Friday, January 9, 2009

Nueve Progresso, Mexico

As forewarned the armored personal carrier and the Federales with machine guns, was a somewhat unnerving sight as we crossed into Mexico. It was an unpleasant reminder of the drug war that is being waged, but that's another story. This is a story of the shopping, food, and atmosphere of Nueve Progresso.
After passing the guards we were greeted with main street. It's lined with vendors and colorful brightly painted shops, so packed that we almost had to walk single file. Children and adults offered us Chiclets, and shopping bags, and purses. Renita stopped at the first jewelry table ad I looked at some leather belts. She bought and I didn't, however she was much better at bargaining than I and soon after I paid the asked price for a sombrero forgetting to make a counter offer.
We worked our way down main street, passing vendor after vendor and shop after shop. A vender warned Renita to put her back pack in front of her and I moved my fanny pack likewise, while clutching my wallet and passport. Did I say I was uneasy?
We worked up and down the street before meeting Shirley and Mike for lunch. Mike and Shirley had recommended Arizona's, so we climbed the three flights of stairs to be greeted with a charming restaurant,(with a mariachi band serenading the diners).
I ordered the special and Renita had the chicken enchiladas, both were quite good!
After lunch we returned to the streets as I was searching for a belt and Renita was looking for a Nueve Progresso tee shirt. Neither of us had any luck as the belts were either way too expensive or way to cheap and most of the tee shirts were not really appropriate.
Time flew by and it was soon 3 pm so we headed for the crossing. We paid our 30 cents and left Mexico, easily passing through customs,(It costs 25 cents to enter and 35 cents to leave). The US Border guards scanned our passports and we headed back to the bus. Tired, the ride home was a bit long for me as I had forgotten how cramped a bus seat can be. All in all it was a fun day, and a return trip to Mexico is something we both want to do. Clear skies.

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