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paysons

Sep 18, 2003, 3:46 PM

Post #1 of 35 (2400 views)

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Amigos del Lago Open Meeting

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There will be a Happy Hour celebration 7:30 Friday night, September 19, 2003 at the Palacio Municipal in Chapala (the old Hotel Nido) to celebrate the formal acceptance of Lake Chapala into Living Lakes! All are welcome to attend. The Board will provide an update on plans for the year, and future projects, and a financial accounting.

Please attend and find out what YOU can do to help Lake Chapala.



Bubba

Sep 18, 2003, 4:54 PM

Post #2 of 35 (2374 views)

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Re: [paysons] Amigos del Lago Open Meeting

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Please define a "happy hour" celebration. Free drinks on the house or drinks at a discount? Is it my donation of last year intended for lake rehabilitation that is buying booze for people to make them feel happy about the organization's inclusion in an international organization of dilettantes more concerned about their preservation as an organization than that of some lake situated in an impoverished region with a contingent of shallow foreign expatriates concerned about property values?

A celebratory party, indeed. Nothing has of yet been accomplished. Celebrate once that lake has been rehabilitated.

You folks will squeeze no more money from this fellow.


(This post was edited by Bubba on Sep 18, 2003, 5:01 PM)


Bubba

Sep 18, 2003, 5:13 PM

Post #3 of 35 (2364 views)

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Re: [Bubba] Amigos del Lago Open Meeting

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By the way. These Amigos del Lago people are about as open as a clam in distress. When Villagomez exposed the fact that they had been approved several days before said approval was officially announced, they nearly had a collective heart attack. These people are so stressed out that their sweat alone would fill the lake for 400 years. And they plan to spend my donation for a "happy hour" before they have anything to be happy about. Hey folks, isn't this about the lake?


paysons

Sep 18, 2003, 6:07 PM

Post #4 of 35 (2349 views)

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Re: [Bubba] Amigos del Lago Open Meeting

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Frankly, no one's donation will be used to buy booze. But beverages can be bought at the meeting, for a reasonable price, including mineral water.

And although this is in part to celebrate Living Lakes acceptance, it is also to provide information about plans for the future. We are holding this meeting in a Mexican public building, to be accessible to both the Mexican and foreign community.

Amigos just finished a huge enrollment drive on the South side of the lake to get the less affluent communities involved. And if our collective sweat would fill the lake, terrific. But that is as about as likely as counting on good rainy seasons to provide all the water Chapala needs to be a healthy ecosytem. Water management is the issue, and everyone needs a higher level of awareness of the problem.


Bubba

Sep 18, 2003, 6:31 PM

Post #5 of 35 (2342 views)

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Re: [paysons] Amigos del Lago Open Meeting

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Sr. Paysons:

How did the drive on the less affluent communities on the south side of the lake go? Could you please give us a precise recap of how much money was raised down there and how it has been or will be allocated toward this effort to rehabilitate the lake basin?

Some other questions:

Could we see a "Fund Accounting" balance sheet and cash inflow/outflow statement for this Amigos del Lago Organization which took in a tremendous amount of charitable money last year and never provided contributors like me with even the most rudimentary accounting of its financial inflows/outflows and investment allocations?

In fact, I never heard a peep from these people one way or the other. Where did my money go?

How does the "Living Lakes" presumed association change things in reality? What are the financial ramifications of this association?


paysons

Sep 18, 2003, 8:45 PM

Post #6 of 35 (2325 views)

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Re: [Bubba] Amigos del Lago Open Meeting

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A detailed treasurer´s report for 2002 was provided at the open election meeting held last February. Hundreds of people attended but apparently you were not one.

And tomorrow´s open meeting will provide complete financial detail for 2003...up to September 15.


www.amigosdelago.org has much information about recent actions...please check it out


Uncle Donnie

Sep 18, 2003, 10:16 PM

Post #7 of 35 (2316 views)

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Re: [paysons] Amigos del Lago Open Meeting

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Paysons,

No darlin', I won't use your name here but congratulations on the excellent job you're all doing under difficult conditions. As you know I was in Tejas undergoing some medical treatments when the new and renewal memberships were being solicited but Miz T and I will be at the open house and you can count on the same seven that we had last year.

Thanks for all you and the rest of the volunteers are doing. Thanks also to all of the smaller and less publicized groups and individuals who are joining with you in your efforts.

Would it be possible to post the names and hometowns of the officers of the group? It might be of interest to some of the forum readers who don't live in the area to see just who is running the show.

Again, congratulations, and keep up the good work.

Shameless self-promotion:
http://www.headformexico.com


Uncle Donnie

Sep 18, 2003, 10:24 PM

Post #8 of 35 (2314 views)

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Re: [Uncle Donnie] Amigos del Lago Open Meeting

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Paysons,

I see I left out a sentence. The reason I suggested posting the names on this forum is that it seems that a lot of folks seldom explore other features of the site or look at links. From other postings I've read I know a few are not aware of the caliber of folks heading up the group.

Just a suggestion. For those who want to know, go to the website and click on the Directors link.

Shameless self-promotion:
http://www.headformexico.com


zapata Bob

Sep 19, 2003, 6:29 AM

Post #9 of 35 (2294 views)

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Re: [Uncle Donnie] Amigos del Lago Open Meeting

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Personally, I'm extremely happy that Amigos del Lago has continued the efforts and progressed to the degree they have! They have every reason to celebrate! While I'm not too hot on spending donated funds for a "celebratory shot", it's surely the folks call that have brought the organization that far! They all deserve our thanks and congratulations!

Last year I was there when the meeting took place and since I was there alone at that time used that as an excuse not to attend! I will not make that mistake again! Let's all encourage these folks, and look foreward to the progress that has so very much more room left until their goal is attained!


juan david


Sep 19, 2003, 7:04 AM

Post #10 of 35 (2287 views)

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Re: [paysons] Amigos del Lago Open Meeting

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It's not easy being a lobbyist, especially when the people you must influence have other priorities....like getting the votes they need for reelection! It's also not easy representing such a diverse group of constituant members and supporters. But a victory is still a victory, and the recent acceptance announcement is surely one that didn't happen without a lot of hard work. Typical of the Amigos del Lago mission are a series of small wins ....and losses too. The wins need to be celebrated publicly so that we can all keep the faith in the long term. Congrats and keep fighting the good fight.
" let sleeping dogs lie"


Uncle Donnie

Sep 19, 2003, 8:44 AM

Post #11 of 35 (2274 views)

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Re: [ian] Amigos del Lago Open Meeting

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Hi Bob and Ian,

Great comments. Many folks don't understand the years of work that have gone into reaching this point of public recognition and participation. It's definitely a poco a poco situation but it's beginning to pay bigger dividends now.

As for how the funds are spent, my philosophy is that anything a group does to advance it's goals and mission and to gather more support is a legitimate expenditure. In this case I think Paysons mentioned that there would be a cash bar and that the affair would be held in the municipal building which should be offered without cost, so aside from a few snacks and maybe a clean-up fee they probably won't be spending much money here. I'm not privy to their budget and don't really care to know that much about the daily operational costs but this seems to be a very reasonable celebration (for a number of reasons) organized and executed for a relatively reasonable cost. And I'm willing to bet that all of it will be offset by increased donations and new memberships tonight.

Let's all meet there!

Shameless self-promotion:
http://www.headformexico.com


pat

Sep 19, 2003, 9:18 AM

Post #12 of 35 (2269 views)

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Re: [Uncle Donnie] Amigos del Lago Open Meeting

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Much snipped...... "I'm willing to bet that all of it will be offset by increased donations and new memberships tonight."
U.D. The more I read from you, the wiser I think you are. It all sounds pretty logical when placed in the proper perspective, doesn't it?

Pat


Uncle Donnie

Sep 19, 2003, 10:32 AM

Post #13 of 35 (2255 views)

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Re: [pat] Amigos del Lago Open Meeting

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Good morning Pat,

One of the things I've learned down here is that in the vast majority of cases the glass is at least half full. There are some groups that I give fits to because I believe they present the wrong image for the community but the bottom line on ALL of them is that each does some good things for either individuals, the community, or the country as a whole. And they keep a lot of the more demented or energetic out of the bars and off the streets.

Pollyanna definitely doesn't live at Casa Donnie but a lot of these programs both need and deserve our support in spite of any personal differences we might have. UD even broke down and joined the LCS again after years of pouting over real and imagined slights. The ravages of time and disease seem to soften our hearts as well as our minds. Or maybe it's just the spirit of Mexico infusing those who can surrender to her many charms.

As a great philosopher said (or sang) "Don't worry, be happy!"

And the Lake keeps rising near La Floresta. Life is good!

Shameless self-promotion:
http://www.headformexico.com


Bubba

Sep 19, 2003, 12:40 PM

Post #14 of 35 (2230 views)

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Re: [paysons] Amigos del Lago Open Meeting

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Sr. Paysons:

As I expected, my inquiry as to financial accountability was glossed over by all respondents so far and absolutely no one told me where I could find an accounting of where the money has gone over the past two years.

A financial accounting was made at a meeting attended by hundreds of people and I was not there.

Hogwash! Send me a copy of that financial statement and statement of cash inflows and outflows. As a 30 year commercial banker, I will be pleased to analyze its content and report back to posters on the forum.

Charitable/civic organizations must be required to post financial results publically over public media. That information must be independently audited by disinterested and qualified accountants and made available to all donors whether or not they attend some staged gabfest where intimidation against dissenters is the rule. To the best of my knowledge, this has not been done in the case of the mysterious Amigos del Lago organization.

Listen here folks. Spend your money prudently and demand accountability.

The lake will be here after we are all long forgotten and are dust in the ground. Your money will be gone tomorrow and in the coffers of people unwilling to tell you of its disposition unless you demand accountability.


Uncle Donnie

Sep 19, 2003, 1:26 PM

Post #15 of 35 (2215 views)

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Re: [Bubba] Amigos del Lago Open Meeting

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Those of you still question the honesty and openness of the ADL might refer back to the original post which states that a financial report will be offered tonight. Perhaps it's impossible for some of you to attend but I'm betting that someone will post the pertinent facts tomorrow or soon thereafter.

And for those who want to help in the conservation efforts but distrust the ADL perhaps some of us who have info about other groups could post contact sources so that we can each find an organization which will permit us to personally participate and assist in the overall effort to improve Mexico's ecology.

I'll see you all at the meeting tonight I hope. I'll be the one who looks like he just completed chemo and radiation therapy. Wait, no clue there; that describes the majority of our old fart collective. Oh well, just look for the extremely handsome guy. That won't be me either but it might provide a nice diversion for some of you.

Life is good in Mexico.

Shameless self-promotion:
http://www.headformexico.com


juan david


Sep 19, 2003, 2:19 PM

Post #16 of 35 (2202 views)

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Re: [Bubba] Amigos del Lago Open Meeting

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Bubba, I suspect that most of us respondants were not glossing at all. We(me) were just recognizing a victory and being happy about it. I think that's okay. Having said that, I agree that open and public financial accountability is fundamental and required of all publicly funded entities. The board will be re-elected or de-elected based upon accomplishments, strategy and effictive use of resources...which is how it should be. I think I'm starting to commit equuscide here, so I better quit now.
" let sleeping dogs lie"


Uncle Donnie

Sep 19, 2003, 4:33 PM

Post #17 of 35 (2179 views)

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Re: [ian] Amigos del Lago Open Meeting

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From the Latin; equus. Surely you're not killing horses!!! But you are being evenhanded about things. See you in about an hour at happy hour for the ADL celebration of yet one more victory.

Shameless self-promotion:
http://www.headformexico.com


Bubba

Sep 19, 2003, 6:33 PM

Post #18 of 35 (2161 views)

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Re: [Uncle Donnie] Amigos del Lago Open Meeting

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Bubba perused the Amigos del Lago and Living Lakes web sites looking for financial statements on either of these organizations and was unable to find anything remotely resembling a financial accounting for anything, much less the Lake Chapala effort as a separate project.

Fellow posters, please enlighten me as to where I may find this information.

May I ask again. What has happened to Lake Baikal that would not have happened were it not for the efforts of the Living Lakes organization? Please be specific.

Are we being shined on?


johanson


Sep 19, 2003, 9:06 PM

Post #19 of 35 (2143 views)

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Re: [Bubba] Amigos del Lago Open Meeting

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I thought there was a meeting tonight, (victory party) and that at this function, they were going to have a financial report available.

Did it not happen? After all of the questions Bubba had, I would have thought that it would been in the organization's best interest to make these statements available. I don't think they know Bubba like we (the readers of his posts) do. He won't give up.

And I am not suggesting he should. I know I plan to give funds to the organization, but will not do so until the questions posed by Bubba are answered.

I am hoping this is simply a communications problem

Pete


sfmacaws


Sep 19, 2003, 9:50 PM

Post #20 of 35 (2137 views)

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Re: [johanson] Amigos del Lago Open Meeting

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Perhaps they are all still at the party? Having a raucus time at the no-host bar and hooting and hollering at the financial report?


Jonna - Mérida, Yucatán




pat

Sep 20, 2003, 5:42 AM

Post #21 of 35 (2118 views)

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Re: [Bubba] Amigos del Lago Open Meeting

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Fellow posters, please enlighten me as to where I may find this information
I think the meeting last night would have been a pretty good place to start. You did go, didn't you? I would have expected you to be first in line for a seat.


johanson


Sep 20, 2003, 8:58 AM

Post #22 of 35 (2095 views)

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Re: [pat] Amigos del Lago Open Meeting

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I had a pleasant response from the Treasurer of the Amigos del Lago promising to make the financial reports available to Bubba.

I bet this was just a big misunderstanding :)

Pete


PS I couldn't attend the meeting Pat as I am still up North, darn it.


(This post was edited by johanson on Sep 20, 2003, 9:01 AM)


Uncle Donnie

Sep 20, 2003, 10:25 AM

Post #23 of 35 (2077 views)

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Re: [pat] Amigos del Lago Open Meeting

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Good morning all,

Went to the meeting last night. It was an excellent example of Mexican/Expat cooperation in working for a common cause. When I arrived there were about 200 people there, overwhelmingly Mexican, although the SRO crowd dwindled a bit as the evening progressed. We lasted until part-way through the Q&A session at the end.

This may be surprising to some of those less well acquainted with the courtesy of our Mexican hosts but everyone who requested the privilege of speaking to the assemby last night was not only granted the opportunity but allowed to do so without interruption, and applauded at the conclusion of their comments. Even a defeated mayoral candidate.

As far as the partying was concerned, I can't give a report on that because I was about 10 minutes late and they were TCB by the time I arrived. Evidence of a raucous pre-meeting bacchanal was exceedingly slim. Set out of general view were maybe a dozen empty beer bottles, but it was quite obvious that the folks who showed up for the meeting were more interested in business than booze. From what I observed no one's dues dollars (or at least very few) were spent on bebidas. Miz T and I bought our own water at the Oxxo at the end of the block although I did see a table set up in the hallway off the the left side of the lobby and a person or two getting a cup of some sort of beverage. Anyway, those of you who feared that your bucks were financing an elaborate and expansive blow-out can rest easy.

I hesitate to post this since some are more than eager to attack any action not taken on a norteno schedule but I was told that one of the highly qualified techie ADL members was asked to post the financial report on the Amigos del Lago website (www.amigosdelago.org) this week-end. Since that worthy has a life in addition to his volunteer work I'm willing to give him a considerable amount of leeway in completing this task and would hope that all of you will do the same. It won't take him long I'm sure.

In addition to others, a slide presentation of the financial report for the past year was given and I hope that some of you are shocked when you see the pitifully small amount those folks have to work with. The 2002 income (and keep in mind these are figures copied in a hurry---please wait for the official report to be posted for the official word) was 379,252 PESOS. 344,366 PESOS of that was from donations (yes, even some from the Southshore for the benefit of those who criticized that effort) and about 30,000 PESOS in donations.

So far in 2003 income has been 25,735 PESOS and expenses have been 64,643 PESOS. I think if any rational person took a look at these figures they could readily see that there just ain't much there to steal, as some seem to imply. These same sorts of vicious and unwarranted attacks were launched against the last board of directors; most directly against the tireless Aurora Michel. It seems that things are the same here as where we all come from; the noble and steady big dogs do the work, the inbred lap dogs do the yapping.

The bottom line is that unfortunately there's just not that much money flowing into the coffers. It would be very difficult for the board or anyone else to divert sums large enough to justify the risk of exposure, but most importantly, it's difficult, if not impossible to believe that these educated, talented, caring volunteers would risk their personal reputations and the future of an entire ecological cause to misappropriate a few piddling PESOS.

If you're truly concerned perhaps a bit of research into where the monies are applied might be in order. Some of us assume that if we don't see action right here at the end of our respective streets that nothing is happening. Folks, that's a big damn lake and a lot of towns surround it. In his report last the president told of many of the hands-on activities sponsored by ADL, including refoestation using trees with low water needs, awareness and conservation programs, and others. These events have also been well reported in the local media.

In addition, many proposals for future work were laid out, including assisting in studies to find other water sources for Guadalajara.

This post is too long, but also much too incomplete. Much more was discussed so I suggest that those who have risen up in self-imposed righteous indignation, casting aspersions on the character and honesty of a devoted and knowledgeable group of dedicated volunteers make personal contact with some of these people to determine the facts and needs rather than anonymously (until someone chooses to publish secret identities---I'm surprised and gratified that so many folks e-mail each other with info about some of our "shyer" participants---this is a SMALL community) skulking about trying to harm a truly worthwhile organization and its supporters, some of whom I am proud and privileged to call my friends.

All I'm suggesting is fundamental decency and fairness in the way these folks and their various organizations are treated. And for those of you who don't live in the area but want to help, please go to the website for info on joining or donating. At present my guess is that membership numbers are extremely important in order to show widespread support as the various groups move forward in their efforts to gain political support and backing for this cause. There's a sliding scale of membership costs beginning at 20 PESOS, so sign up everyone you can think of. Wouldn't it be nice to include your grandchildren in this great effort?

Just a few opinions; but damn good ones.

Shameless self-promotion:
http://www.headformexico.com


Uncle Donnie

Sep 20, 2003, 10:42 AM

Post #24 of 35 (2076 views)

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Re: [Uncle Donnie] Minor error

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Perfect example of the problems involved in dealing with non-official sources. I made an mistake in my last post.

The sentence should read " 344.366 PESOS of that was from memberships" instead of " 344,366 PESOS of that was from donations".

Disculpe mi.

And Pete, I'll feel SO much better having a anonymous entity check those books to report back to us. If anybody wants to audit and pontificate after denigrating the characters of those to be checked up on would it not be fair to identify both the entity and the entity's qualifications to do such an audit? Or am I being unfair?

Neither condemnation nor praise carry much water at my place when they ooze from a black hole of secrecy (well, in this case semi-secrecy).

Shameless self-promotion:
http://www.headformexico.com


Bubba

Sep 20, 2003, 1:08 PM

Post #25 of 35 (2042 views)

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Re: [Uncle Donnie] Amigos del Lago Open Meeting

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The "Black Hole" (formerly Bubba but now "Bubba Black Hole" thanks to Uncle Donnie's creative writing) has just modified his user profile so those of you who wish to find him can do so. Bubba Black Hole is not fearful of taking responsibility for his posts nor is he in fear of castigation.

Bubba Black Hole would like for those who dispute his positions to be a bit more direct in their responses. Uncle Donnie was a teacher and Bubba was a banker. Bubba thinks he would like UD but reminds him that meandering and lengthy observations regarding substantive matters may be more suited to the classroom, where people are temporarily enslaved and at the mercy of opinionated teachers between bells, than to adult discourse.

Bubba Black Hole does not really care how much beer was consumed by the participants in the ADL gathering, simply what was accomplished.

By the way, I am pleased that my annoying post will result in a published financial statement - finally. There may be some positive benefit to having people resident in Ajijic who are inquisitive rather than simply easily manipulated.

Look for my posts in the future to be under my new nom de plume, " Bubba Black Hole" .


Finally, does someone wish to explain to Bubba Black Hole exactly what Living Lakes did for Lake Baikal except tell us sheep grazing upon its web site that it is the oldest lake in the world?


(This post was edited by Bubba Black Hole on Sep 20, 2003, 2:27 PM)
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