It was our first big summer storm since our return to the jungle from San Miguel de Allende. The lightning came cracking down over our house like an arrow landing its bullseye, resulting in my jumping about three feet in the air and one of our rooftop AC compressors catching on fire!
Fortunately for me, I share a home with a fireman and knew that our family (and my nerves) were in good hands. The tropical downpour helped to diffuse the situation as well.
Thanks to the ingenuity, reuse and repurpose mentality of the Mexican culture, the compressor’s wires were changed out and the unit spared! Hard to believe, I know…fire and all.
Jungle storms can be unforgiving, powerful, messy and destructive. They are equally exciting, cleansing and replenishing—popping out those dense, lush, green canopies and the multitude of ecosystems that thrive inside of them—reminding you of the absolute grandeur and magnificence of Mother Nature.
The rainstorms also provide an opportunity to identify where exactly more silicone is needed, such as around the collection of leaking windows at the base of a 20-foot high boveda ceiling! Tall ladder anyone? Those first few falls on our slick marble floors were not so fun (especially after back surgery!) and made us delay not in tending to this issue ASAP.
The jungle wasted no time in welcoming us back and reminding us of the fortitude, sense of humor and determination one must possess to both survive and thrive here. Yes, there are prices to pay for living in paradise folks!
The following are a few of our suggestions as to how you can maximize your enjoyment (and minimize your frustrations) in both coastal and central Mexico.
Make sure that the roof of your home has been properly sealed and therefore protected against leaks and moisture intrusion. We learned this the hard way when our 2012 San Pancho rental grew large circular mold spores from the outside in after our first rainy season there. A disgusting and unsafe “inconvenience” to say the least and one that duct tape alone would not remedy.
There are various types of impermeabilizantes (sealants) Spending a bit more to ensure a quality result is well worth it. We went with an eco-friendly, waterproof one believing it best to have maximum protection considering the amount of rain we receive here on the coast in Nayarit.
2. Air Conditioners
Have all AC’s serviced. The filters should be cleaned of mold/dust/debris and the electrical panels checked for unwanted critters that can wreak havoc. Apparently, wires are a delicacy to geckos—ridding your AC’s of them is far easier than having to replace the units.
Screens on all doors and windows are not a luxury but an absolute necessity lest you want to share your home with mosquitos, spiders, geckos, scorpions, iguanas and stray animals. Even with window and door screens, these over the bed mosquito nets come in handy as well!
Just think—golf ball-sized cockroaches and sewer smells. Trust me, you’ll want to use these.
Jungle, hot, humid….ventilate your home as much as possible lest you want to find fur growing on your clothes, shoes and other household items. Using these moisture absorbing bags inside closets and other closed spaces helps to absorb excess humidity and to protect your items from musty odors and mold.
Check all outlets with a polarity tester or hire a qualified electrician to do so.
If you’ve been following us for any time (or at least for the past year), you know why we recommend these for both home and travel.
While the list could, in theory, be endless, these are our Top 7 Tips to consider whether you are renting or purchasing a home in Mexico.
Do you have any that you could add?
Feel free to share them in the comments section below.
Arturo: For the summer months it is highly recommended to put your clothes in airtight bags or vacuum sealed bags so that mold doesn’t grow in them especially if you skip town. I highly recommend to do this process with your shoes because if you don’t, the soles will disintegrate completely from the salty air and humidity.
Margaret: Keep all your food in the refrigerator, even if you wouldn’t normally, especially fruit. Clean up your kitchen messes as soon as possible to deter unwanted scavengers and never ever ever let your kids eat in the bed unless you want… ANTS ANTS EVERYWHERE! (And they bite). Even with screens and drain covers, if you leave food out they will find you…
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