Thursday, March 5, 2009

In light of the recent drug war happenings going on South of the border, I decided I'd head down to Tijuana to get a first hand look and check out the vibe. The First thing that hits you over the head is that tourism is WAYYYY down. The bars and discotecas are almost completely empty. I had a nice chat with a guy named Luis who runs a photo stand with one of those painted Donkey's. After informing me that this wasn't his real job, he told there are some days were he gets 1 maybe 2 customers. On a good day he might get 5. Now, I'm no Einstein, but I can only imagine how much Donkey food costs as well as each Polaroid(a dollar a pop), and, lest we not forget, his take. And I thought my photo biz was in the dumps. I came away from that conversation thinking about how we're all so worked-up in a tizzy(here in the U.S.)over this recession. I don't think they have a word for that in Mexico. They just survive.
Overall, everyone's seems to be a little on edge but it sure doesn't stop the city from going about its business. I'd recommend a visit.


Daniel said...

Ya, it's bad. I wrote and shot a story for my college's paper about Nogales comparing the profits Nov. 2008 for businesses in the tourist district in Nogales, Sonora. The curios were down like 60% from 2007, they attributed about half from the recession and half from the violence. That was in November. (Their competitors in the US were down 20%-30%) so it seemed like it all added up right.

Our donkey guy was snapping about the same amount of pics. The day I talked to him, he only took one picture and it was of a Mexican guy, not a tourist.

He told me, "We used to eat three times a day, and now we only eat once." He was a huge Obama fan too, and is hopeful of good things to come. He only attributed it to the economy.

I talked to him two weeks ago and business has gone up a little bit.

and his donkey's name is George Bush, lol.

Here's the story if you wanna read it. I always think it's interesting seeing how life is on different US/Mexico borders. I am in my mom's house right now and can see Mexico out the window.

Sandy Huffaker said...

That's hilarious! A donkey named George Bush. It's a prety sad situation down there. Hopefully things will improve. I'm going to go read your story.