Senor and Linda Lou have been in Pueblo Alamos, Sonora, Mexico for 10 years.
Every day brings a new discovery.
They are still working on the casa............Senor says, it won't be long.........but Linda Lou says, it won't be long until what..............stay tuned to find out what's next.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

One Point for Mexico!

Buen dia. I cannot tell you how glad we are to be back in Alamos. We have decided that Hermosillo is off our to do list, tomorrow, next year, the year after. Of course, one has to drive through it to get to the states. We will put the truck in drive and close our eyes.

Below is the much dreaded Immigation building there. We arrived at 8 sharp, when the doors are supposed to open and there were already 4 people ahead of us. Below, the felow, on the right sitting down, has been told he has to fill out an application online. His Mexican girlfriend stormed out of the building and drove off. We have no idea what that was about. The man at the counter, in the picture below, left as well.

Okay by us, we were that much closer to standing at the counter ourselves.

Once we did get to the counter, we thought things were going well. There is another new form to fill out there and the attendant does it online.

There are alot of questions on this new form. They include your height and weight and where you work and the number of children you have.

Then, place of birth, place of residency (OMG WE HAVE ALREADY GIVEN ALL THAT TO THEM). I could see we were actually going to get our cards, so I made no complaints.

Fingerprints, signatures here, signatures there, they do not make it easy.

There are some errors on Senor's form, but we did not catch it until after the attendant had clicked the save button. One line states that he moved to Mexico from Minnesota, which is not the case. When it came to my form, it was printed that I moved to Mexico from Germany. I started my ranting about then and spent several minutes explaining I was only born in Germany and never lived there. This appeared to be very confusing to all 3 people who by now were helping us. The 3 included Nurse Ratchet whom we had hoped would be on sick day. Finally I got them to get Germany off the form and Washington State on. But I do not think they like to change anything once they have typed it in.

This application was attached to the old FM3, put in a big stack of other papers and we did not see it again.

I am going to try not to go into any more details over this. But after 2 hours we left with our new cards. Parting words from immigration were that we must show this card upon leaving and re entering Mexico. We waved and smiled and left the building.

Below is the link to the new online application should you need it and front and back photos of the new little card. Under the juicy fruit wrapper is a photo of Senor and then, dates of birth and card numbers and signatures hidden under the other areas.

We drove straight to the hotel and crashed.

Later, after watching the delayed broadcast of the 3 World Cup games of the day, we made a quick jaunt to the Plaza and the church. I think we were each secretly looking for something to rekindle our feelings about Hermosillo, looking for something that would make us want to come back again.

We were surprised to find the church locked up, that never happens to any of the churches we visit in Sonora. The Plaza was as non descript as we remembered it, no water fountains flowing, hot and dusty sidewalks, very few vendors, old women begging for pesos. So, a few more reasons to not go back.

Only the church and a beautiful iron gazebo were worthy of a photograph.

We spent another day watching World Cup Soccer, which is the only reason we decided to turn this trip into a 4 day, 3 night stay. The 3rd night we drove to San Carlos. Eager to watch more soccer, we had the television on for the early Sunday game at 4:30am, only to find that the sports stations being broadcast in that area were more interested in rollerblade boxing, car racing, tennis, baseball and the americas cup. We packed up and left.
At the Wal Mart in Obregon, we watched Germany play Australia. Senor wanted to go to the camping section and get 2 chairs, but I convinced him that might look wierd.

I would say the highlight of this trip was eating in the taco stand below, on Saturday in Hermosillo. The 2 brothers are watching a re run of the Mexico SudAfrica game. Their faces and their creative game sign tell the rest of the story.

One point for Mexico!


Mike Nickell, Sitka and Cynthia Johnson said...

We're glad to hear you got through the cumbersome process! And we have a question - when we drove out of Mexico we turned in our vehicle permit, we stopped at US Customs, but we didn't do anything with our Mexican FM3 visas.

I imagine we were supposed to have them stamped. Does anyone know what the implications might be? Would we be allowed in Mexico again with just a tourist visa? Just curious...

p.s. Sorry no rain yet and I guess I didn't win the earrings. :(

Anonymous said...

woohooo so glad you are done with that ordeal!!! I am not a fan of Hermosillo either, I hate driving through it. The only part that I like is that it means I am getting closer to Navojoa (when coming from LA).

Leah Flinn said...

Well, you are not alone. I have my renewal process coming up next month. :-(

Linda Lou and Senor, Too said...

yea, cynthia, sorry, you didn't win.BUT I am sure you were close....! I know someone who had a similar situation. She did not return for over 2 years, showed her expired fm3 at the border and got an FMT to come in for 6 months, renewed the FMT again and never got a new FM3. BUt that is just 1 story of many I am sure....
we have never gone in to get our visas or passports stamped. they have automatically done when we have flown in or out, but never by car.

nikki, email me, sometime and we will get together in navajoa.

leah, be sure to copy down your application number just in case you cannot get the application to print! think rain! LL

Brenda said...

Thanks so much for the link. I poked around on that site and couldn't get to that page. Some pages were empty and said that they were being renewed April 30 th; but I never did find the right page.
Thanks again.
I am not looking forward to the renewal this year at all, not that I ever do lol.

Jacqui said...

Glad you got it all done.

I'm sending you the rain, we've had it long enough!

Nancy said...

I've heard all the links to the new forms are on RollyBrook's site.

Everyone here in Mazatlan is complaining, too. Lots of headaches including paying the wrong amount due to bad forms and then having to wait for Hacienda to refund the money.

Our renewal is in September and we have our fingers crossed they have worked the bugs out by then!

Paul and I are enjoying the world cup games, this Thursday we are going to go watch it in a bar somewhere. The first game was broadcast on the giant screen down in front of Valentino's and there were chairs and another big screen and the street closed off, too.

Aly said...

I like your blog I will definitely keep on coming back for updates. I moved to Hermosillo about 6 months ago and I agree with Leah Flinn completely about the driving part.
For the first 2 weeks I was out here I did not dare get in the car to go anywhere I was to scare thinking someone might crash into me.
Glad to know that you got your FM3 with no big problems I have friends who had a hard time and was a very long time before they could get it.
check out my blog at

Ian Huntington said...

Hi Linda Lou! So glad you're legal again! And you didn't assault any of those highly efficient and helpful paper pushers in the process. I was starting to think that I might have to drive down there to bail your two asses out of some nasty immigration detention center or at least smuggle in a file. Congrats!

Linda Lou and Senor, Too said...

brenda, glad you found it and as nancy says..a lot of the forms are on rolly brooks site, but please, stay prepared and even if a site says you do not need your utility bill any longer or your bank statements, TAKE THEM ANYWAY!!
Nancy, we are hoping to find a game place manana en la noche, too, as women are not allowed in the cantina.....
Aly, thanks for visiting our blog, I am eager to go to yours, thx for the link!
Jacqui! Please Bring it ON!!
and Glenn Ian, I knew I could count on you. You were gonna be our FIRST phone call!!!!!

淑慧 said...