The old Newsletter is Dead; Long live the new Newsletter!

This marks the beginning of the 15th volume of the Newsletter. Change is on the agenda.

Gone is the “once a month” frequency; gone the formula 6-8 photos in every Newsletter. From now on, I’m going to write when I feel like it – and no doubt much more frequently – in a variety of formats. Sometimes there will be photos (with commentary, of course), sometimes only photos, sometimes none (rarely: I’m really hooked on Diana’s offerings).

In a way, it will be more like a blog, except that – like the old Newsletter – new articles and albums will be announced to subscribers by e-mail; and full contents will be for subscribers only.

The “Notes” section will be retained, and added to most editions: short notices, news flashes, and ironic commentary.

Meanwhile, there will be a brief recess. I’ve been battling prostate cancer, and the current phase of treatment is leaving me without much “ganas” (a kind of cross between ambition and enthusiasm). I’m pretty tired most of the time. My expectation is that another few weeks should see me through this phase. Meanwhile, we hope you’ll hang in there with us, we think the wait will be worth it.

[This driver is teaching the family business to his oldest child. We had been spending some time in San Martín Tilcajete, and caught a ride to the Azucena Zapoteca restaurant at the crossroads, one of our favorite places to eat.]

Notes:

** Coca Cola looks to be about to take control of much of the water supply in the Valley of Oaxaca, to serve its currently-in-production plant near Tlacolula which makes generic Mezcal. For all the gory details, and a really fine investigative report by expat “Little Earl” as interpreted by Nancy Davies, go to Narco News.

**Coming “soon” to Puebla’s airport, a mix of domestic and charter services serving Spanish destinations. While most of the domestic destinations proposed are already served by non-stop services to and from Oaxaca, one nugget shines out: Puebla / Cancun. As of this writing, there is no way to get there from here except through Mexico City. No prices, no schedule, no starting date; but for those of us who enjoy an occasional getaway to the Ruta Maya, a glimmer of better days to come…

**A subscriber sent along this website for those who want help – in English – finding short-term and long-term rentals in the Oaxaca area:

http://rentapartmentsinoaxaca.wordpress.com.

I pass it along to you without comment. As many of you aleady know, I make it a habit not to get involved in the real estate scene: too many chances for hard feelings. However, I do offer – to subscribers only – a second opinion about any specific property, in confidence…

**A recent study shows that Mexicans are now only 60% of all undocumented residents in the U.S.; and that there are now 1 million less of them…

**Here’s something I picked up from one of the travel sites:

“With the acquisition of Estrella de Oro by ADO, the former company has been expanding its routes and it now serves the Acapulco-Cuernavaca-Oaxaca route. However, the buses only operate four days per week. Going to Oaxaca, buses operate on Thursdays through Sundays, originating in Acapulco at 6:00 p.m., and picking up additional passengers in Cuernavaca at 10:15 p.m. Returning from Oaxaca, buses operate on Fridays through Mondays, departing at 11:00 p.m., and then dropping off passengers in both Cuernavaca and Acapulco. More information and bookings are avaiable at www.estrelladeoro.com.mx

“But making the connection in Mexico City is not that bad: you’ll be on expressways and good roads the whole way. … [T]here’s lots of schedules from Tepoztlan and Cuernavaca to Mexico City’s Tasqueña (South) bus terminal. And while most buses to Oaxaca depart from the TAPO (East) bus terminal, there are a handful of departures from Tasqueña . . . more choices than the direct Estrella de Oro service.”

**March is 30% discount month at Volaris, a no-frills airline that flies within Mexico. For example, we managed to get one-way tickets from Oaxaca non-stop to Tijuana for $103 dollars apiece (AeroMexico charges more than twice as much). On some destinations, you can add a shuttle bus ticket to select U.S. cities: for instance from TJ to San Diego, or to Laredo from Monterrey.