Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Images of the border

Lost in the return to Davis and in the subsequent frenzy of lab work and catching up here at home, I've failed to share with you some of the most interesting and poignant images that Heather and I have taken during our time in Mexico. So after some delay, here they are.

For the school year 2007-2008 UC Davis selected The Devil's Highway by Luis Alberto Urrea as the Campus Community book. If you have not read it, the book follows 26 men as they attempt to cross into the United States by walking through the Arizona desert, telling the story from all of the angles - the border patrol, the smugglers and the would-be migrants.

Heather and I used the book as a road map of sorts and took some incredible images of the border - the concept of which I have trouble wrapping my head around all of the myriad issues, especially this particular border, which has its own controversial history and politics.

We encountered the border just west of Nogales, then followed it as it ended in the Pacific Ocean, on a stretch of municipal beach just outside of Tijuana's bullfighting ring.

This abarrotes in Altar sold everything you needed to cross. Dark windbreaker, dark hat, dark backpack and gallons of water.

Just outside of Sonoita, just south of Organ Pipe National Monument, the border is a rather simple series of 4x4 metal posts of alternating height with some barbed wire stretched across the top and bottom parts. Not much of a deterrent.

Ceniza, our newly adopted Mexican street dog crosses the border illegally.

Kraig and Ceniza approach the border's end - the municipal beach in Tijuana.

Vendors selling peanuts, churros and cold coconuts right up to the fence.

Footprints on the other side

The border patrol keeps a watchful eye on the vendors and the proceedings.

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