Lights & Sirens

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Category: Mission to Mexico

Sep.
22nd

A rough ride and a stick-up

After the fire we packed up and left Ayutla, headed back across the coast range for San Pancho. (Bill Garrison’s village, and where the Pierce County computers will end up if they ever get out of customs).


Six of us piled into the Suburban, leaving Ed and Jose in Ayutla with the Mexivan so they can go back to the Guadalajara airport today and try to get the rest of the stuff out of customs.


The highway across the mountains was, if possible, even worse than last time. We ran into rain, which caused more rockslides. In

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Sep.
22nd

Old-time tailboard riding


Ayutla firefighters, former Seattle firefighter Phil Michelsen and a couple children who hopped on at the last minute, arrive at the scene of a small house fire. In the background is a puff of white smoke emanating from the fire, Sunday, September 21, 2008.

Sep.
21st

A real fire

Exactly 36 hours after getting the keys to their new fire engine, the brand new Ayutla fire department got called to a real fire.


Sunday afternoon at 1 p.m. a half dozen volunteers had just returned from the river where they learned how to fill the tender’s 2000 gallon tank.


They returned to the town square to pick up Phil Michelsen, the Gig Harbor firefighter who helped deliver the truck, so he could teach them how to use the pump and hoses.


"I thought we were going to practice," Michelsen said. "Then Jose (Lopez) yelled at me

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Sep.
21st

Saving lives

I talked to a man today who said the ambulance delivered on last year’s Mission to Mexico saved his life.


Francisco Moran Guzman, a 23-year old construction worker, said he was minding his own business in the town square during the bullfights in January. A man he had some problem with saw him and gave him a shove.


"I asked him, ‘What’s going on?’" Guzman said. "I don’t want any trouble."


The man pulled out a knife and stabbed him several times in the chest. Guzman said he was able to make his way across the street

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Sep.
21st

The celebration

The Mission to Mexico’s arrival in Ayutla coincided with the opening of a week-long religious festival, honoring the town’s patron saint. The plaza is transformed into a carnival, with rides for the kids and dozens of booths selling food and souvenirs. Every 15 minutes the church bells ring and somebody shoots off a cannon.


Last night, El Presidente Miguel Gomez had one of his police officers pull the fire engine onto the plaza so people could see it better. Phil Michelsen and Jeff Anderson hoisted children up into the cab of the truck and let them work the siren

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Sep.
20th

Big Engine, Bigger Plane


Hello, blog fans. I’m finally sharing some photos of mine from Mission to Mexico “The Sequel” after two days of computer transmission issues. Things aren’t always as easy in a foreign country.


Consequently, they are badly out of sequence, particularly in conjunction with Rob’s story entries.

He’s an early riser and he tends to post before me, so please scroll down to read all of his latest bloggings.


My first photo is of Mst. Sgt. Scott Terra guiding the fire engine off the massive C-17 after it and pallets of

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