Category Archives: Death and all its trappings

An Evolution of El Dia de Los Muertos

It has come to my attention that there is some debate about the proper name of the events that go on in Mexico on November 2.  Apparently there is a section of the population, although I’m unclear whether that population is Mexican or of Mexican descent, that believe the name is Dia de Muertos instead of the longer El Dia de los Muertos.

It is true that language is fluid and constantly evolving and the shortening of a name is a common occurrence.  After all, in the English language, All Hallows’ Evening is now known as Halloween and bears scant resemblance to how it was originally observed.  So it seems El Dia de los Muertos is undergoing a transition as well.

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For example, this year, our town that aspires to be a city, had a whole weekend of “Dia de Muertos” events in addition to the traditional altares en el jardin (alters in the center garden).  It was unprecedented!  There was a parade, just like in the James Bond movie, (well, almost) and a Catrina/Catrine best costume competition and even bikers dressed as skeletons out for an after-dark bike ride.

That’s not to say that El Dia de Los Muertos has never changed before. After the Spanish conquest, the original date for this celebration of life was changed to coincide with All Saints’ Day and All Souls’ Day. Instead of obsidian disks, glass mirrors are brought to the cemetery now with the hope of catching a glimpse of departed loved ones.  Walmart now makes the pan de muerto (bread of the dead) instead of local bakers which left me without a sample of that sweet bread this year.  Sigh.  “Dia de Muertos” has become trendy and left behind the traditional El Dia de Los Muertos in many areas. Tourists flock to cemeteries to gawk at the tombs of the dead, adorned with love and cempasúchil (marigold) flower petals.

Even with all these new-fangled additions brought in locally, on November 1, known locally as El Dia de Los Angelitos, and on November 2, El Dia de los Muertos, everyone was en familia (with their families) at the panteon (cemetery).  I suppose the Civic fathers knew enough not to directly interfere with these customs and for this reason scheduled the events over the weekend instead of the high holy days.  

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And for us, it was still personal and private.  We visited my husband’s grandparents’ tomb in Cerano in the morning. We visited my husband’s mother’s tomb in the afternoon.  We left flowers and pictures and talked about our memories so that they will not die the third death yet, the death that comes when there is no one left to keep them alive in their hearts.

See Also El Dia de Los Muertos, Tio Felipe, The Day of the Dead)

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Assassin goat

2016 was a low birth year for us on the Flores mini-ranch overall. We had no horses, puppies, kittens or chicks born. Our goat duplication was also minimal. Instead of everyone having twins, there were only singletons or none at all in the summer. Well, except for Queenie. She’s been a consistent twinner all along.

So in 2017, we weren’t surprised when Whitey was yet another singleton. He wasn’t too happy about being the only kid. There was no one to play with when the mommies went out to graze. He was very vocal in his displeasure. He also didn’t have anyone to huddle with under the trough. He took to waiting until everyone was settled down and then climbing on top of one of the goats, usually his mom, to sleep.

About a month later, the big white nanny goat, a recent acquisition and thus still nameless, decided it was high time to have her baby. She waited until the middle of the night to ensure privacy. I heard the wailing of an unhappy baby goat sometime around 2 am. As my husband was not home, I went out to check it out.

Sure enough, there was a little white kid expressing its dislike of its new condition. But where was the mother? Oh, there on the other side of the corral. It looked as if she wasn’t finished kidding yet as she was still pawing the ground. Whitey wasn’t pleased with this new addition and added his own bleats to that of the new baby.

triplets

I waited outside for about 15 minutes, sure that any second she would give birth. As the minutes ticked by, I could see that she was having difficulty. She lay down yet again and stretched her legs into the air. I had never seen a goat in such distress. I decided that emergency measures needed to be taken.

I woke my son from a sound sleep and sent him up the road to my father-in-law. I was concerned that the nanny goat wasn’t going to make it. In the 10 minutes or so that it took for my son to return with my father-in-law (much more skilled in goat husbandry than myself) she popped out another baby goat. However, she was still carrying on.

It turned out that there was yet another baby goat. At this point, she was exhausted and the kid was presenting feet first, which was delaying things a bit. My father-in-law helped out a little, and voila, baby 3. Triplets! There were 2 boys and a girl which we tentatively christened Curly, Moe and Larry.

The next day, mama goat was still exhausted, as were we. The triplets weren’t too fussed if she was out of sight, but move one of their siblings and they became hysterical. Mama goat needed a little extra time to recuperate, but soon enough was back on her feet.

As mama goat had only two teats, feeding time became quite a hassle. One of the triplets decided that he and Whitey would be brothers and hunkered down with his new family. This worked out until Whitey’s mom was sold. The first night she was gone, something happened to the adopted triplet. We found him dead in the morning.

The deaths didn’t stop there. Later that afternoon, Pinta birthed a stillborn kid. We ended up on the plus side by the end of the day, though. Bunnie gave birth to itty bitty Brownie. Just a few hours later, Venada had twins–a boy and a girl, twice the size of Brownie.

Venada's boy/girl twins are a day younger than little Brownie, but look at the size difference.

Venada’s boy/girl twins are a day younger than little Brownie but look at the size difference.

Brownie gave us quite a scare about 2 weeks later. We had left the goats unattended for about 30 minutes while we went in for lunch. When my husband came out to check on the goats, he gave a holler. Brownie was in the water bucket up to his neck in water and unmoving, although still alive.

My husband wrapped him in a towel and sat with him in the sun. As he still didn’t show any inclination to move about, he brought one of the triplets that had befriended Brownie to nudge him a bit. About 45 minutes later, Brownie tried to get up. Whew!

It was about 2 hours before he could wobble around any. Now that the danger had passed, we puzzled about how this could have happened.

brownie

We think we have an assassin mama goat. The triplet that died, might have been killed. The stillbirth might have been caused by repeated stomach butting. Another triplet has a torn ear. And it just wasn’t possible that Brownie fell into the bucket. He would have fallen head first and that would have been the end of him. We think he was tossed through the air and landed in the bucket. And our probable suspect was Venada.

I’m all for ousting the murderer, but she does give healthy twins even though she goes overboard in her need for world domination. My husband agreed to keep an eye on her and since the bucket incident, there’ve been no new attempts on anyone’s life.

vaquita and skunk

Finally, a month after we thought all the kids for the season had been born, Vaquita presented us with Skunk. He’s long legged, long-eared and oh so cute. She too waited till dark to give birth and had a bit of difficulty. The kid was big and this was her first baby. She’s also pretty skittish compared to our other goats, so didn’t like anyone close enough to give assistance and once delivered, didn’t want anyone near her baby. Of course, the dark coloring make Skunk hard to see and has been causing no end of grief for his nervous nellie mom. My husband separated Vaquita and Skunk in hopes that the assassin goat doesn’t have an opportunity to strike again.

skunk

 

When we did some additional paring down of the goats, Venada and her babies went up on the auction block.  We just couldn’t have murdering goats around, even if there was a good probability of twins every season.  Instead, my husband purchased Jirafa (Giraffe) and much to our delight, she presented us with twins.

Jirafa and one of the twin daughters. She takes after her dad I guess.

The other daughter–just like mom!

 

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This post was proofread by Grammarly.
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Surviving the Zombie apocalypse in La Yacata

I have a love/hate relationship with zombies. I love to hate them. Really. So going into this post, I didn’t know much more about them other than they are resuscitated undead that can be stopped by a blow to the head. However, I did some zombie research and have discovered that the best way to survive a zombie apocalypse is to prevent from becoming a zombie because once you’ve been infected, well, that’s pretty much it for your higher thinking skills.

Therefore, as prevention is the key, I’ve listed the top 10 things that cause zombification, in no particular order, so that you can avoid them like the plague (no pun intended).

survive-zombie1. Pesticide use causes zombies. Do not breathe, touch or ingest anything with pesticides. Go organic.

For further research:

Movies :Let Sleeping Corpses Lie, Les Raisin de la Mort, Toxic Zombies, Warning Sign

Articles :Long-term Health Effects of Pesticides, The problem with pesticides, Exposure to pesticides linked to long-term brain damage, Brain and nervous system damaged by low-level exposure to pesticides , Massive New Study Suggests Pesticide the Cause of Microcephaly — NOT Zika Virus, Largest-Ever GMO Crops Study Shows Massive Environmental Damage in US, Breaking: Central Florida Aerial Spraying NALED on 20,000 Acres by Planes for Mosquitos!, Study: Class of Pesticides Sprayed Over Miami May Cause Neurological Disease , Maybe You Aren’t Gluten Intolerant. Maybe You’re Just Poison Intolerant, Illegal Spraying of Monsanto-Dupont Pesticide Causes Massive Crop Damage in Multiple States, Roundup Weedkiller Found In 75% of Air and Rain Samples, Gov. Study Finds,  Class of Pesticides Sprayed Over Miami May Cause Neurological Disease, says study

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2. Steroid and synthetic drug use cause zombies. Do not use steroids or synthetic drugs. Find natural cures. Switch to marijuana. (I can’t believe I said that!)

For further research:

Movies: Goal of the Dead, Bath Salt Zombies, Ozone

Articles: Drugs, Brains, and Behavior: The Science of Addiction, Medical Consequences of Drug Abuse Neurological Effects, Opiates, Overdose and Permanent Brain Damage, Effects of Cocaine, Steroids May Cause Brain Damage?, DrugFacts: Anabolic Steroids, FSU Student, Suspected to be High on Flakka, Allegedly Ate Victim’s Face After Stabbing Him and Wife to Death, World’s 10 Most Deadly Street Drugs that Will Quickly Tear Your Body Apart

Marijuana as beneficial substance:

Movies: The cabin in the woods

Articles: 23 Health Benefits Of Marijuana, All The Reasons Pot Is Good For You, Medical cannabisResearchers Finally Confirm that Marijuana DOES NOT Lower IQ in Adolescents

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3. Alcohol abuse causes zombies. Do not overindulge in fermented beverages. There is some research that suggests alcohol in moderation may be beneficial.

For further research:

Movies: Broken Springs, The Vineyard

Articles: Alcohol’s damaging effects on the brain, Alcohol related brain impairment, Alcohol-related brain damage, Long-term effects of alcohol consumption, Long-Term Effects Of Alcohol Impair Brain’s Pathways That Underlie Impulse Control

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Alcohol as beneficial substance:

Movies: Days of Darkness, Night of the Living Dorks

Articles: 11 Ways Alcohol Is Legitimately Healthy, 23 SURPRISING, HEALTHY BENEFITS OF ALCOHOL, 7 Health Benefits Of Drinking Alcohol

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4. Genetically modified animal or insect bites causes zombies. Avoid genetically modified creatures.

Movies: Black Sheep, Black Swarm, Quarantine 2 Terminal, A Little Bit Zombie , Zombeavers, Army of Darkness, Blood of the Beast, Braindead, REC 4 Apocalypse, Zombie Night 2 Awakening

Articles:Genetically Modified Animals , 8 Bizarre Examples of Genetic Engineering in Animals, Genetically Modified Animals, Genetically modified insect, Millions of genetically modified mosquitoes could be released in Florida Keys if British researchers win approval to use the bugs against painful viral diseases

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5. Ingesting a contaminated or genetically modified product causes zombies. Avoid genetically modified food and drink. Coke is bad! Grown your own food!

For further research:

Movies: Wasting Away, Surf II, Bio Zombie, Poultrygeist–Night of the Chicken Dead, Zombieland

Articles: Does Soda Affect Your Brain?, 8 Negative Effects Of Soda On Your Brain , This Is Your Teenager’s Brain on Soda,  America’s soft drink addiction,  10 IRREFUTABLE evidence that GMO can harm you! , This is how GMOs damage your brain, Health Hazards of Genetically Engineered Foods, GMOs/Nanofoods, Girl, 14, left brain-damaged after eating KFC chicken twister forced into new court battle as food giant appeals $8m payout, Mad Cow Disease What the Government Isn’t Telling You!, Farmed Salmon – One of The Most Toxic Foods in the World, 10 Reasons To Avoid Soy At All Costs… , 20 Practical Uses for Coca Cola… Proof That Coke Does Not Belong In the Human Body, 9 Toxic Fake Foods Made in China Contain Plastic, Pesticides and Cancer Causing Chemicals

6. Drinking from an infected water supply causes zombies.  Avoid water laced with chemicals such as fluoride or pesticides. (See #1) Collect and distil your own drinking water.

For further research:

Movies: City of Rott, Pathogen, Rise of the Zombies, Special Dead,

Articles: The Effects of Water Pollution 8 Significant Issues, Lead in water: What are the health effects and dangers?, Contaminated water caused long-term brain damage in Camelford, say doctors study, Brain damaged children: Water that meets federal heavy metals limit is still not safe to drink, Flouride’s direct effects on brain: Animal Studies, Impact of fluoride on neurological development in children, Cocktails Of Dozens Of Drugs In Our Water Supply Remain Unfiltered

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7. Watching TV causes zombies.  Get rid of your TV.  Media is a form of brainwashing.

For further research:

Movies: The Video Dead

Articles: Children who watch too much TV may have ‘damaged brain structures’, The effects of TV on the brain, Gray Matters: Too Much Screen Time Damages the Brain, 6 Brainwashing Techniques They’re Using On You Right Now, Research Study Explains How U.S. Media Brainwashes The Public , How We Are Brainwashed by the MediaTelevision is Turning Us Into Zombies

germs

8. Receiving chemical treatment for a disease or a vaccine for prevention of a disease causes zombies. Use natural cures. Do not get vaccinated.

For further research:

Movies: Autumn, Dead Meat, Zombieland, Flight of the Living Dead, I am Legend, REC, The Sky Has Fallen, Virus Undead, Zombie Apocalypse, Silent Night Zombie Night, Bone Sickness, Playground, Insanitarium, Necropolis Awakened, Zombie Planet, Zombies! Zombies! Zombies!, Undead Pool, Resident Evil, The Returned, World War Z

Articles: 10 Shocking Facts About Mad Cow Disease, Malaria in pregnancy linked to brain damage in babies, Army units ordered to stop taking anti-malarial drug linked to brain damage, Chemotherapy ‘could cause brain damage’ in breast cancer patients, Researchers Detail Chemotherapy’s Damage to the Brain, TDAP VACCINATED MOTHERS GIVE BIRTH TO BRAIN DAMAGED BABIES, Subclinical Brain Injury Caused by H5N1 Influenza Virus Infection, Bird flu causes Alzheimer’s-like brain damage, study says, Pandemrix, FDA Approves Experimental H5N1 Bird Flu Vaccine with Reactive AS03 Adjuvant for U.S. Stockpile, Vaccines and Brain Damage, Rabies, Permanent brain damage and pertussis vaccination: is the end of the saga in sight?, Vaccines and Neurological Damage, CDC SAYS MMR AND PERTUSSIS VACCINES CAN CAUSE PERMANENT BRAIN DAMAGE, Boy Awarded $174,000 After Flu Vaccine Causes Permanent Brain Damage, What the flu shot can do to your brain, Monsanto’s Famous Herbicide Chemical Found In Childhood Vaccines And It’s Extremely Toxic, Independent Lab Discovers Glyphosate in Five Different Childhood Vaccines , Courts Quietly Confirm MMR Vaccine Causes Autism

zombie-grammar

9. Being exposed to toxic, radioactive or nuclear waste in the air, soil or water, whether by accident or design, causes zombies. Stay away from test sites, nuclear reactors and leaking facilities. (See Surviving a toXic cloud and Surviving Nuclear disaster)

For further research:

Movies: Caustic Zombies, Eat Me!, Fido, The Horror of Party Beach, Night of the Living Dead Re-Animation, Nightmare City, Remains, Zombie Bloodbath, The children, Dead Air, Deathwatch, The Earth Dies Screaming, Forest of the Dead, Hell of the Living Dead, Miruthan, Planet Terror, The Return of the Living Dead, State of Emergency, Revenge of the Living Dead Girls, Tokyo Zombie, La Morte Vivante, 28 Weeks Later

Articles: Officials: Fukushima Has Now Contaminated 1/3 Of The Worlds Oceans , Coincidence: Kansas Kids Mysteriously Ill…In The Same Town As The Forthcoming DHS Bio-Safety Level 4 Lab, Tyson Foods Now Listed as Bigger Polluter than US Department of Defense, Koch Industries and Exxon Mobile, Massive Sinkhole Opens In Florida Releasing Millions Of Gallons Of “Slightly Radioactive” Water, The New Flint: Children Exposed To Lead And Arsenic In Soil For Years, Are Now Homeless

zombie-living

10. Aliens and asteroids cause zombies. There isn’t much you can do about this one, folks. (See Surviving UFO invasion). Fortunately, it seems the least likely cause of zombies.

For further research:

Movies: Gangs of the Dead, Hide and Creep, I was a Zombie for the FBI, Invisible Invaders, Plan 9 from Outer Space, Zombie Self-Defense Force, Alien Dead, Battle Girl: The Living Dead in Tokyo Bay, Brain Dead, Days of Darkness, The Dead and the Damned, Germ Z, Night of the Comet, Slither, They Walk, Undead, Wyrmwood

Articles: Poisonous Effects of Asteroid Impacts or Nuclear Explosions in the Western Regions of the Black Sea, Toxic Shock, Global Effects

how-to-survive-zombie-apocalypse

Certain groups of people are especially at risk to becoming zombies. If you belong to one of these groups, it behooves you to take special precautions against becoming a zombie.

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1–Being in prison places you at a higher risk of becoming a zombie. Stay out of prison.

For further research:

Movies: Dead Men Walking, Raiders of the Living Dead, Garden of the Dead, Dead Riot, Re-Animator

Articles: Understanding Traumatic Brain Injury in Prisons, Traumatic Brain Injury in Prisons and Jails: An Unrecognized Problem, Traumatic brain injury in a prison population: prevalence and risk for re-offending, Brain Injury Rate 7 Times Greater among U.S. Prisoners, Traumatic Brain Injury in Prisons: A Review

college-zombie

2–Being a college student places you at a higher risk of becoming a zombie. Don’t go to college. Self-educate.

For further research:

Movies: Brain Blockers, Dorm of the Dead, House of the Dead 2, Night of the Creeps, Re-animator, Voodoo

Articles: 9 Ways Going to College Affects Your Health, Is a College Education Worth It? , 6 Disadvantages Of Going To College, 10 Disadvantages of College

zombie-with-phone

3–Being a high school student places you at a higher risk of becoming a zombie. Unschool.

For further research:

Movies: Detention of the Dead, Night Life, One Dark Night, Scouts guide to the Zombie Apocalypse, Tormented, Trailer Park Terror, Zombie High, Automaton Transfusion, Biohazardous, Stacy

Articles: Issues Schools Face that Negatively Impacts Student Learning, Negative Impacts of Modern Education – Self Centrism, Public schools do cause negative effects on a person’s education and psychological behavior

uncle-sam

4–Being in the military places you at a higher risk of becoming a zombie. Do not join the armed forces of any country.

For further research:

Movies: Uncle Sam, War of the Dead, Wasting Away, Zombie Strippers, Zone of the Dead, The Dead Next Door, Zombi 3

Articles: Malaria drug causes brain damage that mimics PTSD: case study, Traumatic Brain Injury Overview, Military-related traumatic brain injury and neurodegeneration, TBI and PTSD: Navigating the Perfect Storm, Brain-damaging Side Effects Force Army to Pull Mefloquine

zombie-end-of-world

La Yacata is the best place to survive a zombie apocalypse. We collect our own water, grow our own food, do not have a television, choose natural health options, do not use pesticides, believe in self-education, live far from nuclear facilities, and have a rooftop sniper vantage point, should worse come to worst. Yes, it would be easier to give in and become a zombie, drink coke and eat hot dogs, but where would the fun be in that? When you see the danger you are in living in modern society, we’ll see you in La Yacata!

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This post was proofread by Grammarly.

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Surviving a toXic cloud in La Yacata

Accidents happen. It’s part of life. Human error, mechanical malfunction, shoddy safety practices, deliberate terrorism, even natural disaster all could cause a life-threatening toxic cloud in your area.

Mexico has quite a history of such toxic cloud disasters. The thing is, it’s often hard to measure the real magnitude of the disaster with all the government cover-up that goes on. Here are a few examples.

In April of 2016, The Pemex facility in Coatzacoalcos had an explosion which reportedly killed 13 people and injured another 100. The explosion caused a massive fire (it is an oil refinery after all) which created a toxic cloud containing chloroethane among other toxic gasses.

Schools were suspended in six municipalities surrounding the toxic cloud site. Residents were told to stay inside their houses, although Mexican authorities insisted that the cloud posed no risk to the population. Pemex supported this statement and further assured the media that the explosion would not impact the plant’s oil exportation production. Whew! I’m sure everyone was worried about that!

This is not the first major accident for the Mexican company. In January of 2013, Pemex’s headquarters in Mexico City was hit by a massive gas explosion that killed 37 people.

In October of 2012, 30 people were killed and 42 wounded at another Pemex oil refinery in Reynosa, Tamaulipas. The smoke from the toxic cloud that resulted was visible up to 10 miles away.

In Poza Rica, Veracruz in November of 1950, the Pemex oil refinery “accidentally” released hydrogen sulfide into the air. Over 20 people were killed while they slept and 320 were treated for exposure. The toxic cloud killed 50% of the animals that were exposed to its gasses.

Another incident on Poza Rica occurred in May of 2002. A series of explosions occurred at the refinery, killing one, burning two and injuring 7 in the toxic cloud that resulted.

In May of 1991, there was an explosion and subsequent fire at the national pesticide plant ANAVERSA in Cordoba, Veracruz which created a toxic cloud made up of Xylene. The vapors killed 5 people and caused dozens to be treated for inhalation of the chemical compound that affects the central nervous system.

In Nanchital, Veracruz in April of 2005, workers attempting to repair a pipeline, mistakenly cut an ammonia pipe releasing a toxic cloud into the neighborhood. Six workers were killed, 297 others were treated for exposure and more than 1,500 were evacuated.

Pemex has numerous received accolades for its safety standards year after year, however, the death toll is in the thousands. Those listed above are only a small segment of industrial air contamination caused by the national oil company.

In 2005 alone, 516.9 thousand tons of SOx emissions were released into the atmosphere by Pemex facilities.  SOx emissions are the major precursor of acid rain.

At times a toxic cloud results from deliberate actions. An explosion on a drilling platform off the coast of Louisiana in 2010 caused a massive oil spill which was then set on fire in an attempt to keep the spill from spreading. The fire in the Gulf of Mexico created an enormous toxic cloud, which of course, the U.S. government felt would be the lesser of two evils and cause less damage than allowing the oil spill to reach land.

Then there was that naled aerial spraying in North Carolina in August of 2016. Not only were millions of bees and other beneficial insects killed, but naled is a compound toxic to humans as well, causing damaged to the nervous system, birth defects, paralysis, and death.

Smog is yet another form of toxicity found in the air.  Smog is highly toxic to humans and has been proven to cause sickness and death among those that breath it in.  Mexico City is the most smog-plagued city in Latin America

Although the Mexican government is quick to point out that Mexico City’s air quality is better than much of China and India.

So what do you do in the event of a toxic cloud in your area? Well, a biohazard suit would come in handy. However, in the event that your suit is at the cleaner’s, any cloth used to cover your mouth and nose that minimizes the amount of toxic fumes you inhale would help as you move away from the source as quickly as possible. A biohazard mask would be good to have in this case.

Another tip that might work in some areas is to go into an airtight building. I have to say though that most buildings in Mexico are far from airtight so this might not be as helpful as it would be in more modern areas.

Remove any clothing that might have been exposed to the toxic cloud and dispose of it. Then shower to remove any residue left on your skin. Unfortunately, some chemicals react negatively to water so this might cause even more problems.

Several prepper sites recommended listening for official announcements by someone in authority for instructions on evacuation. I’m going to say that again that government cover-up might preclude this as being a valid life-saving option.

La Yacata would be an excellent place to be to survive a toxic cloud catastrophe as it is far from any Pemex refineries, there are no pipes going through the area, ammonia or otherwise, and since our 95-year-old pesticide spraying neighbor no longer plants any crops, the air in and around us is totally breathable, unless you are downwind of the pig farmer that is. (See Hate thy neighbor). The area is still sparsely populated so government agencies are not spraying toxic chemicals to eliminate Zika carrying mosquitos either. They don’t really care if we get Zika or not, which is just as well I think.  Don’t you?

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