Aka - "Carl is bad", New Mex

Trip Start Mar 20, 2010
Trip End Aug 25, 2010

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Flag of United States  , New Mexico
Tuesday, May 4, 2010

We exited Texas via the west over the rollings hills of limestone in Hill Country (Rte 10) to Fort Stockton, then north through the open plains and fields of tumbleweeds which were home to numerous oil drills/rigs belonging to small towns such as Peco (rte 285), eventually hitting our Carlsbad, NM goal. With speed limits now as high as 80mph, our windshield is never clean.  The number of bugs that crash into us is endless; a big bird even crashed into us at one point, it was alarming, not sure it survived.  I guess dirty windshields are a side effect for going fast.  What was sad to see along rte 285 were the abandoned little towns, or settlings, that appeared to have been abundant during the high oil times.  There were these small little ghost settlings and nothing around for miles.  We turned off to get gas at one point and it was like a scene from a movie, not a soul around for miles, a lonely gas station, sun pounding down on us, there was a dusty breeze, and the only noise is the wind blowing through.  We assumed our normal roles, Brian pumps the gas, and Christina "scrubs" the windshield (takes two times to penetrate the grime).  A UPS truck rolled in and the driver popped out, he had a deep tan, or perhaps it was layers of dirt, and piercing blue eyes.  He took one look at our license plate and we got the "lord, you guys are far from home", and he was desperate to talk to us.  We know now of a place to go to in So Dakota - some sort of biker festival that is a must see.  One last observation to share is that everyone in Texas owns a pick up truck, and it needs to be a BIG truck, and as these trucks pass us we see the silhouette of a person wearing a cowboy hat driving, very funny....true cowboys our here.  
Not until we crossed over into Carlsbad, New Mexico did we begin to see life.  The cool thing is that once we crossed state lines there was a message board indicating we are now in Mountain Time, no longer Central Time.  Once service returned, our clocks turned back one hour.  The question is what do you do if you live in Texas, but need to meet someone in New Mex, which time range do you use to schedule appointments??  Carlsbad doesn't really have anything to offer, that is why we dubbed it "Carl is bad", their one claim to fame are the Carlsbad Caverns which we planned to explore until we realized it was an hour south of us.  Not wanting to expose ourselves to two more hours of tumbleweeds and empty plains then we had to (there and back), we jointly decided that wasn't a box that needed to be checked.  We've seen caves before, can't imagine these caves would be something so significantly different.  We chowed down at Red Chimney BBQ - pretty good, authentic smoked bbq

Carlsbad was just a stop over for our long ride to Santa Fe, NM.  After taking in a few episodes of "Billy the Exterminator" on AE (a must see, especially after spending so much time in the Bayou), we high tailed it out of there first thing, but, we did have one required stop to make along the way...Roswell, NM, of course.  Christina being a huge fan of the "X Files", she had to stop and visit her friends Mulder and Scully :)  Brian's cousin had warned us about Roswell, he said it was a rough city, so our attennas were up,,then to help emphasize this statement about 5 miles outside of town we see signs that read "Don't pick up Hitchhikers as there is a prison nearby".  Then we kept seeing signs for correctional facilities..guess he wasn't joking.  Anyway, Roswell was a depressing town, its only hope is the traffic it gets from Area 51 and UFO gurus.  People live for the UFOs (and await the annual Burning Man festival in Nevada).  We went to the UFO museum, it actually very interesting.  It provided time lines to the Roswell event, its governmental cover up, and photos and evidence of sighting around the world to present day. The walls are aligned with affidavits from people who were part of the Roswell sighting.  The Roswell Incident occurred on July 4, 1947, many people saw what they thought was an airplane crash 75 miles NW of Roswell.  One particular cowboy came across all this debris from the crash, and took it to local military base in Roswell.  The story goes he was paid off to keep quiet and to change his story to having seen a hot air balloon.  The story, and, side stories are endless.  Area 51 is not open to the public and it, and surrounding areas, are controlled by the government. The main street of Roswell is outlined with street lights where the lamps are shaped as alien heads with eyes painted on.

As we made our way to Santa Fe, the terrain changed as well, much greener, and red mountains everywhere.  In approaching Santa Fe you could see snow covered mountain tops, quite beautiful.  We arrived in Santa Fe late afternoon.  We will be in Santa Fe for about 10 days, there is a lot to do.  Our travels will slow down a bit from here, as will the blog updates.  

Happy Cinco De Mayo! and Happy one month on the road for us today.  We reached a major milestone in reaching Santa Fe and we are in line with our expected travel schedule also.  Starting today we will be in Santa Fe for about 10 days and staying with Brian's cousin Chris.  We are also excited to see our friends Rene and Zinia who have been in Santa Fe since Saturday and are staying until this Saturday.  Stay tuned for updates.
May 4 - May 5

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Elke on

I bet that dude was talking about Sturgis! I've always wanted to go. You should do it!!!!

markartis on

OMG - you guys are "rushing" through this country!! :-)

Love your blog, lots of fun to follow you around!


Golda on

All very funny.

Lupe on

OMG, I think Roswell needs to get over the alien thing. It don't think I'll put it on my bucket list of places to visit. Have a great time. I love to read your updates. Remember my read-head friend Margaret? She lives in Scottsdale. Let me know if you want to meet up with her. Happy Trails!

melissa segarich on

Happy Birthday Brian!! Hey if you guys are still in Sante Fe, eat at The Shed if it's still there.

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