Isla Mujeres Mystery ~ Lynda L. Lock

In the company of new friends at the artist fair

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Selection of original paintings by Damien Lemee.   
“When’s the next Artist Fair?”

“I’m coming back to Isla on (insert any date) will there be an Artist Fair that day?”
These are frequently asked questions on the various island-enthusiast Facebook pages.
The Artist Fairs are becoming at tourist draw and as of November 30ththe fairs are every Thursday until April of next year. However, it was deadly quiet night on December 14th at the fair, the week before the Christmas rush.  

Val Jukosky bracelet

I was fortunate to have three very sociable and entertaining artisans beside me, to fill the quiet times with laughter. Val Jukosky, Liwlig Larsen, Damien Lemée and I were set-up along a concrete wall in the shadow of the life-threatening coco-bombing palms trees. Each of us had a colourful display of our wares, hoping to entice passersby to purchase an original piece of art, a beautiful bit of jewelry, or in my case one of my new paperback novels or bilingual book for children.

Until recently I seldom had the time to chat with these folks even though I saw them week after week for several years. On this night, there were very few people browsing the displays so we chatted, and joked, and I finally got to know them a little bit better.

Val Jukosky necklace

Val Jukosky is from London Ontario, Canada. She makes beautiful ocean-tumbled sea glass and semi-precious gemstone jewelry. Here’s the link to her FB page: Val’s Sea Glass 

This is Val’s fifth winter on Isla, her first three years were six months at a time, but now she is here for longer periods. Previously she wintered in Puerto Vallarta and Melaque on the west coast of Mexico. She got hooked on sea glass collecting during her first winter on Isla started participating in the Artist Fairs the next year. Val says she loves being surrounded by water. Me too!  During the quiet times at last week’s fair, Val got busy and created fun, colourful bookmarks for my novels. She made a few and sold them all. They seem to be a hit.

A selection of art by Liw Larsen.

Liw Larsen is from Denmark. She first discovered Isla in 2006. Travelling around the world, she was in California when a friend suggested Mexico. It wasn’t on her bucket list but from the very first day on Isla she felt like this was home. She knew she had to come back and stay, but it was September 2013 before she finally returned to stay. Here’s the link to her FB page: Art By Liw 
Liw loves the slow life here, just living in the moment with no stress, lovely people a beautiful island and country. “I just love Mexico.” Her paintings are fun, bright and lively. She also has a selection of colourful prints, and has recently started painting mermaids on driftwood.

DamienLemée was born in France but while traveling in Canada at the age of seventeen he decided to live there. He now lives six months in Montreal and six months on the island.  Here’s the link to his FB page: Damien Lemée

The first time he came to Isla Mujeres was in 1998 as part of a band that played a mix of fun, danceable Latino tunes. The band’s name was Proyecto Indica, and included vocalist Lenin Zurita, Andre Hamel on flute and saxophone with Damien as the percussionist. They performed during the winter season for ten years in a number of bars on the island, including La Peña.

Artist, Damien Lemee being James-Bond cool.

Damien’s art includes an intriguing variety of painted bird sculptures made from recycled tires, plus paintings, prints and photographs.

We recently purchased a fun print of a black cat sitting outside the store on Juarez that has three cats painted on the building. Damen said it took his three tries to get the photo. Every time he picked up his camera the cat would leave, finally on the third day the cat waited for him to take his photograph.

Damien’s birds made from re-cycled tires

Started by Brad and Tiffany Wareing in the winter of 2011 at the original Barlito’s location on Hidalgo Avenue, the Artist Showcase moved from the crowded corner to spread across the Sócalo in front of City Hall in Centro. Renamed the Art and Food Fair it grew to a healthy seventy-some-odd artists and food-vendors by 2013. Then the municipality decided that inside the Casa de Cultura on the malécon was a better venue. After a short time inside the building, the fair was moved outside to the parking area across from M&J’s and beside what is now the new office of tourism. 

Both Brad and Tiffany have worked very hard for several years, to organize the events, promote them, and deal with the myriad of national, state, and municipal regulations.
For the past couple of years the Isla Brewing Company livened up the drab Casa de Cultura location with their mobile beer truck, selling their hand-crafted ales. They contributed an enormous about fun and energy to the event including stringing overhead lights and providing music. Of course when other vendors plugged in their lights, the musicians their amps, and the cooks their microwaves, the circuit breaker would trip plunging the entire fair into darkness. Amid laughter and loud groans adjustments would be made and the beer dispensing, lighting, music, and food prep would resume. Fingers-crossed Isla Brewing will come back this year. We miss their lively energy. Here’s the link to their FB page: Isla Brewing Company

Isla Mujeres Mystery Book #1 Treasure Isla & Book #2 Trouble Isla

The evening of December 14th wasn’t a total loss for me. Besides selling enough books to make it worthwhile and making new friends, I also had a very long and interesting chat with Dante Lopez, the owner of Mr. Opal on Madera Avenue in Centro. He told me a fascinating story about the Mayan culture that might just work its way into Isla Mujeres Mystery Book #4, Terror Isla.

And with that I’ll leave you hanging ……
There won’t be a blog on December 29th, see you in the New Year!

Cheers from paradise
Lynda & Lawrie


Coming soon!  Isla Mujeres Mystery Book #3

Working on Book #3 Tormenta Isla

There’s Trouble on Isla, Big Trouble!

Book #2 in the Isla Mujeres Mystery Series

By CA reviews on September 26, 2017
Yasmin and Jessica are back and the gold they found in Treasure Isla is still haunting them, especially when Carlos, their boss at the Loco Lobo, and Yasmin’s new lover, is kidnapped. No spoilers here, but his captivity and the girls’ efforts to free him, with the help of Carlos’s pals—including local Isla Mujeres fishermen and a Mexico City cop—are the crux of this fast-paced story. Lock has created not only a compelling and authentic setting, but a well-developed ensemble cast. The next Isla mystery can’t come fast enough.

$2.99 USD on most e-book distribution systems.

 Book #1 Treasure Isla 
where the fun began!

By CA reviews on September 26, 2017
This was a truly fun in the sun kind of mystery, with an authenticity that was simply captivating. Set on the island called Isla Mujeres, not far from the better-known Mexican resort of Cancun, it follows the misadventures of two girlfriends, who on a drunken binge manage to wander onto the grounds of a cemetery and find a treasure map stuck in a crevice of an old pirate tomb. Jessica, from Canada, and local pal Yasmin both work at a tourist bar/restaurant called the Loco Lobo. Soon their boss Carlos and a handsome attorney named Luis are involved in the girls’ illegal hunt for pirate gold. Toss in a bad dude running from a string of crimes in Key West, and it’s the start of an addictive new mystery series.

         $2.99 USD on most e-book distribution systems.

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