Borderland Mexico seemed pretty weird, way back in…

IMG_0069.JPG…1974 when I was twenty years old.  Now I know why it seemed so weird at the time.  It is.  The border between the US and Mexico is one of the weirdest places in the world, and used to be even weirder, back in the days of donkey shows and so forth.  There was a whorehouse scene down there back then that would give modern Thailand a run for its money.  Of course some of the Mexican girls might inspire you to run for your life.  What they do with makeup could put hair on your chest, or something on your somewhere, at least.  

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They start young on the border…

It’s been verified scientifically that Sonoran desert Indians have one of the highest fat retention rates in the world, so that’s part of the problem.  Of course back then many young girls were trucked up from the south and stabled along the border where the markets were, so that was another factor.  Nevertheless, Old Juarez had an uncountable number of whorehouses, and that didn’t even count the notorious ‘Boys Town’, which is where all the taxi-drivers wanted to take you, of course.  Now the girls wear school-girl uniforms.  That’s not fair. Now they’re sneaking through the back door.

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Sliding scale of need…

But Mexico was a trip of its own.  I can still smell the bad gasoline that partially defined Mexico for me back then.  That was before I drove through Mexico twice to Guatemala and re-built my carburetor on the beach to try to remove the effects of all that bad gas.  That was before the trip to Huautla on Benito Juarez’ birthday, engine misfiring the whole way.  In Huautla, Mexico, they use the same word as us to describe a psychedelic experience, viaje, trip.  That’s cubensis mushroom capital of the world.  Just like you can talk textiles with anybody in Guatemala, you can talk mushrooms with anybody in Huautla, dried, fresh, or preserved in honey.  Everybody’s into it.  Hey, work’s work.

Lupita and I were there on Benito Juarez’ birthday, so there was a lot of partying.  We didn’t get much sleep that night, what with ‘The Ballad of Benito Juarez’ playing nonstop on the PA system.  There were fireworks, too, but we didn’t eat any ‘shrooms.  In Thailand they’re called ‘buffalo sh*t mushrooms’, and are very popular down in Koh Samui, especially during the full-moon parties.  I’ve never been there, but I doubt that I’d like it.  Khao Sarn Road’s bad enough.  I’m an anthropologist; I like authenticity.  Interzone is only for temporary stopovers, not for hanging.

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Mexico de noche…

Yage/ayahuasca you can just order over the Internet now ‘for scientific purposes only’.  They just haven’t gotten around to making it illegal yet, like pharmaceutical Sandoz LSD back in 1965, before Owsley and all that.  Around Lake Toba in Indonesia you could get mushroom pancakes when I was there.  I doubt that you still can, though, what with the jihad and all.  I met a French guy in the grocery store last year living now in Thailand with his Indonesian girlfriend because the heat from the Muslims got too hot for them around Lake Toba.  The baoli community there has been decimated, apparently.  We live in strange times…

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