What's in the desert? Life in a bordertown
Trip Start Nov 25, 2006
103Trip End Ongoing
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I'm captivated by the desert/mountain landscape, highlands dusted with snow this weekend from the winter which clearly is waning (temperature will hit 72 degrees this week.)
Not much traffic on Highway 9. A couple of cattle crossings lend a "washboard effect" to the concrete.
Columbus, NM taught me that "border town" connotes "fringe" or "margin" or the opposite of "mainstream." People choose to live here in a difficult environment. Clearly they find something other than mainline U.S. culture to sustain them. The town's dirt streets don't offer much commercialization, nor many people. There's a school. For now. A good number of poor Mexican kids attend. I saw a schoolbus-load of them disembark at the border crossing. But in a year, when they need a passport to cross, they likely won't be able to afford that. And the school may close for lack of kids.
The border crossing in Palomas is the most casual I have experienced. No bridge and not much more than a gate in a fence-we entered Mexico apparently unnoticed. And as we exited, we had to look for a sign to tell us pedestrians to please stop into the U.S. office. Not a drug dog in sight.