Saturday, February 18, 2012

Fleeing Matamoros

I said to Clint, "We can't get in this taxi!  We have to wait on another

Clint replies, "YOU Are Getting In This Taxi!"

I had always considered myself street smart.  In the summer of 2004 we went to South Padre Island, TX, for a vacation.  One day we decided to actually use our passports and we drove down to Brownsville and thought we'd see Matamoros right across the border.  We had an uneventful taxi drive to Matamoros and I had never seen such friendly guys, rushing to open the taxi doors for us.

We walked up and down a vendor lined street at an outdoor market. I had been needing a new black leather purse and found one from a street vendor.  I asked him if they were genuine leather and he said, "Si, leather".  I thought I was getting an excellent deal and paid for the purse. In no time the purse was wrapped in lots of paper and handed to me in a bag.

Meanwhile, Clint was becoming increasingly alarmed, a gang of guys were following us.  I am usually the one who is easily alarmed, it is unusual for Clint to be alarmed so when he expressed his concern, I knew something was up.  He said we needed to get out of there as soon as possible.  He hailed the taxi that was shown above.

As you could read under the above caption, Clint had to make me get in this old taxi and I was also concerned about the age of the driver.  Very nervous, I climbed in and the back seat was almost touching the floor, the stuffing had come out of the seat.  The driver did not use brakes at all, he sped through intersections full speed and honking his horn repeatedly.

Finally we arrived in one piece (respectively:~)) at the bridge in Brownsville, TX.  There again were those friendly men opening doors for us. I am going to confess my naitivity, I had not realized the "friendly men" were only wanting tips.

We made it back to Brownsville, once again there is another
"friendly" man opening the door for us!  Notice the pile
of stuffing coming out of the seat as Clint prepares
to exit the taxi.

About my great deal on the genuine black leather purse?  As soon as I got into the car after we arrived back in Brownsville, I checked out my leather purse.  I noticed a little metal decorative emblem was attached upside down but thought I could live with it.  The little white label I found next:  I can read "Made in China, All man made materials" from any direction.  In other words, 100% vinyl!  To top off the day, we stopped back in South Padre for lunch and had the absolutely worst Mexican lunch we have ever had in our lives.

Just another tale in the Ellison family lore.  Today when I ran across these photos, we both were laughing.  Seriously, I am glad we escaped with our lives.


Shady Del Knight said...

It does seem like a close call, Cindy. It's a good thing one of you had his radar turned on and realized you were in danger. You made a bad purchase, took a bad cab ride and had a bad meal but at least you didn't drink the water, right? :) I'm glad it all worked out and that you can laugh about it now. Happy weekend to you, dear friend!

Clint said...

Yes, it was a trip from h-e-double L. I like adventure as well as the next guy, but Matamoros is a violent place, even in broad daylight, even at the market.

There was a gang that had grown to about 10 guys following us. And part of the problem was that Cindy, with her long blonde hair, stood out like a sore thumb in a land of darker complexions and jet black hair.

I got a hold of the first cab I could find, and as you can see, it was a doozy. I asked myself if I would rather die in a defective cab or at the hands of a Mexican gang.

I chose the taxi. Man, that was one wild ride.

Nova said...

What a adventure, I don't know if I could handle it so easy. For God's sake nothing happens to you.

Have a beautiful sunday and enjoy the day


Cindy Ellison said...

For your precious gifts of time spent on my blog, a big Thank You! After I posted this, I Googled and it was frightening to read of warnings to tourists about kidnappings in Matamoros.

Vilisi said...

Thank God you made it home safely !