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An Expat Talks about Living in Patzcuaro, Mexico

Submitted by Mirto

What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?

Patzcuaro

How long have you lived there?

10 months

What activities, clubs and organizations would you recommend to newcomers to help them meet others?

It depends on who you want to meet. There is an English library inside the restaurant, Lupita's, a few steps from the Bascilica on Arciga Street. A volunteer group has their meetings there. English is spoken. They would welcome volunteers. If you want to meet Indigenous Purepecha, Mulle (dock) San Pedrito is run by them and it is a beautiful park next to the lake. Also they sell their art on the street and in the mercado in Centro ( open every day-even Christmas.) They also sell fruits and vegetables, clothes, shoes, socks, anything you need. To become friends with local people, it is necessary to speak Spanish and they are friendly. There are usually English speakers sitting outdoors at a cafe on Plaza Grande. One can take Spanish lessons as well.

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In terms of religious, racial, economic and cultural diversity, are the people of this city or town diverse? Are they accepting of differences? Describe.

I would think that most people are Catholic. I haven't seen any other churches and the children attend Catholic schools. As anywhere the wealthy are interested in making more money. Mexicans are very polite here and would rather lie than hurt your feelings. So it is difficult to know.

What are the main industries in this city? What types of career opportunities commonly exist? How do most people find new jobs?

Most likely in Morelia, the state capital. This is a small town with a high unemployment rate. I have not seen Americans except as tourists or at the library. People grow crops. Wood carving and all the arts and crafts made in Patzcuaro and surrounding pueblos are sold here. Perhaps if one had a job in Morelia, they could live here and commute. There are buses and taxis. Many people own cars. It takes an hour one way.

In general, what are peoples' priorities in this city? For example, do lives revolve around work, family, socializing, sports, etc.?

People here, like other cities, love fiestas of which their are many. Family and socializing are the priorities for my friends. Men are macho and kind to women and children. People sit outdoors and love to talk. Of course, they must make a living. Couples marry young here and the young women and their beautiful children are often the only ones on the little buses during the day. People like to follow soccer on t.v.

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If a friend of yours was thinking of moving to this city or town from far away, what other advice would you give them.

Learn basic phrases in Spanish, be patient and kind. Remember Mexico is a foreign country and nothing like the United States. If you are an arts and crafts person and are retired or have your own income, I think you would like it here.

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Get a quote for international health insurance from our partner, William Russell.
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