Albuquerque and the drive to Tucson

Saturday, October 11, 2014
Warm Sunny
Mileage 527 405 km
Last night we stayed at Motel 6 Central - Santa Fe, NM
Awesomeness: Location and friendly staff.

This was our day to leave Santa Fe. Mostly we enjoyed it here in this island of art in the desert. So much art, so little time!

We packed up the van and headed out. Before we left we went to the Restaurant Parasol for one last delicious burrito.

We decided to take the Turquoise Trail at least part of the way to Albuquerque, NM.

The landscape was very desert like, minus any large cactus. The red dirt or sand was certainly present. 

We happened upon a Flea Market taking place in the firehall of a small community. Wished I had gotten there sooner. Everyone was friendly. One small family had the most adorable pooch. He was a pomeranian pup of about six months old. He certainly made me smile. He was very friendly. I bent down to pet him and he came right over to me to soak up any attention I had for him. His humans thought he was pretty special, too. The little guy deserved to be a spoiled as he was as he brought such joy to everyone around him.

We drove off to a bigger town that seemed to be teaming with tourists because of art galleries and eating establishments. The buildings were a bit funky, not ritzy and perfect.

Ken saw that one gallery had fibre art inside. We stopped to see that gallery and its art. It was not a gallery like you would have seen in Santa Fe, it was more loosely put together and the gallery itself stretched out amongst several rooms.

I was walked around some more and found the business card of Diedre Adams. She does heavy machine quilting on acrylic painted grounds. I so badly wanted to see her work. Diedre had recently picked up her art work from the gallery, therefore, I did not get to see it. Too bad!

In one back room I found fibre are that was quilted art. It was the art of Beth Wheeler who authored the book "Altered Photo Artistry - Turn Everyday Images into Works of Art on Fabric" amongst other books for has written. I saw the quilts first and loved the style and thought I somehow recognized them. Then I turned around and there was the above mentioned book on the tale behind me. Then I knew where I had seen the quilts before. I snuck a couple of photos of her pieces. The work is impeccable. She had some wrapped around stretcher bars as if paintings on canvas.

We drove over some pretty bad roads and through a Pueblo to form the rest of our trip to Albequerque. We said at a KOA campground in Bernalillo, NM which seems to really be the north end of Albequerque. This campground won some kind of award for being one of the best KOA around. It was pleasant.

Sunday, October 12, 2014
Cold Cloudy
Last night we stayed at KOA in Bernalillo, NM
Awesomeness: They had laundry facilities. We did the weeks worth of laundry, ourselves. I even ironed Ken's Tommy Bahama shirt. Clean shower/washroom facilities.

Weird weather day! It started our warmish for morning then graduated to very windy, cold and cloudy. It even rained. The wind was particularly disturbing. If you caught a glimpse of the area outside the city you could see red dust swirling around or just blowing and making the sky appear red and dirty. This was the day the big balloons were to light up in Balloon Fiesta Park. We were going to go to that Fiesta but did not because of the weather - windy and cold. The traffic was still backed up both yesterday and today because of the balloon festival. Albuquerque has the biggest balloon festival in the world.

Ken worked on his rather interesting computer project. 

Upgrade - iPhone 5S 64 Gb unlocked by AT&T mint

Monday, October 13, 2014
Warm Sunny
Mileage 527 645 km
Last night we stayed at KOA in San Bernalillo, NM
Awesomeness: We were in a new spot last night from the night before. We wanted to wake up in the sun.

Well, today is a new day. It is sunny and the sky is blue. That scenario really helps to lift the spirits of even the most melancholy person. Ken also purposely drove me passed several dogs to try to cheer me up.

We did go to the Public Library in Albequerque, NM. Ken had to do some serious computing.  I had much more fun by doing my Duolingo Spanish. It is very important to take large blocks of time to devote to learning Spanish. I find that when I do that I actually make more progress and learn more. The library is not as big as the new library in San Diego, CA. There was, however, art on the walls and in glass cases.

After all that mental work we were both hungry. We found an old part of town which had funky old buildings that were in the Art Deco style. A vegatarina, East Indian restaurant was ere we ended up. The food tasted authentic. The owners were getting tips from an American on how to improve their service to the public.

Ken needed some parts for the van. He actually needed a cup holder cause ours is sort of broken. We drove south of town to a wrecking yard - You Pull a Part. It was in a desert like area. I stayed in the van and slept. I tried to do more Spanish but sleep just wafted over me. I climbed in the back and was fast asleep in minutes. I was likely only asleep for minutes, too.

From there we decided to more on and drove on towards Los Cruces, NM. It is rather odd to just take off on a whim. We left rather abruptly as the weather was not appealing - windy and cold. We were in the south end of the city for the wreckers and our previous camp ground was in the north end, an hour apart.

KOA does have fun campsites.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014
Warm Sunny
Mileage 527 909 km
Last night we stayed at Fort Gary Rest Area north of Truth
Awesomeness: It was quiet and peaceful.

We drive through Truth or Consequences, NM. No, I am not making that up. It is actually a small town. We drove through some other little place hoping for a Denny's to eat breakfast at. There was a Denny's in that little town but the exit, overpass to enter the town was under construction and barricaded.

We drove into Hatch, NM. for break fast. I'm sure you have heard of it. It is a small town located in a fertile, old river or lake bed. The area is also able to irrigate. What do they grow? Why chile peppers, of course. They have hanging red chili peppers, hanging on front porches. We saw several places with chilis drying on roofs. That was a rather unfamiliar sight. We went into what we saw as the busiest restaurant in town, for that time of day. The waitress, maybe owner was very friendly. We even had green chilies in our breakfast buritos.

It was hot driving in the car. We drove through the desert and through areas of huge bolders. It was a long day of driving. What can I say! It was not a fun drive.

Ken had to try out the new iPhone camera's panorama feature

Once in Tucson, NM we went looking for supper. We drove to downtown and found granola in a Wholefoods wannabe. We actually ended up at the real Wholefoods north of town. We have been to Tucson before, a few times. We knew where to camp north of the city. The city has expanded right up to where the campground was. When we stayed there seven years ago the campground seemed out of town.

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