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  • Message for U.S. Citizens: March 31 Virtual Town Hall for U.S. Citizens with Ambassador Landau
    Here is a link to the video on Facebook. You do not need a Facebook account to view:
    https://www.facebook.com/mexico.usembassy/videos/149837746394477/

    The video is 1 hr and 4 minutes. The presentation begins just after 9 minutes in or the -55 minute mark. There are intermittent, but frequent audio issues throughout. There is some dead air in the middle where they try to fix their audio issues.

    The main messages, beyond repeating information in the post above, that I got from the prepared remarks are:
    • If you're a tourist here in Mexico, it's time to go home.
    • If you're a resident here in Mexico, you need to decide where you want to be.
    • Don't wait until the last minute.
    • Do not rely on the U.S. Government to help you get home.
    • Have sufficient supplies at home.
    • Check your medical insurance.
    • Enroll in STEP (link in post above).

    Brutally summarized and paraphrased Q&As (watch the video if precision, details and nuance matter):
    Q: Should I shelter in place here or go back to the U.S.?
    A: (GW: A nice and empathetic answer that boils down to...) There is no right or wrong answer. It depends on your personal circumstances.

    Q: Can I come from the U.S. to Mexico for a birthday party or a dentist appointment or to go shopping?
    A: Are you not paying attention? Stay home.

    Q: Can U.S. citizens drive back to U.S.? Will we be allowed in?
    A: Yes.

    Q: Can I visit my parents in Mexico for Easter? Will I be allowed into Mexico then back to the U.S.?
    A: Easter activities are cancelled. Stay home.

    Q: Mexican tourist visas questions? Extensions?
    A: Tourist? Go home. Mexico controls their tourist visas, ask them.

    Q: If I go to the U.S. can I return to Mexico?
    A: Don't know what the future will bear. It will be up to an individual Mexican immigration inspector to admit you.

    Q: Will I be quarantined if I drive back to the U.S.?
    A: Now, we are not generally quarantining people from Mexico without symptoms. It is possible that someone showing symptoms could be quarantined. But the situation is fluid. If you plan to go back do so sooner rather than later.

    Q: Will the Embassy help people leave if they get sick with Covid-19?
    A: Medivac is a personal choice and available through private companies. Look at your insurance to see if it is covered. The U.S. will not pay your medical costs or bills in Mexico. For permanent residents check in with your local medical providers. Your insurance medivac policy may not cover Covid-19 so check with your insurance company.

    Q: What is the best way to keep up to date on flights and cancellations to U.S.?
    A: Check with the airlines. STEP program will let you know of some major changes.

    Q: We are permanent resident in Mexico; we need to travel to U.S. for medical treatments in May...?
    A: We can't predict what will happen in May. Do it sooner if you can. Coming back could be complicated so pay attention to that. If it is not urgent stay home in Mexico.

    Q: Question about B1 / B2 visas. Exceptions to allow Mexicans to come to U.S. by air?
    A: Current limits on non-essential entry only apply to ground transportation. Air entry is still generally allowed.

    Q: When will the border open again for normal travel?
    A: I don't have a crystal ball. Current land border restrictions run for 30 days, but ... who knows. The border remains open for commerce for people that work on either side and essential travel. Individual agents have discretion.

    Q: Can I get back by land if flights closed? Will the U.S. government provide charter flights?
    A: U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents can return home to the U.S. over land at a land port of entry. If your intention is to return to the U.S. for the duration of Covid-19 please do so now or as soon as you can. Don't count on charter flights from the U.S. government.

    Q: Email address?
    A: E-Mail: (GW: and other contact info in the post above).

    Q: My U.S. passport expires in July 2020 ...?
    A: The Consulate remains open for emergency services. Contact your consulate to renew your passport. (GW: Evidently only emergency passport renewals. Routine passport (including consular reports of birth abroad) and notarial services will be limited starting March 18. See: Status of U.S. Consular Operations in Mexico in Light of COVID-19.)

    Q: Where can I get more information?
    A: (GW: The information in the post above.) Enroll in the STEP program.

    Q: Our baby was born in Mexico. I need to apply for a consular report of birth abroad but with the shutdown ...
    A: Congratulations. We are not doing consular report of birth abroad now (not essential; but we might if we have time) but can issue your child a U.S. passport if you need to travel to the U.S. (Ambassador Landau adds...) I was born in Spain. My Consular Report of Birth Abroad is one of my proudest possessions. I'll make sure you get that (GW: but no reference as to when).

    Q: Family member getting a non-immigrant visa? Can you fast track ..
    A: Immigrant visa operations services are reduced ... handling some emergency cases (some who would age out). (GW: More info I did not fully follow re: immigrant / non-immigrant visa).

    Q: Will the borders close completely at some point?
    A: Well, I'm not a psychic (GW: That is not a paraphrase; the rest of the answer is). Generally our policy is to always to let our own people back in; quarantine might be an issue at some point. These are unprecedented times. You can be generally confident that you can get back in but there could be logistic problems if you are not near the border. If your plan is to go back to the U.S. do it sooner rather than later.

    Q: Most important advice?
    A: Follow the health recommendations of the governments: social distance, avoid crowds, stay home. Keep up your spirits. I'm here in Mexico with my family. It's not always fun cooped up at home, It is wonderful to be in a beautiful country like Mexico. Be safe. Stay healthy. Remember that we are here for you. Your health and safety is our number one priority and it is our job,

    That's all folks.
    ~~~~~~~
    Please comment or email me if I missed something or got something wrong.

    Feel free to share this info. Please include a link back to SMA FAQ.

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  • Hand to Hand Fresh Market
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    We just received our delivery. A heavy bag full of the beautiful fruit and vegetables you see here.
    You can't see them, but there are four large carrots hiding in there.

    This is Package #2. It was delivered in a reusable bag that they asked us to return on the next order and they will wash and disinfect it and use it again.

    This is a great option for fresh produce to have available.
  • La Comer Groceries. Delivered.
    This post has been viewed over 1500 times since first posted in Sept, 2019, many of those recently, and it has helped a lot of people use La Comer delivery. That's the good news.

    The bad news is I used to be able to order at 7am and get delivery between 9 and 10 am the same day. I just ordered at about 7:30 pm and the first open delivery slot was 1-2pm tomorrow.

    Also, I tried to order four boxes of Kleenex and two packages of toilet paper, among other things. That exceeded the limit of items for that department. I had to sacrifice a box of Kleenex to get two packages of TP. I've never encountered limits before.

    Perhaps that virus has something to do with all that as well?

    Update: 26 Mar 2:24 pm. The order arrived. On time or close to on time. Got everything except for the TP. We have adequate backup. Maybe next time? Update to the update. Ordered and received TP on the next order.
  • San Miguel's thumping response to the Coronavirus pandemic now awaits enforcement
    Like Al, who wrote the post above, I was a little surprised that the city has taken the measures it has. To see the rest of Al's post click the link above for San Miguel's thumping response to the Coronavirus pandemic now awaits enforcement.
  • Brief News and Views Mar 22, 2020
    Thanks for your thoughts!

    For the short term (2020), their oil hedges should help with the oil part of the problem. I think.
    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-mexico-pemex-debt/oil-price-plunge-ramps-up-pressure-on-pemex-hedge-programs-in-focus-idUSKBN20W369
  • classes and schools in SMA.
    For now, if you want to make a post about your school I'd suggest the category "Art, Literature, Museums, Music, and Theaters". In general, the category "General Discussion" works for anyone not sure.

    I'll add a section to Links in the next day or two and include your school Sterling Quest.
  • classes and schools in SMA.
    Hmmm...you're right. We do not have a category for classes and schools. And, we don't have any listed on the Links page. There are some scattered listings.

    Depending on what you are looking for, there are some Spanish language resources in the Spanish category and could be some under Activities and Events, or Cooking, or, other categories.
    https://www.smafaq.com/discussion/59/chiles-en-nogada-cooking-lesson
    https://www.smafaq.com/discussion/669/jane-dills-art-class
    https://www.smafaq.com/discussion/899/weekly-art-classes
    https://www.smafaq.com/discussion/1050/guitar-classes
    https://www.smafaq.com/discussion/1197/extraordinary-master-classes-for-writers-feb-18-22
    https://www.smafaq.com/discussion/24/warren-hardy-spanish-101-cortesia
    https://www.smafaq.com/discussion/164/qroo-paul-spanish-for-people-moving-to-mexico
    https://www.smafaq.com/discussion/25/online-spanish-resources

    And any posting can be added to the Events Calendar (pretty sparse these days).

    But, I can add something. Is there something specific you are looking for or want to list?
  • Seven of San Miguel’s best dishes are right at your fingertips.
    I have been checking in on UberEats since November 2019. They still say I am not in their delivery area. We're in "Upper" San Rafael -- near Tacos Don Felix.

    But, if it works for you, what is your favorite UberEats place or meal?
  • La Comer Groceries. Delivered.
    Above, where I said "I also continue to order an item I wanted until it eventually shows up in the order." I mean that in my next weekly order, I order it again.
  • La Comer Groceries. Delivered.
    I received two boxes yesterday. But, in these times, things can change ...
  • La Comer Groceries. Delivered.
    I thought I had talked about this in an earlier comment but I don't see it, so, I guess not.

    I now often check the "Send a similar one" (if there is no product) option and usually get all or most of what I ordered, possibly with a substitution. i don't do that if I am ordering wine -- I'm not sure if/how they might substitute.

    When I don't get something I suspect it is because the item is not in stock. I once went to the store right after ordering and confirmed that. But, the shoppers could make mistakes. And, I think they are running at a very high volume of online orders right now.

    I also continue to order an item I wanted until it eventually shows up in the order. If something proves hard to get and is not perishable I order extra. I do the same thing when shopping in the store (pick up an extra of items that are sometimes not available).

    If you are comfortable talking with them you could select the Yes, I want to receive a consultation call, which might be the most reliable approach. I have never tried that.
  • Nine places in San Miguel with tasty takeout.
    Another one: Néctar

    "Our restaurant Néctar will be operating starting March 21 as takeout/curbside and delivery only. Our Facebook page for Néctar now has a storefront where you can order your meals and, very soon, your loose-leaf teas. We will be posting menus online, and we can take orders by phone, WhatsApp, email, or the Facebook store. You will also be able to purchase gift certificates to use for future meals and goodies from the stores.
    The link for our new Néctar Facebook store is:
    https://www.facebook.com/Néctar-269672869834479/ "

    Update Mar 30,2020 from their Facebook page: For the safety of our employees, we have decided to close Néctar until further notice.
  • La Comer Groceries. Delivered.
    We placed an order yesterday, Friday, and selected a delivery time of 1-2 pm which was the earliest time available. There was a notice later on the website that due to a high volume of online orders there might be delivery delays. Our order arrived about 3:30.
  • Nine places in San Miguel with tasty takeout.
    Check out Don Day's full list at the link in the post above. Any you would add?

    Some of my favorites that are not on his list are:

    RubyJoy's Delivery Only Restaurant (Delivery)

    Comida AfroAllende Ethiopian Food (Delivery)

    Cafe Arab'ella (Pick up / Delivery).
  • Coronavirus Update Mar 20, 2020
    Thanks, I'll add this to the resources,
  • Easter Processions
    The Procession will not be held to bring the Lord of the Column
    The Brotherhood of the Lord of the Column announced through a statement that the traditional bringing of the Lord of the Column is suspended, the sacred images will visit San Miguel de Allende although the time and the form have not yet been determined.

    In the message they point out the venerated image if they are going to make their annual, centennial and ancient visit like every year since 1823, without having a confirmed date yet.

    Due to the preventive measures against the spread of the Covid-19 virus, the night walk from the Sanctuary of Jesús Nazareno scheduled for March 29 is canceled.
    The Procession will not be held to bring the Lord of the Column (sp).
  • Easter Processions
    Oh, and in case you missed it:

    CDMX.- The Mexican Episcopate Conference (CEM), ordered bishops and priests from all over the country to immediately suspend Eucharistic celebrations as well as meetings for large groups such as retreats, catechesis, assemblies and others, in order to comply the guidelines established to prevent the spread of COVID19. Through the ...
    https://www.smafaq.com/discussion/1642/coronavirus-update-mar-17-2020

    But I don't know which, if any, of the processions are "church events."