Illegal Alien

Trip Start Sep 01, 1999
Trip End Dec 01, 2000

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Flag of El Salvador  ,
Wednesday, March 1, 2000

During the spring, I ran a delegation out of the San Marcos de Ocotepeque office of the CCD. It ended up being only one of two that I took to that region, thankfully, since it was a ten hour drive from Tegucigalpa.

The region was beautiful, and the bucolic village we stayed in was nestled next to a creek that was running down the hill into El Salvador.

Two interesting experiences that I had involved unofficial, international border crossings. The first involved a man who had gone back and forth between Honduras and the U.S. many times, always "mojado" as they say. He would go to the U.S., work ridiculous hours, and live frugally for a couple of years, and then he would return to Honduras and spend a couple of years living off of his savings. This man was the "don" of his local village, as he was the only person in the village to own a car or a t.v. or have glass windows in his home.

The other experience was my own border crossing. The village sat on the border with El Salvador and was connected by a rope bridge across a river to a sister village on the Salvadoran side. The Salvadoran village was more of a town, and had greater amenities. In fact, on one of our visits to buy an ice cream, I was able to make a call on the local pay phone to my parents. I actually remember thinking that the contrast between the two villages, separated by an artificial political line, was a fascinating opportunity to see which country was doing better at certain things. The fact that the Salvadoran village actually had phone service (thanks, in part, to privatization) was notable.
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