Goodbye America, Hello Mexico! (Reynosa, Tamaulipas, Mexico)

“Would it be OK if we went for a short ride on the motorcycles?” Claudio asked me. “Then we’ll get in the car and head over to immigration.”

OK?!? Heck – the boys would love it!

Each of us was assigned a spot on a moto – and away we went! I’m not sure just how many motorcycles were in the caravan, but a good guess would be around fifteen or so. What a blast!

We didn’t get out of Eric’s house until 1:30 after getting Davy’s new bike all fixed up and put together. Our first stop of the day was the pump house museum near the border.

A hundred years ago, the Rio Grande Valley was barren desert, but eventually a series of canals were dug and pump houses built to lift water out of the river and deliver it to the fields. In the 80’s the pumps were converted to an electric system, rendering the old steam-powered engines obsolete – but it was fun to look at them!

From the pump house we headed south to the border.

“I’ll meet you on the bridge,” Claudio had told us.

So there we stood over the Rio Grande – not in America, but not in Mexico either. No man’s land. And sure enough – Claudio showed up just on time with a big smile on his face.

“There’s a slight problem,” he told us. “The computer is down here, so we’ll have to go to another bridge twenty kilometers from here to get your visas. I’ll take care of it.”

It was odd to simply walk through the border without even having to show our passports – and all too soon we were in Mexico.

As promised, Claudio had arranged for a motorcycle escort – four of them actually – from the border to his hotel three blocks away.

After a quick motorcycle tour of the city, and a not-so-quick trip to immigration at a different bridge to get visas, we arrived back at the hotel where the motorcycle club had a barbeque all laid out for us.

Now my belly is stuffed full of steak, chicken, and chorizo and I’m fading fast. The guys are still outside our door laughing and drinking cerveza, but I think I need to call it a day.

I’m thrilled to finally be in Mexico.

Kilometers today: 23
Kilometers to date: 9739

The enormous furnace which heated water to power the engines and pump water to the fields.

The smokestack from the pump house is huge!  A lot of smoke went up that thing in its day.

They´re building the wall immediately behind the pump house - cutting the pump house off from the river!

Eric and his dog Buster joined us at the pump house

Welcome to Mexico!

Fortunately, we were able to walk right by all the cars.

Davy on the bridge over the Rio Grande

All four of us

Claudio gives John directions on how to be escorted


We enjoyed a spin around town on the motorcycles

Daryl had a huge grin on his face the entire time

books by Nancy Sathre-Vogel

About Nancy Sathre-Vogel

After 21 years as a classroom teacher, Nancy Sathre-Vogel finally woke up and realized that life was too short to spend it all with other people's kids. She and her husband quit their jobs and, together with their twin sons, climbed aboard bicycles to see the world. They enjoyed four years cycling as a family - three of them riding from Alaska to Argentina and one exploring the USA and Mexico. Now they are back in Idaho, putting down roots, enjoying life at home, and living a different type of adventure. It's a fairly sure bet that you'll find her either writing on her computer or creating fantastical pieces with the beads she's collected all over the world.

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3 Responses to Goodbye America, Hello Mexico! (Reynosa, Tamaulipas, Mexico)

  1. David January 17, 2009 at 4:46 pm #

    Welcome to Mexico!

    Please extreme your riding and safety precautions as this is (obviously) NOT THE USA !!!

    My country is a very beautiful one but sadly there isn’t enough cycloculture around so please be very careful !


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