Hipstercrite Life

To Dance in Laredo

Life is always an adventure.
Even when it takes you to a border town in Texas where friends and loved ones suggest that your safety will be in great danger if you go.

Texas is 268,581 square miles of curios. Even on the long stretches of dry nothingness or repetitious sand-colored strip malls, the state is never boring. When I first moved to Texas two and a half years ago, I felt like a child seeing the world for the first time. Everything about the state fascinated me and it continues to do so. From the freeways that ascend into the sky to the characters in cowboy hats to the forgotten main streets to the sprawl of major cities, I write a tiny love letter to Texas every day. And now this is my tiny love letter to Laredo.

Laredo, Texas borders the larger Mexican city of Nuevo Laredo. If you Google Nuevo Laredo you will see warnings from US Consulates urging Americans not to travel to Nuevo Laredo and pictures of people’s heads blown open. Laredo is the 88th largest city in the country and the largest ethnic group is Hispanic or Latino at 94.9% of the population. Laredo is known as the ‘Gateway City’ or the ‘City Under Seven Flags’ due to it’s time as the capital of the short-lived Republic of the Rio Grande. Laredo’s economy is built around trade with Mexico, but due to the escalating drug wars in the area, Laredo has definitely seen better days.

This weekend I went to a wedding with a man I’ve known for two months. This man has known the groom for roughly the same amount of time. He hadn’t met the bride until the wedding. I had never met either. With all of this being said, you would have thought we all knew each other for a long time.

We stayed at an old Hacienda-style hotel in the middle of what is left of downtown Laredo.
The streets of Laredo look like Mexico.
From the parking garage we watched the long line of people crossing the bridge into the States.
I wore my grandmother’s dress she bought in Acapulco 50 years ago.
The man wore a turquoise ring- one of two artifacts he inherited from his deceased uncle.
The bridal party wore cowboy boots.
We ate carne guisada and watched the sun set over Texas fields and danced and gawked at a tarantula and watched two very in love people marry.

We ate Taco Palenque.

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  • Reply tunasandwich April 19, 2011 at 5:59 pm

    That gentleman sure is entertaining.

  • Reply tunasandwich April 19, 2011 at 6:00 pm

    He sure is entertaining.

  • Reply Big Mark 243 April 19, 2011 at 6:21 pm

    This is the start of a relationship that will last forever …

    You should have posted a shot of you in your Grandmother's dress… I'll bet she was smiling while you wore it…

    You should try to shop this story. I know that if I bought a magazine with this story in it, I would have thought the story alone was worth the cover price.

  • Reply girluntitled April 19, 2011 at 7:11 pm

    i like this. not a lot written, but a lot felt.

  • Reply Adria April 19, 2011 at 7:53 pm

    Love it, looks like you had a great time!

  • Reply Teeny April 19, 2011 at 8:25 pm

    oh. my. god. That was just too much cuteness. Love it. I'm an old married fart with children, and it's rare for me to see the sweetness and joy of new love and romance these days (all of my friends are old married farts too) so thanks for posting this, your joy in the moment and each other was really evident in your dancing vid…it reminded me of how sweet we humans can be to each other. I don't know you, but I'm happy that you're happy in this post.

  • Reply Hipstercrite April 19, 2011 at 8:41 pm

    @Tunasandwich- He sure is! 😉

    @Big Mark 243- We did take some pics of the dress and I'm going to send them g-ma's way! You're too sweet, Mark.

    @Girluntitled- Aww…thank you!

    @Adria- We had a blast. Every moment was kind of perfect.

    @Teeny- Thank you so much for that. I was happy. And am happy. I really appreciate your comment.

  • Reply tennysoneehemingway April 20, 2011 at 12:13 am

    Nice. I haven't been to a wedding in ages. I love going to weddings. This one looked pretty damn cool.

  • Reply Lauramc April 20, 2011 at 2:25 am

    You looked lovely and he looked lovely and nothing is quite as lovely as two people that look like they're having the time of their lives! I very much liked the video, even if it was a bit wobbly. I'll be in Austin in june/july and I cannot wait to experience the adventure that is texas.

  • Reply Ary Vee April 20, 2011 at 10:32 am

    The way you describe Texas is MY Texas. It's not just cows, hicks, and crazy Republicans (we have those all!), but it has an aesthetic that can sometimes be looked over, for whatever reason.

    I really enjoyed the post. Your writing is always entertaining, but this hit home in a very special way.


  • Reply StrangeBird April 20, 2011 at 10:42 am

    lovely 🙂

  • Reply Hipstercrite April 20, 2011 at 1:29 pm

    @Tennyson- I don't think I've been to a wedding since I was a kid. I always remember them being boring. This wedding was awesome- and I didn't even know anyone! That's a sign of a good wedding. Where a stranger can have a blast! I want a wedding like that.

    @Lauramc- Thank you! You will enjoy it here so much! It will be hot as balls, but you will be able to do a lot of the fun outdoors things that Austin has to offer (Barton Springs Pool, Travis Lake, Tubing on the river). Let me know when you are coming!

    @Ary- Texas is kind of amazing. It still amazes me. I don't think it will stop. It's too big to ever be boring. I might never see the whole state!

    @Strangebird- 😀

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