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Connecticut River Valley, New England, United States

Friday, February 26, 2010

Blue holes, Desert snow flurries and Coronado's Bridge

My gracious, I thought I left my car back home!! Look at John Dillinger, making a run for it with his bag of nickels! Call Socorro and make reservations for the next two nights!! Okay, let's head down the dead end route 91 to Peurto de Luna ( what does Peurto mean? ) and find Coronado's Bridge must be a natural arch! Found the town, what is left of it, ten miles out through some really beautiful mesa country surrounding the Pecos River Valley. Continued past what ended on the map ( with good reason ) until the road turned narrow and was hard pack rather than pavement--nope, turn around. And there on Coronado Road--a hysterical marker and a few pieces of what looked like old railroad ties--450+ years old--I think not! And so back to Santa Rosa after admiring the small church in the old village. Past what must have been the advertised Blue Hole, it sure looked blue, and is supposedly used for scuba diving! Who knows.? The Comet Restaurant had been recommended by the Curio Shop owners in Tucumcari but we weren't in the mood for more Mexican so had gone to the Sante Fe Cafe--Took Route 54 south with Dona Katrina and Don Guieliamo looking straight down the long, unwinding road to Vaughn---so many motels--but there is nothing for miles and miles out here so anyone on the road at night will stop in Vaughn! Dom Guilly and his cigarello cuts quite a pose, don't you think? He's actually doing quite well--an occasion cigarello and no cigarettes. Hoping to quit for good this time--hope he makes it. In Duran, where there is NOTHING, we met the train--Race you to Carrizozo! Saw three antelope but no more and no deer despite the same old five point buck sign posted throughout the country! ( Bill says a serious hunter should just park near a sign and wait for the guy to show up!!) To say nothing about the lack of buffalo. There is something so relaxing about the colors and serenity of this country. I love New Mexico and Arizona, too. But could I live here where I know no one? I certainly could not trade the boonies of Vermont for the very REAL boonies of the West. Bill, of course, could live in a hut 1000's of miles from anyone! NOT ME!!! He said back in Peurto de Luna that the house he lived in in Nepal were like those stone shacks--RIGHT! Soon, I wondered if we'd taken a wrong turn somewhere--the road before us looked like we were entering Montana--of course, NM is desert meets the Rockies country! Speaking of which, we suddenly found ourselves in the twilight zone--40 degrees and snow flurries in the middle of cacti and other desert vegetation. As our road spilled onto the valley floor that is mostly the Alamagordo Proving Range I started to take shots of the puppy dog rolling around on the floor clouds. Stopped in Carrizozo at the Four Winds Restaurant which was pretty empty. We had cheeseburgers--well, Bill had a hamburger with green chili sauce--which we haven't had since we left home. Tasted pretty good, too! Then on to Rt 380 West which we had taken eastward two years ago. Past the Valley of Fire, which is composed of lava flows and looks like scorched Earth; past Trinity Site and across the Rio Grande, which was unbelieveably high into San Antonio, the home of Conrad Hilton, the founder of the Hilton Hotel Chain. In his youth, he rented rooms in his parents' farmhouse to travelers. Bet Paris has never seen this place!! LOL Took the little side road the 8 miles to Socorro. Saw a couple of roadrunners and a couple of quail along the way. Checked into the hotel and just vegged for awhile. We are supposed to hook up with a friend from home sometime during our stay. He works for CREL and is on assignment out here for three months. Called my Aunt who is 87 and lives in Pine Plains, NY. She is feeling claustrophobic but has power and is comfortable though it has been snowing since Tuesday. Called my sister, surgery went well. She is bored but not in pain. Has to stay off her foot for two weeks--this will entail a three month recovery period--she will gradually add weight throughout that time. Betsy called us!! Power was out for five hours last night so DirectV in my room wouldn't work. It is hooked up to a DVR there and that goes out of sync and has to be reset--had to give her directions on the process. The important stuff you know. Bill has gone out to eat and Bets just called again--but she needed to speak to him. I asked why, what's wrong--oh, nothing --she needs directions to Barre Auditorium. I said I think I can help you there! God!! Check this website out for our plans for tomorrow. www.socorronm.gov/pdf/battles_event_schedule2010.pdf
We've rented the room for two nights, since this is the location of the Basque del Apache Wildlife Refuge that we loved so much and spent a whole morning exploring two years ago. Don't think we'll do the VLA again, but who knows. I think we will return to Alamagordo and the White Sands, as well as Eagle Ranch--my favorite pistachio orchard and winery --to load up on nutsy goodies. I won't order them online because the shipping and handling is outrageous. Also there is a winery in TelaRosa that I skipped last time. If we go to Roswell on our way East, I also want to stop this time at the Peter Hurd museum. He is an artist married to Henrietta Wyeth--yes, one of THE Wyeths. They moved out here from Pa apparently. Well, Bill got mad at me because this whole process takes so long and he got tired of waiting to eat--it's only 6:30 now and he left at 6. I'd wanted to try a nice restaurant which won't be available tomorrow night but he's gone off to Billy Bob Thornton's HangOut--gross! Guess I'll just snack tonight. Well, until tomorrow and the Battle results--Civil War and others--good night. K

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