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Old 11-01-2014, 09:45 AM   #1
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A warning to Winter Texans

I just want to remind my fellow FR members, specifically those retirees that winter in south Texas. Many of you have been coming down here for years and are aware of the madness that has escalated south of the border in Mexico in the last 7 or 8 years, but many of you might be new to the area. I'm sure most of you have long ago made the decision to stay north of the Rio Grande, but some of you may still travel to and consider Progreso Mexico a safe haven for Americans. Progreso too has come under much the same violence and corruption that all of Mexico and especially the northern border region has, in recent months. If you must venture into Progreso (and I do not recommend it) please stay in the immediate vicinity of the international bridge and don't wander beyond the two block area where the shops and restaurants are. It's also not a good idea to walk east or west of the Main Street onto the side streets. I've traveled extensively throughout Mexico in my lifetime both as a child and as an adult and I'm here to tell you that I've not stepped foot in Mexico in 7 years and don't ever plan to again. The local newscast is headlined by stories of spill over violence, drugs and car chases on a daily basis that are taking place right here on US soil. Although I feel relatively safe living 8 miles from the border, these stories remind me that Mexico is the source and not a place for me to be. I have many friends who live south of the border and through social media I'm able to follow their daily lives which have become entrenched in this violence in a country which was once peaceful and where I made so many great memories. They have no choice but to live among the scum that are perpetuating this violence but we as Americans do have a choice as to cross over or not. Of course it is your decision and those of you that cross over often and return safely may call me an alarmist but many FR members that may be traveling to Deep South Texas may not be aware of how things really are down here and I feel it only fair to to inform them on my opinion. Please be safe amigos.
ValleyCentral.com - Latest local news, weather, high school sports in the Rio Grande Valley
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Old 11-01-2014, 10:01 PM   #2
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I hate agree with GASPEDDELER but he is correct.
I grew up in El Paso and have traveled most of my life in Mexico and absolutely love the country but it has been years since I set foot across the border. Life has little if any value to too many people there today.
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Old 11-01-2014, 11:08 PM   #3
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x3

grew up going to mexico, and spring breaking there when in college...

wont set foot back there and have not in over 8 years...wife was offered a position with an anesthesiology group down in el paso for well over 300k a year...NOPE ..I don't even want to go there!!..
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Old 11-02-2014, 11:00 AM   #4
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It's as if the rest of the country is not being informed of what's going on along the border. Unfortunately the cartel is alive, well and living not only in the border states but throughout the country. This is no longer just a border state issue.
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Old 11-02-2014, 02:02 PM   #5
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This is a section of the border fence located directly south of where I live. It goes on for miles and miles. Unfortunately there are many open gaps all along the span where pack mules walk through with their loads of drugs to be distributed throughout the country. Where there are no gaps they employ makeshift ladders or just climb over it. My neighbors that live along the river don't dare venture out without a side arm. Most of those coming across are simply looking for work as has been the case throughout history, but others come for other reasons. Click image for larger version

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Old 11-03-2014, 01:47 PM   #6
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We live near San Antonio, not near the border, and even we have had issues. Just this past spring, there was a high-speed police chase that ran up our driveway and into our pasture. Illegals and their drugs running through our property. Scary stuff!
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Old 11-03-2014, 02:12 PM   #7
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Thanks for the warning, it's funny how we look at things, we live a short distance from the border of the US and Canada, we live on the Canadian side and we travel with caution when we cross the border up here also there are areas of Detriot I would not think of going into.
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Old 11-03-2014, 02:19 PM   #8
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My brother lives in Lubbock/Slaton and works in the jail there and deals with this mess. It's terrible. They release them back into Mexico just to be jailed again a couple months or years later in the states for the same offenses.
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Old 11-03-2014, 02:21 PM   #9
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Thanks for the warning, it's funny how we look at things, we live a short distance from the border of the US and Canada, we live on the Canadian side and we travel with caution when we cross the border up here also there are areas of Detriot I would not think of going into.
I would walk down any street in Detroit before venturing anywhere in MX. Detroit has its bad areas, that's for sure, but MX seems to have it much much worse.
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Old 11-03-2014, 03:20 PM   #10
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and yet...

Valley residents concerned about violence in Mexico but feel safe in Nuevo Progreso : News : ValleyCentral.com
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Old 11-03-2014, 03:45 PM   #11
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Stayed at a private fenced, code gated campground several years ago around LaFeria in the Valley. The Hosts gave us a detailed map with firm suggestions on where to go and where not to go in the Valley. Go no where over the border unless at Progreso and during Winter Texan Days. Stay on the main streets and with the crowds and leave way before dark. It gives one a very strange and unsettling feeling with all of the Mexican soldiers walking in the crowds with machine guns and several Humvees driving back and forth with large caliber machine guns mounted and manned on them. The town where we were at had a curfew and a siren went off for the young people to get off the streets at a certain time. Our children knew about the curfew. One of the first nights that we were there, the siren went off and couple of minutes later our kids came running in the door from the club house. The wife and I looked at each other and shrugged our shoulders. After about 5 minutes, I said....."The club house does not close for about 3 hours, why don't we go play some pool or go swimming in the outdoor pool". My kids reminded me of the 'curfew' for kids.... to which I said,"I guess me and momma get the club house and pool to ours selves"..... to which I then said, sweeties.... we are in a fenced and gated community.... the curfew does not apply within the fenced area". I had not finished my sentence and they were back out the door.

A lot of History, great place to visit, but know that it has changed a lot in the last few years. My In-Laws camped in the valley for many years as winter Texans. Two years ago they decide to never go back for multiple reason.
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Old 11-03-2014, 04:14 PM   #12
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I live 5 miles east of La Feria and attended church in that town as a youth. Lots of good people still live and work on both sides of the Rio Grande, but this is not the same place I grew up in.
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Old 11-08-2014, 11:12 PM   #13
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Thanks for the warning, it's funny how we look at things, we live a short distance from the border of the US and Canada, we live on the Canadian side and we travel with caution when we cross the border up here also there are areas of Detriot I would not think of going into.
I have been warned and will do my best to behave. Detroit is no different than any big city.If you find yourself in the wrong part of town you may have a problem but I have spent lots of great times in that city and it has a lot to offer. A travel caution is a bit of a stretch . Canada is no different.If you Wander into a bad area in Toronto and you may feel a bit nervous.I have traveled a lot in Canada and love it and the people. The only time I have ever been robbed was in Hurst On. and I lost 800.00 dollars. Detroit has its problems but it's an up and coming city so give them a break. It's a shame that the people in Mexico have to live with the violence and danger every day.
Some how when ever we are camping in the South we are surrounded my Canadians so they must feel safe.



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Old 11-09-2014, 12:12 AM   #14
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Thank you for the info. Being a new retiree, I appreciate it.
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Old 11-10-2014, 11:52 AM   #15
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During the Winter of 2013-2014 I traveled back and forth across this border a number of times, during the day, and have not had any issues.
I debated if I should cross or not but as I stood there watching one auto after another crossing with from two to four gray headed people crossing back and forth, I felt safe. I bough booze, meds and had a great meal. I would cross during the day and the reason that you see the Mexican Army there is because they don't want problems that would prevent Winter Texans from coming.
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Old 11-10-2014, 12:03 PM   #16
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I wouldn't do this either.







Not saying anything is going to happen but you have all the ingredients of something happening.
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Old 11-10-2014, 09:50 PM   #17
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Thanks for the warning, it's funny how we look at things, we live a short distance from the border of the US and Canada, we live on the Canadian side and we travel with caution when we cross the border up here also there are areas of Detriot I would not think of going into.
Understand, but there are areas of any large city that a person should not enter unless familiar with the area.

I grew up in Detroit and later was stationed there for a few years. Very disapointed that the areas I grew up in and used to hang out as a kid, I would no longer go to, even though I was sometimes pretty well armed.
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Old 11-11-2014, 03:09 PM   #18
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During the Winter of 2013-2014 I traveled back and forth across this border a number of times, during the day, and have not had any issues.
I debated if I should cross or not but as I stood there watching one auto after another crossing with from two to four gray headed people crossing back and forth, I felt safe. I bough booze, meds and had a great meal. I would cross during the day and the reason that you see the Mexican Army there is because they don't want problems that would prevent Winter Texans from coming.

Just my opinion of course but why temp fate my friend? I'm the guy that speaks fluent Spanish and is able for the most part to blend in and I won't step foot in Progreso. Btw most of those federal soldiers are recruited from the mountainside and are salt of the earth, but are just as susceptible to the almighty bribe. Please take care amigo.
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Old 11-11-2014, 06:41 PM   #19
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What about other parts of the country... Like Cancun and Cozumel?
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Old 11-11-2014, 07:05 PM   #20
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What about other parts of the country... Like Cancun and Cozumel?

Personally I would not visit any part of Mexico. I'm sure we all know people that have gone to Cancun in recent years and have had a safe and enjoyable trip. But it's just a matter of time before a tragedy occurs in those tourist areas as well. If you do go just make the necessary arrangements back home so a loved one can access 50k of your money to wire to the guy on the other end of the phone line and pray he cuts you loose. I say this in all seriousness based on what my friends and family have witnessed.
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