Jim Cook presents “Mexico Adventures” at the next meeting of Open Circle, Sunday, November 14, 10:30 a.m., at the Lake Chapala Society (LCS).
Cook retired after 30 years of work as a union and community organizer. He and his wife Carole moved from Oregon to Ajijic in 2007.
Since his arrival, Cook has made it a point to learn as much as possible about Mexican history and culture. He and Carole have visited many of Mexico’s colonial cities and ancient pre-Hispanic ruins.
They chronicle their journeys in their photo-journal blog called Jim and Carole’s Mexico Adventure. Since 2007, the blog has attracted almost two million page views from people in over 130 countries and territories on every continent in the world, including Antarctica. Cook’s stories and photos have appeared in the Ojo del Lago and other lakeside publications. In addition, his photos have been published in several books in English, Spanish, Danish and Russian.
Three civic organizations are holding a fundraiser Thanksgiving festival Saturday, November 13, noon to 8 p.m. at the Salon de Eventos La Huerta in West Ajijic. Enjoy live music by The Crooners and soloist Danali Sandoval, baile folkorico, a tango dance presentation by Joel de la O., a pie-eating contest, bingo, loteria, food and beverage offerings, arts and crafts and more. All Covid protocols will be followed and masks should be worn.
Tickets, 80 pesos, will be sold at the door on the day of the event and include entrance in a raffle for a turkey and restaurant dinners.
Monday, November 15, from 4 to 5 p.m., Lake Chapala Chapter of Democrats Abroad presents a free Zoom presentation on “Expat Taxation Challenges: Explore possible solutions that could save you time and money,” featuring Patrick Oden (owner of Lakeside Tax Service and Certifying Acceptance Agent of the I.R.S.) and Ilona de Borhegyi.
Oden will speak on the unique taxation issues faced by U.S. citizens living abroad, including foreign account reporting and compliance; taxation of rentals and foreign investments; and non-resident spouses and dependents.
Oden and his team specialize in tax preparation for Americans and Canadians who live abroad, and for Mexicans who have U.S.-based income sources.
De Borhegyi has been an active member of Democrats Abroad since 1985. She will provide a short overview on how the Democrats Abroad Global Taxation Force is researching U.S. tax policy as it affects Americans living outside the United States, and how it is working to develop and execute initiatives aimed at enacting reforms to resolve adverse impacts. De Borhegyi is a dual citizen of the U.S. and European Union, and is also subject to Italian taxation. She will draw from her experience in having filed U.S. taxes from overseas for 36 years on non-U.S.-earned income, and living as an expat retiree in Europe and Mexico.
Secular Buddhism will be the subject at the Lakeside Freethinkers virtual Zoom meeting Wednesday, November 17, 4 p.m. Can one be a secular Buddhist? How about a secular Mormon; a secular Catholic or even a secular Baptist? Also, the book “Travels with Epicurus” by Daniel Klein will be discussed.
Using international insurance in Mexico
Wednesday, November 17, the Lake Chapala Birders will meet at 8 a.m. at the entrance to Cristiania Park in Chapala. You should see an interesting selection of species in the park and on the shore of the lake. At about 10 a.m., the birders will go to “La Palapa de Don Juan” for breakfast and to complete the bird list.
How to get there: From Ajijic go to the traffic light at the main street of Chapala (Av. Madero), cross straight over and keep going straight for five blocks. Turn left at the T intersection and park on the right, near the park entrance. Bird walks are open to all those interested in birds, both beginners and experienced birders.
Casa Cacau will hold an artisanal chocolate tasting at the next Bingo Lago event Wednesday, November 17, 1 p.m, at El Sombrero Restaurant (next to the Pemex gas station in Ajijic). A bingo package of 10 games costs 200 pesos. The event is dog friendly and there is a smoker’s terrace. Bingo Lago is a fundraiser for Have Hammer … Will Travel, which teaches Mexican youth valuable life skills through woodworking and carpentry.
Save a pooch
Dog behavior workshop
Dog trainer Guillermo Diaz holds a workshop on canine instincts and behavior management, with on-site training, at Rancho Santa Monica Campestre, Av. del Jaguey 1 in Chapala (entrance just north of Libramiento entrance). The course is scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, November 20 and 21. Information: Cindy Martin, 331-171-8628.
• Nora Maldonado leads a class on Mexican traditional chocolate Friday, December 3, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. held on the grass next to the gazebo. In this workshop you will learn to identify and recognize the fruit of cocoa, study the process cocoa goes through from seed to the end result of a delicious table chocolate. Maldonado is the owner of Luna Cacau in La Floresta, which serves amazing chocolate drinks. Enrollment ends November 30.
• Patricia, an Ajijic native, will teach you how to create a traditional piñata using clay jarras (jars). Get ready for the posadas! Class dates are Monday and Wednesday, December 6 and 8, 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on the art patio.
• Ksenia Klimov will hold a mushroom seminar Thursday, December 9, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the gazebo. The course will be practical and theoretical. Learn how to grow fungi and then do so!
Klimov is a biologist specialized in mycology and immunology. Her main interest is research on the medicinal use of fungi and their cultivation. Recently she founded with her business partner a company called Griibok dedicated to the sale and education of medicinal mushrooms. She is dedicated to the cultivation, research, scientific dissemination of mushrooms and teaching courses on mushroom cultivation. Enrollment ends December 4.
These classes are for LCS members only. Enroll via the LCS website: lakechapalasociety.com.