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Impressions of the USA

Thursday, August 2nd, 2007

The first really amusing outing was our first dinner back in the USA.  Where else would we go than McDonalds?  It wasn’t that we had been missing it for the last 11 months – McDonalds are everywhere in the world.  We cruised the streets of San Bernardino looking for a McDonalds.  I was waiting for our food when a pudgy black guy with a see-through fish-net shirt, thick glasses, dread locks and a key chain with “Jesus Saves Lives” came in and started talking to me.  He bore a resemblance to a young Stevie Wonder and his belly rolls were clearly visible through his shirt.  He was very upset because they made us write our names on our receipt so they could call out our name when the food was ready.  “What if you are from a 3rd world country and can’t write?  And this McDonalds is really going downhill.  They are slow and the food is bad.” 

I guess what I thought was so funny about this encounter wasn’t really his outfit (although it did make me smile), but rather the eclectic mix of weirdoes this country has to offer.  People in Latin America seemed to be a little more homogenous in their outward appearance.  The fact that he also just started an animated conversation with a complete stranger was unusual for us.  Maybe it was just our bad Spanish, but we didn’t have so many impromptu conversations like this on the street.

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New Experience 117

Thursday, July 12th, 2007

It seems every time I am writing a blog I am whining about not wanting to drive more and not wanting to see many more things, because most likely we have seen it even better on our trip before. We visited over 100 places, had to pack in and out over 100 times as well and it is getting tiring and after the disappointment on the Baja we thought things would get a little easier in the States. Boy where we wrong.

It started at the border. We had to stand in line for about 1 hour at the Tijuana crossing and made it to the US without any problems. Even the US customs officers, who usually make so much drama, were all relaxed. The only problem was that there was no office where we could cancel our Mexican car permit and turn in our tourist cards. That’s a must, because otherwise we wouldn’t be allowed to return to Mexico in the future. So we had to drive back into Mexico, find the office to turn in our permits and stand in line for another hour to get back to the US. Again no drama.

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