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Thursday, November 19, 2009

Hermosillo Sonora and an upset Willy.

Sorry no photos today,(I took some) and my pride is hurt a little,as yesterday I got caught in a Pemex Gas Station scam that I was fully aware of,but let my guard down for a couple of seconds and got caught.

Going back,the trip over the border was smooth as now I see that you get an interview with the US Border Agents first before crossing.A nice fellow with a heavy southern accent(or maybe I’m the guy with the accent?)Anyway,he chatted with me about which way I go when I leave Canada to come down into the States,and do I always use this crossing for Mexico,etc etc.A pleasant chat for a couple of minutes then I cross and get a green light.Picked up my first Mexican transit cop about 100 yards in,as he followed me at the ridiculous posted speed of 20 KPH through rural outskirts.Then he dropped off only to appear a little later.I always use extreme caution for the first few hours until I get used to the differences,then go back to my old reckless self.

Mile 21 for the paperwork was fairly quiet,with 4 Canadians already there,blocking all the parking spots.By the time I got my Tourist Card and photo copies done at Immigration,they were done and gone,so I was the only one getting the import papers for the truck. I was out of there and on the road in about 40 minutes total.The highway was all really nice new pavement and an enjoyable, quiet 3 hour drive over to the junction of Mex 15 at Santa Ana.

It was just past noon so I thought I would fuel up at the big Pemex a few miles south,then pull over to the side for lunch.This is the spot that I always stop at,but no more…I was the only customer as I pulled in,and I passed pleasantries with the young attendant as he was refueling the truck.Trying to get my Spanish tongue working again.

Now I always stand and watch the pumps to see how much its registering,so  that there’s no mistake on the cost…..but this time I turned and reached into the truck to get something for just 5 seconds….and that was enough time for him to stop refueling and reset the pump.Still unaware of what was going on,he says to come into the office for the cost.It was then that I looked back and saw the blank screen on the pumps,so I followed him in where he punched in something on a register and a receipt came rolling out.

As soon as I looked at it I knew that it wasn't correct.83 liters and a cost of 650 pesos is a correct tally,but I know very well that it should not have taken anymore than 55 liters to fill it.My gauge is accurate and because I deal with liters at home,can estimate very closely.I was just below half.I argued and he didn't back down,I had no proof of the amount,so paid it.He then took the receipt and crumpled it up to throw it away,so I quickly grabbed it from him and left in a huff,only to get in the truck and see my gauge reading 3/4 full.And to add insult to injury,when I checked that receipt later at the RV park,noticed that it was dated for the day before and a much later time,in fact I was still in Arizona when that receipt was originally programmed for printout.A lesson learned,cant wait until today when my gauge gets back down to the same spot and I’ll make another Pemex stop and compare the difference.My eyes will be glued to that pump this time.

It wont be long because I’ve only gone a hundred miles,and its almost back to where it was.HMMMMMMMM! 100 miles on 83 liters,not very good mileage huh?…With all the Mexican travel that I’ve done the past 9 years,this was the first time I got scammed.That I know of anyway.I quickly put this out on the RV.Net Mexico Travel discussion forum to warn others to stay away from Pemex #8311.

This is a nice little park that I'm in right now,in the northern outskirts of Hermosillo.There are about 5 others here with me.Today I hope to hit the beachside campground at Hautapampito.


  1. Now that you have an unpleasant incident out of the way and behind you, I hope the rest of your Mexico trip goes smoothly.

  2. It can happen, don't let it spoil you fun. I am sure it's a lesson learned. Look at it as the price for being in the sun and leaving us in the dreary Westcoast drizzle :-) How much do the parks in Mexico charge? That would be interesting to know. Have a great time.

  3. This is one of those unfortunate stories that keeps a lot of people, like me, from ever wanting to drive in Mexico. I hope things go well from here on in.