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Serendipity: Unexpected and Fortunate Discoveries in Puerto Vallarta
email this pageprint this pageemail usPolly Vicars - PVNN
January 06, 2011

Surrounded by our treasured friends, Maestro Melchor and Martha Cortez, their children, Yesi now 19 and Alex now 17, our life saver doctor, Dr. Jaime Castañeda and his wife Martha, Husband’s Pilates maestro Ruben Mico and his wife Faviola, we were entertained by "Los Bambinos," Carlos, Lazzaro, Immer and Giorgio, whom we love as if they were our own, at their Tuesday, December 21, 2010 show at Viva Bar.

Melchor and Martha at their wedding in 1989

Melchor and Martha at 2010 Becas Ball

Husband with Alex and Yesi in 1997

Carlos, Galindo, José at Las Animas 1997

Los Bambinos 1993

Los Bambinos 2010

Dr. And Sra. Jaime Castañeda at the 2010 Becas Ball

Dr. Castañeda at work in CMQ hospital

Ruben Mico and Husband at work in Pilates

Marcelo Mico and Husband pose for the camera

Jerry Wilson at the beach in his oversized glasses
Listening to the incredible harmony of those guys with our so special friends my heart filled with love and joy and I was physically moved to jump up and share that feeling with everyone! Suppressing this desire then, I am no longer able to keep quiet about this incredible love affair that exists between Husband and me and these friends.

Upon arrival in Puerto Vallarta in August of 1988, on the advice of the late Jenny McGill who was the U.S. Consular Agent at the time, we immediately enrolled in Spanish classes with Maestro Melchor. The initial bond with this handsome young man started all those years ago, has grown through the years as we witnessed his wedding to the lovely Martha and the bringing home from the hospital on the day of their births both Yesi and Alex, and every special family occasion. We are there for them and they for us - for joyous occasions as well as times of pain and loss. What a serendipitous decision to enroll in Melchor’s Spanish class!

We didn’t meet Los Bambinos until 1997 when I was about to celebrate my 65th birthday with a wing ding at Las Animas. We had everything planned; the invitations were out to about 30 friends, the boats were rented, the reservations were made at the restaurant. But we didn’t have music! What is a Mexican Wing Ding without music?

Then another serendipitous event occurred while working out at the small, but well equipped gym owned by former Mr. Jalisco, Armando. A young man walked into the gym carrying a guitar case. My thoughts were if he brings his guitar even to the gym, this young man must be a dedicated musician.

I asked some questions and found that he sang with two others, Galindo and José. He quickly agreed to bring his group to Las Animas to entertain for my momentous birthday. They came and played to the delight of everyone. Husband and I saw something special about the young man who brought his guitar to gym and whose name was Gerardo Carlos Morales Salinas.

For several years we hired Carlos and his friends for parties, dinners on the beach and sometimes just in our condo. One night while we were dining at La Palapa on the beach, Carlos arrived with 3 young guys and began to sing at another table. We soon had them at our table and discovered they were his younger brothers, Lazzaro, Immer and Giorgio. Their harmony was fantastic, they were a handsome group of troubadour and "Los Bambinos" were launched.

They have become family and I guess Husband and I are "groupies" as we try never to miss a performance. This December 31st they wowed the diners at Daiquiri Dick’s New Year’s Eve Gala.

From a stage on the beach, they sang their hearts out to an audience that absolutely loved them. People were dancing between tables, on the beach, on the sidewalk and singing along. The spectacular fireworks actually paled in comparison to this group of handsome singers who were joined for this occasion by Karen on flute and Enrique on drums.

Serendipity seems to have played a major role in our lives in Puerto Vallarta. In December a few years ago Husband had a serious illness that rendered him comatose and required an ambulance to the neighborhood hospital, CMQ. As we pulled up to the door, a doctor came out to the ambulance and took charge. We have been incredibly healthy all of our lives thus did not really have a family doctor.

At this point we acquired one, Dr. Jaime Castañeda! He took Husband into intensive care. Even though we eventually air evacuated him to Houston where he recovered beautifully, the doctors there said Dr. Castañeda had done everything right and it was just a matter of time for him to recover! Dr. C. and his wife have become a part of our family now and he continues to keep both of us well!

Serendipity still at work we ran into our friend, Jerry Wilson, whom we hadn’t seen for some time. He looked absolutely great and said he had never felt better. I knew he was a year older than I, so asked what he was doing to look and feel so good. His answer was "Pilates."

Husband, who wasn’t feeling as well as he would have liked, went to find out about Pilates at Marcelo Mico Pilates which at that was just across the street from La Palapa. He signed up with Marcelo’s brother Ruben and has been stretching and working with Ruben ever since.

He liked it so much, I signed up too and my maestro is Marcelo, who has really worked wonders for me as I am now a couple of sizes smaller and feel absolutely great. We were sorry that Marcelo could not join us for the night I described, as he is a member of our extended family, who along with his brother Ruben, take very good care of us and we wouldn’t miss a Pilates lesson for anything less than a major earthquake!

I have not begun to tell all of the kindnesses, the care and love extended to us from this group of magnificent people. But I think you surely must know that there is nothing more that Husband and I would ask from any of them other than the friendship, care and joy they so freely and lovingly give to us. ¡Viva Mexico! ¡Viva Nuestros Amigos!

NOTE: For Spanish Classes call Melchor Cortes at (322) 224-8917; For Los Bambinos call 222-6412; For Dr. Castañeda call 223-0011; For Pilates call 322-127-9102.
Polly G. Vicars and her husband of almost 60 years, Hubert (a.k.a. "Husband") retired to Puerto Vallarta in 1988 and soon became active members of several charitable organizations. Polly is the author of "Tales of Retirement in Paradise: Life in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico" [a sell-out!] and "More Tales of Retirement in Puerto Vallarta and Around the World." Proceeds from the sale of her books go to the America-Mexico Foundation, a scholarship foundation that is their passion.

Click HERE for more articles by Polly Vicars, or click HERE to learn more about Becas Vallarta and the America-Mexico Foundation.

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