Our plan for the day was to go to the post office to mail February Birthday cards, visit the Columbus historical society museum, and cross the border into Mexico for some shopping and lunch.
The post office worked out well, but the museum was closed in spite of the fact that they had an open sign.
Our trip to Mexico was a success. We drove 3-miles on Route 11 to the border. There is a large parking lot next to the Family Dollar store where one can park for the day for $5.00. From there we followed a sidewalk into Mexico with a stop in a building to have my purse scanned. It was odd as there were no signs helping pedestrians find the way and no one seemed to speak English. Except for my purse, they had little interest in us.
Once through a turnstile we were on the Main Street of Puerto Palomas. We immediately saw our destination — the Pink Store – but we walked along the street to see what else was there. Stores selling prescription and OTC drugs, boots, jewelry, baked goods, flowers , eye glasses, and a number of dental clinics. The biggest and most prosperous of the clinics was next to a beautiful hotel. They shared similar architecture so I image you are encouraged to spend a night at the hotel if you are having extensive dental work done.
On the main street there is a gigantic statue of Poncho Villa erected to commemorate his 1916 raid on Columbus NM in 1916 when many civilians and soldiers at the army cavalry unit. John Pershing was sent by Woodrow Wilson into Mexico to capture the raiders but did not succeed.
After meandering along we entered the Pink Store. Wow. It delivered as promised in reviews on the internet. Such a collection of Mexican wares. Pottery, glass, jewelry, clothing, metal work, carved wood. Their day of the dead figures were numerous and raucously bright. The prices were extremely reasonable. When we tired of looking, we went over to the restaurant side and treated ourselves to lunch. All was very tasty though one of the red sauces was hotter than we prefer. We had guacamole, a platter with a beef taco, chili relleno, and cheese enchiladas and a platter with two chicken chimichangas. Of course all came with refried beans, rice, and various sauces. Their green sauce was absolutely amazing. It was more than we usually eat for a meal, especially lunch.
After lunch we had to waddle back to the US. Again there were no signs for pedestrian access. We found a young man who spoke a little English who pointed out the entry way we needed to go through. After that, there were no choices. The immigration check point looked exactly like those in airports.
From there it was a quick walk back to the van and a 5-minute drive to the campground. We highly recommend this walk across the border. If you plan ahead, the owners of the Pink Store can arrange tours of some of the artisans in the area.