Monday, August 21, 2006

Coast-to-Coast ... WE MADE IT!!!!





(Now we just have to make it all the way back from Imperial Beach, California, to Seattle, Washington... Ptolemy, our minivan, is making all sorts of bizarre bumping banging noises which are making Bens rather worried ... Tinkerbell, our camper trailer, is doing wonderfully. The adventure shall unfold ... what ever is going to happen???!!!!!!!!!!!!)

The Pacific sparkled blue and serene, beautiful people basking on the sandy beach, chic villas lining the shore, into the hazy distance. Beyond this perfection, the high barbed-wire fence marking the Mexican border, and the silhouettes of the city of Tijuana, rambling, squashed, overflowing, other.

We went to Mexico yesterday. I am still processing the experience. The contrast at this border between the USA, big, luxurious, clean, shiny, and Mexico, crammed, smelly, crowded, dusty, left me feeling as if something wasn't right. I can't pinpoint what. At a simple level, it's just not fair. We have in common our humanity - my idealism wants that to mean we share a lot more in terms of creature comforts than the inhabitants of our planet actually do.

Arriving in Uganda, I had a long plane ride to get used to the idea of being in the Third World. Arriving in West Africa, the long Atlantic crossing was an in-between world where I could muse the sphere awaiting me. Arriving in Mexico yesterday, there was no buffer zone, no preparing, just a border, a sudden realisation that my context had suddenly and dramatically changed, and that the edges of my normality have physical lines and tangible barriers - in this case the Mexico-USA border at Tijuana.

3 comments:

Justin said...

Congratulations!

Re crossing border. I've never been across the US-Mex border. But I have crossed the Johore straights from Sing to Malaysia. So I know something of what you mean.

Amoungst a range of emotions, my thought was -- you really can see the power (for better and worse) of government.

I'm voting here in the US if ever they grant me citizenship.

gretta at lothlorien said...

Love those silhouettes on the beach, but Meggs, I'd like to see your new toggs.

Megs said...

you shall, in just 3 months, in Australia... !