The Akumalian

Akumal's Newsletter for its Extended Global Community
Quintana Roo, Mexico

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September B 2006 Issue 44


September is one very busy month, so this is the second issue of The Akumalian this month.  The last issue was one of the largest (files size wise), and many of the subscribers on Hotmail and/or Yahoo might not have been able to download it - sorry about that.  Now, this issue is the largest in page count.  And, at that same Executive Meeting mentioned in the last issue, I made another decision to send it out Friday morning.  That decision and the eventual distribution took down a T1 server, due to the extensive bandwidth created by the file size and number of people on the distribution list.

Therefore, the Executive Committee member voted to start the move towards building up the web site and using it to deliver The Akumalian



Miguel Hidalgo, often called the Father of Mexico.El Grito every 16th of September is the Mexican Fiesta par excellence!  On this day Mexicans all over the world celebrate Mexico's independence from Spanish rule.

In the early hours of September 16, 1810, father Hidalgo, accompanied by several conspirators -Iganacio Allende, Dona Josefa Ortiz de Dominguez-   rang the bell of his little church, calling everyone to fight for liberty.  This was the beginning of the Independence War, which lasted 10 years.El Grito September 16, Independence Day in Mexico

Eleven years of war, decades of despotic Mexican rulers and political unrest proceeded Hidalgo's cry of Dolores.  Yet throughout the years of turmoil, El Grito de Dolores, "Mexicanos, viva Mexico," has persevered.  Every year at midnight on September 15, Mexicans shout the grito, honoring the crucial, impulsive action that was the catalyst for the country's bloody struggle for independence from Spain.



The Grito de Dolores was the call for the independence of Mexico given by Miguel Hidalgo on September 16, 1810 in the town of Dolores, near Guanajuato.  The name is a pun in the Spanish language; "Grito de Dolores" can mean both "The Shout from (the town of) Dolores", and "The Cry of Pain", signifying the pain that the rule of Spain caused Mexico.



Felipe Calderon, a conservative from President Vicente Fox's party, was declared Mexico's next president on Tuesday, September 5, by the nation's highest electoral court, officially ending a bitterly contested election that has polarized the country.  Though the decision settled legal challenges to the most contentious election in Mexican history, it did not put an end to the political crisis that has gripped the country since voters went to the polls on July 2.  Mr. Calderon’s first challenge as president will be to defuse the anger of leftists who believe the election was fraudulent.

It will not be easy.  The losing candidate, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, the former mayor of Mexico City, refused to recognize Mr. Calderon's victory.  He has threatened to continue a campaign of mass protests and civil disobedience to thwart the new president’s ability to govern.

Mr. Calderon, a 44-year-old economist and lawyer, has promised to continue the pro-business and free-trade policies of Mr. Fox. He hopes to spur investment with a flat tax, which would lower taxes on the rich and businesses.  But the biggest challenge facing Mr. Calderon, in the short run, will most likely be healing the rifts and political wounds the election has created.  Since the election, Mr. Calderon has taken pains to say fighting poverty will be one of his top priorities and has offered an olive branch to those who voted against him.  Mr. Calderon will take office on December 1.

The losing candidate, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, the former mayor of Mexico City, refused to recognize Mr. Calderon’s victory.  He has threatened to continue a campaign of mass protests and civil disobedience to thwart the new president's ability to govern.

By promising to help the poor, Mr. Lopez Obrador's campaign exposed the deep divisions along class and race lines in Mexico, a country where half the population lives on less than $4 a day while the top tenth of the population controls nearly half the wealth.  With a long history of fraudulent elections, Mr. Lopez Obrador has succeeded in convincing many of the 14.6 million people who voted for him that there was a broad conspiracy between business leaders and the government to rob them of victory.

But Mr. Lopez Obrador did not persuade the electoral tribunal.  In a unanimous decision, the  seven-member court rejected Mr. Lopez Obradors arguments that the election should be annulled, among other reasons, because Mr. Fox had given speeches attacking him and business leaders had paid millions for illegal, negative advertisements to help Mr. Calderon win.  Explaining their ruling, several of the judges deplored the black propaganda Mr. Calderon and some business groups had used against Mr. Lopez Obrador, depicting him as a closet leftist dictator who would bankrupt the nation.  They also said President Fox had jeopardized the elections validity with numerous speeches that indirectly attacked the leftist candidate.  Still, the judges ruled Mr. Fox had not broken the current electoral law, and though the advertisements paid for by business leaders had violated the law, the judges said they did not influence the election enough to warrant throwing out the results.

But the overall results did not change much.  In their final ruling on Tuesday, the judges concluded Mr. Calderon won the election by a mere 233,831 votes out of 41.5 million cast, a margin very close to the official tally done in early July.


As of September 9th Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has given up efforts to have himself declared winner of Mexico's presidential race, but he still plans a parallel government to cater to the poor and keep alive his fight against the president-elect.  Since Mexico's top electoral court rejected Lopez Obrador's allegations of widespread fraud in the July 2 vote, he has focused on a September 16th convention where supporters will declare him leader of a resistance government.  The plan is to block President-elect Felipe Calderon at every step, including his December 1st inauguration.

Gerardo Fernandez, the spokesman for Lopez Obrador's Democratic Revolution Party, said the parallel government will fight for recognition in international forums and launch street protests against free trade reforms and privatization of government enterprises.  It also will set up an unspecified capital, form a Cabinet, and set policy.

Lopez Obrador plans his own inauguration, complete with a presidential sash presented by his supporters.  He has warned followers that such moves may draw ridicule, telling them:  'They will make fun of us."

He also has drawn criticism for comparing himself to national heroes such as Benito Juarez, who led a parallel government during the 1862-67 French invasion.

Many see the comparison as ridiculous because most observers say Calderon won a fair election.

"What are we supposed to do with a crazy man who wants the whole country to capitulate to his whims?" wrote columnist Enrique Canales in the newspaper El Universal.

Others think it's not so crazy.  Timed to coincide with Mexico's Independence Day, the convention is modeled on events convened near the end of the 1910-17 revolution to end the chaos and create a government and a constitution. "It's a very savvy use of political symbols," political scientist Federico Estevez said.



For the second time in recent weeks, a hurricane forecasting team has cut the number of major storms it expects this season.  The team at Colorado State University now expects 13 named Atlantic storms, researchers announced Friday, September 1st.  Of those, the group said five will be hurricanes -- two of which are expected to be intense.

At the end of May, the team predicted 17 named storms.  In August, they cut that figure by two.  On Friday, the researchers said that based on what has happened through August, they now believe September and October will be more like average years.

The Colorado team isn't the only group changing its storm predictions.  The National Hurricane Center revised its estimate in August from 15 down to 12. 

It is mid-September, and the named tropical storms in the Atlantic/Caribbean are only up to Helene, and nothing (knock on wood) has come close to the Riviera Maya.  Most of the tropical storms stayed out in the Atlantic, especially Florence, and Gordon, and the forecast is for Helene to go that way too.

Is ING going to downgrade its rates for the insurance premiums?

OKTOBERFEST 2006, SEPT. 16 to OCT. 3

The Oktoberfest - in Munich, Germany - begins on Saturday, September 16 and runs through Tuesday, October 3.

Oktoberfest 2006  © dpa / Montage: BR

 The History of the Oktoberfest
Crown Prince Ludwig, later to become King Ludwig I, was married to Princess Therese of Saxony-Hildburghausen on 12th October 1810.  The citizens of Munich were invited to attend the The History of the Oktoberfestfestivities held on the fields in front of the city gates to celebrate the happy royal event.  The fields have been named Theresienwiese ("Theresa's fields") in honor of the Crown Princess ever since, although the locals have since abbreviated the name simply to the "Wies'n".

Horse races in the presence of the Royal Family marked the close of the event that was celebrated as a festival for the whole of Bavaria.  The decision to repeat the horse races in the subsequent year gave rise to the tradition of the Oktoberfest.

In 1811 an added feature to the horse races was the first Agricultural Show, designed to boost Bavarian agriculture.  The horse races, which were the oldest and - at one time - the most popular event of the festival are no longer held today.  But the Agricultural Show is still held every three years during the Oktoberfest on the southern part of the festival grounds.

The History and Statistics of OktoberfestIn the first few decades the choice of amusements was sparse.  The first carousel and two swings were set up in 1818.  Visitors were able to quench their thirst at small beer stands which grew rapidly in number.  In 1896 the beer stands were replaced by the first beer tents and halls set up byHistory enterprising landlords with the backing of the breweries.

The remainder of the festival site was taken up by a fun-fair.  The range of carousels etc. on offer was already increasing rapidly in the 1870s as the fairground trade continued to grow and develop in Germany.

Beer Tents are a MustToday, the Oktoberfest is the largest festival in the world, with an international flavor characteristic of the 21th century: some 6 million visitors from all around the world converge on the Oktoberfest each year.  And since the Oktoberfest is still held on the Theresienwiese, the locals still refer to the event simply as the "Wies'n".  So "welcome to the Wies'n" means nothing other than "welcome to the Oktoberfest"!

Oktoberfest 2005: one festival, 17 days, and six million visitors consumed 6.1 million 1 liter steins of beer, 95 oxen, 482,000 chickens and 560,000 pork knuckles.   Prost!!!


The date (September 23 in the northern hemisphere) when night and day are nearly of the same length, and the Sun crosses the celestial equator (i.e., declination 0) moving southward (in the northern hemisphere).  In the southern hemisphere, the autumnal equinox corresponds to the center of the Sun crossing the celestial equator moving northward and occurs on the date of the northern vernal equinox.  The autumnal equinox marks the first day of the season of autumn.


Not quite ruler of an empire, Chichen Itza became, for a time, the pivot of the lowland Maya world.  The Temple of Kukulkan (for the Feathered Serpent God, also known as Quetzalcoatl) is the largest and most important ceremonial structure at the site.  This 90-foot-high pyramid is a storehouse of information on the Mayan calendar and is cleverly positioned to mark the solstices and equinoxes.

At sunset on both the vernal and autumnal equinoxes, an interplay between the sun's light and the edges of the stepped terraces on the pyramid creates a fascinating - and very brief - shadow display upon the sides of the northern stairway.  A serrated line of seven interlocking triangles gives the impression of a long tail leading downward to the stone head of the serpent Kukulkan, at the base of the stairway.

You have to see it to believe it.  The best time to experience the phenomena is in the afternoons, five days before and five days after the equinox.  On the day, thousands turn up, so be sure to get there early!


This diagram shows the position of the sun at sunset on the day of the Fall equinox (Sept 23rd).  The alignment of the sun and the way that it reflects and shadows the tiers, or layers, of the pyramid are what causes the phenomenon known as the Seven Triangles of Light and Shadow to appear on the northern staircase.



            Phil Mickelson is the only right-hander I know who plays the game left-handed.  Mickelson, golf's second best player, is often referred to as "Lefty", because he plays golf left-handed.  However, Phil is naturally right-handed but learned the game by standing across from his father and "mirror imaging" his father's right-handed swing.



2006 Ryder CupTeams from Europe and the United States compete every two years for the cup, which was inaugurated back in 1927.  The inaugural Ryder Cup matches took place in Worcester Country Club, Massachusetts in 1927.  The United States team beat the team from Great Britain by 9 1/2 - 2 1/1.

            The major golf event that occurs every two years, a.k.a. the World Cup of Golf, is a two-day event in which Team USA and Team European square off in a mixture of national pride and sportsmanship.  This year, the 36th Ryder Cup matches are on September 22 - 24, 2006, centered around the K Club in Straffan, Ireland.

            During the Ryder Cup matches, the pressure really mounts when individual players are required to let go of their "star" status and work together to win.  If one player is performing badly, the rest have to grin and bear it for the best possible outcome - namely, scoring a point for the team!

Ryder Cup rules adhere to a matchplay format that rewards the number of points a team wins, rather than the shots players take individually.  In the end, it all adds up to victory if each team can really pull together.  A match is worth one point, and whichever team first accumulates 14 1/2 points wins the Cup.

RYDER CUP 2007, JUNE 5-11, 2007

            The local AGC (Akumal Golf Club) is also preparing to defend its 2005 "Ryder Cup" victory in its rematch with Team Austria over the course of June 5 - 11, 2007 in and around Vienna, Austria.  Austria's team captain, Fred Strommer has been preparing his team for this rematch for over a year already, and he is seeking a strong "home field advantage" with three courses personally selected to play to their strengths.

            The 2007 Ryder Cup gets started on June 5th – the day the AGC arrives in Vienna - at the Haugschlag Golf & Resort, with a 12:00 tee time.  Talk about taking advantage of the "home field".

            After two days of wining and dining by the locals - still looking for more of the "home field advantage" - the match resume on June 8th at Golf Club Adamstal.  BTW, "tal" in German means valley.

            The 2007 Akumal/Austria Ryder Cup concludes at the world famous Golf Club Schloβ Schonborn, and this is where the Awards dinner will be held.

            In another effort to take the concept of "home field advantage" to the maximum, Mr. Strommer is also planning on providing Akumal’s left-handed captain, Dennis Mahan, with rented right-handed clubs.


PHOTOS OF THE MONTH – Thanks to Scott Brown and Ron Stern for the Lol Ha photos.









 Rosh Hashanah occurs on the first and second days of Tishri.  In Hebrew, Rosh Hashanah means, literally, "head of the year" or "first of the year."  Rosh Hashanah is commonly known as the Jewish New Year.  This name is somewhat deceptive, because there is little similarity between Rosh Hashanah, one of the holiest days of the year, and the American midnight drinking bash and daytime football game.

There is, however, one important similarity between the Jewish New Year and the American one: Many Americans use the New Year as a time to plan a better life, making "resolutions."  Likewise, the Jewish New Year is a time to begin introspection, looking back at the mistakes of the past year and planning the changes to make in the new year.

The name "Rosh Hashanah" is not used in the Bible to discuss this holiday.  The Bible refers to the holiday as Yom Ha-Zikkaron (the day of remembrance) or Yom Teruah (the day of the sounding of the shofar).  The holiday is instituted in Leviticus 23:24-25.

The shofar is a ram's horn which is blown somewhat like a trumpet.  One of the most important observances of this holiday is hearing the sounding of the shofar in the synagogue.  A total of 100 notes are sounded each day.  There are four different types of shofar notes: tekiah, a 3 second sustained note; shevarim, three 1-second notes rising in tone, teruah, a series of short, staccato notes extending over a period of about 3 seconds; and tekiah gedolah (literally, "big tekiah"), the final blast in a set, which lasts 10 seconds minimum.  The Bible gives no specific reason for this practice.  One that has been suggested is that the shofar's sound is a call to repentance.  The shofar is not blown if the holiday falls on Shabbat.

No work is permitted on Rosh Hashanah.  Much of the day is spent in synagogue, where the regular daily liturgy is somewhat expanded.  In fact, there is a special prayer book called the machzor used for Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, because of the extensive liturgical changes for these holidays.

Another popular observance during this holiday is eating apples dipped in honey, a symbol of our wish for a sweet new year.

Another popular practice of the holiday is Tashlikh ("casting off").  They walk to flowing water, such as a creek or river, on the afternoon of the first day and empty their pockets into the river, symbolically casting off of sins.  This practice is not discussed in the Bible, but is a long-standing custom.


A woman who won $1 million from a state lottery game four years ago has improbably hit the jackpot again.  Valerie Wilson, who works at a Long Island deli, said she won another $1 million on a lottery scratch-off game last month.

In 2002, her winning ticket in the Cool Million scratch-off game was a shot of 1 in 5.2 million, according to the New York State Lottery.  Last month, she beat odds of 1 in 705,600 when she got the $1 million prize in the New York lottery's Jubilee scratch-off game.

Overall, her chances of winning both games were a slim 1 in 3,669,120,000,000.



Ramadan is the ninth month of the Muslim calendar.  The Month of Ramadan is also when it is believed the Holy Quran "was sent down from heaven, a guidance unto men, a declaration of direction, and a means of Salvation"

It is during this month that Muslims fast.  It is called the Fast of Ramadan and lasts the entire month.  Ramadan is a time when Muslims concentrate on their faith and spend less time on the concerns of their everyday lives.  It is a time of worship and contemplation

During the Fast of Ramadan strict restraints are placed on the daily lives of Muslims.  They are not allowed to eat or drink during the daylight hours.  Smoking and sexual relations are also forbidden during fasting.  At the end of the day the fast is broken with prayer and a meal called the iftar. In the evening following the iftar it is customary for Muslims to go out visiting family and friends.  The fast is resumed the next morning

The good that is acquired through the fast can be destroyed by five things:
the telling of a lie
denouncing someone behind his back
a false oath
greed or covetousness  

These are considered offensive at all times, but are most offensive during the Fast of Ramadan.

On the evening of the 27th day of the month, Muslims celebrate the Laylat-al-Qadr (the Night of Power).  It is believed that on this night Muhammad first received the revelation of the Holy Quran.  And according to the Quran, this is when God determines the course of the world for the following year

When the fast ends (the first day of the month of Shawwal) it is celebrated for three days in a holiday called Id-al-Fitr (the Feast of Fast Breaking).  Gifts are exchanged.  Friends and family gather to pray in congregation and for large meals.  In some cities fairs are held to celebrate the end of the Fast of Ramadan.


            Our grandson, Ryan Fredette, becomes an official teenager on September 27th when he celebrates his 13th birthday with family and friends in Uxbridge, Massachusetts, USA.  Needless to say, we shall be there leading the celebration.  You can send Ryan your birthday greetings via 

            Ryan's dad, Robert, has his birthday on the same day, and Ryan's mom's (Stefanie) birthday comes one week later.



In Australia and New Zealand, Labor Day, a public holiday, is not celebrated on the same date.  Leave it to the Aussies and Kiwis.

In Australia, Labor Day is a public holiday on the first Monday in October - October 2nd - in the Australian Capital Territory, New South Wales and South Australia.

Labor Day is on the first Monday in March in Western Australia and on the second Monday in March in Victoria.  The equivalent public holiday in Tasmania is Eight Hours Day on the second Monday in March.

Labor Day is on the first Monday in May in Queensland (May Day in the Northern Territory).

In New Zealand, Labor Day is a national public holiday marked on the fourth Monday in October.


Full Hunter's Moon - October 6 - With the leaves fallingSun and the deer fattened, it is time to hunt.  Since the fields have been reaped, hunters can easily see fox, deer, quadamundi, iguana and the other animals which have come out to glean.



*  Although on average it takes only 27.322 days (sidereal month) for the Moon to complete one orbit around Earth, it requires about two more days than that to again catch up with the Sun.  On average, the number of days between Full Moons is about 29.5306 days.  The actual number of days may differ from the average number by more than a half day.  From one Full Moon to the next, the number of days in one lunation can vary between 29.272 and 29.833 days.

*  The age and apparent size of the Full Moon vary in a cycle of just under 14 synodic months, which is called the Full moon cycle.

*  Earth is closest to the Sun--would you believe it? --in the cold wintertime, around January 3-5.


Columbus Day falls officially on October 12 and is celebrated on the 2nd Monday in October.  The first recorded celebration of Columbus Day in the USA was held by the Tammany Society, also known as the Colombian Order, in New York on October 12, 1792, marking the 300th anniversary of Columbus's landing in the Bahamas.

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt set aside Columbus Day as a holiday in the United States.  Since 1971, the holiday has been commemorated in the U.S. on the second Monday in October, the same day as Thanksgiving in neighboring Canada.


            Here it is, the middle of September, and the people just keep coming, and this is very visible in some of pictures from the PHOTOS OF THE MONTH section.  Some nights we are at the Beach Bar all by ourselves, and then again, everyone is here.


  • Larry & Cherie Jackson were back once again at Seven Seas.
  • Don & Sandra were there too.
  • Terry & Lisa Turner were back to host a Labor Dar barbecue on the beach at South Akumal.
  • Steve Guynes was here at Casa Luna with his two girls.
  • Steve’s two friends, Tom Laurin and Steve Essick, were here too.
  • Roger & Denise Burton were visiting their reconstructed Casa Caribe.
  • Tom & Judy Baxter were once again back in South Akumal.
  • Susan & Macon Gravlee's friends, Bob & Loretta Flynn, were visting.
  • Ron & Shari Stern were back for the September Birthday "party" at the Beach Bar.
  • Speaking of the Beach Bar, David & Laura Wolfe were back in town.


  • Bart & Jenn Smith are vacationing (golfing and shopping) over in Orlando.
  • Charlene has left for her vacation in Las Vegas and Yellowstone.
  • Shelley Cope leaves for two weeks vacation in Sacramento/Lake Tahoe/San Francisco area to visit old friends on September 21.
  • Ingrid & SteveC head north to Massachusetts on September 26 to celebrate Ryan's (their grandson) 13th birthday on the 27th.



This is a picture that just could not be excluded, and it is well positioned right after the COMINGS AND GOINGS section.  I think it's the first annual 5K Nude Race on South Akumal beach; recognize any body.  But it needs a title.  Any suggestions?  





Hurricanes are the most awesome, violent storms on Earth.  They form near the equator over warm ocean waters.  Actually, the term "hurricane" is used only for the large storms that form over the Atlantic Ocean or eastern Pacific Ocean.  

The generic, scientific term for these storms, wherever they occur, is tropical cyclone.  Other names they are given, depending on where in the world they are born, are typhoons, cyclones, severe tropical cyclones, or severe cyclonic storms.  Whatever they are called, the same forces and conditions are at work in forming these giant storms, which all can cause damage or devastation when they hit land where people live.

Tropical cyclones are like engines that require warm, moist air as fuel.  So the first ingredient needed for a tropical cyclone is warm ocean water.  That is why tropical cyclones form only in tropical regions where the ocean is at least 80 F for at least the top 50 meters (about 165 feet) below the surface.

The second ingredient for a tropical cyclone is wind.  In the case of hurricanes that form in the Atlantic Ocean, the wind blowing westward across the Atlantic from Africa provides the necessary ingredient.  As the wind passes over the ocean's surface, water evaporates (turns into water vapor) and rises.  As it rises, the water vapor cools, and condenses back into large water droplets, forming large cumulonimbus clouds.  These clouds are just the beginning.

Meteorologists have divided the development of a tropical cyclone into four stages: Tropical disturbance, tropical depression, tropical storm, and full-fledged tropical cyclone.

Tropical disturbance

When the water vapor from the warm ocean condenses to form clouds, it releases its heat to the air.  The warmed air rises and is pulled into the column of clouds.  Evaporation and condensation continue, building the cloud columns higher and larger.  A pattern develops, with the wind circulating around a center (like water going down a drain).  As the moving column of air encounters more clouds, it becomes a cluster of thunderstorm clouds, called a tropical disturbance.

Tropical depression

As the thunderstorm grows higher and larger, the air at the top of the cloud column is cooling and becoming unstable.  As the heat energy is released from the cooling water vapor, the air at the top of the clouds becomes warmer, making the air pressure higher and causing winds to move outward away from the high pressure area.  This movement and warming causes pressures at the surface to drop.  Then air at the surface moves toward the lower pressure area, rises, and creates more thunderstorms.  Winds in the storm cloud column spin faster and faster, whipping around in a circular motion.  When the winds reach between 25 and 38 mph, the storm is called a tropical depression.

Tropical storm

When the wind speeds reach 39 mph, the tropical depression becomes a tropical storm.  This is also when the storm gets a name.  The winds blow faster and begin twisting and turning around the eye, or calm center, of the storm.  Wind direction is counterclockwise (west to east) in the northern hemisphere and clockwise (east to west) in the southern hemisphere.  This phenomenon is known as the Coriolis effect.

Tropical cyclone (HURRICANE)

When the wind speeds reach 74 mph, the storm is officially a tropical cyclone.  The storm is at least 50,000 feet high and around 125 miles across.  The eye is around 5 to 30 miles wide.  The trade winds (which blow from east to west) push the tropical cyclone toward the west-that is, toward the Caribbean, the Gulf of Mexico, or the southeastern coast of the U.S.  The winds and the low air pressure also cause a huge mound of ocean water to pile up near the eye of the tropical cyclone, which can cause monster storm surges when all this water reaches land.

Tropical cyclones usually weaken when they hit land, because they are no longer being "fed" by the energy from the warm ocean waters. However, they often move far inland, dumping many inches of rain and causing lots of wind damage before they die out completely.

Tropical cyclone categories


Wind Speed (mph)

Damage at Landfall

Storm Surge (feet)


















Over 155





Crocodile Hunter Steve Irwin, poses with a three-foot-long alligator at the San Francisco Zoo in 2002.Steve Irwin, the wildly popular Crocodile Hunter who tangled with the world's most treacherous animals, was killed Monday, September 4, in a rare attack by a normally docile stingray.  He was 44.

"I never pictured a croc killing him, but I never pictured a stingray doing it, either," says Jack Hanna, director emeritus of the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium in Ohio. "It's like me getting killed by a poodle."

Irwin's daring encounters and on-camera exuberance not only brought him worldwide celebrity, but they also created a cottage industry of guerrilla-style conservationists whose close calls made wildlife shows a TV staple, particularly among children.  14 years ago, before Irwin's international success, there were two nationally televised wildlife shows.  Now there are 29.

StingrayIrwin was snorkeling off the coast of Queensland to film Ocean's Deadliest, a documentary for Animal Planet on dangerous marine life.  As Irwin swam over the stingray, it drove its poisonous serrated tail into his heart, says friend and colleague John Stainton, who was with Irwin on his research vessel, Croc One.

A doctor aboard the ship was unable to resuscitate Irwin, who was dead by the time a rescue helicopter arrived.  "He died doing what he loved best and left this world in a happy and peaceful state of mind," Stainton told reporters in Cairns, Australia.

Irwin, an adventurer famous for leaping onto untethered crocodiles and for his catchphrase "Crikey," rose to prominence when his 1992 Australian TV show was picked up by the Discovery Channel in 1996. He made his big-screen splash with 2002's The Crocodile Hunter: Collision Course. The TV show went into reruns in 2004 but remained one of the network's most popular programs, airing in 130 countries.

Irwin's exuberant style occasionally irked wildlife officials.  In 2004, he caused an uproar by holding his infant son in one arm while feeding large crocodiles inside a zoo pen.  Irwin said at the time there was no danger to the child, and authorities declined to charge Irwin with violating safety regulations.  Later that year, he was accused of getting too close to penguins, a seal and humpback whales in Antarctica while making a documentary.  Irwin denied any wrongdoing, and an Australian government investigation recommended that no action be taken.

Irwin's Oregon-born wife, Terri, who shared his passion for wildlife conservation and who had been hiking in Tasmania when the tragedy occurred, left immediately for Queensland.  The couple, who met at Irwin's wildlife park in the Australian state of Queensland, have two children, Bindi Sue, 8, and Bob, 2.



Go to this web site at if you want to have an aerial view of the plans for Gran Bahia Principe's development across highway MX307 from South Akumal, Akumal Point, and Aventuras Akumal.  I wanted to insert the photo in The Akumalian, but it cannot be copied.

The golf course(s) is going to be a Robert Trent Jones design, and the rumor has been that it will be 27 holes.  However, on Monday, September 11th it was reported at the Lol Ha Beach Bar that it is going to be 36 holes.  The same person also reported that by then end of 2007, there will be at least 15 (FIFTEEN) golf course along the Riviera Maya, from Cancun to Tulum.



September 15, 16, and 17 at the Snack Bar

Special Mexican "Botana" ("Down at the very tip of Texas, this beef and chicken fajita, bean, cheese, guacamole, and sour cream recipe has always been an all-in-one hit.") that goes great with a beer or a Mexican Bandera, the special drink of the weekend.

 Mexican Bandera

*  1 part(s) Jagermeister
*  1 part(s) Rumplemintz
*  1 part(s) Midori

Directions: Layer this shot as to resemble a Mexican flag.  Begin with the Jager, then Rumplemintz, and top with Midori.

 September 15, 16, and 17 in the Dining Room

Special Mexican Combination Plate - $185.00

Cheese Mole Enchilada

Tampiquena Beef

 Grilled Poblano, Peppers and Onions


Chile Relleno en Nogada, Rice & Beans - $140.00



            We were not going to do this, but there’s 1/2 a page, so. . . . . . . . .

A backup punter on the University of Northern Colorado football team has been arrested on suspicion of stabbing the starting punter in his kicking leg.  Mitch Cozad, a walk-on from Wheatland, Wyoming, was kicked off the football team Tuesday and suspended from school.

Rafael Mendoza, a junior from Thornton, was attacked from behind and stabbed in his right thigh after parking his car outside his apartment in Evans, a small town just south of Greeley, about 9:30 p.m. Monday night.  The assailant fled in a black Dodge Charger.  About 10 minutes after the attack, a liquor store clerk told police that two men in a car matching that description stopped outside the store, stripped tape off the license plate and drove away.

The clerk gave police the license number, and the car was traced to Cozad.

The two punters were locked in a three-way battle for the starting job during preseason practices. Mendoza, last year's starter, won the job and averaged 37.6 yards on nine punts in the Bears' first two games this season.  The only apparent motive was the competition for the starting spot.


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