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VanFam last won the day on June 22 2015

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About VanFam

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  1. Glad it worked out for you. My last three-month stint working online from Sayulita was the same -- serviceable, sometimes spotty. I got into the habit of turning video on for the first few minutes of a Skype meeting (mostly so they could check out the palm trees in the yard : ) and then switched to voice only, with screen sharing as needed. Surprisingly few dropped calls when voice only (instead of video) and only the occassional lag in screen sharing. BTW, I used Truphone over my iPhone (WIFI) for dialled calls -- was super affordable with good quality connections as long as I didn't wander too far from the WIFI.
  2. That is awesome, Stormsam! Beautiful house, lucky people, lucky puppies.
  3. Do you know of anyone flying to Vancouver via WestJet in July or August? SayulitaAnimals has puppies needing escorts to their new "forever" homes. We have escorted ourselves before and it's so easy! As you leave Sayulita, a volunteer will meet you wherever it's convenient and provide everything you need: paperwork, a small kennel that fits under the seat ahead of you, a dish of food and water. In Vancouver, it took us under 5 minutes to have the paperwork stamped at customs, and we'll be there to greet you, even give you a lift to wherever you're headed. Westjet allows one puppy per passenger, and there are five puppies urgently needing homes. Please help us find five Vancouver-bound visitors and convince them they want to do this, they won't regret it! email or message me here.
  4. Morningstar, I stayed at Duende earlier this year. It's a great house, fantastic location, Joe and Carolyn are lovely, and the property management folks will take care of everything you need. Highly recommend it, and excited to return later this winter. The bus from PVR goes right into Sayulita, and from there it's about a 7-minute, easy walk past the town plaza to the casa. Have a great trip.
  5. I am sad to hear this... We had many family and friends come down, many new to Mexico, and when they asked about health care worries, I always assured them Dr. Moy was right down the street, and took special care of everyone, no matter what the emergency or time of day. We'll miss you. Thank you for teaching me CPR, for the very first time -- I'd always been anxious, but you made it very welcoming, and I appreciate that. You have given so much and deserve good things in your future, so best wishes to you both, and I know people will be very lucky to have you, wherever you land.
  6. I've heard it's pretty quick and painless at the office, and know of one house that waited only about a week for the installers to show up. Good luck.
  7. Got it! Will drop it off with Carmen tomorrow. Have a great trip.
  8. Mystery solved -- I walked over to Jose Ramos' office and spoke with Carmen today. She's having seriously computer problems, has been for some time and seemed exasperated about when it would be fixed. Best to phone her. brntrout (or anyone else) if calling is an issue, feel free to send me your deets and I'll walk them over to her and send you back a confirmation (we leave March 1).
  9. Mystery solved -- I walked over to Jose Ramos' office and talked to Carmen today. She's having seriously computer problems, has been for some time and seemed exasperated about when it would be fixed. Best to phone her. brntrout (or anyone else) if calling is an issue, feel free to send me your deets and I'll walk them over to her and send you back a confirmation (we leave March 1).
  10. The selection is still pretty limited (and we're really not wine snobs). After trying the more expensive reds that we didn't know and finding them fairly mediocre, we've settled on Concha y Toro cabsav as our regular wine at home. At least it's cheap! 81 to 95 pesos depending on the tienda. Beyond that, you have to plan for it elsewhere, as noted above. Great news about Tropical House distributing, we'll come by...
  11. We contract work from here too, and it's great. Internet is 95% stable, medium speed unless you pay more (I think $60-plus per month?). Clients who know we're here have grown used to Skype, with others we use Truphone over WIFI -- shows our local area code from home and costs just pennies per minute. IMO, housing in Sayulita is pretty expensive and a great place long term can be hard to find, so you'll want to start early and reach out a lot. Not much by the way of "condos" here, more options in Bucerias. Social group takes awhile of course, but there are community-involvement projects here to get you started. Good luck.
  12. LauraG, thanks for posting this. We tried to rent from Gecko in Bucerias, but they were out of cars, so we rented from National (and made very clear the terms, thanks again). I guess Ramon is working on repairing his reputation. We booked the car the day before, and stressed that we had to leave at NOON. The car was delivered to our casa half an hour before, and was exactly as promised (in fact, the Jeep was brand new, just 300 km). We missed the last gas station, and said we'd pay for the fuel, but the other guy (not Ramon), warned us that National would charge us double. He let us go over the rental time by an hour so we could fill it up in Lo De Marcos. The rate charged was exactly as promised -- no hidden fees at all. Although I still think Gecko is a great option, it was kind of nice to be able to rent a car for a few days right here in Sayulita. And we had no problems. I hope that's the case for others in future.
  13. Thanks everyone, we had a lovely trip. For those who've done it, something akin to traveling Okanagan wine country in August, except the vineyards are agave fields, and the tequillerias all seem to be in Tequila. And the roads are much faster and in better condition than most in Canada. Paulie, I agree and we would normally have taken the bus, but we were staying outside of the city, and man is it ever huge. Glad we had the car to get around (a local to drive it for us : ) Dynamic Duo, tempting as it was the driver felt more comfortable with the toll roads, so that's what we went with. You're right -- they were great. Camillenparadise, thanks for pointing out the volcanic fields -- my son is super into volcanoes, so we knew when to look for it and got some great photos. DVA, thanks for recommending the stops. Tequila was fun, and now we have gifts to bring back that are actually Tequila from Tequila, lol. And we loved Compostela -- although I have to say that the police presence while we were there made for a weird vibe and made me realize that Sayulita is not as occupied by this presence as I had previously thought. Still, I'd plan to spend more time there another trip. We'll definitely visit Guadalajara again. It was not what we were expecting -- so huge! And more like New York or Paris in parts than what we've experienced so far in Mexico. And gorgeous. We especially loved Tlacaxepache (thanks, Paulie). And SayulitaSenora, we'll add a stop at Magdelena next time. One thing I hadn't planned on -- Guadalajara was cold! Nice to be back in Sayulita today and feel the sun. Thanks again, all.
  14. We're off to Guadalajara for a few days, seeking input from those who have made the trip. Google maps provides three routes, North through Tepic, south to PV and then north at Ameca, third option is the same as the second, but south at Ameca. There is an older post about being able to turn east at Compostela instead of going all the way north to Topic, is that possible/recommended? Our priorities are in order of 1) road safety, 2) awesomeness of the trip and places to stop, 3) time, and 4) cost (highway tolls). Speaking of places to stop along the way, recommendations? For safety, we're traveling by day. Anything else we should know? We're driving with a friend with family in Guadalajara who plans to show us around, but if there are any must-do recommendations, those would be most welcomed as well. Gracias in advance...
  15. Atm

    I'm not positive, but I believe the rate is set by your own bank. (??) Today, we withdrew from a Canadian credit union and 3,000 pesos came out to $238.18 Cdn, including the 69 peso (ouch) fee. My partner says that the machine at Break Fast today offered a max of 5,000 pesos, which I hadn't seen before (only max 3,000 pesos around the square). I'll note the usual cautions we see here: skimming is rampant, so we keep one card tied to an account that is empty except for just before we withdraw, and there was an incident a week or two ago where a woman was followed after using an ATM in La Penita.