Friday, December 28, 2012

Back in Albuquerque

Left Big Bend on Monday the 17th and arrived in Albuquerque on Tuesday. We had a good-long trip back with a mishap. I was pulling the 5er and running out of fuel as we approached Van Horn Texas. I pulled into the first station in town and tried to find diesel. The only diesel pump was in the middle of the islands, most stations have their diesel pump on the end. I didn't have the luxury to keep on going and find another station since the truck had been telling me I had 0 miles left two miles earlier. I was able to angle in and fill-up, but I knew getting out would be tricky. Sherri was directing me and as I pulled to the right she signaled that we were good, a couple seconds later I heard a terrible noise of metal hitting concrete.
How ironic, after two years on the road we biffed the RV on our last travel day. The 5er is now for sale and will be fixed up soon. The truck is also for sale, I will miss the truck - not living in a fifth wheel so much.
Since our return to Albuquerque we have been living at Sherri's mom and house hunting daily. With no reason to choose a particular section of the city to live in, we have run our Realtor all over town. Our decision was made somewhat easier yesterday as Sherri started her new job and when she got home from work she made it clear that she was not driving more than 45 minutes home from work in the dark.
I am very proud of Sherri. She saw an ad for an office manager listed on Craig's list while we were still in Big Bend and she went after the job with vigor. She called the CPA company in Corrales as soon as we were back in Albuquerque and had an interview the following day, was called back in last Friday for a practice day, was offered the job on Monday and started yesterday. Sherri beat out 30 others who interviewed for the position.
Before we left Big Bend we took one final hike, a 14 miler with elevation changes of 2,500'. The Marufo Vega trail stretches over mesas and through canyons on its way to the Rio Grande.After three miles into the hike the trail splits, the photo below shows the north fork starting down to the river.
The descent to the river can get steep.
We reached the river, a very pretty area. Here is looking north and south.

The hike from the river on the south fork is 800' straight up. The river is the green patch way down there.
It was a wonderful/tough 8 hour hike and left a good memory of Big Bend. Our first night in Albuquerque was spent at the Isleta Lakes RV Park. As I was walking the dog in the morning I saw a bird in the trees which was much bigger than the others and it had a white head...a Bald Eagle having breakfast while the crows looked on.

The area is very nice, unfortunately the train tracks are 50 yards from the RV park and the train whistle blows at all hours. Here's another shot of the lakes.
Time to get back to house hunting. I suppose I should also start job hunting.


Wednesday, December 12, 2012


This will probably be my last post from the road, but who knows what the future holds. We are leaving Big Bend this Monday the 17th. For many reasons we have decided to head back to Albuquerque. The main reason is we are expecting a granddaughter February 4th. This will be our first grandchild and we, especially Sherri, are having a hard time being away from all the events which surround the birth of a child. There are showers to attend, cribs to buy and of course clothes to look at.
We also realize that we are starting to get claustrophobic living in the RV and began talking about the virtues of having a home. I think we both enjoy having roots and feeling like we are a part of a community. I am not in any way saying we haven't had a great time over the past two years; plus we have learned a lot about ourselves and each other. Both of us are glad we had the opportunity to RV and  we might give it another shot in the future.
Well, that's enough philosophizing - let's move on to what we have done in Big Bend. Last week we left the park for the first time since we arrived.  Right outside the park's western boundary are the very small towns of Study Butte and Terlingua. In Terlingua we visited the very old portion which is referred to as a ghost town even though people still live there, or maybe they have re-populated.
Our first stop was the Terlingua Trading Company which is an old building with many rooms and many funky items for sale.
There is a short walking tour of the Ghost Town which was a booming mining town from the early 1900's until the 30's. The church Saint Agnes was the most interesting building and the best preserved.

The Starlight Theater, next door to the Trading Company is a big attraction after 5:00PM.
Down the road a short ways is the cemetery, most of folks buried here are from the old mining days, but there are some recent headstones.

 After the ghost town we took a 15 minute drive to Lajitas which is a resort community right on the river. It is very incongruous to have this resort in the middle of nowhere, in the middle of the desert. I'm not sure how well they are doing - we did not see many people around.

We headed back to Terlingua for some good Mexican food at Rio Bravo and finished up grocery shopping at a little market. On the way back into the park I stopped for an interesting landscape photo. This part of Big Bend is known as the Badlands.
We will be in Albuquerque by next Tuesday and the RV part of our Excellent Adventure will pause/end, and a new adventure will begin.