Category Archives: Northern Mexico

The Mexican border – the real deal in a surreal place.

Photo I shot at the border with the US, in the Mexican side.

Those living in both sides of the vast border should be chipping in the debate.

Much has been said about the border shared by the US and Mexico. Pundits, politicians and commentators have gone back and forth talking about a place not many have visited, much less lived in it. Even though I was born in Mexico City, since a baby I grew and lived in the border. No one can speak for or against but only those of us who are from border towns, ranches, and cities. It is as if the reality of a far away city — say, London for instance — was to be explained by a person living all his life in the jungles of Chiapas, Mexico. But it seems people in the urban jungles miles away are willing to chip in with their rhetoric of things they haven’t lived.

simplifying the border is nonsense.

This may come to a surprise for many expecting a pro or against stance — illegal immigration shouldn’t be happening, just as generalization of a population as criminals is inaccurate. And still the reality of things at the US-Mexico border is far more complex that just black and white. This isn’t the first time this has happened; ask the Roman Empire and their troubles they had with their borders. Borders are meant to be surreal and difficult, after all they are one of the last remnants of our cavemen-like mentality of tribal divisions. That I get. Simplifying the border by people who has never gone to Laredo, El Paso, Arizona, or California — that I don’t get. Brownsville is not living the same reality as to what a ranch is living deep in the range of Arizona. The border is so vast, that is bound to have a mosaic of differing situations, and hence opinions about Mexicans in general — since (sadly) the topic seems to be that instead of the outdated American immigration laws and waiting times which provoke illegal influx in the first place.

Now, if not Americans, hopefully the world will open their eyes to this turbulent situation. It is pressing, yes, not Israel/Palestine-pressing yet, but it is the thought of many in both sides of the border. Again, both sides of the border. One way or another both Americans and Mexicans feel they’re loosing stakes in this border issue. Is that good or bad? All I can say is that there can’t be compromises to be accepted by either nation if politicians from both Mexico and the United States learn the reality of the border IN BOTH SIDES. Let’s face it — there are Mexican nations, American citizens, and then you have a different breed known as politicians (and they’re in Washington D.C. and Mexico City alike).


Before America ever existed as a nation, Mexican indigenous nations also had immigration influx issues. The clash between cultures (newcomers against settled) is explained in my novel Till Stars Shut Their Eyes.

Mexican desert sky. Copyright 2010 Miguel Omaña. Mexican desert sky. Copyright 2010 Miguel Omaña.

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Mamulique mountains.

Photo and text by Miguel Omaña.

Located in Northeastern Mexico, the small Mamulique mounatins, part of the Picachos mountain range, is the last elevation one leaves behind when going northward. As the hills and slopes of these mountains fade, the vastness of the plains make its presence covering a huge land area — the rest of Northeastern Mexico, the United States, and Canada.

It housed one of the most dangerous curves of the Panamerican highway.

Between the industrial city of Monterrey and the border town of Nuevo Laredo, Mamulique stands in the way. Long ago the highway communicating Mexico City to Laredo, Texas — the famed Panamerican Road — housed its most dangerous curves on these range, making it the stuff of legends amongst truck drivers and travelers. During the 1990’s a new high highway toll system was built here, in a time were the country did not have (but needed) a highway system.

In the state of Nuevo Leon, it is about 2 hours driving (or less) from Laredo, Texas.

Mamulique mountains. Copyright 2013 Miguel Omaña. Mamulique mountains. Copyright 2013 Miguel Omaña.

At the keep of the wicked.

At the keep of the wicked,
snarling to face it,
rise and rise, not once but thrice!
Amid the darkness and its skid,
Lies the night of this land dry.

Photo and text by Miguel Omaña.


Photo I shot at the Northern Mexican border.

At the keep of the wicked. Copyright 2010 Miguel Omaña. At the keep of the wicked. Copyright 2010 Miguel Omaña.

Abandoned Mexican ghost town

Photo I shot at Las Tortillas, a locality where a town used to be located in northeastern Mexico.

An hour-drive away from US-Mexico border, the abandoned site is located exactly in the limits between the states of Tamaulipas and Nuevo Leon. Most of their people now live in Nuevo Laredo, Monterrey, or Ciudad Guerrero.

This is just one of the various houses that now remain abandoned, beaten by erosion.

Abandoned Mexican ghost town. Copyright 2007 Miguel Omaña. Abandoned Mexican ghost town. Copyright 2007 Miguel Omaña.