Another day, another sunrise!
Pink was Ian's favorite color so very appropriate!
Glenn set out from Las Cruces to El Paso at 9:10,
a little later than usual, making this a more
leisurely day than most!
Having a free morning, my first inclination was to
check out Trip Advisor's suggestions for places to
see in Las Cruces. #1 on the list was The Old Mesilla
Village...so off I went!
Mesilla is a small town by today’s standards but 150 years ago it was the major stop for those traveling between San Antonio and San Diego. Mesilla hasn’t changed much over the years, allowing visitors to see what an 1800’s border town looked like. Western Legend Billy the Kid once stood trial for murder in a Mesilla courtroom, and the Mesilla Plaza was once a major stop for the Butterfield Stagecoach. Originally, Mesilla was part of Mexico, but with the signing of the Gadsden Purchase in 1854, the village became part of the United States. Mesilla is anchored by the Basilica of San Albino. The church, originally built of adobe in 1855, still offers masses today, both in English and Spanish. Outside the church is a memorial to parishioners who died in combat. Today, Mesilla offers a wide range of events as well as shopping and dining on the town’s plaza
A typical storefront in the historic area
Salsa anyone? Locally made and many varieties!
New Mexico Pinon Coffee is roasted in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
It smelled really good in the places brewing it today!
Now this frog and the bowl are much prettier than the ones
in the B&B yesterday. I was reminded, yesterday, about
my Mom's wonderful collection of frogs. I'm not
sure why she chose these creatures but I am pretty sure
that she would not have liked the one I saw in Hillsboro!
Historic Church in the Mesilla Square
A Glimpse From Glenn
For a change we got up at a reasonable hour for the time zone we happen to be in. We were glad to have been in the mountain time zone last night, it made it easier to stay up for the end of the baseball game. After a leisurely breakfast, I decided to head out. I thought I would take it easy on Lynn today and ride out and back but plans changed. With the weather forecast being a bit iffy for tomorrow I decided to head out towards El Paso. At first I thought to go part way but then decided to go the distance, especially after I found a fairly convenient place for Lynn to pick me up. Along the way it got rather windy. There were times I had to lean into the wind to stay upright on the bike. That is always an interesting feeling. Fortunately, the roads were flat so it was not all that bad. I decided while pedaling along that this ride is like my favorite cheese, Swiss. It will have plenty of holes in it and I guess I have finally come to accept that and not beat myself up about not doing every single inch, or more accurately, mile. I knew that Texas was fast approaching as the mileage was counting down. I found it a bit strange that there was no welcome to Texas sign along the route. Hopefully, this has no implications for hospitality in the Lone Star State. I did remember that there was no indicator when we crossed from Indiana into Ohio on the cross country ride but at that time we were greeted and given Buckeyes by some locals.
Another thing that I realized is that just having the focus on getting from one point to the next means that there are many things along the way that I miss out on. That was exemplified today by my passing by some restaurants and a shopping area. I thought that maybe we might have been able to go back for one for dinner. When Lynn picked me up she told me that she had gone to this nice shopping area and that she wanted to show me a few things she had seen that she needed approval for before making the purchase. As it turned out one of the restaurants I had seen was where we had lunch. I appreciated having something other than peanut butter! In the little shopping area of Mesilla, there was a building (see the picture above) that had on its side Billy the Kid. It was a governmental building, now a gift shop, in which he was tried and convicted. We strolled through some galleries and gift shops. I guess I am enabler as we ended up with more purchases than Lynn had actually intended. I was glad that we had the time today to spend together in some way not directly related to the ride. As it turns out, one of the other restaurants is where we are going for dinner!
Now that I have entered Texas and finished with Arizona and New Mexico, I have added three more states to the list of states I have biked in. Fortunately I have never set on a goal of riding in all 50. I think I have made it to 39. I appreciate those of you who take the time to follow us on our venture and am thankful for all of those who have donated to this and the other rides.
Glenn's patient, Ed Morgan, who was born and bred in Texas,
provided a lot of information about the area and he mentioned
that this region in New Mexico is renowned for its pecan groves.
Glenn passed by these trees above today on his ride.
When Glenn sent Ed the photo above, he reminded Glenn of a cafe
that should be in that area and Glenn had just passed by Chope's
(below) but it was closed so no opportunity to try it out!
Glenn came across some tumbleweed that was not tumbling even in the
high winds that were blowing the bike and the car around on the road!
I have a feeling this is not the last of this that we will see!
Interesting to see the Rio Grande River.
We were surprised at how small the Jordan
River in Israel was but this part of the
Rio Grande (below) was a shocking sight!
Draught? Global warming?
In addition to pecans and cotton, this area is
known for its wineries. Tonight we tasted wines
from another winery located about 60 miles west of
Las Cruces, St. Clair's Winery. Haven't had
any pecans or purchased anything cotton yet :)
First sign that Glenn was nearing Texas
Glenn may not have seen a welcome to Texas sign but
I captured this one on Rte. 10 as I drove to retrieve
Glenn from El Paso after his ride today. I also saw
a sign similar to the one below on the highway. With
a 75 mph speed limit, bikes better not be on that road!
On our ride back to Las Cruces at about 12:30 PM, we
enjoyed the scenery along Rte. 10 and just had to pull to
the side to grab a few more pix!
Lunch....the first day that Glenn had something other than
a peanut butter sandwich. Our pretzel appetizer,
fresh squeezed lemonade and the colorful bread
were a great start to an enjoyable meal!
Short (33.73 miles), flat (only ascent of 129 ft.)
easy (only expended 1448 calories) ride for Glenn today
and he really enjoyed it despite the wind!
We will be leaving New Mexico and Arizona behind tomorrow for our
trek through Texas. We took a few minutes to recap our favorite
experiences in these two states!
Our "Top 10" list of things we loved about our ride
through Arizona and New Mexico
10. Our new SAG vehicle despite some electronic glitches.
9. Being in mountain daylight and standard time zones for the
World Series so we didn't have to stay up til the wee hours.
8. Evan Green's help in finding Glenn's bike battery. Riding in
one gear would not have worked well
7. The flat riding days interspersed between climbs
6. Casita de Gila, our "home" for one night
5. The delightful weather after that first scorcher in Arizona
4. Getting to the top of a mountain climb and looking back at
all of the switchbacks which were necessary to ascend.
3. The incredible Night Sky at the Casitas de Gila
2. Scenery in both states which exceeded our expectations!
1. The love and support, communication and donations from
our friends and family during this first few days.
Cheers to a day of riding, relaxing, resting and replenishing!
Now we are ready to start all over again tomorrow!
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