Santa Fe Fun

We pulled out at 8:52 a.m. CST. I hadn’t left a Scatter Kindness card in Amarillo at this point, so I found a unique way. I left one with a little gift tucked up in the electrical box for whoever pulled in after us. I wonder what they will think:-). We passed a truck carrying an arm for a windmill. As we were passing him, it was amazing how long they really are, 120 feet. From the tip to the ground is 380 feet on an actual windmill.

We passed into the Mountain Time zone and New Mexico at 9:11 a.m. MST. Our phones updated automatically this time. Not nearly as many windmills now that we’re out of Texas.

We are definitely not in Virginia anymore. Ron said the lonesome little windmills that are found every now and then are used to fuel the water pumps, they’re able to run with no electricity needed.

I’m taking a Public Relations course right now. The class is 8 weeks long, 70% of the grade is based on a group project. I’m on a team with three other people, we are to create a campaign for our fictional client. This team is all done virtually, which is a new learning experience for me. I was chosen as team leader which means I have to organize our meetings. We have our first meeting tonight at 7:00 p.m. Eastern time. We use go-to meeting which has an app you can use. As we’ve been passing through time zones, it automatically makes the time adjustment for me, which is awesome. The time for me went from 7:00 p.m. Eastern to 6:00 p.m. Central and has now changed to 5:00 p.m. Mountain. I love the technological advances our world has made in the last two decades

We are somewhere on I-40 in New Mexico. We can see three different rain storms in the distance around us. At 12:13 p.m. MST we hit 5283 ft above sea level. That is the same as saying we’re a mile above sea level. I love life on the road.

Vegas is that way:-). There is actually a Las Vegas, NM I now know. We did get a little rain just after passing this exit, first time on the trip. We’ve gone 2,232 miles at this point. In 35 miles we’ll start heading north towards Santa Fe. By the time we reached 7000 feet, at exit 218 on I-40, where we stopped our trek west and for the first time headed north on U.S. 285, I finished my discussion post for this week’s assignment.

We started seeing the mountains in the skyline the closer we got to Santa Fe. As we were driving by the rock formation on the side of the road, I realized, “You don’t see that every day back home.’ You definitely do see them everywhere here. We came across this lonely bike rider, on a very desolate stretch of highway. I’m praying protection for our cyclist friend as he goes on his journey.

We pulled into Santa Fe Skies RV Park at 2:07 p.m. MST. For the first time, as we pulled in and I looked around at the mountains, I had the “kid in the candy” store feeling,” excitement rushed over me. I feel like I’m out west now!

Kevin checked us in at the campground. I loved him! In his 30’s, black hair with ponytail and beard. BIG, boisterous voice! What a welcome to New Mexico, perfect Gave me lots of recommendations for things to do while here. Fun!

As we settled into Aster-4 I had to take a moment to thank God. I’m grateful for the life choices Ron and I have made that allowed us to take this trip. I’m grateful for God’s leading. And I am very grateful for my husband. I truly am not worthy of such a man. Do you know I haven’t driven one bit. He has allowed me to write and study the entire way? He works in the evenings after we come in from our days activities. In this moment on the mountain top, praise Jesus. In those moments in the valley, praise Jesus. I hope and pray we honor the opportunity God has given us with lives well lived.

I realize I have a new time zone developing, Truck time. Truck time was supposed to be always Eastern Standard Time, so we could keep in touch with back home. However, Ron changed it and didn’t tell me. My phone, the Fitbit and the truck are all telling me different times. I literally have no idea what time it is.

We’re heading to Historic Cerrillos Mining Town, which is a ghost town! I will not be getting any steps on this visit, my Fitbit died. I’m thinking I might use this opportunity to break it’s hold on me, we’ll see. I’m pretty addicted to getting my steps in my normal life. When we got to the town, I was reminded of the movie City Slickers, I definitely felt like one. The world I was experiencing is so different from anything I’ve experienced before this. Kid in the candy store is the best description. All of this is part of the Turquoise Trail.

I talked to the lady in the gift shop. New Mexico’s entire population is just over 2 million. She moved here in 1971 from Fairfax county, VA. She came out exploring and has stayed ever since. I would have loved to talk more with her, but there were other people who needed her attention. I didn’t have the opportunity to talk to her any further. The glass electric conductors are a shout out to our friend Dan Sims, who collects them, he would love these. Old and dusty, completely out of a movie scene is how I would describe the museum.

I thought it was funny to see these two together. I never thought I would see John Wayne and Kiefer Sutherland standing side by side. The movie “Young Guns” was filmed here, as well as John Wayne’s “Cowboys”.

My Dad was a coal miner. He died over 30 years ago, when I saw this in the museum, it reminded me of him. He had a great smile, he loved to laugh and he enjoyed people. I saw all of that when I looked at this figurine. This gem made me think of my Dad and smile.

We spent $43 in souvenirs here plus $4 for our tour through the museum, $2 per person. I bought cross necklaces and a homemade corn bead necklace. The corn bead necklace reminded me of my Mom, she always loved to put up Indian Corn in the fall, I bought it for her. I bought an arrowhead for Cody, I just felt like it was something he would like. When I look at both of these items they’ll remind me of them and make me smile.

We visited the Mine Shaft Saloon, supposedly one of the oldest saloons in New Mexico. The Cantina Tavern was an extension of the Mine Shaft Saloon, connected by the hallway in the middle of the entrances. The place wasn’t very busy but had some interesting sights. The back wall had a great mural. These are located in the town of Madrid, an art colony and fun way to spend the afternoon.

The wall at the end of the bar is covered in dollar bills, which then extended down the entire length of the very long bar.

I left a $20 tip with a Scatter card for the waitress and didn’t tell Ron. He’ll find out when he reads this post. As I’m slipping the money into the bill folder he’s telling me how he refused to tip more than 20% on over priced drinks in a tourist trap. I didn’t say a word, although I was thinking, “You’re leaving her way more than 20% today. ” I worked my way through college waiting tables in a tourist trap, it’s not the glamorous lifestyle he apparently thinks it is:-). We didn’t buy a t-shirt, but I did take a picture. They had an authentic cigarette machine which I hadn’t seen in a very long time.

Today was the first time I haven’t been able to take notes directly on the blog because we didn’t have service. I wasn’t able to send a text, which made me realize how dependent I am on being connected. I couldn’t use google docs. I ended up making a task everywhere we went and then adding details in the notes. Then, as soon as we got back to the campground, I copied/pasted them into the blog and started adding pictures. If I don’t, I’ll forget. We have done and seen so much in the last two weeks there is no way I can remember it all if I don’t write it down. I love sending postcards, the one below we sent to Ron’s Dad, it has lots of good information on it for future reference.

Ron caught sight of a baseball field out of the side of his eye, we had to stop and see it. The baseball field looked much different from what we’re used to back east. This picture is for my brother Matt, a lifelong baseball player and fan, we knew he would love it.

Ron and I talked about how easy it would be to take all of this beauty for granted. We also talked about how depressing it would look day after day. because there isn’t a lot of variety. But I guess it’s the same for us back home, how vibrant our world can look to someone who is seeing it for the first time versus someone who sees it everyday and takes it for granted. The air is a lot dryer out here. The temperature is 84 but humidity is 24%, at home the humidity is 67%. Ron says that is a dry day for home and probably really good weather. Beautiful sights on the way home from our day of touring.

People always takes pictures of their toes in the sand at the beach. I thought it would be fun to take a picture of my toes on the rocks in New Mexico. I took this at the spot where the baseball field was I talked about earlier. I stood on these rocks to take the picture.

We met our neighbors next door, Danny and Chris. Danny came up while I was talking on the phone with one of my classmates. I loved it! He was so funny, just came up and sat down, waiting for me to get off of the phone. Him and Chris are full time RV’ers from Florida, they sold everything 6 years ago and have been on the road ever since. Everything they own is in their Class A motor home. They tow a jeep as their get around vehicle.

Danny was born in Burlington, NC and lived his first 7 years there. He grew up in Miami, then moved to Ft. Meyers, where he met Chris. According to Danny, full-time RVing isn’t for everyone. If you want to be on the road full time, you have to give up all your stuff, not store it. If you’re going to to store it you might as well keep your house, it’s cheaper than paying for a storage unit. He doesn’t know where they will go next, they are here for 2 nights, like us. Danny is 68, Chris is 82, in Chris’s words, he’s her boy toy:-). They have been married 35 years, second marriages for both of them. Chis ran away from her home in Chicago when she was 16 years old, with her boyfriend. They ran off to Tallahassee where they had 2 daughters before separating ways. She met Danny working for the school district in Ft. Myers.

We learned random bits of information from Danny and Chris. We’re higher here than Denver, Denver has already had snow according to Danny and Chris. Danny’s Mom is 91 years old, lives in Tallahassee with his sister, and still drives to visit his brother in George, by herself. Most of the rented RV’s you see on the road are Europeans. There is a great RV Park in St. Petersburg, FL called Ft. DeSoto, that is privately owned and right on the water. The park is hard to get into at Christmas. We also learned, since they are Florida residents they get half off at the state parks for camping. And we can only book a Florida state park 11 months out, residents get to do 12 months out, which is why we can never book Key West at Christmas.

Below is a picture of Danny and Chris’s home. The Gnomes ride in the Jeep when they are in between spots. The bar that is used to tow the jeep is a Push Bar, what that means is you cannot back up with the car still attached to it, if you do, it bends the bar. Push bars are expensive. Apparently, people have learned the hard way, you can’t back up with them still attached.

The sky this morning when I woke up took my breath away with it’s beauty. Change of Pace + Change of Place really does equal Change of Perspective. Grateful is the only word that comes to mind. We had thunder storms through the night last night, none of which were on the radar. If it’s going to storm, I’m glad it’s at night!

The time difference had me up earlier than normal. I chatted with Chris as she went on her morning walk. My favorite times are sitting in front of the camper in the morning during the quietness of the early day. The morning was cold, remnants of last night’s storm seen in the puddles scattered around the patio. As the sun started to rise, so did the temperature. I started out snuggled up in a blanket, by the time I went in I had to change into shorts. I snagged this picture when I was walking around this morning, so beautiful here, so different from what we’re used too.