Tuesday, November 27, 2012


Festival of the Cranes
Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge, NM
Capitan, NM...Home of Smokey the Bear
Roswell, NM...Just can't go through without stopping...Really wierd!
V and D visiting with old friends, Phillip and Abigale Jowers
My 2 princesses...Emilie and Madeline
Fredricksburg, TX
T-Pop and Vincent...Buddies!
Fredricksburg, TX
Vannie helped Emilie and Vincent decorate their tree.
Austin, TX
North Texas Airstream Community
Hillsboro, TX

I can’t believe how time flies when you are having so much fun.  The last time I wrote I was sitting pretty high on my kipukas.  Now I’m sitting on a little hillside in Hillsboro, TX.  It’s not a kipukas, but it is a nice spot.  Lots has happened in-between then and now.  I’ll try to just hit the high spots.

…Festival of the Cranes at the Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge in Socorro, NM…this was a neat festival, but these people were getting excited about seeing ducks, much less cranes.  I wonder what they would do if they had a chance to drive down Lake Martin Road in Lafayette when the Roseate Spoonbills were there or see a blue heron fly over and just stand there in the swamp…tall and stately…

…Capitan, NM - Home of Smoky the Bear…Yes, there really was a Smoky!

…Roswell, NM – Just had to make one more stop there – too crazy to pass by

…Artesia, NM – home of Phillip Jowers and his family – V and D knew him in Lafayette…he was just a little boy then – all grown up now – Phillip treated them to a wonderful Mexican restaurant

…Fort Stockton, TX – just an overnighter

…Fredericksburg, TX –Willkommen (German for Welcome) two nights here - had a visit from Emilie, Vincent, and Madeline – Vincent spent the night, and he and V and D climbed Cross Mountain the next day – Vannie and Dave brought home a big honkin’ Apple Strudel from one of the German restaurants – they devoured it in one sitting – did not share one bite with me or Vincent – a bunch of hogs!

…Austin, TX – Lone Star RV on I35 – this is the same place we stayed last summer – felt like home – stayed for a week – so nice to have Vincent sleep over in me – made me feel all warm inside – Madeline got the croup this week and we were all a little worried about her, but she pulled through with flying colors – She is such a little bundle of sweetness.  V and D spent Thanksgiving Day with Emilie and family.  They did bring me a turkey leg back.  Hope I get a bite of it before Vannie digs into it.  She’s gets evil when it comes to turkey legs.

…Hillsboro, Tx – This place feels special….do you know why?  Well, it is just for airstreams…that’s right…just the big silver bullets.  They actually sell spaces here.  This can be like your permanent home.  I don’t think we are ready for that, but we are enjoying the spot.  V and D had a coupon for 2 free nights…right price, so here we are.  Hillsboro is just south of Dallas.  We passed a big outlet mall on the way in, so I can bet your bottom dollar Vannie is going to check it out tomorrow. 

I think that catches us up…Hope your Thanksgiving was wonderful.

Thursday, November 15, 2012


sunrise on my kipukas
Look right and you might can see me.  I am right behind that white trailer sitting on my kipukas.  The lava flow is all around us.
I can see these lava formations out of my windows.  Amazing.  This was a cave created by the flow.
Early morning walk
White Sands National Monument
"snow" angel
I feel the love!
A walk on the sand

Good Morning.  Ah-h-h…Waking up on a kipukas is heavenly.  Betcha you don’t know what a kipukas is.  Well, I’ve learn some stuff since I’ve been traveling with Vannie and Dave.  A kipukas is an island among a bunch of lava.  Many moons ago (about 2000 years) Little Black Peak erupted, and there was a major lava flow.  We are parked at the Valley of the Fires RV park in Corrizozo, NM.  The scenery is magnificent, and the weather is cool and crisp.  There is a nature walk down into the lava bed, and I’ve enjoyed watching V and D explore the trail and the lava formations.

About 60 miles south of here on Hwy. 70  is the White Sands Natural Monument.  Vannie and Dave struck out one morning heading that way.  They came back full of stories of blue skies, white sands, “snow” angels, picnic lunch.  The White Sands park is the largest gypsum dunefield in the world. There are gypsum dunefields on Mars and comparison studies are being done.  I was blown over by these stories.  Gosh, Mars…New Mexico…Our God is an awesome God!!!

Excuse me while I just bask in the New Mexico sun on my kipukas!!!!



Sunday, November 11, 2012


Priests at the Isleta Pueblo after the dedication of the shrine
The Shrine to the 1st Native American Saint
Two lovely Native American ladies
On the way to the Acoma Pueblo
The Acoma Pueblo is on top of the rock formations straight ahead
Reminded Vannie of "Stonehenge"
The pueblo is in the sky!
Helen's Pozola...

            Two Native American Pueblos in two days.  First it was Acoma…all I heard about was the fabulous scenery…the pueblo in the sky…history in its glory…breathtaking…quite…thoughtful.  Sky City, as this pueblo is called, is 370 feet above the desert.  It dates back to around 1100 A.D.  There are about 300 adobe and sandstone structures.  It is about an hour west of Albuquerque.  The homes are owned by Acoma Pueblo females. Now, that is a piece of news that I like.  Go Girls! 

            Second, it was Isleta….beat, beat, beat of the drums, whirling and twirling of the native dancers, dedication of the shrine to the first Native American Saint, dignitaries, beautiful costumes, the young, the old, Native American food (turkey, tamales, enchiladas from Jemez Pueblo, green/red chili, Indian bread, fried bread, Indian tacos, bread pudding, and more).  The Isleta Pueblo is about 30 minutes south of Albuquerque.

            I heard two very different stories…both unique and distinctive in their own way.  Vannie and Dave were tourists at the Acoma Pueblo, but were invited guests at the Isleta celebration.  Vannie said that the Native American people are very private, and she felt very special to have been among the guests. 

            Tomorrow we head out of Albuquerque.  We have loved our stay here and are a little nostalgic about leaving.  V and D’s friends, Loretta and Helen, made them a going-away meal last night…pozola with hominy and red chili.  They played cards and had a great evening.  I was getting a little worried about them.  We all know old folks don’t need to be driving around after dark.  But do they listen to me…nada!

 We are going south to see the White Sands area, our friend, Philip Jowers, in Artisia, and who knows what else.  The sky’s the limit.

Friday, November 9, 2012


Dave picking apples
Free Fruit...as Vannie's grandson, Cooper, would say
Loretta...church where she was married...it was in the process of being renovated.
They made it to the top of Tome Hill.
St. Augustine Church on the Isleta Pueblo

I wish you could have seen Vannie and Dave when they came home today.  Their arms were loaded with bags of apples and pears.  They had been gone all day with their friend, Loretta.  She had wanted them to see where she grew up and to meet her uncle and his wife. Vannie pulled out her camera and pushed that little thing in the computer and up popped her pictures.  Hooray!  They ooed and ahhed over the pictures, as they told me about their day.  I was amazed at all they did…and they are older than me.  Good Grief…slow down already!!!

Let’s see…I saw pictures from Los Pedillas, Isleta, Bosque Farms, Peralta, Valencia, Tome, Los Luna, Adelino, and Belen.  All these were small little villages south of Albuquerque on I25.  They picked apples and pears from trees in Loretta’s uncle’s backyard.  They saw where Loretta went to elementary school, high school and where she was married.  They climbed a mountain (actually, I think it was a hill, but when you are 66…it is a mountain).  The “mountain” had 3 crosses on the top.  These crosses were constructed by Loretta’s cousin.  They stopped at the Isleta Pueblo and met the nicest man, Alan Torino.  He told them all about the restoration of the church on the Pueblo and invited them to a big celebration for the dedication of a shrine to Mohawk Kateri Tekakwitha, the first Native American Saint. Vannie said he was very excited about St. Augustine Church on the Isleta Pueblo being chosen to have this shrine. They topped off the day with some yummy New Mexico food at a very tiny cafe.  I could still smell the green chili on their breath when they walked in my door. 

Sh-h-h-h…I think I will have to turn off the lights…they already have one foot in the bed.  Big day for 2 old fogies!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012


Vannie is so happy to see me!
Shidoni Foundry...A Casting process called the Lost Wax Bronze process.  V and D saw the actual pouring of the molten bronze in the ceramic shell. The bronze was poured at a temp of 2100 degrees.  Ouch!!!
Vannie said that Old Town Albuquerque is so much like New Orleans...in a NM way!
Michael and Elaine Conant with D and V...Elaine taught with Vannie in Lafayette.  They went to a wonderful Greek Restaurant, Yani's.  I know it was good, because I could smell the garlic when they came home.
I am so glad to be back with Vannie and Dave.  They are just as happy to be back with me, also.  You can see by the picture how super excited Vannie is to see me.
I am feeling in tip-top shape.  My rearend has been lifted.  I have new brakes and new axles.  They even found a small crack that they mended.  I could have showed them others, but they didn’t  ask, so I just kept my mouth shut.
After paying my bill ( almost coughed up a lung when I saw the bill…easy come, easy go), V and D headed to Enchanted Trails RV out on Route 66 in Albuquerque.  We have stayed there before.  Nice place.  We will be here till Saturday.  We were going to head to the Grand Canyon, but the weather is not cooperating, so we are going to regroup.  Probably will head down to southern NM…White Sands, Crane Festival, etc.  The Grand Canyon will have to wait until the weather is better.  Got to be flexible!
While here in Albuquerque, we have visited Shidoni Foundry, Old Town, friends Elaine & Michael Conant, and, of course, Loretta and her buddies….and we haven’t left yet.  More to come.
Just so glad we are all back together…Life is Good!


Saturday, November 3, 2012


Red River Ski Lift getting ready for ski season...making lots of snow...trying to get a good base for when it really snows
Singing..."Let it snow...Let it snow...Let it snow"
snow blowers going full blast...this is the bunny slopes and ski lodge area in RR
Red River sunrise on a cold November morning...13 degrees...going west
going east
Ah-h-h-h...Hot Apple Cider after a cold morning walk
 Saturday, November 3...will the 5th ever get here.  Everyone is really nice and gook-looking around here, but I am ready to move on.  Oh, my gosh...I think I hear my phone.  Hold on...
 It's a message from Vannie. And pictures, too!!!  Look at the snow. It looks so
 cold.  So glad to hear from them.  It makes me know I can hold on a few more days.
Message from Vannie:  Hi, Gypsy.  These are pictures of our walk this morning in Red River.  It is 13 degrees.  The snow blowers are going strong putting down a base for ski season.  The slopes open during Thanksgiving week.  We are leaving today and heading for Santa Fe.  We'll be staying overnight and on to Albuquerque on Sunday.  Can't wait to see you on Monday.  Luv ya, V and D