Friday, April 16, 2010
Back to Calexico
So back to the Earthquake zone this week, 12 days after the 7.2 magnitude one that rocked Calexico and Mexicali. Thursday was the first day the majority of shops in Downtown Calexico were allowed to re-open. Mind you that the Imperial Valley has the highest unemployment in the Nation, this community has suffered hard, especially the shop-keepers who had to keep their stores shuttered until structural engineers could clear them. It was nice to come back and see lots of smiling faces and the regular influx of folks from Mexico crossing over the Border to spend their hard-earned dollar in the stores near the crossing. I also went around checking on other facilities such as schools and hospitals and found that there was extensive to damage to many important structures around the valley. Most of this wasn't reported because this story completely died, or lost its legs, the day after the quake because of the West Virginia mine accident. I can tell you though, this thing will affect this region economically for years to come. The folks in this region are incredibly resilient and will surely pick themselves up by the bootstraps.