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04 December 2007

mexico, land of the... beer sponsored streets?

this outage has gone to 6-12's with sundays off, so last sunday i went to mexico with two of the guys from site. we are only like a 15 minute drive from the border, so it's actually not too bad. i've realized why there are so many mexicans in america. we aren't building a wall, we're building a BRIDGE!!! it costs $0.25 to walk into mexico, and $0.30 to walk out. $0.55 for a round trip. craziness. it's easier to walk across, so we drove to progreso, texas, parked at the border parking lot ($1.50), and we walked across the progreso international bridge that spans the MIGHTY rio grande river. i actually asked if it was actually the rio grande, because it isn't really very grande at this particular crossing.

it's amazing how there is nothing to progreso, TX besides a highway that goes to mexico and a parking lot, but when you cross the bridge and drop your quarter in the turnstile, you find yourself in nuevo progreso, mexico; a bustling boulevard of beggars, indefatigable grade-school-aged shoe shiners, antique "junk stores", bootleg DVD peddlers (the BEE movie is popular this time of year), and pharmacies selling just about any prescription drug you want (without a prescription). i was impressed by the difference a river can make.

we stopped in a store called "canada". it was basically a junk store. it had EVERYTHING you might possibly be looking for and then a bunch of stuff you never knew existed. one of the guys i went with bought some mexican blankets for christmas presents for his grandkids. the other guy bought a new cowboy hat and four authentic 12' bullwhips for some of the guys onsite who weren't coming over [there's a place nearby nicknamed "boys' town" (you might be able to guess what THAT is) that some of the guys are afraid to be tempted to visit, a la the greek myth of the sirens. they don't mind the visit, they mind the money they spend]. so, in "canada", as in every shop along the main drag, there are bars. i thought that was funny. they have happy hours that pretty much last all day, so you can get drunk for cheap, then buy cheap junk, and go back across the border to wake up in the morning wondering why you bought that cheap junk. WITHOUT being drunk, one of the guys bought a cheap oil painting print that was a rendering of the last supper except all the disciples were dead music icons (elvis, dean martin, etc.) and the role of jesus was replaced by marilyn monroe. yeah, like i said, you can even find things you never even knew existed.

while we were walking down the street, shoe shine boys hassle you like mad to give you a shoe shine, even if you're wearing tennis shoes. the bullwhip guy finally caved and got one to shut them up. it's like 5 minutes and $1. he told me to get one too so they'd quit, but i've never had a show shine in my life, and i wasn't giong to get one just because of peer pressure. peer pressure got me into having sex and stuff, and look where THAT got me, jeez! i'm done with that peer pressure stuff. so i let them ask all day long, once kid even said i could pay him with a taco... a true bartering economy.

it was a good day shopping, i didn't get much which is strange considering the crazy consumer i am. i ended up getting a cool shotglass with a leather sleeve on it and three DVDs (american gangster, resident evil:extinction, and um, i forget the other one). that's all. the liquor is crazy cheap down there. $15 for good bottles of whiskey, and you only pay $1 to customs coming back. texans can only bring in 1/5, but i can bring in two since i'm "out of state". they also sell lots of prescription drugs without prescriptions from what i can tell. viagra, ziflucan, levitra, amoxicilin, cialis... every pharmacy has them posted on their doors. i think they are the generic versions, that's how they get away with it, but hey, if it works. i might get some if we have another day off. any requests?

oh, and i forgot about the street. when we walked into mexico, i was trying to get my bearings in case we went off the main drag as i get lost very easily without a map. when i looked up at a street sign, i saw we were crossing chihuahua street, and apparently streets in this part of mexico have sponsorships. chihuahua street brought to you by... carta blanca beer. when you cross a street named for a dog, think... you have unlimited power. ok, maybe that wasn't funny, for some reason i thought the translation would be something funnier for me to work with, but alas, it is not.

so that was 2 weekends ago. this past weekend was kinda funny too, but i need time to get witty, give me a few days, and i'll try to get it to you before THIS upcoming weekend.

the MIGHTY rio grande???

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Blogger themom said...

omg - I just flashed back to you and Spencer doing the Flintstone run down the marble steps in Cancun, after all those tequila shooters. Amazing you didn't crack your skull open. Ah yes, Mexico has been good to you!


7:44 AM, December 05, 2007  

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