Today we did Mexico. OK, so we didn’t actually “do” Mexico. We did Progresso. While I’ve not seen much of Mexico in general, I do believe that Progresso is pretty much a stand alone town. It’s a mecca town for the Winter Texans (that would be us this year!) as their source for cheap vanilla, great prices on prescription drugs and amazing prices on quality dental work.
Crossing the border is pretty easy –
You park your car right before the bridge ($2.00 please), and walk across the bridge. No ID required to get into Progresso, just two quarters. Exact change please :).
The mighty Rio Grande
The hardest part about crossing the border is the heartbreak of the folks under the bridge, with their hats and hands outstretched, hoping for a quarter or a dime to be thrown their way.
Once you’re over the bridge it’s immediate overload of Dental Clinics, Pharmacies, and street vendors selling everything from beautiful silver jewelry to blankets to boots to pineapples.
We were with our friends Bill and Sandy, and since they were headed to finish up some dental work I decided visit one myself. I had broken a tooth several months ago, and while it wasn’t bothering me, I did feel like it was a little dental time bomb just waiting to demand a pricey crown. And besides, I was overdue for a good cleaning. So, going on a recommendation from our host, Juan, I decided to Get.It.Done.
It went very well – he was able to repair the tooth without a crown, just a “two surface” filling and the total bill for the filling and cleaning – $40.00. It was a good start to the day!
Gary priced out some of his asthma medicine – about a third of the cost in the US. In the bag. We found some cute things for the grandkids, and enjoyed a very yummy lunch on a balcony above the hustle and bustle of the street.
View from the balcony –
As we were wrapping up our time (still had to pick-up that vanilla) we walked past a street artist who was painting beautiful scenes on saws using only spray paint, edges of paper, and scrunched up grocery bags.
It was really fun watching him create, and then Gary asked him if he could do a custom saw/painting using a photo. That would be a cell phone photo. We agreed on a price (the same as his “regular” work), he made a sketch of what we wanted done and told us it would take about 1/2 hour. We set off to get our vanilla (they only let you buy two bottles per person now – go figure!), and returned to find our saw well on it’s way to becoming a family keepsake –
And the finished product with our new friend, Arturo the artist.
I know it’s kind of hokey, but geez – it’s the Cabin, painted on a saw!!! 🙂
And since he always paints both sides, I told him to just paint whatever is his easiest and fastest thing to paint. He did this side in under 10 minutes.
With spray paint. Crazy!
So it was a good day in Progresso! We paid our quarter to get out of Mexico, crossed back over the Rio Grande, presented our passports, declared our vanilla and arrived back home in time for a late afternoon nap.
Yes, indeedy-do – it was a good day all around!