Saturday, December 18, 2010

It's Been 109 Days Since My Last Confession

Confession, blog, whatever. Prepare yourself for a bunch of random crap. This blog has no direction.

I haven't blogged since August and I'm sure for those of you who aren't friends with me on I2US or Facebook it's crossed your mind that I've become another statistic here in Juarez. No worries, that's not the case. I am very much alive. In fact, I have never felt so alive in my life.

On September 18th I saved a Word doc with the intention to post it as a blog... in it I bitched and bitched about the line and how I couldn't take it and what the hell was I thinking moving to the border. You see, after the initial shock of the first day, Juarez has never been the problem for me. I love it here. It's beautiful. I love the weather, the food, the people, the ambiance. It was that line. What a difference 3 months can make. The line doesn't get to me as much anymore. I've fallen into a nice routine of crossing and then falling asleep for an hour in the Walmart parking lot. I have my pillow, my blanket, I'm set. Then on the way home I read trashy magazines like Life & Style or Ok! It's quite fun really. Soothing. The trashy magazines I mean. I've always been a celebrity whore.

Work is more than I ever could have asked for. It's just the cherry on the top of my theory that I was destined to move to Juarez. I mean, I had never been here. Not really even seen pictures other than some dead bodies. I knew 1 person in the whole town. I had no work lined up. No home. But somehow I just knew that this was the place for me. That it was going to change my life. It was one of those gutt, motherly instict type feelings. Anyway, the chances of me finding another company in my industry to work for in El Paso were slim. The chances that I would adore my coworkers was slim. The chances that I would admire the company's policies and ethics and passion were slim. And I got all of that. I even got a boss who doesn't give a crap that I live in Juarez and only thinks more highly of me because of it. I couldn't ask for more... except for some more money of course ;) The salary is about $8000 less than my last job, but it provides basic necessities plus wine, Cablemas, cigarettes and Ok! so I can't complain...

My husband still can't find work. We didn't realize that would be such an issue. We thought... 300+ factories in Juarez? He'll find work. Crappy work, but work. Yeah, no. We only have one car. You know how hard it is to look for work in the US with no car? It's even harder here. There's no online applications, no well-planned, stable city bus system and the taxi drivers will rob you faster than you can count to 10. Plus it's difficult because every factory he manages to make it to says "Come back at 5 am tomorrow." Since they all say the same thing he can really only go to one "interview" a day. He even resorted to pretending he knew how to use a sewing machine. He could have lost a finger from that little charade. Of course he is starting to go insane in the house all day. I don't blame him. I wish we had the money for a second car. Especially since my car makes some questionable noises. No I'm not imagining them Stacey.

When we first came here, we thought we would have an extra $1500 to buy a clunker. Haha, we were so naive. We blew through our savings in the first 2 months. Don't get me wrong, we weren't out buying diamond earrings and leather boots. But we paid our bills and ordered pizza on Friday nights and rented movies and drank too much. What fools. In the grand scheme of things we're doing okay. If I get out of my American mindset, we're filthy rich. I make 15 times more than Mexican minimum wage. I feel blessed that we can afford to pay the bills even without my husband working. Especially since once we start a family, he will be the one to stay home with any little ones. I keep telling him that this is just practice. If looks could kill...

Because we ran through all that savings we had to move. Luckily we found a bigger house around the corner from our apartment for 2000 pesos cheaper. It's even on a dead end street with 2 security guards. Of course I think these guards are a joke and paying them 90 pesos a week somewhat offends me, but whatever. The new place is older and needs a lot of work. When we moved in you couldn't use the kitchen sink, there was a thick film of concrete dust over everything, the bathroom had no cold water, the heater didn't work, there was no shower head and because of water pressure problems we got a mere drip coming from a pipe in the wall, the stairs were covered in smelly shag carpeting, there was rusty rebar and nails sticking out of the walls and (my personal favorite) when you flushed the toliet water poured into the living room. Since then my husband has fixed all of those things, with the exception of the cold water in the bathroom, all at the expense of the owners thank God. I appreciate that I have a husband who knows his way around a tool box and is so hard working because I've seen it go the other way and having a handy man in your own house is... well, handy.

Anyway I can't keep rambling all day because I have to try and salvage the... soup... that I created last night in my first attempt to make tamales de elote. Too much milk, not enough baking powder. I think. I'm super pissed because if I can't figure out a way to get this mess to harden up I have officially wasted $8 (US) May not sound like much, but let me put things in perspective... $8 is 99 pesos. Enough to buy 10 burritos on the corner, enough to pay both of the "security gaurds" on my street for a week or the equivilent of 2 day's pay for a Mexican factory worker. Yeah. I have to save my corn. I'll be back.