Saturday, October 30, 2010

Vidrios de Ojinaga

ride to Ojinaga with Don, James Jackson, and Bubba
I needed some windows cut, asked around, and the consensus was that the best and least expensive window cutters were right across the border in Ojinaga. And so yesterday we went.

I was all set to drive Don, James, and I, but then James couldn't find a dog sitter and we ended up taking Bubba with us in James' truck. 

Ojinaga is a small but bustling Mexican town which doesn't have the border effect of Juarez or other border towns. It is quite peaceful, safe, and everyone is friendly and jolly. This is why Don loves any chance to go. 

When we first got to Mexico, we gained an hour even though the Sun was in the same place. This was beneficial since we had a late start and had a lot to do. We went right to the window specialists and they quoted me a whopping $30 to have 6 windows cut. We shook on it and then we were off to make the shopping rounds...
Ojinaga Bakery

One can't go to Ojinaga without a visit to the Bakery. It is just not acceptable. We hunted for the empanadas with pumpkin in them, and some mouth melting pastries. Even after paying, I felt like a shoplifter when walking away with a big brown bag of goodies. Next, we went to the fruiteria, loaded up on queso, bananas, avocados without the seeds, and other items that we are allowed to bring back over the border. James showed me where to buy Mexican roasted coffee beans in bulk, and a bottle of sotol for a friend.

Cesar's guitar
We went back to collect my windows, and Cesar, the owner of the wood shop next door and brother of the owner of the glass shop showed us his one of a kind hand made 12 string. He told me that his band was looking for a banjo player and asked me if I played. Cesar can't go into the United States even though he gets a lot of requests for carpentry work on that side of the border. Don asked him, "Wouldn't it be great if we could all just come and go as we pleased?"
Ojinaga Park
Our last stop before heading through the portal back to the United States of America was a small park filled with eucalyptus trees so that we can eat our peaches, avocados with seeds, and other items that we are not allowed to bring back. James told me about the time that he and Don stopped there at the park to boil 60 eggs after finding out that they weren't allowed to bring their raw eggs back across the border. They made a stove with a gallon can and used sticks form the park to fire it.


Ginger said...

For many decades, I freely crossed to Nuevo Laredo and Matamoros. I haven't been across to Ojinaga in... I don't remember when... maybe since the mid-70s with my father. Even my frequent-border-crossing friends say it's not safe in Ojinaga these days. But I've not heard a word that proves that it's unsafe, just rumor. Sounds like you had a great day. In answer to Don's question, "Yes, we should." Maybe I'll make a trek across soon. The egg story is funny.

trevor.reichman said...

Yea, there are no specific incident reports to justify any claim that it is unsafe in Ojinaga. I assume that any violence is drug related, but if you are going there to buy tortillas, then there is nothing to worry about. I have never felt unsafe in Ojinaga.

William said...

Am going to Marfa shortly. Really wanted to visit Ojinaga, but EVERYONE says its not safe. I speak sufficient Spanish and am an old Mexico hand. Do I really need to worry?

trevor.reichman said...

William, when you say EVERYONE, have any of those people actually been to Ojinaga? I don't know ANYONE who has been there recently who has reported feeling unsafe. I personally have never felt unsafe there, and my spanish is not great. I'd recommend going with someone who has been before if possible.