Perhaps a recent question about books I had read during my Nebraska childhood prepared me for what was to come as I criss-crossed the Sonoran desert. I recalled one book about a teacher leading her students through a blizzard, bringing one student through an infection by making willow bark tea. Another recounted an older sister's remarkable budgeting of just $30 to bring her siblings through the winter and her having to resort to burning the dining room table.
My own recent travels found me in the Sonoran Desert of Mexico without a passport, without credit cards, without dollars. All I had was 600 pesos, about $35. My half tank of gas would not have gotten me to the US border. The price of gasoline from the huge jugs in the garage in Puerto Lobos was $3.75 per liter, and I needed to get back to Caborca. The man selling gas assured me I would make it on 1/2 a tank, but he tried to sell me more anyway, still thinking I wanted gas. I had just discovered my purse was gone and kept saying frantically, holding the 600 pesos, "¡Pero esto es todo lo que tengo!" Finally he understood my fear and gave up on the sale.
The next two days included assistance from two hitchhikers I picked up, inluding a gift of 100 pesos, an offer of bed and bath for two nights from a woman who worked at an OXXO, and finally a phone call from someone back in Puerto Lobos saying he had my purse. I made it back on the 700 pesos and found everything intact. Big thanks to all my helpers!
My next adventure was provided by my car's periodically crazy electrical system. Stay tuned!