Sunday, December 09, 2007

a report from the border

After living within a few miles of inexpensive dental care for over half of my life now, I finally decided to take advantage of it. Right about the same time the feds decided the border is just a little too porous (seems like that ripple effect from nine eleven sure took its time getting here.) If you haven’t walked across the bridge to Matamoros lately, you are in for a nasty surprise.

Lines. Long (pedestrian) lines to get back into the US. Last week I was told that my passport was not enough, The Man wanted to see my birth certificate as well. When I was unable to produce that document , I was quizzed by the scowling officer on the city of my birth. It was very uncomfortable and I couldn’t help but wonder if I had somehow slipped into an alternative universe -- one where the Soviet Union won the Cold War....

Is it like that in Progresso too?


Blogger Unknown said...

I went to Progresso about a month ago and had no problems at all. They were about as easy to get through as always. The local boys have jumped the gun. You are supposed to get by with only a drivers license until?? End of January I think. After that either a passport OR a drivers license and a birth certificate. At least that sounds right. Anyway, I too went to Matamoros about 6 or 8 weeks ago and found long lines and the 5th degree, what ye got, let me look, where ye been, what have you been doing etc. Also typing a lot of info into computer while looking at ID. When I went to Progresso, it was really the same as always. How are you sir? What did you buy?( however NOT looking into bags examining everything , looking for?? Cuban cigars?how much cold medicine?pirated Cds? dont really know what Matamoros looked for that Progresso didnt bother to care to look for)In Progresso it was dont forget to buy the alcohol stamp and have a nice day.

Having said that I wonder if perhaps Matamorros is under one kind of pressure (post 911 plus recent killings supposedly by drug lords, and at the edge of a busy city with 850000 people.)and though enforcement should be the same, Progresso is under a different kind of pressure( town of only 5000 who NEED the tourists above all else, keep those lines of winter texans moving and for gods sake dont make any tourists mad!! Yes, I suspect some profiling may happen in Progresso, be older and white and pass on by, be any age and look mid-eastern or Hispanic and to one degree or another they look a little close. Main thing, keep the lines moving and the tourists smiling. )Hmmm, now that I think of it they had 3 lines in Matamoros and couldnt keep up, partly cause they even x-rayed a package or two. In Progresso they had only one line but nothing got x-rayed and the line moved quickly.

5:58 AM  
Blogger Beerman said...

Hey S.F., it's all that Bush Bashing you do :) I bet you are on a list by now. Wonder if they have sand piles in Quantanamo, hee hee hee :)

Have a Merry Christmas

8:21 AM  

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