Archive for the ‘Mexico – Nuevo Progreso’ Category

Wonders Never Cease

Friday, November 13th, 2009

Click for Progreso, Texas Forecast

Well, we can’t believe it.  Having spent a lot of time in Mexico over the past few years, we have come to understand what is meant by Mexican time.  The term “mañana”  doesn’t always mean tomorrow.

Our previous blog entry (Click Here) questioned the logic in beginning a massive sewer project as the busy season approached.  You can see by the two photos below that the project is now successfully completed.

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While we were there, we visited a bar named Arriba, which is located about 5 blocks south and a block west of the border crossing, in the Progreso Market.

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The Arriba bar is very modern, clean and everything is reasonably priced.  They also have a nice dance floor.

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You can see that during the daytime,   the clientele consists of mostly Winter Texans.

Tinka decided to chow down on nachos.  A very good choice.

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A report on our trip out of Mexico will follow tomorrow.

Good Luck at the Bad Timing Awards

Saturday, November 7th, 2009

Click for Progreso, Texas Forecast

Nuevo Progreso, Mexico is located just across the border from Weslaco and Progreso, Texas. (Click on Photo to Enlarge)

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The town is a fairly sleepy place to go to from April through October.  During the winter, however, it becomes a bustling mecca for “Winter Texans” taking advantage of the great restaurants, shopping, visiting one of the hundreds of dentists, and stocking up on medications from nearly as many farmacias (pharmacies).

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I don’t know who’s idea it was to begin a major street and sewer project at the beginning of their busy season, but somebody deserves the “Bad Timing” award for this one.  When you cross the border at the Progreso Bridge you find yourself on the main downtown street.  They have torn up the entire street.  This is normally a major parking location for visitors and residents.

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These photos were taken last weekend.  We’re heading over there today and will see how much progress they’ve made.

One Stop Shopping

Thursday, April 2nd, 2009

No, it’s not Wal*Mart, it’s Angels. When you cross the Mexican border, south of Weslaco, TX, and walk across the International Bridge to Nuevo Progreso, Mexico to shop or dine, you can’t go wrong with Angels.  Located about a block or two down the right-hand side of the street from the International Bridge you will run across Angels.  The door opens at the corner of the building at a 45-degree angle to the street.  It’s the only one like it.

Angels has a pharmacy, liquor, and gift store on the first floor.  Hop on the elevator and go to the 4th floor and you will find Angels Restaurant, Rick’s favorite Progreso restaurant.

As we entered the restaurant, we noticed a sign that said, “Ask your waiter for a coupon for a free teeth cleaning”.  So we did.  Our normal dentist in Progreso is Dr. Tuttle,  but we figured, for a cleaning, what the heck.  (Progreso has 200 dental offices and 500 dentists.)

After lunch, and with coupon in hand, the waiter escorted us to the 3rd floor where there are dentist and cosmetic surgery offices.  Here is a picture from the dentist office window looking back north toward the border.

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The dental equipment was very modern and the dentist worked his magic on our smiles.  He used ultra-sonic cleaning techniques and for polishing, the standard rotary polishing tools.  He used hand held color photography to show features on your teeth that may need attention in the future, such as cracked fillings, etc.  These photos were displayed on a computer monitor.  The cleaning was free and there was no pressure to have any of the suggested work done immediately.  They suggested that, upon our return, we may wish to have certain things done.

Once again, it was a good experience and now we know where we can go for liposuction.

Second Round of Visitors

Monday, January 19th, 2009

There seems to be no shortage of visitors heading to South Texas in search of beautiful weather.  Unfortunately, our friends, Roland and Karen from Tucson, were greeted by the coolest week of  the winter.  Daytime highs stayed in the high 60’s and low 70’s.  Here they are, dressed appropriately.

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The temperature wasn’t  the whole story, the brisk northerly winds persisted at 15 to 25 MPH.

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Even the exercising required layers of clothing.

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Not all activities were dampened by the weather.  We learned a new card game and played dominoes.  We also made a day trip to South Padre Island to take a look at the effects of Hurricane Dolly.  It appears that the island fared quite well, however, roof repairs are still underway.  Some of the businesses on the strip are remodeling and others are closed.  Areas of the dunes were being reconstructed.  You’d love the pictures, but our camera battery died.

Beware of soft sand.  I should have know from experience driving the truck on the beach in the past.  This time I thought that I could turn onto the bay side and take a little bay tour.  Wrong!!! Turning off the pavement, the 4000 lb. front axle sank immediately.  The rear wheels didn’t even get off of the pavement.  The photos below don’t look very bad, but the poor traction resulting from the light rear end of the dually kept us trapped.  Thankfully a kind soul came by and gave us a little pull back onto the road.  We were again grateful that we always carry a heavy tow chain.  Next time we take the Jeep.

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We had lunch at Dirty Al’s, which is located on the bay side just before you enter the county park on the south end of the island.  The plentiful helpings were quite good and reasonably priced.

Unfortunately the Los Ebanos Ferry was still closed due to high water so we made another side trip to Nuevo Progreso, MX for lunch.  Our second trip to Angel’s was as good as the first. They perhaps have the best salsa, with a side of jalepeños.   Tinka had the “Shrimp – Progreso Style” and it was wonderful.  It was shrimp in a light wine/cheese sauce.  I don’t understand how Progreso can have a shrimp “style”, since they are 70 miles from the water, but they pulled it off.

We hadn’t really noticed this before, but it appears that Homeland Security is making some progress with the infamous “Fence.”

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A friend of ours from our park,  Ruthi, is an entertainer that has found quite a niche and a large following in the Valley.  This is only her second year in the area and is booked nearly every day. (25 in January alone.)  Entertainment in this Winter Texan Mecca is a little unique.  Many of the performances are from 2:00 – 4:00 PM or some as late as 4:00 – 7:00 PM.   I guess this is so the old people can get to bed early or not drive after dark.  Anyway, the four of us headed over to the Mustang Lounge to watch Ruthi perform.  There were about 150 people there to see the performance and dance.  The larger than expected crowd overwhelmed the wait staff.  We ordered some food that took about an hour to arrive.  After 1 1/2 hours, Tinka’s nachos never appeared.  Apparently another waiter snagged it.  With the order canceled, we left with a hungry and peeved Tinka who had consumed several adult beverages in anticipation of a meal.

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This mustang stands guard over the entrance to the Mustang Lounge.

Well, once Roland and Karen departed, our weather returned to the mid-80’s.  For the time they were here, the weather was better back at their home in Tucson, but we were glad to get the opportunity to visit with them.

First Visitors of the Year.

Sunday, January 11th, 2009

We spent our last evening in the Dallas area as guests of our friends, Jerry and Dana.  They returned the visit two days later when they arrived in their motor home to help us celebrate New Year’s Eve.  They arrived on December 28th and departed on January 3rd.During their visit, we made two attempts, one successful, to cross the border into Mexico.   Our first attempt took us to Nuevo Progreso for lunch.  The sun was in the wrong spot but we snapped this shot of Jerry and Dana on the bridge at mid river.

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We’ll have to work on Jerry’s relaxation techniques.  Maybe putting down the blackberry would be a good start.

Once across the river they posed, again with the sun at their backs, in front of the Mexican border sign.

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We wandered around the main street and decided on a restaurant.  We chose the Arizona Restaurant that is located on the second floor above a liquor store.  We arrived at an off-peak time.  The food was good and the ambiance pleasant.

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Jerry, Dana and Tinka wait for the elevator to exit the restaurant.

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Our unsuccessful attempt to cross the border occurred a few days later about 20 miles west of McAllen.  The crossing is known as Los Ebanos and is quite unique.  It is a hand-pulled ferry across the Rio Grande.  The historical marker tells of its history.

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The text of the sign reads:

 LOS EBANOS FERRY CROSSING
Apparently this is an ancient ford, first recorded usage was by Spanish explorers and colonists under Jose de Escandon in the 1740’s on the Rio Grande.  A salt trail led from here to El Sal del Rey (40 mi. NE).  The ford was used by Mexican War troops, 1846, by  Texas Rangers chasing cattle rustlers, 1874, by smugglers in many eras, especially during the American prohibition years, 1920’s and 30’s.  The ferry and inspection station were established in 1950.  Named for the ebony trees here, this is known as the only government licensed, hand-pulled ferry on any boundary of the United States.

Unfortunately, on this day, the river current was too swift for safe operation and was closed.

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This shot is looking across the river at Mexico.  The ferry can accommodate three autos and several pedestrians.   Several Winter Texans use this crossing for bike rides to a small Mexican town a couple of miles from the river where they will have lunch and return.

One unexpected observation was that the road to the ferry was paved on the Mexican side, but not on the US side.

New Year’s Eve went well with a great celebration and dance at the park.  Another of our friends, Ruthie, put on a great performance that lasted a little over 4 hours.