Day 21: Mountains, Valleys, and More (northern NM)

Another full day of sunshine.  And I made the most of it motoring all through the forests and mountains north of Albuquerque, down to Santa Fe, over to Cuba — and back to Bernalillo to set us up for Albuquerque tomorrow.   Whew!  And now, getting a very late start.  Not promising much coherency or flourishy writing tonight.  Sparkle running great — got her third or fourth oil change — I’ve lost track.  The dogs got a couple swims today — weather still pretty mild and the water is COLD.

Let’s start with Raton — yes, that’s 7:19 am.  If the sun is there, I get cracking early!


At a former Conoco gas station.  I’ve never seen a Dr Pepper machine before (no, it wasn’t filled with bottles or working):


Two signs are better than one:


Signs in the window indicated that this is soon to become the “Rockin’ Raton 50s Diner”.  Gawd.  I hope they don’t mess with the sign — but it seems inevitable:


I couldn’t resist slipping across the border to nearby Trinidad, CO:


Back into New Mexico — this is in Cimarron:


North of Taos — a couple of shots from the headquarters of Earthship Biotecture:


From Embudo — the Gasoline Alley Museum.  Which is Johnnie Meier’s collection of all kinds of stuff — mostly gas station related:


Lots of gas station signs as well.  This ice cream sign came from someplace about an hour north of town:


And the more valuable stuff is locked in a building.  Gas pump globes, photos, ephemera, etc.:


On to Espanola:


Down to Santa Fe:


Taos & Santa Fe are really decked out in Pueblo styled buildings.  Including the chain restaurants like McDonald’s & Burger King.  Here’s a unique IHOP in Santa Fe:


Another one from Santa Fe — a bus stop shelter:


Getting late but westward I went — the former Big Chief Gas Station in Zia Pueblo.  No pumps anymore but this sign remains:


A fun, modern sign in Bernalillo:


And, lastly, shot just as the sun had set behind the clouds.  Had to use the flash for this one.  It’s this time of day, I can’t help but think where I could have shaved a few precious minutes off somewhere and gotten a better shot.  But I think you guys will like the moodiness anyway:


That’s it — 1 am and a big day tomorrow.  I’ve got a huge list for Albuquerque which will take at least two marathon days of shooting.

15 thoughts on “Day 21: Mountains, Valleys, and More (northern NM)

  1. Dear Queen of the Road,

    Bravo ,bellissimo! Another sterling day of GOOD STUFF.

    Looks like there’s a lot of art pieces around, pretty cool. I can’t imagine there were more bus shelters like the one in Santa Fe . Why do I find the Giant Hand & Mailbox kinda creepy (but like it)?

    Gasoline Alley Museum looks like my kind of place. Really like the illuminated gas pump globes, & the Range Cafe sign is now a favorite, too.

    Hope your wrist is feeling better.

    Drive carefully & send more goodies!

    • Glad you’re liking the photo offerings. Yes, the only bus shelter I saw like that. But lots of artsy stuff in Santa Fe.

      My hand — I was simplifying when I originally wrote “wrist” but it’s actually the area below the pinkie finger — isn’t getting better. Which concerns me. Not getting worse. And can’t be anything broken. But now after six day, it seems it should be getting better. I’m thinking it might have damaged some cartilage or something — which might take longer.

      Sun’s nearly up!

      • you may have significantly bruised it — but agree it should be getting better.

        when you get back you could go see my acupuncturist maybe. he deals with a lot of sports injuries and sprains…..

        great pictures today! keep on truckin’!

      • Great weather — but more mechanical crap today. Blog later. No bruising. I think it’s more internal — like ligament or something. Not so into acupuncture. I hope to be healed by June!

  2. Beautiful photos! Cafe Capri would be such a perfect name for a cool 60s restaurant/lounge, and the neon sign is already there. Frank Sinatra and Johnny Matthis, with a little Tina Louise thrown in. But alas, the nostalgic 50s Rockin Robin stuff persists. Elvis always wins over Sinatra on kitschy roadside rehabs.

      • Yes! You are so right. I think Happy Days show from the 70s is to blame. Betty Boop is particularly tragic. An awesomely wicked 30s cartoon, but they’ve managed to cutesy her up, make her wholesome, and throw her in with all the other 50s maltshop stuff.

        Okay, rant over. We shall never speak of these things again!

  3. LOVE the ice cream sign on the ground! And much as I’m also addicted to bright blue skies, I love the moody shot of the Cuban Cafe with gray skies and headlights at the end of the day! Hey every day can’t be a totally blue sky day – let’s face it!

    • I did what I could today — stuck at a garage half the day. More at the next blog installment much later tonight. My hand doesn’t bother me much — pretty much only when I try to make a fist do I really notice it.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s