Considering you don’t have a car full of illegal drugs or guns, crossing the border to and from Mexico is a relatively easy task. Wait in line, show your passport, hope for the green light and go. It’s all pretty simple. That is, unless you really do have something illegal in the car.
In that case, you sit and worry and sweat like you’re 50 yards from the finish line of a 10K. You have small talk with the passengers in your car, because you really can’t talk about anything of any substance – you’re too nervous.
This is the way we felt the day we smuggled Little White across the border. I’m sure you’re thinking I really shouldn’t talk about smuggling something little and white across the border on the internet, but we did. We dressed her up in a froo froo looking doggie t-shirt from a swap meet in Tijuana and brought her skinny little hairless butt to the border crossing.
“How many dogs do you have in there?” Asked the border security officer in the booth – our final question before crossing back into the United States after a full winter chasing waves south of the border with our black lab Ellie.
“Two,” I replied – in my usual quivering voice induced by social anxiety.
“Ok,” he said, “Welcome to America.” And he waved us through.
We drove for about 100 meters straight ahead waiting for a border guard with an AK 47 to pull us over, search the vehicle and nab our prized possession, but they never did. So instead, we drove toward San Diego looking for the nearest place to stop, so we could pull the vehicle over and give our precious cargo some fresh air.
There it was. The parking lot of a full-blown American shopping mall. Our dusty SUV with a Mexican flag sticker stuck out like a sore thumb in the spotless parking lot, but we did it anyway. We opened the door and let Little White run free like she had never run before.
“You’re an American! You’re an American!” we yelled. And the little mange-covered mutt who didn’t know a word of English wagged and squiggled as if somehow she knew. We felt compelled to tell her of her new-found freedoms. And of course, how much money we were about to spend on vet bills.
But through all of the stories of deportation and drug busts, this is a true story of a Little White that made it successfully across the border.
Of course, we only stayed in that parking lot five minutes before a security guard on a segway escorted us away for loitering.