New Mexico redux

Long time readers of this blog might remember our New Mexico adventures from last summer – racing ducks in Deming, eating green chile in Hatch, seeing a big rattlesnake at Tent Rocks National Monument, the fest-which-shall-not-be-named in Santa Fe, and lots of family time. Even though we seem to have poor timing with regards to weather (Chicago in January?! New Mexico in August?!), we were all thrilled to head back into New Mexico. At the first Blake’s sighting, Carson said, “Hello, New Mexico!”

After driving through Carson National Forest, we stopped for the day in Taos, where we saw the Kit Carson home and toured the Taos Pueblo. Since we were so close (a super short six hour drive!), we took a nice detour up to Colorado Springs for some more time with good friends. It was a short visit since we had to get back down to Albuquerque where we left the bus for our flight back to Ohio.

When we got back from the family reunion (glad we didn’t try to make that trek in the bus!), we decided that it was time for a little reality check. Government cover ups? Unexplained phenomenon? The truth is out there and we were determined to dig a little deeper, so we set our sites on Roswell. What did we find? Aliens, of course!

The skies clearly aren’t safe, so we headed the other direction – underground! Carlsbad Cavern is one of the largest cave systems in the world but what really distinguishes it from any other cavern is the remarkable formations inside. Oh, and the fact that the cave is home to a population of bats that ranges from several thousand to several hundred thousand. It was amazing.

Leaving Carlsbad, we had a mercifully short drive through west Texas and into El Paso, where we parked the bus, dropped the Jeep, and headed south of the border. Touring the states has given us a really broad view of American standards of living; we wanted to take the opportunity to show the boys another perspective. Juarez used to be one of the most dangerous cities in the world. It’s gotten better in recent years but we still did our research before driving down for a quick driving tour and some authentic Mexican food.

Back in the US, we headed to Las Cruces and Silver City for some down time with family. We toured the White Sands Missile Range museum, went bowling, hit the movies, and generally kicked back for a few days. The boys soaked up some grandparent time. We really love this family and we really love this state!

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