Don’t let the geographic proximity to the US fool you: Ciudad Juarez is most definitely another country. You feel it the moment you clunk-clunk your tires over the rumble strip on the border. And so I feel that potent blend of bewilderment, terror, and exhilaration that comes to every traveler dipping a toe in new waters. I want to know everything instantly and have no patience for my own ignorant fumbling. So far every person I have met has been unfailingly kind and helpful which has made being painfully new much easier. I imagine the local staff in particular are very used to seeing new people come and go — yet still, they find time and energy to be patient and friendly and I for one am very grateful.

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