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Posts posted by stuphel

  1. When we were stopped by those guys a couple of years ago (entering Mexico) we played with each other for about 20 minutes before they let us go.  They were going to 'give us a ticket' that we'd have to pay in NLaredo, out of our way, blah blah.   We said we'd take the ticket.  They switched guys and the one in the cruiser came out to try his luck.  Told us we were speeding in a 20k zone.   Really????   A 20k zone?  Then we'd better take the ticket.   Went to his car to get the form.  Waved it in front of us.   We insisted on the ticket.   After 20 minutes they gave up on us and sent us on our way.    We met some people at the hotel in Matehuala, who we'd seen at Immigrado.   The cops apparently stopped them after trying things with us.  They had no better luck with them.

    When we were driving up to the Columbia Bridge exit, leaving Mexico, about 2 weeks ago, we saw them parked behind some bushes at the side of the road and ready to pounce, but they didn't go after us.   We were between two trucks.  Maybe they were eating lunch, who knows.  We were glad we didn't have to deal with them; we were pretty stressed about whether or not the US Border guys were going to let us through (this was Day One of the new rules) and wouldn't have enjoyed dealing with them that day.


  2. We  (2 Canadians) crossed at Columbia 2 weeks ago with our 2 dogs.  Our dogs have papers (up to date shots; no 'health certificate' as it is not a written requirement in US, Mexico or Canada for crossing).   As has been the case with our 18 crossings, north and south now, no one even noticed the 2 dogs.  We mentioned them to the Border Guard.  He did not ask to see the papers or ask us any questions about them.   Same entering Canada.  

  3. We always use Columbia, including when we crossed into the US two weeks ago.  It is not very busy at all (no wait, at all, two weeks ago. ) You turn right off Hwy 2 and along a long road, staying in the 'auto' lane.  You will see a hut where you turn in your TIP, then follow the road, veering left until yu get to the immigrado building (one story, lots of parking)  You turn in your turista here, then head slightly to your right to pay the bridge toll and cross into the US.  When we went, all of the carrels were marked closed, and we were somewhat confused, but it turned out they had so few people crossing that they hadn't turned them 'on' yet (this was noon)   We were worried that we wouldn't be let in as we are Canadians, but the word was out to let Canadians going home through, and we were done in 2 minutes.

    On the Mexican side, you follow the signs to "Columbia" bridge about 60 k before NLaredo, and bypass Nuevo Laredo completely.  (One note:  stick to the speed signs on Hwy 2.  There are a couple of 'mordida' cops who stake out that highway and try to pick off gringos.  Usually those on the way into Mexico, but it's slim pickings at the moment, so they may work the other direction, too.  We found parking ourselves between two trucks kept them at bay.)   On the US side, you completely bypass Laredo, and end up just before the 20 mile security stop in the US.   It may be a few kilometers longer than if you go through NL and Laredo, but the convenience is well worth it to us.

  4. We are not at Lakeside for the next 6 months.  When we go north, we usually continue to pay our maid (4 hours a week) and our gardener (1 1/2 hours twice a week) and they work although the house is empty.  We give the maid a number of 'once a year' jobs to do for the 6 months; the gardener continues to water and trim as usual.

    This year, we will continue to pay them, but we've asked them not to come to work on public transit.  The maid will come every 10 days or so, in her husband's truck, to check on the house and then leave; the gardener, who comes in his own truck, will come every 7-10 days to water the plants enough to keep them alive, less during rainy season.

    If things change over the summer, we will be in contact with our property manager to renegotiate the terms, but we will continue to pay their full salary during the 6 months.

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  5. Well, we 2 Canadians crossed the border around 1 pm on Monday, at Columbia Bridge.  No wait at all, in fact all the carrels were marked "Closed" and we thought they had closed the whole Entry, but it turned out they hadn't bothered turning them to 'Open" because they hadn't expected anyone.  It's that quiet.

    Our border guard checked our passports, asked us a couple of cursory questions, asked us why we were leaving Mexico (we said 'because our government told us to go home') and we were done.  No checking of our temperature, no asking about symptoms.  In fairness, he may have been a trainee, and he did show our passport to his supervisor (I'm guessing because of the China stamp from 3 years ago.)  His supervisor said, "Canadians going home?  Let them through."    

    Easiest crossing ever.    More traffic once we hit the States, though all the malls along I-35 inTexas had very few cars in the parking lots.  Lots of restaurants offering delivery and take away.  Masks and glove use about the same as we saw in northern Mexico.  

    We hope to be in Canada late Thursday afternoon.  

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  6. Thank you so much for following up, JGiff.    We will be crossing tomorrow around noon, and I will be able to sleep tonight knowing this information.   Then 3 tense days in the U.S. and on to 14 days quarantine in Ontario.

    Stay safe over the next 2 weeks until you can get home.  Then stay safe up north.   

  7. We're off this morning to Saltillo, then on to Columbia bridge tomorrow.   Theory is that if they turn us back, we can return to Saltillo to stay over, then back here on Tuesday.

    We're hoping, as Canadians returning home, they'll let us through.  Not tourists, not leisure travel.   They are letting Canadians switch planes in the US, so here's hoping.  Our embassy thinks they will.

    We think we are probably, who knows, better off down here, but our health insurance will run out at the end of April, and insurers are not reinsuring travel insurance or not under the same conditions.  

    If anyone is ahead of us on this trip and can update us before we leave Saltillo in the morning, we'd appreciate it.  We'll do the same once we hit the border.  

  8. A couple of updates:  I called the Canadian Embassy in Mexico City and the person I spoke to said I should get official information from the US Embassy but that it's Canada's understanding that we can enter US territory if we are on our way home.   I tried the US Embassy, who patched me through to Border Control, who did not answer the number I was patched to.  

    Articles I'm reading seem to be focussing  on leisure and tourism as examples of 'non-essential' business.   Also, the regs that will define some of the terms the agreement between the US and Mexico are using are not set to come out until Tuesday.   

    With these things in mind, and unless we get different information, we're going to try to cross the Mexican border on Monday mid-day. 

  9. Please keep this thread open.  We will be crossing into US (fingers crossed) mid day Monday, and then up through the US to Canada.   Trying to keep on top of info, but things are changing rapidly.  If anyone is crossing before we do and has info that is helpful, we would appreciate it.    Looks like the US Government may be announcing changes imminently, but itś unclear what they may be.  They SOUND like they are focussing on undocumented workers travelling across, and may let two Canadian pensioners going home across, but itś hard to tell.  

  10. We are snowbirders who drive to and from here and Canada each year.  We would normally leave to travel through the US towards the end of April (and get into Canada in time to do our taxes.)

    Although we cannot leave here for at least 10 days due to obligations, we are considering heading north as soon as we can in light of possible border closings.  

    Of course no one can predict the future during these crazy times, but we'd appreciate any accounts of border crossings by car into the US over the next couple of weeks, particularly for people who are not U.S. citizens.  


  11. I've been in touch with Carlos Arturo Hermosillo to board our two dogs.  He has availability, and we'd like to see his operation before we formally book their stay.   Can anyone give me directions to his facility?    I've left him emails, but he prefers to communicate by What'sApp, and I don't have a smart phone.   I know he's open to the public from 9 - 2 every day, and I'd like to go Wednesday morning, but I really don't know how to get there.


  12. When I read the news about racks of lamb at Soriana, I went there and was disappointed to see the freezer where 'racks of lamb' was clearly labelled, was empty.  I figured every other lamb lover in town had beat me to them.  However, I asked the butcher, and he happily brought out a whole box of racks from the back freezer for me to choose my two packages (four racks, yum!).   So it may well be that they will have this regularly.     Hubby and I enjoyed the first rack that evening.  Delicious. Three more to savour over the next few weeks.  

    Thanks for the tip!

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  13. It is west of Container Lake restaurant, but there is at least one property between it and this store.  Also, unless they have changed the sign, I think it it called Home Decor.  It is right at the bottom of the hill, on the lake side, and at the corner of the carretera and San Pablo,  across from the Gravel and Stone distributor.


  14. We have a higher-than-average priced gas stove and oven.  We found that, if we had the oven on high heat, and then turned it down later in the cooking process, the pilot light would just turn off.  Unless we checked the oven every few minutes and relit it when necessary, we would end up with a 1/2 cooked meal.     Now, if we have to lower the heat, we use the wooden spoon method to bring thetemperature down, and then turn the oven off, and reset the thermostat to the lower temperature.   There's usually no problem keeping the oven on if we don't play with the thermostat. Does anyone else have trouble keeping the oven lit if the temperature is lowered?  (It's ok, usually, if you raise the temperature, such as broiling in the last few minutes.)  

  15. I just read through this thread and realized no one stated that there wasn't a REAL cow at the location, but a full-sized statue of a black and white cow.  Hence the name of the apartments.  Since the statue is no longer there, the name is even more bizarre, but so it goes.  

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