COVID-19 Report–Shutting Access to Mexican Cities and Towns

Shutting down Mexican cities and towns. Good idea? Can it be done?

I hope you had a safe and uneventful Easter Sunday. Jacob and I took a Sunday morning drive out to the Port of Los Angeles, San Pedro, for a change of scene — protected and secure. It reminded me of Marlon Brando’s 1954 film On the Waterfront, gritty, rusty, heavy-lifting by beefy musclemen and giant machinery. Real life. Not pretty. No palm trees or grassy knolls.

After Gretchen Ellinger reported a few days ago that Puerto Peñasco, Sonora, Mexico, shut down access to the town to anyone other than residents, I asked if Oaxaca should do the same. People wrote to tell me their opinions and to report on what is happening in other places around Oaxaca and Mexico.

Write me: norma.schafer@icloud.com

What’s happening where you live in Mexico?

Katherine Koch says that “Oaxaca is doing pretty much the same…they’re starting to do checkpoints to ascertain from people driving into the city whether they could be sick. I don’t know if completely closing off this large capital city would be a reasonable thing to do—?” She goes on to say, “Seeing the responses from folks in your other thread about various pueblos closing—I’m so glad communities here are taking this strong stand, as if, okay, the Spanish got us once with smallpox, it’s not going to happen again.”

I said, “Ojala.” God willing. We can only hope that this 500-year-old memory about smallpox is rooted so deep in the culture to stop this modern plague from spreading!

Oaxaca residents Jacki Cooper Gordon and Kalisa Wells tell me that “San Marcos Tlapazola has completely closed.” Jacki says, My heart is with the women we [ENVIA] work with there.”

Kalisa called and spoke with a personal friend, writing me this, “Good news from Tlapazola. I spoke to Valentina this morning. They are restricting travel from the pueblo only to buy food in Tlacolula. They do not have one case of the virus. They are sheltered in home. Let’s hope this is enough. Of course, they do not have testing. Neither does the most powerful country in the world.”

Gail Pellet tells me, “San Agustin Etla is CLOSED! Only residents can enter.”

San Marcos Tlapazola and San Agustin Etla are two villages about 40 and 50 minutes outside of Oaxaca, in opposite directions.

Sally Sell thinks it may be too late to do anything for the city of Oaxaca.

What do you think? norma.schafer@icloud.com

News from Michoacan

Meanwhile, blogger Cristina Potters, added this, “Michoacán‘s borders have been closed to incoming traffic (tourism, etc.) since Thursday, April 10. Angahuan, Zirahuén, Sevina, Santa Ana Zirosto and other communities (small towns not far from Pátzcuaro) are not allowing even in-state traffic to enter. A Mexican woman I know had to make an urgent trip to Mexico City for medicine unavailable in Michoacán and will not be able to return to her HOME in Zirahuén at least until April 19 or 20, when the Semana Santa vacation period ends. Her brother and sister-in-law, who live just outside the town limits of Zirahuén, are not allowed to enter the town.

Norma with famed Michoacan weaver Cecelia Bautista Caballero

Cristina continues, “More than twenty thousand Mexican people arriving from the USA for Semana Santa celebrations with their families have been turned away from entering the state, despite government warnings over the last two weeks that they would not be admitted.

“This will all probably be changed AFTER Semana Santa.”

In Ajijic on Lake Chapala, blogger Chris Clark says she was told the plaza is roped off. She and Ben are sheltering at home.

On the docks, Latinos are prominent figures.

Thank you for reading. Stay safe. Stay healthy. Wear your face mask. If you want to order one, contact Hollie Taylor or Bailey Hikawa.

Fabric selection, Hollie Taylor face masks
Who is buying fish now?

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