"Soy mexicano pero del otro lado."

I love this quote because it proves that a dual identity exists. I’m quoting my Tio Ramon. He was born in Brownsville, TX, but “looks” mexicano as he would put it. I was hanging out at my abuelitas when he and I started talking about something related to the quote. I think he had just gotten home from work. He’s a mechanic. He was telling us how some of the mexicanos that either come in to get their car worked on or that work with him ask him what part of Mexico he is from. My uncle Ramon said, “I just always tell them, ‘Soy mexicano pero del otro lado,’ in other words, he has Mexican roots, but is an American citizen.

If you have ever been to Brownsville, wait, you don’t even have to go to Brownsville, just look at a map, you will see that the only other city south of Brownsville is Matamoros, Mexico. But, if you did go, you would notice a dichotomy…a blend almost between the two cities, the two countries. Spanish flows back and forth across the border as “easily” as the people.

One of the interesting things I find about these two border towns, other than their close proximity, are their names. Apparently, Brownsville was named after some man, but I always tell people that I think its interesting that there just so happens to be alot of brown people there, too. Now Matamoros is a different story. Mata means to kill and moros refers to the Moors….hmmm strange….very strange. Interestingly enough there seems to have always been alot of drug trafficking violence in this border town. So much that the last time I went my other uncle refused to go there unless we drove my “older” car. Something he had never done before. We went to Matamoros got what we needed, which happend to be drugs, but the legal kind, and went back to B-ville.

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