the Pacific Northwest!! Timing really is everything.
We're near Jocotepec in Roca Azul with other American and Canadian RV'ers...having a blast! We're all here for the same experiences with people, culture, and food. Good stuff. So happy for you to be in love with Mazatlan. The baseball is a large lure for us (SF Giants fans)and we hope to attend Venados games someday.
We'll head to the beach one of these days --- going to Tequila Wednesday! We'll come through Mazatlan on our way home in May and perhaps we can get together and share cervezas and many happy stories
Adios amigos,
Kris y Ken y Duffie
mOOners in Mexico
http://mooners.squarespace.com

Nancy said...

Hi Everyone!

Thanks so much for your comments!

Bloglogger: We love it here, can't you tell? And we moved here full time, selling everything up north. So I think you have your answer!

CancunCanuck: I didn't know Cancun didn't have a malecon - I thought it was usual to have one in Mexican coastal towns. It is really a great place to go and hang out.

Sue and Fred: Construction projects anywhere are hard, and the costs are probably unique to each area. I'd suggest you go to MazInfo yahoo group (link to the right on the main page), join and ask people their experiences. We are only doing a few projects here so we can't really contribute much. For info on health insurance, I suggest you call Juan Chong and ask. He speaks excellent English.
Tel.Mazatlan (669)982-0260
Tel.USA (619)819-9295

Mexpat: Have a great trip! We look forward to reading about it!

Mooners: Whenever you come through Maz, we'd love to join you for a beer and even baseball if the time is right!

Eating Dust said...

Hi,

I just found your blog last night. My husband and I are coming to Mazatlan at the end of April and we are really excited to stay in the Centro of Mazatlan.
I was wondering if you could tell me if accessing the health food store is pretty easy? We work in a food cooperative in Wisconsin and always like to check out the health food stores where ever we go.
Thanks a lot for writing, the beautiful pictures and the links on your blog.

-kt

Nancy said...

Eating Dust,

The health food store is on Zaragosa almost across from the square. It's easy to find.

Eating Dust said...

Thanks Nancy!