The Official MidwesternerInMexico.com Quiz for Determining your Risk of Violence in Mexico
(please answer yes or no to the following questions)
- I am the head of a powerful drug cartel.
- I am employed by a recent drug cartel start-up, and my title is “Business Development Manager, Mexico”.
- I cannot leave the house without my 3 diamond rings, diamond stud earrnings, and emerald necklace.
- I only travel by limo.
- I insist on wearing shorts, sandals with socks pulled up to mid-calf, a Hawaiian shirt, and a floppy hat at all times, while using my obnoxious American “outside voice”.
- I have a tendency to flash wads of cash while trying to pay for a $10 peso bottle of water with a $1000 peso bill.
- I travel strictly using libre taxis hailed off the street in Mexico City, like the green VW bugs, because I don’t want to pay the extra $30 (+/-) pesos for a safer sitio taxi.
- I am a high-level Mexican law enforcement official actively engaged in the fight against drugs and am not on the narco payroll.
- I prefer to drive long trips between cities in Mexico only at night, and I am too cheap to pay the tolls to drive on the safe, well-maintained cuota highways.
- I insist on going out drinking by myself, getting loaded, then stumbling around the back alleys of Mexico City singing “You are my sunshine” at the top of my lungs.
- I sell drugs to a circle of depressed, soccer-moms in a US suburb, and I am traveling to Mexico to take advantage of the crazy dollar/peso exchange rate to find a new dealer for my drug supply.
- I am visiting Mexico to conduct a major business transaction for which I intend to convert $20,000 USD into $306,000 pesos in public at the airport currency exchange desk.
- I ask taxi drivers to take me on tours past the homes of local drug lords, where I get out of the taxi and take photos from the middle of the street during broad daylight.
- I insist on traveling to parts of Mexico City not mentioned in guide books or specifically mentioned as areas full of criminals, like Tepito, a.k.a. the “Thieves’ Market”.
OK, end of quiz! Time to review your score.
If you answered yes to #1, #2, or #8: I strongly recommend you avoid travel into Mexico, leave Mexico if you are already here, or seriously consider a new line of work.
If you answered yes to #3, #4, or #6: perhaps you have forgotten that you are visiting a country where the daily minimum wage for 2009 is $54.80 pesos. That is $3.58 USD PER DAY at the current exchange rate. Please bear this in mind and stop flaunting your money like a fool.
If you answered yes to #7 or #9: have you checked the exchange rate lately?? During the 8 months we have been here, it has gone from 10 pesos / 1 dollar to 15.3 pesos / 1 dollar. Stop being a cheap ass and spend the extra pesos to pick the safe option.
And finally, if you answered yes to #5, #10, #11, #12, #13 or #14: you are simply not very smart and probably shouldn’t be allowed to travel, period.
I hope this insightful quiz has eased your fears about travel to Mexico, as long as you are not an idiot or a criminal.
And there you have it folks, a fantastic piece from a great gringa blogger in Mexico City. I thank her for letting me share! Check out her blog for the whole piece and to see another perspective on being an ex-pat in Mexico.