Sunday June 1st - Drove down from North Houston in only 6 hours to Brownsville.
We stayed at the Red Carpet Inn exit 802 in Brownsville for only $44 booked thru cheap tickets...wouldv'e been better off just checking in and getting the rack rate of $39.
Had to stay later than we planned in the morning because Jim had to deal with his stock trading program issues on the phone and I had to deal with server issues. Left at 11 am and went across the border at Matamoros. After driving across you pull to the right and park in front of the building for getting your vehicle paperwork and visas done.
As we entered a nice lady told us where to go first to get our visas. I had already gotten my mexican insurance and bancerjicito vehicle permit sticker online. I made a few mistakes filling out the form and tried to get a new form but the official wouldn't give me one so I crossed out my mistakes and wrote above them. Had no problem getting a 180 day visa and neither did Jim. Then we went to the next window to get the vehicle permit. I had already made 3 copies of everything so was well prepared for them asking for copies. I only needed 1 copy but I recommend making 3 so you can use the others later when you have to renew. I had made a copy of every page of my passport but only needed the pages where my picture was.
The Bancerjicito guy stapled my visa paperwork to a copy of the driving permit page and Jims too since I asked if Jim could drive my car too.
The official seemed to be in training and spoke no english at all. I was surprised as I had thought everyone would speak good english like in Cancun. As we traveled I would come to find out that hardly anyone spoke English.
I just stayed on the main road the whole way Calle 6 (sexta) till it showed signs pointing to Cui.Victoria. I went too fast after the traffic cleared out and went thru what I found out was a school area - it was my first time driving in Mexico so I didn't know what signs to look for.
We only stopped at Pemex along the way to get about $20-$30 of gas at a time since the gas prices were less I wasn't sure how much I needed. But I had been told to ask for a certain peso amount ahead of time rather than saying to fill it up and to keep an eye on the pump to make sure I got what I asked for. Many Pemex to not take credit cards so we asked where there was one that did and they would tell us how many km it was to one that did and we would go there.
At one I had to go upstairs to get them to process my card.
Since we got a late start we only made it to Cuidad Victoria around 6 pm - spent an hour looking for a hotel - Best Western was $116 - was surprised that the lady at the desk did not speak any english at all. Found an off brand hotel called Paradise Inn for $957 pesos (about $95) w.WIFI in the lobby. We liked it better because you could park in front of the sliding glass door going to your room - so it was easier for unloading luggage. The restaurant was very nice - great food and reasonably priced. I had fish Vera Cruz for $10 and Jim had the Mexican beef tips $11.
I got up around 6 am today June 3rd to go thru my email and do this post.
Not sure if I'm getting all my email so I may still have server issues.
Jim just went to get some ice at the restaurant...I am still trying to get used to saying Buenas Dias.