Category Archives: Mexico

Whitey Will Pay

Jack wrote this in April, 2006:

Hi blogsters:

Hope you’re all giving yourselves plenty of challenges, making lots of decisions that lead to growth experiences.

Things have gone quiet around here, owl-wise, though the hawks still soar overhead days.  And the coyotes still howl on the mesas.

Just finished a short trip to western New Mexico on an old-new trail of the Lost Adams Diggings.  Rough trip in some ways, because it brought to mind memories of a lot of other trips into that country with men now dead.

But it was physically a reminder of how old this vehicle’s becoming.

Climbing and unclimbing mesas, digging and scraping samples from streambeds, toting them back out to work them down into concentrates for closer examination, all just become the tap on the shoulder gravity gives a man insisting he slow down.

The trip didn’t answer a lot of questions, but it created enough to cause me to know more trips in there will be required.

Ahh.  Adventure!

Meanwhile, back here in the village, the rich old man up the hill behind me evidently has an enemy.   Someone decapitated a rabbit just before Easter and left it on his porch.

Might be because he’s rich and cantankerous, or because he’s said to be miserly and difficult to collect from if a person’s only a mere workman.  Or it might be because he’s all the above, which a number of old villagers are, but also he has the distinction of being an Anglo.

The accident of birth that gives a person ancestors who spoke English and had pinkish skin is a difficult sin for the majority of New Mexicans to forgive.

The Hispanics, who hold all the power, speak the same language as the Conquistadors, Cortez and Coronado, but see themselves as having been robbed of their conquests and rendered downtrodden by white-skinned invaders from the East.

The Native Americans generally just know someone conquered them, but because we’re all born innocent of memory,  have evidently forgotten who did the conquering.

For a while I occasionally used to drive around in a borrowed truck with “WHITEY WILL PAY” bumper-stickered on the tinted glass back window.  As a whitish sort of fellow, I found my feelers a little ruffled with all the thumbs-ups and raised-fist salutes I got from Hispanic and Native American types.

I generally don’t feel I’ve done anything negative to Hispanics, nor Native Americans.  My conscience is clear.

I had a distant kinsman mountain-man who wandered into Santa Fe around 1805, and was held captive for 20-odd years by the Spaniard government (ancestors to the folks who are here today), but I don’t hold it against them.

Let bygones be bygones, I say.

Fact is, old James Purcell’s problems ain’t mine.  I was lucky enough to be allowed to find problems of my own.

His didn’t happen to me.

Same as when Onate cut the foots off all the adult males of the tribe of rebellious Acomas in 1600 something-or-other, which makes Acomas do a lot of whining and complaining today, it wasn’t me did it, and it wasn’t people alive today it happened to.

You don’t hear me complaining about not having the same rights and advantages of Native Americans, no free health care, never having to have a steady job my entire life, being born into a wealth of land I pay no taxes on.

You won’t hear me complaining I can’t open a casino.

And you won’t hear me complain because my distant pore old mountain-man kinsman, James Purcell, got thrown in the hoosegow just because he came to town.  Didn’t do nuthun but be an English speaking man with white skin.

I was born naked.  Those aren’t my troubles.


Mexico Trip Complete

Previously written Sept. 9, 2005

Mexico trip complete.  Home to the felines, with a gift bag to myself.  Another year of life.

Another time around the sun contained in these dozen plastic bottles rattling with medications.  Normal blood pressure. Pain and internal bleeding from acid reflux avoided 12 more months at the cost a few uninsured cents on the insured pharmaceutical US dollar.

Traitorous, cowardly purchases in these times when our nation needs our blind, unquestioning support.

Border guard:  “What country were you born in?”

Old man:  “This one.”

Border guard:  “What are these?”

Old man:  “Drugs”

Border guard:  “Who are they for?”

Old Man:  “Me.”

Border guard:  “Do you have a prescription?”

Old man:  “No.”

Border guard: (Shrugs).  “Go on through.”

Turnstile clockticks planetwise around a steel post.

Foreign enemy homeland fades  (No. No. That was a different century.  They’re friends now.  If not friends, at least neutral.  They’ve mostly forgiven us for taking this spot of land from them by force of arms), pulsebeat slows.

A dozen Hail Marys and a flagwaving parade in penance, I promise.  I pop a cap and sink a Prinivil dry into mouth cavern, feel the rush of sinking blood pressure.

Old Jules

Feral Hog Plague

One thing that happens when you get a group of country people hanging around without a lot going on involves a mysterious sorting and filtering process.  Small groups of strangers with similar interests are drawn into intense exchanges of arcane esoterica.

Saturday a few old guys including me got talking about chickens, coons, skunks and feral hogs none of us would have ever learned if we hadn’t been to the auction.

The wild hogs seem to be concentrated, we found, in some locations and absent in others.  A guy from a few miles east of town seems to have the worst problem of any in the group, and despite the fact he’s killed a hundred hogs this year he says it hasn’t made a dent in the population. 

He’s devised an ingenious trap with several interior rooms the hogs can get into but can’t get out, allowing him to capture a dozen at a time.  He kills them in the traps and drags them down to a remote corner of the property with the previous hauls.

That guy knew some hog catching tricks I’ll probably use here next time they come in here or up and Gale’s tearing things up.  He uses boxes of Jello as bait.  Says they can’t resist it and they’ll choose going into a trap after Jello over breaking into a feed bin or tearing the walls off a storage shed for chicken feed.

But everyone agreed the hog population in Central Texas is out of control something awful.

Then, this morning, my old bud Rich sent me a link to this Yahoo News story:

Mexico to cull 50,000 wild boars from US invasion

Mexican officials have unveiled plans to slaughter some 50,000 wild boars that have crossed the border from the United States and now threaten agriculture in Mexico.

The Ministry of Environment in Chihauha state said some 1,500 hectares (3,700 acres) of farmland in the border town of Ojinaga have been affected by the large number of feral pigs that have come from Presidio County, Texas.

“We must get rid of these European wild boars because they sleep overnight on US soil during the day and cross over to the Mexican side to feed,” Ignacio Legarreta, a state official, told local media.

The boars of European origin, which were imported to Texas as pets and then replicated in the wild, have caused serious damage to the flora and fauna of the area, officials said.

“They have reproduced to reach more than 50,000 animals that threaten the area,” said Legarreta.

The authorities intend to use cages with food inside to trap the animals.

But back at the auction.  I asked whether any of them had ever tried bringing the hogs in and selling them at auction.  None had, and at first everyone’s reaction was a guffaw.  Nobody likes getting close to a critter capable of ripping you in two and eating you.  Probably the auction folks wouldn’t take them despite the fact they handle a lot of dangerous animals.

But then someone mentioned there’s a place in Ingram always advertising they want to buy swine on the hoof.  Sausage place, one thought.  Which got us thinking how a person might build a trap on a trailer so’s to not have to deal with them more than dragging the trailer to Ingram, letting them inspect them and kill them in the trap, drag them out, weigh them, and pay up.

I allowed if I’d considered that and thought of it earlier this year I’d be a lot better off financially today than I am.  There was a lot of muttering and thinking going on among all of us before the conversation changed to coons.

Old Jules

I Can’t Stop Illegal Aliens, But I Can Slow You Down, Old Timer

In 1961, I joined the US Army for three years with the intention of killing young Russian men to keep this from happening in the US:

On a regular basis,  I join the throngs of US senior citizens crossing the International Boundary to trek a couple of blocks into Mexico to buy prescription medications.  The reason we  all brave the hot, the skyrocketing gas prices, the long drive and the short walk?

A block south of the border prescription meds cost a tiny fraction of their cost a block north of the International Boundary. Plus, you don’t need a prescription.

But that’s another issue for another time.

Coming back waiting on the US side behind a line of oldsters in the US Border patrol station the fun begins.

Guy with a gun, a uniform and a Hitler mustache:  “Do you have anything to declare?”

Elderly lady pushes through the turnstile to stand in front of his table.  “I have this.”  She holds up a bulging plastic bag.

Guy with a gun, a uniform and a Hitler mustache:  “I didn’t tell you you could come through the turnstile.  Go back to the other side.”

She goes back to wherever a person is when on the other side of the turnstile.

Guy with a gun, a uniform and a Hitler mustache:  “OK.  Now you can come through.”

She goes back through the turnstile, stands in front of him.  “Do you have anything to declare?  Medications, anything?”

She holds up the bag again, but before she can speak, elderly hubby, the other side of the turnstile, holds up a bag.  “I’ve got the medications here.”  Pushes part way through the turnstile holding up the bag.


Old man, startled, backs into never-never-land, turnstile clicking.

Hitler mustache to woman:  “Do you have anything to declare?  Medications?  Anything?”

Hubby across the turnstile to wife:  “God damn it!  I told him I have the medications over here.”

And so, ad infinitum.

Mr. Uniformed Mustache with a gun never came out and said,

“I am one stupid son of a bitch here to give elderly US citizens a hard time after they have to walk into another country to get their medications at a reasonable price.”

He didn’t need to.

Old Jules

Tom Russell– Who’s Going to Build Your Wall?

Note:  I wrote this after my last trip to Mexico.  Afterward I curtailed my trips and started buying my blood pressure and other med off the Internet from Canada and India.  But I decided to post it after reading this yesterday:

Border Patrol Antics or (I got searched), Tire

7:30 AM musings over coffee:

Maybe it’s just me, or maybe it’s a piece of a paradigm shift [whatever the hell that is] but one of the corner-of-the-eye changes I believe has happened in my lifetime within the US is a morbid fascination and indulgence in, patience with and capitulation to fears.  Maybe it’s a replacement for anger, maybe just boredom needing to speed up the heartbeat.

Back when every day was a brink-of-war crisis with the USSR the attitude was duck and cover, build a bomb shelter and bomb the bejesus out of them.  A conspicuous absence of fear.    Contrasted half-century later with a citizenry frightened so badly by a microscopic possibility a terrorist will harm them, they hire a few new layers of police, agree to be searched, and humiliated for their own protection, and indulge in a series of self-bankrupting foreign adventures with the stated intention of finding an outlaw gang hidden in fantasyville, Asia.

Hiring thugs to protect us from other thugs has probably been around for a longish while.  But never worked all that well.