Hugo Baldridge and Antonia Rodriguez Araiza
Dadi, the resident Casa Milagros Dog
Thomas, the resident Casa Milagros Cat
Antonia Rodriguez Araiza is a warm and kind person with a sharp sense of humor, and it is always interesting to hang around her, whether in the large communal kitchen - smelling the magical recipes she loves to create from local produce, or amongst the plants and flowers gardening (another great passion of hers). Antonia can also be found on the porch in moments of rest and contemplation, often with embroidery/crochet projects on the go, watching the daily life wash in and out of bay.
She has been resident landlady at Casa Milagros for a long time. Her first husband built Casa Milagros about 40 years ago for their family. He was a Texan engineer who also brought water irrigation to the village, bringing a huge improvement to living standards for the community.
For this and many other reasons she has become a prominent matriarch of this small community, and has earned much respect amongst the locals and ex-pats that live here. If you have the time and inclination there are many interesting stories Antonia will reveal to you about Yelapa, it’s people and her own experiences growing up here and in smaller country villages nearby.
Hugo Baldridge was a fascinating, entertaining story-teller and our beloved Texan host of Casa Milagros. We are very sad to let you know of his untimely passing on May 28, 2009. He was very quickly taken by cancer in the last few months of his life, and in true Hugo style upon understanding that his body could no longer sustain the growth of the cancer, asked Antonia (his partner for 17 years) if they could go home. A testimony to Hugo’s popularity was the consistent flow of friends they received during the last few weeks of his life in their second home in Ajiji, near Lake Chapala.
Hugo was a caring man with a shrewd, inquisitive nature always on the look out for interesting historical or political accounts. He could talk for hours sharing life’s anomalies and absurdities, and leave you astounded at his grasp of the human condition, no matter from what time period, country or culture.
Missed by all who spent time in his presence, we remember him with affection and fondness, continuing to do our best to practice his ‘laid-back-in-yelapa’ philosophy.
Dadi, a sweet little dog with boundless energy, is always on the lookout for an adventure and will gladly accompany you to the village and back. He provides many entertaining moments whilst chasing Thomas the cat up and down the terrace in a friendly frenzy of joy.
Thomas has a gentlemanly nature about him, is very sympathetic and loves human company. Though young, he is a very wise cat, with ample patience and seems to enjoy a good yoga session or curling up beside someone in meditation.