Lakeside Living – December 2020


Carol D. Bradley

Phone: 33-2506-7525


“Do your little bit of good where you are; it is those little bits of good put all together that overwhelm the world.” 

—Desmond Tutu 

Your local restaurants, theaters, and musicians are gearing up for high season, as it is, with their best for you and all COVID precautions. Please, if you can, go out to your favorite restaurants and venues, like and share your best on Facebook and/or follow them on websites to get all the latest news. Our local entertainers and small businesses need you now more than ever.   


The Lake Chapala Society hosts Open Circle every Sunday at 10AM, a popular community gathering in Ajijic, to enjoy a diverse range of presentations. 

For more information and to make reservations, see their website: 

In order to follow State of Jalisco safety precautions, attendance will be limited to 80 persons, reservations required, use of mask is mandatory and temperature checks on entry. During this period, we recommend bringing your own coffee or bottled water, and please remove containers upon departure. As a service to our audience and presenters, Open Circle will video-record presentations and upload them on the LCS YouTube channel. 


December 6.  How to Maintain Brain Wellness 

Presented by Dr. Enrique Lopez 

Dr Enrique Lopez

Dr. Enrique Lopez

Dr. Lopez will provide practical tools and lifestyle tips for keeping the brain healthy and vital. Additionally, he will describe how the professionals diagnose and assesse cognitive disorders and differentiates between normal aging and a cognitive disorder such as dementia.  

Dr. Lopez is a psychologist/neuropsychologist and has been an allied health professional at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center’s Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neurosciences since 2004. He completed a post-doctorate fellowship in neuropsychology at UCLA’s Neuropsychiatric Institute and Hospital in 2000. Dr. Lopez attended Occidental College in Los Angeles from 1985 to 1989 with a major in psychology and minor in Spanish literature.   

December 13.  Música de Mis Amores  

Presented by San Juan Children’s Orchestra and Chorus (Música Para Crecer)  

Musica Para CrecerMúsica Para Crecer

Música Para Crecer, under the direction of Maestro Dani Medeles, is blessed and honored to celebrate another holiday season with Open Circle. This year they will present a program of Mexico’s all-time favorite songs, those the great music pedagogues Dr. Suzuki and Carl Orff call “the soul of the people,” songs acquired through the mother’s milk. The students have heard these songs all their lives and they are in their blood. The program was carefully arranged to challenge the students musically and technically without departing from their musical roots. 

Like many nonprofits at this time, Música Para Crecer is facing existential challenges, not only financially but also with regard to school enrollment and concerts. With the help of friends, parents, and supporters, the program continues to pay salaries and maintenance, but the pandemic has reduced student attendance from 70 to around 40. Those who’ve stuck with it demonstrate their devotion to music, and the school is there to support them in their dreams. Studying and playing music with other students gives them a sense of community and a feeling they are not alone. Music provides them the strength they need right now and for the future as well. Let’s do whatever we can to keep this program alive. 

Mexico de mis amores Concierto 

Caperucita Encarnada 

De colores 

Cielito lindo 

Zopilote mojado 

Dios nunca muere 

Somos novios 

El relámpago 



Ojos españoles 

Danzon Juárez 

December 20. Where Did We Come From? Where Are We Going?  

Presented by Noris Binet 

Noris Binet

Noris Binet

For all living things, physical identity is the result of countless generations of evolution and DNA encoding. Each of us carries an extraordinary legacy. When we become fully aware of the genetic pool of our ancestry, we realize we are part of a colorful tapestry. Wherever we go we bring with us who we are. That place is transformed by what we bring and in turn we are transformed by the place. Ms. Binet will explore how this transformational exchange takes place, a process enabling us to realize our oneness and to love life as it is—always new, flowing, unpredictable, and mysterious. 

A visual artist, poet, author, spiritual teacher, and sociologist, Ms. Binet lived in Ajijic from 1982-89. A native of the Dominican Republic, she studied with several indigenous communities, including the Huichols for whom Lake Chapala is sacred. She has worked over decades with diverse communities around the world to build bridges by reclaiming a sense of the sacred. Ms. Noris has a BA in sociology from the University of Guadalajara and received an honorary PhD from the International Institute of Human Sciences in Canada. She returned to Ajijic three years ago. 

December 27.  Shakespeare & Fermat: Two Fascinating Enigmas to Ponder 

Presented by Michael Warren 

Michael Warren will intrigue us with two enigmas from the 17th century. First he will discuss the dedication of Shakespeare’s Sonnets, published in 1609: “To the only begetter of these ensuing sonnets Mr. W.H. all happiness and that eternity promised by our ever-living poet wisheth the well-wishing adventurer in setting forth T.T.” All sorts of theories have been advanced as to the meaning of this dedication and the identity of Mr. W.H. Michael will proffer his own interpretation. 

Second, he will discuss Fermat’s Last Theorem, a mathematical puzzle of historical importance first set out by Pierre Fermat in 1637. For 350 years it has defied solution and prompted extraordinary advances in mathematics. Michael Warren is a poet, actor, and mathematician. For the last several years he has been writing the theater reviews for the Ojo del Lago

Michael Warren 

January 3.  The Great Pause  

Presented by John Stokdijk   

John Stokdijk will share his thoughts about the coronavirus crisis as a spiritual experience. What insights can be gained? What lessons can be learned? How are we to live now? John will share some of his exciting new discoveries during this extremely disruptive pandemic. His presentation will be a continuation of the spiritual journey he shared at Open Circle in 2015, accessible by clicking here: Secular Spirituality.  

John and his wife, Pat, moved to Lakeside in 2012. Locally he is best known for launching the Ajijic Book Club in 2016. ABC has continued to meet and thrive utilizing Zoom. In addition to reading, John enjoys tending his garden and exercising on his treadmill. He and Pat have remained mostly in quarantine supported by local shopping and delivery services. 

Lake Chapala Artists  –  showcases the initial results of more than two decades of research into the many talented artists and authors associated with Lake Chapala. With a few notable exceptions, most of the artists/authors whose profiles appear on the site were active in the area between 1890 and 1990. Updates and new material are added each week.  


This treasure trove of information, quotes, and glimpses into the lives of residing or visiting artists and writers is written and curated by Tony Burton. A forthcoming book is planned for late 2021. 

Here is a short extract of one of the many delightful stories: “Ajijic ‘Love Trap’ unites Canadian author and English nurse”: 

At this point, it is best if Helen’s daughter takes up her mother’s story:  

“Her uncle and his chiropractic friend met her . . . and planned to drive her to Lake Chapala. Unfortunately, the sun was setting and uncle Herbert was not able to see the road well and ended up driving over a cliff. My mother’s back was broken to the point the doctors fused it. Poor thing, she spoke no Spanish [and] was in a Mexican hospital [presumably in Guadalajara] sharing a room with a woman bullfighter! It was there that my father met her and began spending time with her while she recovered. As he had been there awhile he had picked up some Spanish, while she had none. The day she was released from the hospital, he proposed.” 

The quote is from a personal communication from Helen’s daughter, Colette Hirata, after Mr. Burton contacted her in the course of research.  

The illustration is a photo of an oil painting by Ann Medalie (also profiled on the website).

Other published works about Lake Chapala by Tony Burton:

Lake Chapala Through the Ages: an anthology of travelers’ tales” 

“If Walls Could Talk: Chapala’s historic buildings and their former occupants,” both available in Ajijic at La Nueva Posada, Mi México, and Diane Pearl’s, and in Chapala at Villas QQ. 

Bare Stage Theatre presents . . .  

bare stage logo

In a recent, local press release, with a deadline of mid-October, Bare Stage announced its comeback for a November production. Shortly thereafter (and with no ability to stop this press release) COVID-19 cases spiked and our state instituted another shutdown for entertainment. We chose our cast and had just started rehearsals for Here on the Flight Path by Norm Foster, but sadly, we decided it would be best for all concerned not to move forward with this show. We are so very sorry and we understand your disappointment. As cases continue to climb, we will now take a hiatus until we can see “the light at the end of the tunnel.” It truly breaks our heart. We know you will be there for us upon our return and we so look forward to that moment when it comes. Please stay safe and healthy out there ‘til the good times roll again! 

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IT’S STILL CHRISTMAS, NO MATTER WHAT! Experience the true, lasting joys of Christmas by attending one of these programs featuring nativity readings and traditional carols singalongs:

Sunday, Dec. 20, 4pm at the Chapala American Legion; Thursday, Dec. 24, 4pm at Mama’s Musical Bar in San Antonio; Friday, Dec. 25, 4pm at the Lake Chapala Baptist Church. All programs feature the Baptist choir and members of Freedom Chorale, under the direction of Cindy Paul. All three programs are free!

lake chapala baptist

Photo cap: Lake Chapala Baptist Choir and Freedom Chorale Members


Little Lakeside Theatre presents:  

Christmas Music Fest, with classical Christmas songs, Christmas popular songs, Christmas readings, and a Christmas carol sing-a-long. The dates are December 18, 19 & 20 with all performances at 4pm.   

Performers will be Catharine and Robert Thieme, Marsha and Mark Heaton, Michala Swanson, David McIntosh, Michael Warren, Brian Fuqua and Susanne Bullock on the clarinet. (no photo at press time) 

COVID-19 precautions will be in place for all performances maintaining a minimum of 6 feet social distancing. Tickets will be 200 Pesos; available by email at . Box office sale dates can be found at the LLT website –  

 lakeside little theatre

For more information about Lake Chapala visit:

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