January 1, 2017
Looking back on the past month we see a period of change … good-bye’s to friends from Bosque del Apache NWR, good-bye’s to other friends we have made while in New Mexico — Bud & Barbara, Roger & Cindi — and traveling to see old friends & family as we visit Florida.
Thanksgiving was a wonderful community event with turkey and all the fixin’s shared with friends at the Bosque del Apache Volunteer’s Lounge. Twenty or so volunteers and friends gathered to consume the two turkeys that Betty-O roasted in the huge ovens in the Lounge. We all had a wonderful time sharing stories and laughing as we remembered with thanks the bounty we enjoy.
With the Thanksgiving festivities past it was time to “hitch up the wagon & head ‘um out” (maybe I’ve been in cowboy country too long?) We did hitch up the trailer and head to Alamogordo NM for a final few days with Bud & Barbara before heading East. The small museum near the center of town had some interesting displays related to the Native American culture of the area and the town’s early history.
We spent an afternoon at White Sands National Monument enjoying the beauty of the wind sculpted dunes, playing in the sand, & just goofing around. We made “sand angels” and Judith did a little body surfing!
We visited Cloudcroft, in the mountains above Alamagordo. With the elevation change we found that it had snowed up there over night! The snow was nice to visit, but it was nice to be able to leave it behind!
As we left New Mexico, Bud & Barbara joined us on the first leg of the trip as we stopped in Balmorhea TX. We had made reservations to visit the McDonald Observatory, home of the second largest optical telescope in North America, and participate in their “Star Party” where we would look through some of their telescopes (NOT the Hobby-Eberly) with their experts helping us to understand what we were seeing. HOWEVER, it was cold & rainy & foggy when we arrived! The tour of the big telescopes was still very interesting, and they conducted a series of presentations in the auditorium that probably allowed us to see more than we would have on a clear night by looking through the telescopes!
After saying our “See you later”s to Bud & Barbara, we headed toward Houston to visit Anahuac NWR (where we will be volunteering starting February 2017). While there, we were able to link up with Judith’s nephew, Zac, and his son David. Talk about a ball of energy, David defines the term!
Then, across I-10 to Destin FL to visit a few days with our friend Fran. Life on the beach is “so” tough! Right!
Finally, on down to Winter Haven FL to spend some time with her sister & family — Barbara, Clint, & Allison. Good times, lots of laughs, and way too much food. Here the girls are in full holiday mode — laughing their heads off!
As we start the new year, here are wishes for a bright new year filled with love, and hope, and joy, and dedication, and peace, and light!