Imagine this, you awake to the loud roar of the local textile mill that has served as your alarm clock for your entire life. Following that you immediately realized that six or seven rabbit-sized rats have gnawed their way into your two-room shack and are now running around your room searching for any kind of food they can get their hands on, including your last piece of stolen bread you've been saving for days. That is a very small part of everyday life that our author Luis Alberto Urrea got a chance to witness in his time that he spent in the slums of Tijuana, Mexico. In his book, Urrea goes into tremendous detail about his life living in those slums and the images he saw growing up on the other side of "the wire." Across the Wire offers a compelling look at what life is like for those refugees living on the Mexican side of the border-a world that is only twenty miles from California, but a world that few have seen. Urrea gives us an intense account of his work as a member and "official translator" of a crew of relief workers that provided aid to the many refugees hidden just behind the big tourist spots of Tijuana. His account of the struggle of these people to survive extreme poverty, terrible living conditions, and political chaos that is present in the Mexican borderlands explains without a doubt the reason so many are forced to make the dangerous and illegal journey "across the wire" into the United States. Throughout this paper, I will be explaining how a term coined 'Globalization" has shaped the slums of Tijuana into the place it is today and has in a way, forced the decision to make to journey to America upon a large amount of struggling human beings. .
Urrea's time spent in Tijuana one could not describe as happy, thrilling, or even in the least bit fun. The things he over the course of his stay in Tijuana some people could not bear witness to and still stay sane.