GateKeepers and bureaucracy

El Grito

El Grito

Do you ever feel to scream loud in response of stupidity? I do.

It cost us about 600$, 2 round trip to Mexico City, 2 hours to complete all the online forms needed, more than 5 hours of transport, 6 hours to wait at the embassy, and yet no transit visa to United-State to go to Sydney by Los Angeles. It’s apparently impossible to get a Transit visa to Australia because we lack stable job in Mexico…. I try to find any logical reason to this but I couldn’t. We’re not planning to set ground in United Stated we just want to step by because most of all flight pass by there. From all GateKeepers in the world, immigration are certainly at the top of the list.

Since a couple of days, and between visits here and there in Mexico, we are sorting out flight strategies to Sydney without having to fly by north America. The problem is that most of all affordable flight passes by North-America. Our actual option is to pass through Europe or Chile to reach Sydney at the price of more than 1000$-2000$ per person one way. Living unconventional lives can be pricey.

Our trip

A lot of things happened since we arrived in our temporary new home city, Quérétaro. Quérétaro is a nice, clean and welcoming city. I have to chance to met Gabriela’s family and many friends here. With my new Mexican look (moustache), we went out to various place in the city, from what I enjoyed the most was walking around the nice and old colonial city center. My first impression, is that Mexicans are very generous and friendly people.  They value relationship with people, they enjoy good times, they enjoy talking, they like to eat!

First founded in 1325 by the Aztec as Tenochtitlán and later conquered by the Spanish,  Mexico City is one of the largest city in the world with 21 millions people (metropolitans area) and the largest in the Americas. Mexico City is a vibrant and certainly busy city  A lot of energy and money is spent to actually make it look good and making life more convenient (impressive 2 floors highway) and more green (Tramway, EcoBici) for Mexicans with some questionable success. From what I’ve seen so far in others countries, it’s not as chaotic as I was expecting, but one thing to expect for sure is traffic. You can expect to be jam for 2-3 hours to go to get pretty much anywhere during busiest hours from 8ham to 8pm. The Reforma Avenue is one of the city’s most important and nice streets. We visited the huge and very interesting National Anthropology Museum, the Chapultepec castle, walked around city center, the national Palace of Mexico, the Palace of fine arts, climbed up the torre latinoamericana, navigated through Xochimilco canal’s in trajineras (boat). We also went to the impressive pyramids of Teotihuacan. Funny coincidence are always part of any travel, in this one I ran randomly on a friend I knew from University Laval in a small restaurant  in Mexico city.

This is Mexico and yet, it’s still a developing country (not third world anymore) where a lot of things can happen. When we got back from visiting the pyramids, strangely we couldn’t start the car anymore. A good Samaritan immediately came to help us and called his friend a mechanical/electrician that was also on the site but on the opposite side of the pyramids. Like a lightning blast, 2 min after, his friend showed up with all the tool needed to inspect the car and within 15min he could find the “defective” part (the distributor). By pure “coincidence”, that person was also carrying a catalogue in his truck with a new distributor perfectly fitting for our car. He fixed the car and first asked 1300 pesos (around 120$ CAD) for the new part. We offered 500 pesos presuming that’s all we’ve got and he generously accepted the deal keeping the old “defective” distributor. With a bitter smile and disappointed by the robbery, Gabriela and our fellow Mexicans friends told me, welcome to Mexico. We continued our way to “The Gruta” for diner (a restaurant in a cave) and later we got back to Quérétaro, 6 in the car than fit 5.

Be sure to have a look in our travel photos section for our latest photos.

One more thing. Sometimes things go wrong, example you don’t get doesn’t issued a visa, you get tired, etc. The only response is to keep going to reach your objective; the only way is perseverance and determination. You may take a step backwards, but you have to keep taking steps forward.

Thanks for reading wherever you are,

– Pascal & Gabriela

0$, 2 aller-retour Mexico city, 5h de transport, 6 heures d’attentes et aucun Visa de TRANSIT à Los Angeles aux États-Unis.
This entry was posted in Coincidences, Organized robbery. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to GateKeepers and bureaucracy

  1. Jérôme says:

    Méchante arnaque!
    Le gars était pas là pour rien… yavait probablement traffiqué le char pendant votre visite…. toujours prêt à le réparer! LOL c’est vraiment corrompu!

    • Pascal says:

      Oui c’est certain ça! Imagine, il voulait 130$ pour changer la pièce (au prix coutant selon son catalogue) et a finalement accepter 50$ Il aurait donc payer de ça poche 70$?

      • Jérôme says:

        Surement, tu sais comment le monde sont généreux! surtout envers les pauvres touristes! :))

        Ya pas de corruption au Mexique, ca aussi tu le sais! LOL

        Sa pièce était fort probablement VOLÉE! LOL

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *