More Road Tripping.....Northwestern New Mexico.....
I'm catching up with the highlights of my road trip out west now that I'm home again.....After leaving California, I made one last stop at an In-N-Out Burger in Yuma, Arizona. While I've been an on- and- off again vegetarian for years, I was definitely not a vegetarian on this trip after tasting a hamburger from this place. We don't have them on the East Coast but they are definitely the best fast food burgers I've ever tasted.
I drove back through Phoenix and Flagstaff and on up to the Four Corners area of New Mexico. First stop was in Farmington where I stayed with my friend Bill. We met up with his kids and grandkids for dinner and here he is with his newest 5 week old grandaughter and oldest grandson. We've been friends a LONG time! I also stayed with Brenna and Logan's grandparents a couple of nights, drove around my old home town of Bloomfield and saw the house where I grew up, had coffee with other long ago friends at Durango Joes and then visited with my nieces, Shirona and Rayna, who still live at Nageezi where my brother Don lived. Nageezi was also where my family lived for many years when I was a young adult and I have some wonderful memories of our times together there.
|My niece, Shirona, and her sweet daughter, Corey, who decided I was her new best friend.|
|Corey and my new great-nephew, JaMee, who is 5 weeks old.|
|My niece, Rayna with Corey and her son, JaMee|
|The old barn at Nageezi is still standing|
My parents had a collection of these old gas pumps. I remember watching my dad pump gas at the old Chaco Canyon Trading Post when I was a young child in the 1950's. This is also during the time when we hauled water, had an outhouse and Navajo families would come to the trading post in their wagons and buy their groceries.
Not having a wagon and not wanting to drive my little Mazda on the bumpy dirt roads or go alone to the land we own at Kimbeto, I talked Bill into taking the afternoon off from work. Did I mention that he is a very good friend? We drove down in his pick-up truck and spent the afternoon hiking around and taking photos. He patiently listened as I told him story after story from my childhood and then he graciously left me alone while I had a teeny crying spell. We also found two very cool rocks that I promptly forgot in the back of his truck. This week I got a package and sure enough, he had mailed me those heavy rocks for my garden in Asheville.
This is the old Kimbeto Trading Post that my parents owned for many years. When I was a teenager, I spent a few summers here. The part of the building that is still standing was the little 2 bedroom house but the store part has now completely caved in.
Up at one corner of the property is where my dad and brother have their remains buried. When I visited a few years ago, I left one of my earrings on the fence and then took the other one and used it in a piece of pottery I made and gave to my mom. The earring wasn't hanging on the fence but I searched around in the dirt and found it.
|My Dad's Brand|
Don loved this land and when I hiked up into the rocks I found the spot where he spent a lot of time and had etched his name.
From here, I headed towards Albuquerque with a whole layer of happier memories which made it a little easier to drive away knowing that coming back would be something to look forward to next time........