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PA to LA: Day 11

June 11, 2003

June 11:
The drive from Roswell to Santa Fe is simply astounding. The landscape is breathtaking. But my thoughts are with my family today as I learn that my niece, Shelly, has died following a lengthy bout with Huntingdon's Disease. Shelly and I were not too distant in age, and some of my favorite childhood memories were of her--watching her learn to walk, playing games together. I always felt we could relate to one another and talk as peers, rather than as uncle and niece. I regret that having lived in Philadelphia for so great a time I was not able to spend more time with her--to get to know her better in her early adulthood before the debilitating effects of her incurable illness began to take hold. Even while ill, Shelly's unwaivering positive glow was something to behold. She loved music, especially the music of Elvis. And while I am not expressly a religious man, I fully believe without a doubt that if there is a Heaven, she is on her way there.

The drive to Santa Fe took just a few hours, which left a bit of time to see the city. I'm feeling a bit road weary. Tired of hopping from hotel to hotel, tired of driving and riding in the Subaru, and tired of restaurant food. We'll both be glad to reach LA this weekend.

Here's a few thoughts about Santa Fe and the rest of our day from the always witty Ms. Di:

Well, you must all get to New Mexico at some point in your lives; it is too beautiful here. It is hills, and scrub trees, and wildflowers, and rock the colors of fall. The views are astounding.

Santa Fe is the perfect place for girls to go shopping together. But I have no girls with me. You can guess the outcome...although David is a very good sport.

But, we are a bit worn down toward the end of our trip, and the locals here drive too slow, the hotel lost our reservation, Chad escaped and ran amuck in the halls of the hotel, terrorizing everyone. David and I stood in our room saying, "whoa, listen to that barking, someone here has a BIG dog...hey, where's Chad? Chad? Chaddie...CHAD!"

We forgot to take our camera into town, so we missed the wonderful adobe architecture. And, the whole gul durn place, tourist trap that it is, closes down between 5:00 and 6:00 p.m., while shoppers wander the streets like lost children searching for a home for their cash.

It is crazy, this closing of the stores so early.

We ate dinner in the equivalet of a Mexican diner, not bad, but not good either, nosy as Hell, and came home to a message that someone complained about Chad barking around 6:00 p.m. I erased it before listening to the first sentence. C'mon--6:00 p.m.? Sante Fe visitors need to lighten up.
But as I said, we are a bit road-weary today, and just don't have enough time to really dig in or relax.

It is very, very hot here during the day, but cools off nicely at night.
I think we may be getting tan, so we won't look like PA shoobies in LA!

Next stop: Grand Canyon.

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