Monday, March 31, 2008

They're Not All Bad

There was an umm... incident on the road from Mazatlan to Culiacan, Mexico on Saturday night. I came up over a hill and on the other side, I saw something in the road I couldn't identify right away. I swerved to avoid it. I was driving a relatively small car with 4 other passengers including an infant; I didn't want to risk hitting something that could total the car.

I should mention here that the road was 2 lanes with no shoulder on the left side, just a concrete barrier. I was driving in the right lane when I saw what only turned out to be geese walking on the road. Of course if I knew they were geese before I swerved, I'd have just run the bastards over.

Well the sudden swerve caused the car to start fishtailing a bit and to make a long story short, (like I ever do that) rather than end up against the wall, we ended up in the ditch.

So there's the back story. The police came of course (Federales). We were stuck and couldn't simply back out. They took statements and the Captian spoke English so we were able to communicate directly. Based on many things I've heard, I was more than half expecting a bribe to be exacted from me in order to keep me out of jail. I know it's a very common practice in Tijuana where the Captain used to work. Fortuntely, he turned out to be a decent guy and he was very helpful. The tow truck driver that pulled us out later told us we're lucky he was on duty that night because things might have turned out different if it wasn't him.

As a side note, I want to add that no one was hurt in the incident, I wasn't found at fault for anything, no tickets were issued and the only damage to the car was a bent rim. Also, though no bribes were asked for, apparently it's common to tip the police when they've been helpful.