To top off our month-long trip through Texas, the CenTrill nuts headed to Corpus Christi, which prompted the question, “Why the shell are we being sent to Corpus Christi?!” For one, it didn’t make logical sense with our tour; it was very out of the way for our next stop in NOLA, and we were going there to work at your average, everyday Walmarts instead of some grand event. Our resident Texan, Conner, had no good things to say about Corpus and was especially disgruntled that of all places in his home state, this is where we’d be ending up. I on the other hand was trying to stay positive about Corpus because of its proximity to two things: the ocean (this would be my first time at the Atlantic this year) and Mexico.
I’ve mentioned before that I am very competitive (sometimes over trivial things) but luckily for me, so is PeConner. When we realized that, thanks to the large amount of time we spent in California and Texas, we would be hitting a smaller amount of states on our tour than most of the other Peanutters, we were both on the same page that that simply would not do. While our number of states was mostly out of our control, we decided the next best thing would be getting the most amount of countries, which is how we found ourselves on a day trip to the United States-Mexico border.
After driving two and a half hours and walking a short bridge over the Rio Grande River, we found ourselves in the new and exciting land of Nuevo Progreso, Mexico. Despite being only a quarter mile from the U.S., Nuevo Progreso felt drastically different. The streets were alive with loud Spanish music and carts selling everything from fake Ray Bans to cheap dental services. Conner and I enjoyed the best (and cheapest) tacos of our lives, received quality $10 pedicures, bought some very cheap and very fake souvenirs and took a shot of tequila in the middle of the street before heading back. All in all, I guess you could say country #2 was a great experience, and if any of you are looking for a food-shaped truck driver to do a Mexico tour next year, I’m your girl!
Our day-trip to Mexico ended with a spontaneous stop by the home of our nutty buddy Iara. We were originally unaware that we were so close to Iara’s home, but upon discovering this fact we quickly re-routed to visit her family, who turned out to be the sweetest people alive. When her mom found out I had never had homemade tortillas, she quickly whipped up a batch which we enjoyed with butter and fresh avocado while talking to her nearly identical younger sister and listening to her brother show off his skills on his new mariachi guitar. Our visit was extremely short, but it didn’t take long for the Aldapes to completely win over our hearts.
Back in Corpus, there didn’t seem to be much to do outside of work other than walk/run up and down the beach and converse with the staff of our hotel’s breakfast restaurant (who were really obsessed with us shellebrities and treated me like their BFF all week). So I was really happy when I met a cool local guy who offered to show me around in exchange for a ride in the NUTmobile (you know, everyone’s dream). Said cool local guy turned out to be really nice and not only delivered on his promise to show me around, but also invited me out with his friends and showed me around the U.S. Coast Guard station that he works at. It’s always fun to make new friends on tour, but it’s also bittersweet when you inevitably have to leave them behind and hit the road, potentially never to return again. All drama aside though, I hope I get to see the cool local guy again someday!
I often completely leave out the fact that we actually did have to work during the week, but I’d like to take this opportunity to share some heartwarming stories from our events in Corpus. 1) A man walks up to our table and the first thing out of his mouth is “I bet you can’t rob a bank with that thing.” What followed was a debate between me and him where I detailed why I did think it was possible and exactly how I would go about the deed. 2) A grown man took a crayon out of our box for kids and, without saying a word, began coloring directly on our leather tablecloth. It took a few seconds of shock before we were able to put a stop to it. 3) We pulled up to see emergency vehicles at our Walmart event. The manager came up to us and extremely cashewally said “Yea, we just had a fire, but it’s all good.” 4) Last, but certainly not least, a man pulled up to the NUTmobile and showed Conner his prized bumper sticker that read “Horny in Texas” before taking off into the store with his car still sitting next to us… running…with no one left in it. I simply couldn’t make this stuff up if I tried, you guys.
So far I have been nothing short of #blessed with my central schedule, and though I was not about to complain and jinx that good fortune, Corpus Christi initially felt like the weak link among our solid line-up of Dallas, Austin, Houston, San Antonio, Corpus Christi and NOLA. But, everyone loves a good underdog, especially me, and I have to admit that Corpus Christi might be a front-runner for my favorite weeks of the half thus far.
That concludes Texas in a nutshell! Up next: Legumes of Louisiana.