I went jogging this morning at a park touching one of the puentes (border crossing) the traffic seemed endless on both sides. Jogging by the monuments showing the former border of Mexico and the US. Cement pillars standing 3 feet tall seemed drastic from the fence, lights, and border patrol police paid just to park and sit in the SUV all day that now “guard” our border.
What are borders? Invisible lines? How do you divided land? How you steal resources, jobs, services, choices? I have so few answers in my mind which feels overwhelming but maybe reassuring as answers are only answers for a short time and will soon become questions of their own.
As I was turning the bend I saw a man in a bright yellow t-shirt and a blue bag. I thought maybe he was walking the trail but then I realized he was headed towards the freeway. He had just walked over the puente into the United States into Texas into EL Paso. He seemed tired as his pace slowed and rested for a moment on one of the cement pillars. He kept looking around - seeming lost - trying to cross the busy freeway. I wondered if this was his first time crossing. What did it feel like? What is a huge moment for him? What were his wishes? What made him believe in them? How does he feel a fence changes the world? Or maybe he crosses everyday for business or work. Maybe his wife had crossed to birth and he was trying to find a way to get to her. Maybe he sees the customs as another part of his morning commute to wherever he goes.
The border lands are extreme, confusing, and beautiful. The journeys and stories. I feel so out of place - like I’m secretly watching this all from a distance. I don’t understand yet what it means but every time I look south and see the big red X of Juarez and the huge Mexican bandera it takes my breath away - the
enormity of it all.