A few kilometres from where Trump presented the prototypes of the wall, the population of the Mexican side is divided between indifference and outrage.
” The wall, It is a reverend of stupidity, a mockery that angers me as a Mexican, “says Tony Valdez a few steps away from the sheet fences that already exist between San Diego and Tijuana .
A few meters further on, on the US side, there is another wall made from concrete.
In the middle of the two fences there are eight prototypes of the wall that has obsessed Donald Trump since he announced his presidential candidacy in June 2015. “I’m a neighbor of the wall of shame,” says Valdez with a mischievous smile, but seconds later the laughter then became anger.
The construction of the new wall has been a reality for a week now, on the border between Chihuahua and New Mexico, and it will not be long before it reaches California., where the first samples were placed, according to Trump.
The line has marked the life of Valdez, 33, who arrived in Tijuana when he was seven and moved to the neighborhood of La Torres, very close to the other side. Always close to the wall, always living with the border patrol, always one step away from the United States.
His brother just left for Oregon
He paid $ 7,000 to a pollero and crossed just a week ago. The border has its rules, he explains. Without papers, the one who does not pay, does not pass. The undocumented are a business so profitable that the traffickers already allow the payment in instalments. That is just the case with Valdez’s brother.
“So put up a thousand walls , the Mexican will continue to cross because there are tickets, will continue chasing the dream, ” says Valdez before complaining about the announcement of the deployment of thousands of US troops on the border. It is the same opinion that Maria Magdalena Palacios, 56 years old has.
The images of emigrants who try to cross every day
His house is in front of one of Trump’s walls, the purple one. “I have papers of amnesty ” says Palacios and recalls the visit of Donald Trump , who was a few meters from where she lives, a month ago.
“When President Trump came, they closed all the streets on the Mexican side, nobody could enter or leave, “recalls Jorge Perez, a worker at a 47-year-old car depot. The Congress of the United States approved at the end of March 1,600 million dollars for the construction of the fence, far from the 25,000 million that the president asked at first.
Traces of the visit are still visible in the neighbourhoods
There are still mountains of garbage that was collected in the surrounding streets. This time, the debris did not get under the carpet, it was left next to the fence. The dirt roads are full of old shoes, clothes, toothbrushes that leave in their wake those who try to cross.
There are also truck tires and waste piles that serve as a platform for the curious who want to lean out and look on to the gringo side .