Nogales

We arrive in the border town around 7:00 PM. Crowded narrow streets and car fumes mix to create an almost erie merge of two cultures. Allready I can see changes taking place; this city is breathing with life, almost too fast to catch with the human eye. At the border control, problems arise. It turns out that my brother and I don't have a letter of permision from our father, (who lives in Hawaii) allowing us to get across the border. The man at the desk shows us the rule in writing. We all just stand there, disbelieving that we can't go to Mexico after so much work and preparation. After a short wait, the man behind the counter says "You know, the people here don't get paid very much." At first, my mom is confused, but soon gets the hint and slides a $20 across the table. Four stamps of approval go down on our visas. Looks like we're going to Mexico anyway.

Our first stop in this vast new country was a small restaurant just out of Nogales. Mathew, Brendan and I, sit and drink pepsi while waiting for our tacos. On the TV we see the pope visiting Mexico in a big football stadium. The bandstands are packed with thousands of people, cheering for the pope. I'm sure at least 90% of the people in Mexico are dedicated Catholics. All along the road, as you drive Mexico, there are hundreds of open shrines to the Virgin of Guadalupe. Not one was destroyed or desecrated, I think the people here have a higher respect for others beliefs.

Ready for a good nights sleep, we settle in a meager hotel in the town of Magdalena. It's about 9pm so all the stores and shops are closed. Not much going on at night in this town, but I enjoy the warm night breeze.

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