Season Four, Episode 07 – Where Two Lines Meet

Important: Everything Is Stories is created specifically for listening and is best experienced audibly. If you have the means, we highly recommend listening to the audio version. It captures the emotions and emphasis that cannot be conveyed on the written page. Transcripts are produced using a mix of speech recognition software and human transcribers, so there may be some errors. It is advised to refer to the accompanying audio for accurate quotes when using this content in print.

ALVARO ENCISO: This person was found last year and we have his name. He was identified because he was fully fleshed when he was found. Uh, his name is Wilmer [INAUDIBLE] Peralta, a very unusual last name, and he was 37 years of age and he died from exposure to the elements, which, uh, caused hypothermia. And that killed him. He was found here by the side of the road. The GPS will tell us exactly where. Um, sometimes, uh, the people that, you know, companions usually bring them to the side of the road so he gets found. So that’s what we’re going to do here, put a cross for this person.

Okay, before you go any further, we cannot put it in the wash, we have to put it up here. Otherwise it will get washed up. Are we closer on this side or the other side?

So we have a person here who died last year again. Um, he was, his name was Francisco Merino Sanchez. Um, when they found him, uh, the vultures and the coyotes had eaten most of him, but there was enough remains there to, to sort of be able to make an identification or maybe he had an ID on him. And this area here, it was very popular years ago because everybody will come through here from the Tucumcaris to reach the, uh, the, uh, the rest stop on 19, where they will get picked up.

Who’s got my shovel? 


ALVARO ENCISO: Okay. Just bring some water, man.

The cross is nothing more than a vertical line and a horizontal line and they meet at some point. And the vertical line, to me, represents when you are alive, you are erect, you are vertical. When you are dead, you are horizontal. And where the two lines meet, being alive and being dead, that point to me, is where the poor world, the third world, meets the U.S. And the third world always loses.

The Borderlands, uh, it’s an area that, uh, has three main elements. The Mexican, the Hispanic presence, the Native American presence, such as the Tohono O’odham, the Yaqui, Pascua, and a whole bunch of other people. And then there are, of course, the newcomers, which are the gringos. Those three components sort of turn it into a very, very interesting culture.

The Borderlands culture has its own, you know, flavor. I mean, we speak, uh, Spanglish, I mean, we’re pretty much half of the words are in Spanish and half of the words are in English and there’s a whole bunch of made up words that we come up with, and we understand each other pretty well.

The Sonoran Desert is a beautiful thing, you know. People come here from all over the world, and they come here to photograph and make movies and, uh, camp out. But the Sonoran Desert has a secret. In this beautiful Garden of Eden 3,000 people have died, and no one gives a shit. 2,000 people are missing and many people believe that the numbers are a lot higher than that.

AUDIO CLIP: On the border, every year excessive heat is blamed for the deaths of migrants trying to cross into the area. Rugged desert areas like this one, where the fence ends, are now becoming popular places for these asylum seeking families to come into the country. It’s a long trek across southern Arizona’s roughest terrain that’s claimed the lives of nearly 150 people. Unfortunately, we are expecting to still see a rise in the deaths that we find over in the remote desert areas.

ALVARO ENCISO:  So the future looks bleak, but we are here for the long run.

My name is Alvaro Enciso. I’m an artist and I live and work here in Tucson, Arizona. I’ve been here since 2011. I live about 50 miles from the border, sometimes less because the border is not a perfect line. It’s got an angle here and angle there. I do work out in the border every week. It’s sort of like working at home. You know, I do my efforts here in my own backyard, and this is my house. This is my studio. This is everything here. Everything that I own is here.

I am from Columbia, South America. I came here in the 60s to go to school. I had this idea that the promised land is land of milk and honey, you know. This is where everything is possible and readily available. And I came here thinking that I was going to land at JFK one night, and the next day I’ll be going to college. It wasn’t the case.

Well, I grew up in a small town South of Bogotá. It was sort of like the, uh, the beginning of the Amazon jungle. You know, there was only like a few cars. There was no, no urban transportation because you didn’t need it. Everything was so close and there was no street names. But I grew up in poverty. And after I finished high school, I knew that my future was very limited. So that’s when I decided that I needed to look for the American dream because that’s what you hear in Colombia. This is, you know, that if you want to find fame and fortune, you have to go to the States because that’s the promised land.

I had an aunt that was here in the U.S. She used to work for the Otis Elevator Company. So she got a job in Colombia for them and then they liked her so much they said, “Well why don’t you come to the States and sort of be like a liaison.” And she did. So, I asked her, “Do you think you can help me out?” And she did, you know. 

I was 19 and I came to the U. S. as a legal resident with a visa. I remember that I arrived late at night in the middle of the winter. So here I am waiting by the sidewalk waiting for my aunt. And I looked down and I saw a 20 bill. But I was so tired and so cold, I said, I’ll come back and pick it up tomorrow morning. That’s how naive I was. 

But how do you go to school when you don’t know the language, you know? They ask you for all these documents that I didn’t have, like, did you take the SAT test? And you say, “No.” And your high school diploma here doesn’t mean shit, you know. We don’t accept this kind of documentation, that kind of thing. So,I’m trying to make sense of all of this. And in the meantime, I’m having these jobs that are menial jobs.

I landed in a Jewish neighborhood because my aunt had married a Jewish guy. So, they had all these Jewish, uh, things that they did. And I couldn’t like the food, you know, there was just no, no way that I could eat this fucking fish that they cooked. They went into the delicatessen and there was this fish that was all smoked and swimming in sauce and, wow, you know. So, he threw me out so I was homeless.

I remember one day I walked into a church and I walked into the church and I said, “You know, God, I need you to give me a break. I don’t go to church and I’m not a believer, but I need some help. So could you do something for me because I’m at the end of my rope. I don’t want to go back to Colombia as a failure and I don’t want to become a petty criminal here.” So I said to him, “Well, you know. Do whatever you can for me, and I’ll keep an eye out for any, any signs.” And then about a couple of months later, it wasn’t very long that I got a letter in the mail. You know, my aunt says, “Hey, come and pick up a letter.” And it was a letter from the army. You are being inducted into the U.S. Army. That was the break, you see what I mean? Like, God, you know, they say that the Lord works in mysterious ways. 

So here I am, I don’t speak the language and I’m here in the Army in North Carolina. I didn’t have any skills. The only job that I got was as an infantryman. So they sent me to advanced infantry training. And… turned me into a killer.

AUDIO CLIP: Here we go! Gotta go! Very soon! Vietnam! Gotta fight! Live, thrive, live! Live, thrive, live! Live, thrive, live! Live, thrive, live!

ALVARO ENCISO: So, I went to Vietnam. I was there 14 months. I had no political sophistication and those people in Vietnam were the enemy and you were supposed to kill them. And if you didn’t kill them, they would try to kill you, you know.

PRODUCER: What was that like learning a language through something that’s so hostile? 

ALVARO ENCISO: Well, you learn by the sound. You learn by watching the sound and then the action that follows that. And then you learn the word, but you just hear the sound and you don’t know what it looks like in written form. So there was another way to learn the language, you know, by mimicking. And that’s how I learned Inglés, trying to follow orders. And so that was my initiation to the American dream, you know.

After I’ve been there like 12 months or 11 months, I got pneumonia. It was a combination of malaria. I wasn’t taking the pills every day like I was supposed to. So, uh, they put me in a hospital and I was there a week or so and I got better and then, uh, they put me to work in the hospital, you know, while I could find my way back to where I was. And my job was to be a watchman at night for the people who are badly hurt with legs hanging off. And every morning I will hear, “Hey, does anyone know how to drive a truck?” And the hands will go up and say, “Okay man, let’s go.” And then you’ll never see those people again.

So one day, you know, one guy said, “Does anyone know any medical, any medical skills?” And some hands went up. But I had no skills of any kind, you know. All I knew was how to pull a trigger, you know. So one day, again, one of those breaks that you get in life is said, “Well, does anyone know how to take pictures?” And I said, “Yeah.” I had never taken a picture in my whole life. Never had a camera. And I said, “Yeah.” So the guy said, “Okay, man, come with me.” So the guy immediately realized that I was, said, “Okay, man, I know you’re, you know, you’re fucking with me, but I’m going to teach you.” So I started taking pictures of…I was a combat photographer.

PRODUCER: So you’re in the mix, right? 

ALVARO ENCISO: Yeah. But I’m taking pictures of dead Viet Cong, you know. Because those are the pictures they needed for propaganda to tell the people back home that we were winning the war. We weren’t winning the fucking war. But we needed – they needed – those pictures of 26 Vietnamese lined up dead. I knew that I was a pawn in their game, you know. That I was doing what I was told to do, but I couldn’t question the system. You have to play the game. So, uh, I’m thinking, “You know, I’m going to survive this and I’m going to get out.” And, and I did. Two months later, I’m flying back to San Francisco. 

I had a good friend who we were discharged at the same time and I went to New Mexico with him. And the desert, you know, the Chihuahuan desert sort of healed me some. I was looking, I was trying to, first of all, find purpose in life, find meaning, find peace, find healing. And, uh, so I went to New Mexico to stay with my friend a while.

I went back to New York and it was early ‘68 and it was the loneliest moment of my whole life. My aunt had moved. I didn’t know anybody, I didn’t know where to live. I walked the streets and stayed in these run down hotels, and I remember that as the saddest part of my life, that such a vibrant city, but you feel so lonely. And I’ll never, it still hangs somewhere in my, in my body, that, that memory of loneliness.

But little by little, you know, I got the GI Bill and I find my way to the university. I went to Queens College. But I was working, I was working full time. I was driving a taxi cab in Manhattan. It was, uh, it was Vietnam all over again because I used to drive from four o’clock in the afternoon to two o’clock in the morning. There were people out there to rob me, there were people out there to trade fares for sex. There were homosexuals that were lonely and needed some young buck to go home with. There were drunks that didn’t want to get out of the car who didn’t have any money. 

So I drove the taxi, uh, through my four years of college. I was going to college in the morning and I was driving at night, every night, seven days a week, so I didn’t have a life. And I never had a college education. I never belonged to any club or did anything because it was work, work, and work, and work. And go to school and, and, and go to summer school and learn, you know, try to get out of there. And finally I got my degree and then I applied for graduate school and I got accepted. And I, then, you know, I got my graduate degree in anthropology and then I went on to learn degrees in Latin American studies and Latin American contemporary, uh, literature.

And then…I got another break, you know, this is another one of those things that change your life completely, you know. So here I am with my graduate degree trying to get a job teaching somewhere and I was only getting this one semester deals for a year. You teach, you know, at a community college, and then that’s it. I didn’t have any money. I had girlfriends who would provide me with room and board. But, then one day, this professor of mine says the government is looking to create a workgroup of experts. Because we are getting a lot of immigrants from Southeast Asia, you know, from Laos, from Cambodia. Then people from Ecuador and from Colombia, and from all over. And the government needs to understand how to deal with these cultures that are coming in. So they’re creating a group of experts. So, would you mind, since you don’t have a job, representing the American Academy of Anthropology? So I went in there as an expert. You know, I’m not an expert, I’m just a graduate student, you know. But somehow I was able to convince people that, that I knew what the fuck I was talking about and they offered me a full time job. So I went from making $2,000 a year to making $40,000 a year in 1970, you know, $40,000 for me, that was a lot of fucking money.

I was working for the Department of Health and Human Services. I was teaching Peace Corps volunteers who were going to Latin America how to deal with cultures. Then I was, uh, teaching people who they didn’t tell me who they were, but some people told me they were the C.I.A., you know. So I was teaching all these spies. And I did that for the first time in my life. I’m making money and I’m buying $200 shoes, and I had a beautiful townhouse with five levels against the state park. So I was living the good life, you know. But I got tired of that. I did it for 20 years. 

It’s always this thing. What am I here for? The philosophical questions that you begin to ask yourself, what is my purpose? Where am I going to find real meaning? And I had never lost my interest in photography. And I said, “Well, I want to, I want to quit here.” And I took a leap of faith. Just like Kierkegaard says, “You jump into the void, and you don’t know if there’s a safety net there, but if your faith is strong, and your convictions that you believe in yourself, that you, you know, that you’re not gonna hit bottom.”

I came to New Mexico because there was this beautiful light and this was this beautiful high desert. Very difficult from New York City, you know, it was like the total opposite. This was 1998.

The West is always very exciting, I mean, it’s where you can reinvent yourself, you know, this is where you can be who you are and no one is going to question you, you know, so I still bought that idea that the West is where opportunity, you know, and where you find what your real path is. And I lived in New Mexico for 15 years in the middle of nowhere, between Albuquerque and Santa Fe, near a couple of Indian reservations, isolated pretty much. I had 11 acres of land but there were 400 acres of public land where no one ever built, so there were no houses near me. Someone had introduced me to contemporary art and I went to see a few things and I became very interested, and I started reading about contemporary art. But again, you know, it’s things that you learn, you know, that if you want to put something together, you learn how to do it.

So I really never took any courses in art making, but started working with it, but with, with the same, I wanted to explore the same, um, themes that had run through my life from the very beginning. This idea of the American dream, this idea of about cultural identity, the outsider, and how to live in two cultures, and the idea of how language changes who you are. This idea of cultural identity where you are not Hispanic 100 percent anymore, but you are not 100 percent gringo anymore. So I became successful, but people still think of me as a Hispanic. 

So I would get invited to a lot of cocktail parties because I was an artist. And I remember one time, one guy came over and says, “What are you doing?” I said, “Well, I’m a painter.” The guy says, “You have a business card?” I said, “Yeah.” And he says, “Well, you know, I want to paint the inside of my house and maybe you can give me an estimate.” It never occurred to him that I was a painter of pictures. That I was a painter, because, you know, I paint houses.

My wife and I decided that we needed to come back to an urban area. To be near the hipsters, to be near the druggies, the alkies. You need that energy, and to be near young people.

Well, when I lived in New Mexico, I had no idea that people were dying out here. I had no idea because that’s in the desert or anywhere of migrants do not make the news and they don’t get written in the newspapers. You don’t hear about it. So when I came here I started hearing about, oh, so two migrants were found dead. 

I’m a desert rat. I love to be out in the desert, so I needed to learn the desert here. So I joined the Tucson Samaritans, which is a social justice organization whose mission is to prevent deaths out in the desert by putting water in different locations. So I used to go with them and walk the trails and put water. And they have an orientation, it’s like a three hour orientation. And John Fife, the first thing he does is take out this map of Southern Arizona and this map is full of red dots. And those red dots are where people die, have died, and there are thousands of those red dots. So I said, “Jesus, you know, this is unbelievable. How come I never heard about this?” 

And then the second shock is that when you start looking at the data, then you find that most of these people are in their 20s and 30s. You shouldn’t be dying at that age. Just because we have this immigration law that makes them go through the most difficult areas to get here. They are turning the desert into killing fields, because there’s no way that you can go through the desert with enough water to survive. And migrants are no longer news, so they die every day out here, not far from here, 20 miles from here. Doesn’t make the news.

The information that I get comes from the, uh, Pima County Medical Examiner’s Office and those are for deaths that occurred on U.S. soil. I have no idea how many people have died in Mexico and I don’t know if there are any records. So I’m only concerned with what happens when they cross the border and those are the numbers that I have. But this is for Southern Arizona. There’s New Mexico, there’s Texas, and then there’s California. So the number gets bigger and bigger and bigger and bigger. At one time, this was probably the busiest sector and more people were dying here than anywhere else because the, uh, the Sonoran Desert is unforgiving here. You run out of water and you’re dead by the end of the day.

AUDIO CLIP: Out of the hundreds of thousands of migrants who try and cross illegally into the U. S. each year, some attempt the arduous journey across the desert of southern Arizona. Their remains come here, the Pima County Morgue in Tucson. Some are identified and repatriated, but every year, some go unnamed and unclaimed. They join a growing list of the unknown. Dr. Greg Hess is the chief medical examiner. In our facility right now, we probably have about a hundred people that are unidentified that we suspect to fall into this group, um, undocumented border crossers. If we’re looking at it since we’ve been keeping track, which is the year 2000, we’ve had almost 3,500, um, remains come in that we’ve investigated and about 1,000, uh, to 1,200 of those are unidentified.

ALVARO ENCISO: The deaths that occur here are the most violent deaths that we can have, because dying from lack of water is horrendous. It leads you to heat stroke. It’s a slow, slow, painful death. It fries your brain, it makes you go crazy. It makes you get in the sand and think that you’re in a swimming pool in in Acapulco and you’re wanting to die, but you cannot. That’s why we have so many people who commit suicide by hanging themselves to end it. That in the winter they die from, uh, it’s called hypothermia. They freeze to death, you know, because they don’t have, they are too poor to buy the Patagonia gear that you need to be out there. So it’s violence that is happening here.

And then when you talk about women it gets even worse because the violence that women suffer. Not too long ago, a few years ago, people are saying there’s a possibility that you may get raped. But now, it’s a certainty.

Immediately I said, “This is an abstraction, this is a map. These red dots are indicating locations, but I want to go where the actual death occurred to see how it feels. To see if there’s any trace of the suffering and the tragedy at the end of the American Dream there. And to see if I could photograph this in some way.”

So I went there and there’s, of course, there’s nothing out there. It’s just desert, bare. So how am I going to photograph something that has so much hidden suffering and tragedy and broken dreams if there’s nothing to show that. So I said, “Well, you know, the red dot in the map, I’m going to replicate that here where the person died. So I will go there and take, uh, spray paint and it didn’t look right. “Besides,” I said, “you know, I shouldn’t be messing with the desert.” This is an ethical thing. Then I said, “Well, maybe I can do a sculpture, and I had someone fabricate a metal disc and we painted it red. But the disc weighed 70 pounds, and I couldn’t carry it.

So I came up finally with the idea of the cross, which I hated to use the cross because I’m not a religious person. The cross has a lot of baggage already. It’s a Christian symbol of faith, but it’s also a Christian symbol of death. And then when I said, “Oh, death, really?” So I started reading about it. And then I learned that the cross was an instrument of death. That’s how the Roman Empire killed criminals and false prophets and enemies of the state. They hanged them in this cross without any water out in the sun until they died, and this is exactly what’s happening here. People are dying here from lack of water, from exposure to the elements, and because they are being forced to hike very rough terrain. Because the authorities figured that when people started dying it was going to deter migration, but they had no idea of the desperation of the people who need to make the trip because they don’t have any other option. This is it. You have to come here to find the better life that this country is known for.

There’s an organization here called Humane Borders, and on their website they have a list of all of the remains that have been recovered since around 2001, and that’s the information that I get to go to the locations that I want to go to, the exact location where the body was recovered. I started thinking of the red dots and I was going to take that abstraction. The red dot on a map is an abstraction. So I was going to take the red dots into the desert.

Okay, guys, uh, did we decide on a location or what? 

UNKNOWN SPEAKER: No, I think you’re accurate as far as the location. 

ALVARO ENCISO: Okay, so we’re going to put it here. 

So that’s what I do. I go every week and take a red dot about this big on a cross and go to four different sites every Tuesday and put markers there. This is in very remote areas, very difficult to get to. No one ever goes there except for Border Patrol sometimes. Border Patrol, see, they’re not interested in what I do. Just, uh, as long as we don’t look suspicious in any way, they’re okay. Migrants most likely go through hunters sometimes during the hunting season and ranch hands sometimes looking for stray cows. 

So this is art without a viewer. But for me, it was the idea that I’m marking sites where a tragedy occurred.

I have my team because, you know, when I go out into the desert, I have to carry a shovel. I have to carry concrete. I have to carry water. I have to carry topographical maps. I carry GPSs, but you know, whenever you have a project, the helpers will appear. I didn’t know anything about topographical maps and GPSs, and then I found a guy in New York, a PhD librarian who’s great at putting information on maps. And then I needed a database to keep all my records, and then I found a woman in Germany who does all this for me.

My project has a little bit of performance art. You walk on the footsteps of someone who died at a particular place, and you are, you are putting a marker in a space. And that marker turns it into a sacred space in a way, a place where something terrible happened, a tragedy that affected people in Latin America, but also people here in the U.S. because that person left a family on the other side, but was coming to reunite with another family here. So, the repercussions of that death is gigantic. So that’s what I was very interested in, trying to give presence to that person, trying to give this person a name. Because this person is, in my thinking, is not different from any of us. That person has a family and people who love them and people who care about him, and he had dreams.

Every time I go, I try to find a cluster where I can do three or four in one day. Where I have to think of my limitations is that I cannot hike ten miles in a hundred and ten degree temperature. So I have to find these places where I can stay in the same area, because, uh, the desert, it’s a very difficult environment and you can get lost very easily. You can run out of water. 

I’m dealing with death, primarily, but sometimes there’s something about a particular case or something that breaks my heart again. And it’s been broken so many times over this, you know. There are cotton fields north of Tucson, sort of like about 50 miles north of here, between Tucson and Phoenix. And those cotton fields are irrigated by water from the Colorado River that comes out of Yuma, and they have these canals, concrete canals. And migrants, in their desperation to get water, dying of thirst, they jump into the canal to drink. But the canals are very steep, and then they can’t get out. They are slippery, there are no handles, and they die there. So the water that was supposed to save them is killing them. So the body goes down to where the turbines are, where the water gets redirected, and then they get processed into those machines, and they become hamburger meat on the other side when they come out. But they fall off the trains, you know. There are dozens of migrants who get run over by cars trying to cross I-10. So they’re not dying out of thirst.

This desert is full of stories. Most of the stories don’t have good endings. Not all the remains that we found around here are dead people. Sometimes we find people that are very close to death and I have found those. About two years ago, maybe, we found a guy from Honduras and he was disoriented, he was completely lost, and in fact, he was so lost that he was walking south instead of north.

So he had some water, and I said, “Where?” and he said, “I’d run out of water three or four days ago, but I saw this cross, and I went to look at it, and then I started seeing these bottles of water around it, and that saved my life. Whoever put that water there is God.” Immediately they think of God. But those are the moments when you see that you, that your actions do some good.

The American Dream, I learned, is a myth. It doesn’t really exist. It’s a romanticized idea that this is the land of plenty and you may find it. But there are a lot of people who were born in this country who don’t find the American dream. So the dream, which is like a light that attracts to there. But when we get there, it doesn’t, it’s nothing there and nowadays, the land of opportunity has closed the gates for the people from the south. We don’t want them anymore.

When the historians begin to write this chapter of American history, it’s going to be very shameful and it’s going to be very sad that we treat our neighbors right, that we let them die out here in the desert in our own backyard. They want to be part of this culture. They are no longer, they don’t want to be exploited anymore. They want to have a piece of the American dream and there’s nothing illegal about that. This is just a basic ambition that all of us have to improve our lives in some way, and to live in peace, and to live safe, and to contribute somehow to our society. 

I think I have put out somewhere between 300 crosses. It’s a project that I knew from the beginning that I will never be able to complete, because it’s just too many people and just me doing it and I don’t have enough life in me. I’m 76 years old, 9 years of doing this I’ve damaged my extremities and I don’t have the energy that I had years ago. 

So, uh, the project will remain incomplete and so far I haven’t found anyone who says I want to continue with it, because it’s a lot of work. It’s a lot of money, you know, everything comes out of my pocket. I have to sell a lot of art to make the project happen. How many more crosses can I… I don’t think about numbers anymore.

I’m not an overly religious person. Well, I’m not political either. But on Tuesdays, that’s my day to connect with my Christianity, my Catholicism, you know. And it’s a way for me to connect the losses in my own life to those people out there. So, when I go there I think about my grandmother who died and my parents who are dead, and all of my romantic disgraces that had happened over the years. All of my losses, you know, in one way or another, they are all here with me. And I go there and it’s a time for me to connect everything that has happened to me in a way of grieving my own way to grieving for a stranger, for a person whom I never knew, because that’s not something that we do in this society.

I don’t see the light at the end of the tunnel. I think that we have to be here for the long run. Knowing that it doesn’t discourage me. You do what you can. I do what I want to do to sort of bring attention to what is happening , but that’s as far as I can go.

This preacher that I met in New Mexico, he told me an anecdote. He said, “I used to go to church every Sunday and the preacher will say, now we’re going to pray for all the migrants out there trying to cross the desert, who are dying and,” always the same fucking line, “we gotta pray that God will protect them.” 

My friend one time said, “Apparently God doesn’t give a shit, or he doesn’t have the time, or he’s looking the other way.” So I gotta do something about it. So I’m following that philosophy. You cannot rely on God because he may be doing something else. He’s too busy to be worrying about migrants in southern Arizona, you know. So, that’s why we have to do it ourselves.

Okay, we’re gonna put him, uh, we’re gonna hide it a little bit. So the vandals will not, uh, How about back there? Yeah, maybe we can put it behind here.

This cross here is sort of a memorial to this person. But it’s also, I’m pointing fingers. I’m pointing this person shouldn’t have died, because of the situation here. So we need to do something about it. We need to fix it. So this is a reminder for us also to understand that we cannot let this thing continue on forever. And, you know, I don’t like the idea of putting crosses out here in the desert. I’m desecrating the desert in a way. But they have to be here now. And one day when everything is fixed and I still I have life in me, I will come and remove them. You know, but for the time being they have to be here.

We’re going to try to find a way to get out of here. Not by backtracking, but, uh, yeah, a loop that will take us even closer to Amado for the next cross.