After two years of jumping around Latin America, I come back home only to get a gun pointed at my face. Fck, how ironic but a lot of it is my fault. I made so many stupid assumptions. Or did I forget how people think in my country?
To enter my country, the procedure was to install an app, but I didn't. Why? Because it invaded my privacy. I decided to wing it and arrived the border before sunrise. Perhaps I deserve to get shot for even attempting this lol.
So I decided to cross the Mexican border with a cheap taxi. That was easy. The officials didn't even ask me anything. Going out is the easy part in most cases because they don't give a fck about you or how many kilos of anything you have.
I arrived at the first checkpoint. It was a bit strange. There was a wooden plank with nails to stop cars from passing and everything looked abandoned. The taxi driver starting feeling uneasy, so I told him that he can leave me here. I walked across this border at night. It felt off, I won't lie.
But I told myself I've been in way worse situations, so I kept walking. I even stood at checkpoint for a while looking for my headlamp. I heard the sound of a television in the tiny checkpoint house. My instinct was to continue moving. I genuinely thought they were asleep or not even operational.
My feelings are still neutral at this point. I merely think everything is abandoned because it's nighttime. People from my country don't exactly love working. So I arrive at the second checkpoint, the one where you stamp your passport. It's totally quiet. No one is around. No noise. And before exiting the last door, I see the outline of a man sitting down. It looks like a shadow.
He was so black I couldn't tell he was there. I swear to the universe I'm not racist! I just say it as it is. So then I played a quick scenario in m mind. If I wake him up, he'll be startled, and I don't know how to handle his reaction. So I walked right out. No stamp for me.
What's next? Well I just go home, but I have to wait on my folks to come pick me up. I wait for a couple of hours. It's very much like them arriving late. In the meantime, I check out buildings around the area for wifi. Jackpot, the biggest insurance company in my country has open wifi. If only I had time to hijack all their files lol.
Anyway, long story short, I called my girlfriend with the open wifi, and she made very valid points about going back to the border. For the sake of doing things right to prevent bigger problems in the future. In retrospect, she was right.
Shit hits the fan. Complete diarrhea. My cousin describes this moment as robbing a bank and going back to return the change. He was also right. Everyone reacts extremely confused because they are in disbelief and eventually denial. How could this kid pass through all our authorities and come back to tell us we failed. Boom. There was my mistake. I wasn't humble about it. I did it and bragged about it. That burned through their ego and eventually formed some serious hate.
The lady in charge blatantly said that she couldn't help me. It was the weekend, and they only do the swab tests during weekdays. She told me to go back to Mexico and wait. I told her she lacked empathy and, she sucked at her job because she enables bureaucracy. Boy was I digging a grave lol.
An armed testosterone squad of border patrol officers came in, four of them. Keep in mind these were the same guys that were supposed to stop me at the first checkpoint. The macho midget leader immediately took out his loaded handgun and point it at my face. Oh, did I mention my parents arrived a couple of minutes before this, so they got to see all this go down LIVE.
I put my hands up then went face down on the floor obeying orders. These guys were lucky I didn't reach Brazil in time to learn jiu-jitsu lol. Ironically, I spent so much energy to avoid this confrontation with the Mexican military and here I am on the floor, face down in my country.
That's exactly how I get labeled. My passport meant nothing. I was just another immigrant that tried to get in. And in their mind, there's no way I could have just walked through. It meant they all failed miserably at their jobs. And someone was getting fired or blamed. Guess who it was easier to blame? Yeah, me.
They took me away from my folks and pushed me in a corner where there were no cameras. The armed midget leader pointed his gun between my eyes and told me to tell him the truth. I did, and he grew furious the more I talked. After this, they drove me a couple of kilometers down the highway, out of public eye. I genuinely thought about jumping off because I had a feeling I was going to get killed. But jumping off gives them an excellent reason to start firing rounds. So I scrapped out that idea.
Jesus, this is the longest story ever. But I get slapped up a bit here, so it's worth the read. They take me to their first checkpoint and made me explain how I crossed. I told them the same story again, the truth, but that's not what they wanted to hear. The midget leader took me in the tiny checkpoint house, took away my phone in case I was recording and pointed the gun in my face yet again. I'm still surprised I didn't even flinch. Maybe it was the adrenaline, or maybe I was curious about whom I'd reincarnate into this time.
Fast-forward a bit, I get slapped in the face and kicked in the chest so hard that I bounce like a ping pong ball against the wall. This guy had a big fcking boot for his height. After that, he threatened to burn my hair by burning aerosol with a lighter. He wasn't very good at this bad cop thing to be honest.
Either I gave up or he did. Maybe it was mutual. I told him I'd say whatever story he wants me to say. This wasn't worth broken ribs or burnt hair. He told me the fake story to stick to. I agreed. Good cop started to take over. They searched my bag, I was in the clear. I genuinely think the only reason he let me go was because my mom was screaming I was still a student. And being a student means you have a future that could be ruined. I had a peek at his phone and his son was on the homescreen. Maybe that's where his empathy came from.
Wow, I think my mom saved my ass there. Again!
Since my family has a couple of influential friends, we got a ministry of healthy worker to come give me a swab test on a weekend. He just happened to be my childhood barber. What are the chances lol. And my uncle also helped with my re-entry with his masonry connections. So I got a lot of help to back home. Super grateful for that.
What did I learn? Context is everything. You need to understand the people. The midget leader thought me to be humble. He told me this many times, but I wanted to be right. I also thought I was smarter than them since I had been out of the country for so long. But the rules here are different. I just had to learn the hard way.
Maybe next time I won't take back the change after robbing the bank.