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Subject:  Re: My TSA horror story Date:  7/5/2012  12:30 AM
Author:  salaryguru Number:  43908 of 76903

In 1968, after graduating from UCLA, a buddy and I drove to Mexico for a surfing adventure. We crossed the border in Nogales and about 10 miles into Mexico we were pulled over by the police. We asked what was the problem, but the would not say and just kept us waiting in the 110F sun. We knew they wanted money, but we were not not eager to give them any. Finally we gave them $10 each and they let us go. The fear of being in a Mexican jail made it easy to give them the money.

In the 80's and 90's I spent quite a bit of time crossing back and forth into Mexico - also traveling to South America. Based on my experience, the Mexican police would probably have sent you on your way if you simply tipped them each $1 and thanked them for doing a good job protecting you.

I had government access for my work on spy satellites at the time. I found that when I was crossing into Mexico, simply placing a $1 bill in my passport would move me to the head of the line and get me on my way. I didn't hide it and when the Security officer would take it and slide it into his desk, I would thank him. I always looked at it as a $1 fee to enter Mexico on the fast track. Once I crossed with a friend who had never been to Mexico before. I explained that he should put a $1 bill in his passport and thank the officer for his service. My friend got all self-righteous and said he wasn't about to offer a bribe to cross into Mexico. We ended up waiting about an hour to get cleared. Other than that one time, I never had any problems with police in Mexico. Once, I had traveled a long way to get to a remote archaeology site and just short of the site I got to a river where the bridge had washed out. I couldn't cross into the town on the other side where I knew I could get gas. I had to head back and w