Que Pasa in Cabo?

October 29, 2018 Edition
BY: DAVID FLORES

Traffic alert! This Sunday November 4, the Ironman 70.3 competition returns to Cabo. As in past years, large areas of the fourlane from San Jose to Cabo will be closed, as well as the toll road to the airport and streets in and around downtown San Jose.

The map of closed streets has not been released at press time, but the swimming competition starts at 7:00 am at Playa Palmilla, continuing with a bike race and a running race. It ends about 5:00 p.m, so expect a day fraught with delays

Last year the Ironman welcomed 455 participants, 96 of them women and 359 men, plus managers, trainers, helpers, volunteers and the public that watches it. Best don’t fly in or out that day, and subscribe to our daily updates at www.gringogazette.com for update information, or look up: www.ironman.com or in Facebook: ironmanloscabos

Sea turtles in trouble. The n mama sea turtles who have arrived in Los Cabos beaches to deposit their eggs are in trouble, and 6,700 eggs along with the mamas.  The Asupmatoma ranch, as it is known locally and internationally, has been in operation for 24 years on a beach on the Pacific side just outside of Cabo, known as Rancho San Cristobal.

The camp  was used with the blessing of local developer Rene Pinal, but the land is now in legal turmoil. A group that claims legal ownership of the land has shut down the camp, not allowing biologists in or out. A group of them was already in and are staying there, tending to the 670 turtle nests, which will produce thousands of sea turtles in the weeks and months to come. Egg tenders have been told that if they leave the camp, they will not be allowed back in.

The Asupmatoma people have launched a cry for help from Semarnat, Mexico’s environmental secretariat. If that doesn’t work they will have to borrow boats to land on the camp’s beach to continue helping the little critters. The beach is federal property and of public use, so they can’t be prohibited from approaching by sea.

Cultural Center Closed Our cultural pavilion is facing serious infrastructure problems, due to the last rains. That big ugly building that looks like a deflating soccer ball has never been popular with anyone who has to look at it, certainly not with the people behind it in the Pedregal, nor with the marina workers who gave up their parking for it.

Tiles are falling off the outside, making the entire downtown appear shabby and it's so poorly built that it leaks every time it rains.

But this last rain really did it in. The water poured through the roof, through the ceiling tiles, and onto the seats and then onto the floor in the auditorium. Then the water cascaded through the next floor, the ground floor, then then through the ground floor into the underground garage, depositing now filthy water onto the cars seeking shelter from the storm there.

Now the upholstered theater seats are ruined, the fancy red carpeting is ruined, and the floors are buckling, making it difficult to walk on the roley poley squishy carpet.

This is not going to be a simple fix to the $28-million dollar facility and it's not even clear who is responsible, as the city has been trying to get the state to take it off their hands. Good luck with that now, because the state is not going to be anxious to take over what is essentially a ruined building.

Scheduled shows have been canceled or moved to another location, while the Los Cabos International Film Festival starts on November 7. Elea Casiano, the Los Cabos director of culture, said in a telephone interview that several agencies involved in the operation of the cultural pavilion are currently inspecting it and will have it restored in time for the film fest. Sort of fixed. Like it was sort of built.

Shake Shack coming! Sort of. The popular U.S. hamburger joint has announced that it will open its first Mexico restaurant in Mexico City, in cahoots with the Toks group, whom have been granted a license to open up to 30 Shake Shacks around the country.

While they are still looking for the Mexico City location, around preferred posh areas like Santa Fe, Polanco and Bosques de las Lomas, they told us that for sure, for sure, Los Cabos will get one, at the San Jose International airport. They didn’t say it would be in our lifetime, or in which terminal.

Tourist tax alert! Here they go again. Carlos Mendoza, our Southern Baja state governor, said, “we are fine tuning the new tourist tax procedure, which will be included in next year’s budget.” Ja! He’s been trying to nick every tourist 20 bucks for several years now but he can’t get anyone to help him collect it. Finally the airport people have said they can set up a booth and try to collect it themselves. Good luck with that. What are they going to do with people who refuse to pay? Let them live in the airport? We’re not going to pay this pop-up fee. We will be stuck between immigration and the plane we just flew in on.

Mendoza stated that there is an “imperative need” to obtain more revenue for the state, as the incoming federal government, that will take office December 1st, has announced that there will be no extra money sent to the states, as President elect Lopez Obrador will need money to make good his campaign programs to help the poor. And because all the money sent to the state gets “lost”. So what do they do? Tax the people who don’t vote.

Restoring La Ramona The 50-meter tall “La Ramona” brick chimney is undergoing a careful restoration by Corredor Historico Carem association. The chimney was weakened with the passage of time, threatening both the monument and the public.

It was built in 1890 by the El Progreso Mining Company as part of operations in the late 19th and early 20th Century. Gold and silver were extracted, in the tiny town of El Triunfo north of San Jose.  The mines supported a town of more than  10,000 in its day, one of the biggest in the entire peninsula at the time.

Nobody knows exactly who designed the chimney, but there is confirmation that it was not Gustav Eiffel, despite the legends. Modern structural analysis shows it to be outstanding in its capability to withstand hurricanes and earthquakes. Restoration will assure it stands for decades to come.

The Carem association and its funding partner, the International Community Foundation, are non-profit organizations that support the community of El Triunfo, seek to restore and protect local history and improves lives throughout the Baja California peninsula.

You can be part of the legacy. For just $100 bucks you can sponsor a “brick” to support the restoration – your name will be reflected at the La Ramona donors’ memorial after the restoration is complete.

You can donate online: donate.icfdn.org and enter La Ramona Carem name.

City lawmakers making less money. As promised during the past July elections, members of the La Paz city council have announced a voluntary reduction of their salaries by 51%, plus 100% of additional bonuses and benefits. This will save the city nearly 400 grand a year.

Other benefits like fuel will be reduced by 60%, saving the city an additional 52 grand. Reassigning lawmakers’ subordinates to other areas will also save another half a million a year.

That’s nearly one million a year. In Los Cabos, mayor Armida Castro also promised that she would reduce her salary by half if elected. Instead, she increased her salary above that of her predecessor, only to announce a month later that she would reduce it by 10 percent. Sigh.

New ferry a coming. The new ferry boat has been baptized “México Star” and will increase Baja Ferries’ cargo capacity by 50%, starting sometime this November. It was built in Italy and is built for Roll on – Roll off cargo. Cars, Bunky. Measuring 600 feet of length, it travels to 22 knots an hour and it will add to Baja Ferries’ other 4 ships: the California Star, Baja Star, Balandra Star and Mini Star.

Mexico Star will replace the California Star on the route La Paz - Topolobampo while California Star will be traveling the La Paz – Mazatlan route.

Celebs in Cabo. Real Housewives of Dallas star was here. Cary Deuber was in town to officiate a friends’ wedding, which sounds like a great excuse to take a vacation before and after the wedding. Cary brought her husband Mark Deuber along for the trip and they shared a bunch of photos showing off her yoga moves, in a bikini, at that. She shared photos of the couple.

Then it was the turn for actress Emma Watson, the 28-year-old Harry Potter and Beauty and the Beast actress who was photographed kissing a man who appears to be a new beau, Brendan Wallace, co-founder & managing partner at Fifth Wall ventures, while dining in a restaurant during a trip to Cabo. The two have not commented on the status of their relationship.

"They kissed across the table and seemed passionate about each other," a source told us. "She had a big smile on her face and seemed to really love being with him. They chatted a lot and spent time laughing together. They seemed like a very happy couple enjoying their vacation." The source said Watson and Wallace stayed at an oceanfront resort. No, we’re not going to tell you! You’re going to run out there and make a fool of yourself. We’re saving you from yourself.