A Whim and a Shoestring: ROAD TRIP

It was that Mothers Day that every mother dreads. The one when all of your children have flown the coop. And here it was; that day. A lovely Sunday morning (just like every Mothers Day) and here I was, nearly 30 years a Mother with none of my children under my roof. OK, ok … enough of the sad, poor me routine! I shall start over.

It was Sunday, May 8, 2011; Mothers Day in the USA. My husband (Michael) and I dressed for church and enjoyed fellowship and worship with our brothers and sisters in Christ. After church, hubby treated me to a lovely lunch at my favorite restaurant. It was such a lovely day and so we decided to take a ride. Before we headed out the door, Michael said we might be gone for the night. He reminded me that he had stashed away a small amount of cash that we had received as a gift and that Monday was a scheduled “day off”. So there we were, ready to take a road trip, on a whim and a shoestring budget.

Come, follow me on my journey:

We filled up the gas tank in the car and then headed north on I-25 through the Sandia Pueblo and over the Sandia Indian Reservation. Once we hit Bernalillo (“burn a leo”), we took a northwest turn onto Rt. 550. The state of New Mexico is so lovely and we saw many, many things. We drove through the Zia Indian Reservation and the Santa Ana Indian Reservation, beyond the White, Red and Cuchilla Mesas. When you looked to the east you could see the Sierra Nacimien as we approached the Jemez (Hay mezz) Indian Reservation where we crossed the Arroyo Debdos Gordos and the Rio Puerco. And there stood the Marion Butte with an elevation of 6,850 feet above sea level. Even though we live at elev. 6,000, I was beginning to feel that altitude … a familiar lightheadedness.

We just kept driving on Rt. 550 and went through the Santa Fe National Forest and onto the Jicarilla (hick a reeya) Apache Indian Reservation. Next came the Navajo Indian reservation where Michael pointed out some areas in which he has taken day trips to do funerals for the Navajo people. We passed the Huerfano Mountain (elev. 7,474 ft.) and then Angel Peak to the east, which is an amazing tall rock structure that looks like an angel with wings. Then we took a left on Rt. 64 to follow the San Juan river to Farmington, New Mexico, where we stayed for the night. Farmington is rich in farmland and canyons and was originally named “Farmingtown” when it was settled by the Spaniards in the early 1800s. History speaks to the fact that the basketmakers (“Anasazi”) were some of the earliest natives, including the Navajo, Apache and Ute Indian tribes.

In the morning we headed northeast on Rt. 516 out of Farmington through Aztec to find Rt. 550 again. Then we kept on north through Inca and Cedar Hill. The smell of cedar was amazing, it reminded me of a cool morning camping in the forest. Lots and lots of mountains on this route, we saw Lone Tree Mountain (elev, 7,153 ft), Mt. Nebo (elev. 7,042 ft.), Mesa Mountain (which was very flat with elev. 7,153 ft.) and then the Round Top Mountain with an elevation of 7,336 ft.

Traveling north took us into Colorado, where the colors became even more vibrant. The landscapes were undoubtedly the work of our Almighty Father, Creator of Heaven and earth. It was so incredibly peaceful and I was reminded of Pslams 72:3 “The mountains shall bring peace to the people, and the little hills, by righteousness.”

In Colorado we were on the Southern Ute Indian Reservation where we could see the snow capped Mt. Hesperus in the distance. This majestic and beautiful creation stood at 13,232 feet high. It was a rainy day when we reached Durango, Colorado, but even so we were able to enjoy some excellent coffee at Steaming Bean Coffee on Main Avenue and then we did some browsing in the downtown stores. As it approached 1:30 afternoon, Michael suggested we head back to the desert of Albuquerque because he expected snow in Durango. And he was right! We saw the snow storm warnings for the San Juan Mountains on Albuquerque’s evening news when we returned home.

Our road trip was lovely and I can mark it down as another very special Mothers Day, even though the kids are leading their separate lives; some enjoying their own Mothers Days! I thank the Lord for the years that I had as the Momma in my home and look forward to whatever He brings my way in the days to come. I thank Him for my husband who helped me make a transition into this new chapter of our life together, with an empty nest.