“In The Kingdom of Kitsch”

The Arrival Arch.

Every now and again you come across places in this world that are just plain wrong. This “South Of the Border” is not in Tijuana, but is located on Rt. 95, just across the line between North & South Carolina. It stands proudly as the capital of the Kingdom of Kitsch. This baby’s got everything. A restaurant, convention center, diner, fireworks store, hot dog stand, two t-shirt shops, an ice cream store, steak house, another restaurant, an 18 hole miniature golf course ( adeptly named the “Golf of Mexico”), an amusement park, a kiddie railroad, a 200 foot sombrero tower, parachute jump, car wash, gas station, a 300 room motel and acres of gifts shops. And oh what gift shops! They have aisle after aisle after aisle of every useless item Taiwan has ever produced, from cheap back-scratchers to pet rocks. Every employee is named Pedro. And the restaurants, oh the restaurants! Wendi and I have had Mexican food from Maine to Matzalan, from Canada to Cozemel and believe me not all of it was good. But “South of the Border” has set a new benchmark for lousy lunches. In fact, meals that I had once thought were horrendous, I now realize were not that bad. But you know it’s going to be bad just driving in. Signs like “You Never Sausage A Place” and the age old “Chili Today, Hot Tamale” are dead giveaways. And yet, you still can’t stop yourself. As the center of the Universe of Tawdry this place has it’s own gravitational force. Billboards stretch out along the freeway at two mile intervals for twenty miles in all directions. Like the strobes along the sides of the runway they lead you safely onto the tarmac. This Frito Bandito Black Hole of sleaze sucks in everything in it’s vicinity. Bottom line, I give it five stars. The kids will love it.

Pedro's Concrete Bazaar.

Pedro's Concrete Bazaar.

Hot Tamale!


The Sombrero Tower.

The Leather Shop.

Necessary Services.

Me & Pedro. Photo by Wendi

5 thoughts on ““In The Kingdom of Kitsch”

  1. Debra Wilson

    The “Lucky Charm” clover on Pedro’s pant leg is an added bonus — my head is swirling. Just get’s the creative juices flowing, doesn’t it?


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