Monday, February 28, 2011

The Commute

Some of you people out there in Bloggerland noticed my blog change to I Was Crazy For Living In Reynosa. I haven't spent a night there since February 10. I didn't want to go into details because I was afraid of word getting out to my students. It's amazing that I don't care if they see some groseros (4-letter words), but I didn't want them to know I was leaving. Not that I've told my students about my blog or I that I am Facebook friends with any current students, but you know how electronically savvy kids are, right?

Anyone familiar with my blog or me personally know that I've have been wanting to divorce myself from Reynosa. Too many gun battles, narco-blockades, thieves like Edward Cadena, transito and police. The last incident was the final straw.  Two weeks I gave the school my resignation to be effective February 28.  I've been commuting from Texas since then.

1. House with central heat and air conditioning.
2. Insulated walls and windows.
3. My own bathroom with hot water that regularly flows not only in the bathtub, but the sink as well!  And, yes, I said BATHTUB.
4. A fully equipped kitchen that actually has cabinets and counters with a real refrigerator and an oven that has Fahrenheit temperature (not 1, 2, 3, 4, 5)
5. My truck is locked behind a secure gate.
6. I've never heard people shooting at each other.

1. It takes one hour to drive to the school.
2. It takes 1.5 - 2 hours to drive home (bridge wait time and the traffic is heavier)
3. $75 a week in gas (more now that gas has jumped .30 a gallon).
4. $25 a week for tolls on bridge.

So I go to the office today to turn in my grades and tell them, "Hey, it's been great working with ya'll."

Silence (insert crickets chirping here)

Apparently my resignation wasn't taken seriously even though I explained it was not cost or time effective to commute from Texas every day. The director pulled himself together and said he would go talk to the owner. Less than half hour later as I was cleaning out my desk, it was decided that I would be reimbursed for gas and bridge fees until they can find a replacement for me.

So the commute continues... for a while anyway.  And now ya'll know the rest of the story.


  1. It's safer to commute than to live there?

  2. Barb - Probably not much safer because the shootings and blockades happen at any time. It's probably only safer for my truck since the only place I park it now is at school.

  3. Wow - good for you for a) sticking it out so long , b) getting the hell outta there!!!

    What are your plans now??

  4. ElleCancun - I am in the midst of applying for teaching positions at different school districts in the Rio Grande Valley. Thank you so much for your good wishes :)

  5. I wish you the best, Rita. I have really enjoyed reading your blog and getting to know you better.

    Have you considered other parts of Mexico?

  6. Leslie - My parents moved to the Rio Grande Valley permanently last November. My geriatric dog and cat are in their house and I find that I really like the comforts of a USA home. Since I am elgible to teach in Texas and could make a ton more money, I think I better find a job in Texas. I don't have a significant other in Mexico (or Texas) so I really don't have any ties to Mexico. I've got some great friends on both sides of the border so I think I will stick around here. I can always travel around Mexico or cross over into Reynosa to go see my friends.

  7. Good for you! I wish you all the best and I'm sure your parents are happy to have you closer.

  8. Sounds like a plan!

    Rio Grande Valley districts are amongst the lowest paying in the nation. That, combined with Texas state reductions to schools in the billions, the competition will be non-existant.

    Those districts will probably hire anyone. You shouldn't worry about a little trash-talk on your blog at all.

    Do let us know how you fare.