The Past Three Weeks…..

have been very rough but it’s getting better now. We finally received our permanent residency three days ago and will never need to go to the immigration office again. Our exit document had to be stamped leaving and entering Mexico and that was an ordeal in itself. Thousands of Mexican Americans travel south in December and the lines at the immigration office are long. We waited in line 1.5 hours leaving and 3.5 hours entering Mexico.

And that’s just the Mexican side. American customs agents made us get out of the RV and thoroughly searched it including the engine compartment. We regularly read about stupido gringos who try to smuggle drugs into the US in their RV. We have been through this before and I am getting used to having a border policeman chat me up with lots of friendly questions while the others search. I think they are looking for nervousness or a lie.

We made the drive to Tucson two weeks ago and stayed at De Anza RV Resort in Amado about 35 miles south of Tucson. It’s expensive but most RV parks have raised their prices sky high the past few years and De Anza is about the nicest park we have ever stayed in, as far as commercial parks go. Our very favorite park overall is Catalina State Park in Oro Valley but it’s impossible to get a site during the winter unless reservations are made well in advance. Our doctors have all been in that far northwest part of Tucson but now we are changing doctors to get as far south as we can.

Nothing went right in Tucson. I had ordered a new camera lens for pickup at a locker and Amazon returned it three days before my expiration date of pickup. We were actually driving to the locker when I got the notification.

There was not one single Apple laptop in stock in all of Tucson. That means there is incompatibility between my phone and laptop and I can’t access my blogging site on my laptop nor the pictures that I take with my phone. It really stinks that Apple does this. It happened the first week of October. I am hoping laptops are in stock the end of January when we go back up for the never ending doctor appointments.

When we returned to San Carlos the visits to immigration began again. One person there had told us to come back for fingerprinting and so we did the usual take a number and wait. But no, the new supervisor said we have to wait for an email that never came. Long story short, we drove almost two hundred miles round trip to the immigration office in Hermosillo and walked out permanent residents.

But one enormous bonus to all of the hours waiting at the immigration office is that I met a well known woman named Rosa who helps North Americans with administrative matters. I told her about the iffy situation of taking the RV south of the free zone and she guaranteed that we could because we have a 10 year permit and it’s valid no matter our status now. And just to be sure, she went to the agency in charge of vehicle permits, Banjercito, and they confirmed her answer to me was correct. Fingers crossed that we will go south about February 1st.