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I read “Gringos in Paradise” in Florence, Italy but as I got closer to the end of the book I was ready to get on a plane to Sayulita, Mexico and track down the Golson’s and their Casa Gala. The book is more than about building a house in a foreign land. It showed that we Baby Boomers can live without all the extras that we’ve become used to and we can live life with humor, sensitivity and humanity in another land if we have the courage to take the leap. The richness of the Golson’s long term marriage makes it all possible.
Hello Barry and Thia, Loved your book. We have a lot high up at the top of the Nanzal and have a California architect who has designed our house plans. Plans have been submitted to PV Builder who will supervise the entire endevour. We found your book to be totally entertaining AND educational. Thank you so much for all of the information related to building in Sayulita. Hopefully, our construction will begin early 2007. Look forward to meeting you and Thia….you seem like fun, interesting people. We are both Nurse Practitioners and hopefully, we can provide medical care in the area for us “Gringos”.
I had read Tony Cohan’s book On Mexican Time several years ago and was pleased to find an equally interesting as well as entertaining book. My husband is from the mexican state of Guanajuato and I can certainly relate to the authors reasons for heading south. The “quality” of life there can not be had here in the U.S. The way your relationships grow with your family and friends is undescribable. Yes, there is the lack materially speaking, but learning to live happily with less in Mexico is so very rewarding.
Mil Gracias al autor Barry Golson por esrcibir algo tan autentico y lleno de sabor! Lo disfrute mucho.
My mom, Peggy (an extremely active 72-year-old), invited our family to her friend’s (Charlie & Mona Bryant) B&B, Casa de Ensueños (in Rincón de Guayabitos) for the first week of December. While there, I read - with great pleasure - Barry’s book. I only wish that I had read it before we came so that I would have made the time to visit Sayulita, San Pancho, etc. Oh, well: something to look forward to next year!
Thanks for the great vacation read and the inspiration to return to the area to live.
Barry: Geoff Swaine and I just saw your website and were remembering the early days in Mexico when we’d hang out [you'd show me your Dad's condoms under his socks in the dresser] , baseball, scouts, etc. Both Geoff and I stayed linked to Mexico for many years after and remain somewhat involved. Many years have gone by since then , but can’t help but remember what a great fiendship we had back then. I’ve retired after 33 years in the International Finance world, which took me back to Mexico in the 70’s and London in the 90’s. Geoff became a restaurant owner [you may remember Shirley Courts and the great/only hamburgers in town]. Be fun to catch up. Cheers, Dave [davey in those days].
Just finished your book. It was great! We could really relate to it since we are just finishing a house in La Cruz. We build ours while living in California. I had a great builder and made many trips. Thanks for sharing your adventures. I even spent time in wonderful Sayulita. The book should be read my anyone considering buildling a house in Mexico. What a great story!
Ah what a great read, received the book as a Christmas gift two days ago and am already half way through your Sayulita expose. My plowing through “Gringos in Paradise” started two days after my mother in law sent a Christmas copy of “In Mexican Time.”
All of this is most interesting and timely as my wife and I are busy stumbling through the same “travails” you and Thia are. We have plowed through many of the same experiences, initial closing, architect, slow start on the Casa and mana like responses to our change requests. Our project is in San Miguel.
Back to the book, of especial import are kudos for the way you have weaved into your efforts the marvelous and warm personalities of the Mexican people. The descriptions of your Sayulita neighbors, while always light, have a “from the heart” feeling. They truly are a warm and compasionate people and richly deserve your generous comments.
The way you have put together a combination of reality experiences and challenges into your book makes “the read” a good operating manual but also a delightful saga of a couple’s new beginnings.
Your description of this out back bit of Mexican paradise makes me want to pack up our project and land it Sayulita. We might actually think of doing this if Thia would guarantee us a regular dinner table at Rollie’s.
God Speed with you project and as you are a deft poker player, maybe you would be interested in a nominal wager as to whether Casa Barry or Casa Dave is finished NUMERO UNO.
Greatly enjoyed the book, my husband is reading now. We have long planned to live at least part of our retirement in Mexico and are looking for the right spot that combines both the great Mexican culture with sympatico neighbor-expats. We like SMA but find that it has been “over discovered” and so are looking for the right small town or small city.
I especially liked the writers’ approach to Mexico and the people he encountered, treating them with respect and accomodating to their culture, rather than expecting the opposite.
My husband and I spent a week in San Miguel de Allende in early December of 2006. While there, we fell in love with the place and decided to make it our goal to find a way to retire there. Alas, as fate would have it, on the plane ride home, I saw the 1 page interview with Barry in Time Magazine. I purchased and read “Gringos in Paradise” with a completely different eye than I would have prior to our trip to San Miguel. The book provides a road map for retiring to Mexico with the humor and attitude that one needs.
Living in Sayulita has been great not only to watch a ’sleepy little fishing and surfing village’ turn into something much more but because of the great people who have entered our lives….you and Thia included. Both Richard and I read your book with great enthusiasm. We laughed, exclaimed and shared with each other how true it all was and how you could capture it all so well! We also cried at your ending - it touched our hearts.
We can’t wait for the next book or for you to come back to your other home! Love - Cheryl and 2 dog Dick
Loved your book. We have been coming to Mexico for the past 3 years in our RV. Last year we spent one month in Rincon de Guayabitos and travelled to Sayulita for breakfast at Rollie’s. We loved your little town. We only wish we had read your book before travelling there. We would have looked for your beautiful new home and tried to find the friends mentioned in your book. We are in Mazatlan right now enjoying beautiful weather while it is storming back home (Alberta, Canada).
We wish you a wonderful retirement!
I just finished your book and felt excited, hopeful, elated and really scared too. My husband Peter and I bought some property last spring in Bucerias and plan on building our dream retirement home in a lovely Mexican neighborhood there when Peter retires from teaching in two years. The adventures we had in simply making the land purchase were harrowing, but obviously the experience was not quite daunting enough or we are just plain too stupid and stubborn to give up on actually trying to get a house built. We have spent every vacation for years in the area and your book put into words what we feel about Mexico and the people that live there. Perhaps we will have the pleasure of meeting you, your wife and some of your friends in the future.
P.S. Your original article about Sayulita in AARP was what actually made us seriously make up our minds to make Mexico our retirement home, so this book was just icing on the cake. Thanks!
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