The Economic Adventures of a Transborder Street Musician

Heading down south for the big Pesos.

It’s official. January 15, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — ramonalvarado @ 4:15 pm
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I didn’t have to wait, but was rather invited to a warm and casual get together…at the guitar owner’s apartment. It was a realy delightful evening, full of beautiful surprises and innovative conversations, in content and style. The invitees talked about all sorts of relevant issues like how ought cigars to be smoked, dwelling for a few minutes on the important matter of whether their smoke should be inhaled or just left there enveloping the gustatory receptors in the upper respiratory system. The nature of comedy, physical and oratory was emphasized throughout our enlivened tertulia in the living room but the height of the night, in many levels, was reached when the host and I climbed the emergency stairs in the back of the building to have a smoke. Here the host even told me, in the friendliest of manners, that she had saved a couple of guitar catalogs with some affordable guitars outlined by her for me. That really made me feel better about the whole deal, all I needed now was the money to buy one of those, as easy as that.

Anyway, while I get my act together (pun intended), I think we should refocus the content of this blog. I seem to have minimized the single most interesting element of the whole adventure: the border crossing. We live in a trans-border metroplex that hosts more than 2 million people and the dynamics of our lives are both extremely complex and extremely simple. We have a national media-based monologue, completely ill advised if you ask me, on the border and its security. Millions of dollars are being spent to upgrade, enhance, and tighten this ridiculous frontier and with the elections coming everybody is talking about how things should be over here, without any knowledge of how things really are. I am a fan of passports myself, I love the look on them and what they represent, I love to get them stamped and I use mine whenever I can to cross the border, but the reality is that even with the new laws taking place, a friend of mine just last week was able to cross the border with nothing but a check stub, another, just the same week, with just a Community College student ID. I like that, I have no problem with the idea that border officials are there not just to ridiculously obstaculize the entry of foreign travellers but mainly to facilitate entry to citizens. This frontier ideal of mine has even put me behind their little glass cells for hours more than a couple of times, once because of my lack of ID (even though the law until this past year allow me to state my citizenship orally and required nothing else) and a second time because of my accent. Yes, my accent. They didn’t buy  my explanation: that I had learned my vocabulary from Big Bird and my enunciation from Antonio Banderas, because he was the hottest phonetic source around theat time. They said I was British and they had to question me.

This is just to show you part of the complexity of simple procedures here at the border and to refocus a little on the nature of crossing it as often as many people here do. Hopefully the busking will resume soon whether with a guitar or with a drum.



One Response to “It’s official.”

  1. ale Says:

    No queria pasar porque sabia que seria un poco triste.
    Esta separacion provocada por mi. Olvidaste o mas bien olvide darte el catalogo que ahora se encuentra bajo una torre de
    recibos y papeles inutiles, Ya se que no tienes dinero, pero para eso tengo otra sugerencia: Si planeas salir con tu tambor, en lugar de gastar las ganancias las ahorras para una guitarra nueva. Que te parece?

    Creo que si hubieras ahorrado todo lo que sacaste en estos meses, hubieras podidio comprar una; aunque entiendo que siempre hay cosas mas importantes que pagar…

    Saludos desde mi heladísima ventana.

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