Updated: May 18, 2021
I thought we had the best week ever Last week but I was very wrong! This was our last week at Roca Azul so we decided to go all out! We had looked at several properties since we got to Lake Chapala. Mostly by just riding by and stopping to look around. Two weeks ago, on a bike ride through San Juan Cosala we ran into a realtor that was showing a home. Her name is Priscila and she offered to show us the house for sale. It was big and beautiful. Brand new! We took the hand out and got her card. Larry and I talked a bit about seeing what else was available in the area. We’d ask Priscilia to take us out. She’s super sweet, young and speaks very good english.
We looked at a few condos on the west side of Ajijic. Both looked good but had condo fees and rules. We looked at lots too. Maybe we could build our own. That seemed like more than we wanted to get involved in right now. She took us to a home between Ajijic and Chapala that had been on the market for 4 months. Priscilia said it was a bit different and that’s why it was taking longer to sell. On the drive over, we noticed how wide the streets were in the neighborhood. This is uncommon around here. The streets even had good sidewalks. We were impressed. Before we got the gate unlocked we had already met two of the neighbors that are Expats and told us it was a lovely place to live. Larry and I spent about 45 minutes looking around the house, which is a little different looking. Let’s say unique. It has 3 levels.
First floor had the kitchen, living space and one large bedroom and full bath plus a half bathroom under the stairs. The second level had the master bedroom with a bath and an open area overlooking the first floor. There was an outside terrace in the front of the house on the second floor as well. Outside and up a stairwell was the rooftop with the structure to build a palapa. We had a good view of the mountains and a small peek at the lake!
We hung out in the neighborhood and walked around when we were done at the house. We walked 2 blocks and found the beach. There was a public beach and also a beach club with a bar and restaurant. I don’t think the beach club was really open but we went inside the gate. They had about 8 workers doing stuff all over. We asked if we could have a beer and they said, ”Si”. We sat there for a few hours drinking the beer from the fridge behind the counter. We kept helping ourselves. We sat under an umbrella by the fabulous pool. The place was really nice. I said to Larry, I could come down here to the pool if we bought the house. LOL Larry liked the house just as much or more than me! We talked about buying it and having it as a rental. The Ajijic area is very popular with snowbirds and Expats.
As we were chatting, we noticed the workers trying to lift a boat upright. They were having a hard time so Larry went to help them. I think he was all the muscle because they got it up with his help. I watched them mix cement and secure it. Next came some scaffolding. I said I thought they might be painting a mural on the underside of the boat and I was right! Larry went to get more beer and chatted with a guy in a pink shirt. He was the muralist and his name is Churro Chapala Jorge Eduardo. He is friends with the owner of the beach club and came to paint it today. I went over to chat with him and he was very nice. He spoke good english and was listening to some funky reggae music. He was drinking whisky and smoking a joint. I asked him if that helps inspire him and he said, “of course!” I told him that I was helping Chile on a mural in Jocotepec and he knows Chile. He said I could help him too! I said another time….I had a lot of beer so far. We watched him until we left.
We walked a bunch more around the area and back to see the house. On the way back to Jocotepec, we stopped at Pasta Trenta in Ajijic for a super yummy dinner. This is the place I ordered Larry’s pasta for his birthday party. It’s very good. I love their Funghi pasta.
On Wednesday, we decided to make an offer on the house. Since it had been on the market so long, we offered low. Priscilia drove from Ajijic to Roca Azul to pick it up. That was a 45 minute drive for her and we really appreciated it. She thought the offer may be too low but she would present it. She said we should know by 5pm the next day. Wow! That would be fast. Well...we heard back even sooner. We had a counter offer of only $5000 more and we were happy. In Mexico, everything is purchased in cash so now Larry and I needed to start getting some money down here. We also needed to get a home inspection done. Priscilia was able to get that scheduled on Friday as we were planning on leaving Lake Chapala on Tuesday for the west coast and Lo de Marcos.
Thursday we had to sign the counter offer so we met Priscila at the house. We wanted to look around again! Afterwards, we walked through our New neighborhood and ended up at the Beach Club. We saw the mural on the boat was almost complete. We enjoyed a few beers and just hung out absorbing what our lives are like right now. We are truly living our dreams...everyday and in every way. I’m so happy that Larry is right on board...crazy ideas or not! We both agree that buying this property will be a good investment even if we only use it a few months out of the year.
Friday we spent 3 hours with the house inspector and our real estate gal. It was an extensive and thorough inspection and we were glad to have it done so quickly. I took lots and lots of pictures and Larry and I talked about what we will do to make it a comfy place for us. We have met 4 or our 6 neighbors on the block. They are very friendly and they said they look after each other in the neighborhood. We chatted with Lyn and Gary again and let them know we had made an offer on the house. They invited us to see their home, which was spectacular! It’s on 2 lots and has a pool and outdoor kitchen/dining area. They also have a small casita in the back corner where Lyn’s mom, Val lives. She’s 90 and loves living in Mexico. She paints pictures of peoples pets and loves spending her time doing this still. She told me that she is going to visit her other kids in Florida and Colorado and would be back at the end of June. I said that we should be back around then too…...maybe. We really are never sure where we are going next.
We took a little bike ride in our new neighborhood and ended up at Huerto Cafe. It had a nice little open air patio plus inside seating. They had a little garden where they grow items for their menu. They had Corazon de Malta beer on the menu! Yum! I ate the kale salad and a side of sauerkraut. It was fabulous. They had tons of organic choices. I have also found 2 more vegan/vegetarian restaurants within 4 blocks for our house. In Ajijic you can never go hungry. There are so so many choices of places to eat. We had to stop by my new brewery Corazon de Malta for an IPA on the drive back to Roca Azul. It was a very good day!
Saturday, we invited Deb to go to Ajijic and have lunch. She wanted to try my Corazon de Malta pub since I first told her about it. I called my new neighbors Lynn and Gary to borrow a key to the house. They watch it for the last owner. We really wanted to show Deb our house. She’s been super interested in what we are doing. She seemed to like it….she took some pics of us on the patio in front of the beautiful Jacaranda tree. We went into Ajijic Centro to find the restaurant that had our beer but ended up at Jardin Plaza Restaurant. It was good but no good beer here. We walked around a bit before heading back down the road. We made a stop at the Corazon de Malta brewery because that was really the point of this whole trip. Deb and my IPAs!!
Sunday Max had a going away party for Larry, me, Deb, John and Stephanie. We were leaving together on Tuesday to head to the beach in Lo de Marcos. John’s parent’s Carol and Marvin have been there for 3 weeks already. Max said if we partied too much on Sunday night then we’d have Monday to recover before travel day! Our party was super fun. Max drank way too much but was hilarious! Great entertainment. Sayward and Phillips came over as well. We spent a little time with them over a week but I suspect we will run into them again...somewhere on the globe! We had lots of good food and plenty of beverages. I switched to water half way through so I wouldn’t feel too bad in the morning. We invited Tino and of course he showed up! Jose wasn’t able to come and I did tell Chile to bring his wife and kids by. Unfortunately he didn’t come. The mural of the toys is still being finished but I won’t be there to help with that one anymore. I’ll post a picture when it's completed.
Our very last day in Lake Chapala was spent at the notary in Ajijic. We needed to set up a power of attorney for Priscilia so she could sign the documents for the house while we are gone. We should have everything complete by May 17th. We will be homeowners in Ajijic!! We really have enjoyed every minute we spent in this area especially Ajijic. We have hiked several of the hills here and went bird watching all over. Rode our bikes up and down the Jocotepec to Chapala bike trail. Walked just about every malecon on both sides of the lake. There is so much to do here, we knew we would be back. I also saw they have a really cool foot race to the top of the mountain that begins and ends in Ajijic. Another exciting thing is Ajijic was named a Pueblo Magico in December 2020!
It’s funny how things unfold for us as we travel. We started out only going to stay at Roca Azul for 3 days. That turned into a week, which ended up a month…...times 2! Now we are buying a house so we can return to spend a few months each year! Crazy stuff...huh? Let me know if you are interested in renting our house out. It will be ready by September 2021.