Mexico Without Fear
Dear Folks @ the Reader,
I was really glad to see Ed Bedford’s “México” (Cover Story, November 12) expressing the positives of Tijuana and Baja, Mexico. I, too, fell in love with Tijuana after taking kin on touristy shopping trips there years ago. Yes, it is different now. But that big heart is still alive and well.
We are lucky to have such a great country right next door. The food, the color, the history! Wow! My Spanish is minimal. But I have found that most people are warm and friendly and want you to enjoy being there. It’s not just a money thing to Tijuana’s people. They have a genuine love of life! (Here I must add that if you go there and get drunk, abusive, and stupid, you might get a different response.)
I want to mention the Tijuana Wax Museum, an undiscovered gem! It covers Mayans and Aztecs, political figures, folklore, and even some American celebrities. And the mystery of Juan Soldado. It’s affordable and close to the entrance to the Tijuana shopping district. And it’s worth making a special trip to see!
I say, don’t be afraid of Mexico.
Re “México” (Cover Story, November 12).
This is by far the best article from any local-type publication I have ever read, and one of the better articles I’ve read in general. The author, though more versed in the Baja region than myself, captured the essence and allure of the region as experienced by an outsider, a gringo. I guess I feel so strongly because I used to go down there almost every Friday for two years (when I was between the ages of 17 and 19), and not only to get drunk.
During those two years and after, I really appreciated what Mexico has to offer, and I’ve made a lot of good friends. The cuisine, the culture, the people, the attitude, the sights (no matter how destitute), and, of course, the good times. It really inspired me to learn more about the area (not necessarily in a scholastic fashion) and to acquaint myself with Spanish-speaking beyond the three years I took in school.
The sense of humor is unparalleled, considering TJ is/was the melting pot of Mexico in terms of its residents relocating; so you get to experience the quick talking of the chilangos, all the entertaining slang they use, and just the general good-natured spirit of the people. The people are always so warm and receptive, a very charitable bunch beyond the monetary sense, and all around very pleasant.
In fact, I really appreciate the people and the culture down there more than my own, because, well, the U.S. completely lacks a distinct/ identifying/unifying culture. Despite the woes of its government, Mexico has a lot to offer in many ways; I’ve always learned something (bad or good) when I’ve come back from a TJ experience, and it’s always for the better. It can be very humbling at times.
I really miss going down there; it’s been close to nine months since I took my last expedition. Times are hard everywhere, and even though TJ is cheap, I would still normally spend the same amount down there as I would on an outing in San Diego, given there was more bang for the buck, so to speak. Tijuana, I miss you. ¡Viva Baja!
El Gabacho (Borracho)
Oh, I Get It
Re “East Village Lowdown,” “City Lights,” November 12.
Now I finally understand the big push to get the new central library built. Our downtown shakers and movers have convinced themselves it will save the East Village. Wasn’t that what the ballpark was going to do? It’s only costing taxpayers $10 million annually in debt service. You have to wonder how much the library will add to that.
It Was Just A Sneaky Plot
The East Village area will recover slowly as the recession fades away and people move in to occupy those empty condos (“East Village Lowdown,” “City Lights,” November 12). And then, if Alex Spanos and Mayor Sanders have their way, the choice of the Petco “tailgate” parking lot as a location for a new Chargers stadium will destroy East Village as a pleasant place to live and/or do business.
It turns out, predictably, that Mayor Sanders and the crafty Alex Spanos never had any intention of considering anywhere but downtown San Diego. The skillfully choreographed dance through pretended alternatives was the usual sham attempt to disguise the fact that a decision had already been made at lunches and other private social venues.
A Google satellite picture of the Qualcomm site taken on an NFL game day will show the many thousands of cars that would have to fit into the MTS/Petco area during a game. How about that inevitable day when a Chargers game and a Padres game are scheduled for the same day? Now, suppose that the convention center is hosting a major gathering, the new library is having a busy day, two or three cruise ships are in port, and tourists are thronging around the Gaslamp Quarter. What if there happens to be a major accident or fire in that area? Any chance that an emergency vehicle could get through? Any chance that a resident could get in or out?
While you have your Google satellite map handy, be sure to compare major highway access to both the Qualcomm and Petco locations.
Should it happen that the voters do get conned into building a downtown stadium for Mr. Spanos and the Chargers, let’s demand that the facility be constructed with something akin to oversized Lego blocks. Since Sanders and Spanos agree that major concrete structures such as stadiums and civic buildings have a useful life of no more than 40 years (tell that to the Romans), it would save lots of demolition expense when the stadium is abandoned.
There is a factual error in Mr. Leighton’s story (“Buck Howdy’s on the Case,” “Blurt,” November 12). There is not now, nor has there ever been, a RecallRexford.com link on the BuckHowdy.com website.