We’re finally packed and ready to cross the border. I can’t help but ask myself over and over, do we have everything we need? I’m pretty certain we’re as ready as we can be but as we approach the border my heart starts to race. All the barbed wire and warning signs aren’t helping. And then just like that we’re in Mexico. I feel my awareness of my surroundings heighten yet my anxiety vanishes. We may have just crossed, but it already feels so good to be back.
Last year we drove right through and went on our way. Today the Mexican border agents have pulled us over and want to inspect the truck and trailer. They’re polite, efficient, and even let us get our tourist visa right there rather than have to go find parking somewhere else and walk back to the immigration office. 15 minutes later we’re on our way south.
We chose a less popular border crossing this time (Los Algodones) meaning we have about two hours of navigating narrow roads in and out of tiny rural towns before making it to the main highway. After that it’s smooth sailing and one easy military checkpoint to San Felipe.
Last year (our first time traveling by vehicle around Mexico) we were completely overwhelmed the first few days. Today we’re exhilarated by the culture, the change, the challenge, and the discomfort. It’s humbling to hardly speak the language, to not understand the cultural norms, to know that we have a lot of learning and adapting to do. I believe growth is bred from discomfort. I also feel unbelievably privileged that I get to choose my discomfort. And for all that I expect this time in Baja to be just as humbling and rewarding as the last time.