The weather is sunny and warm. The people are friendly and laid back. Good times.
Since we arrived around 10:30 last night, we didn't go walking around, but we did drive up and down the strip. They have old fashioned oval street lights, to which they've added black oblong alien eyes...fun! The McDonald's has been build to look like a UFO. Aaaand...there's a few t-shirt and souvenir shops. Lastly, there is a Roswell UFO Museum and Research Center. $5 gets you in the door. It's an interesting mix of serious and silly. There are lots of blown up photocopies of newspaper articles, official statements, and photographs. There are also a number of odd little dioramas made from plastic model parts and railroad set terrain. They have a prop alien corpse from a made for t.v. movie that they've used in a lifesize diorama of an alien autopsy. They also have a stage with a lot of chairs for guest speakers. Of course, they also have a gift shop. Additionally, they have a research library. It's amazing. I suspect they have at least one of any book ever written on UFOs, aliens, or anything related. They also have a lot of videos. They also have what appears to be an extensive collection of periodicals and other materials. Everything is painstakingly labeled and cross indexed and organized. There are 3 or 4 rooms of this stuff. They have staff to help you find what you're looking for.
Looking at the library, I got a chill from the revelation that probably 10s of thousands of man hours were spent building it.
Wow. That seems like an awful lot of time.
We left Roswell in the morning and drove to the White Sands National Park. $3 gets you in the park entrance behind the visitors center. The fine white sand is luxurious on the toes. The enormity of the desert area is amazing. People bring sleds and slide down the dunes. It's startling how much life is present amongst such an arid and alkali environment. This was a big highpoint, well worth the time.
We made one small unplanned stop after White Sands at a place that grew pistachio nuts and grapes and made their own wine, and roasted and flavored their own nuts. They also made lots of different kinds of candy. The lady who ran the retail store was super nice. We tried free samples of red chili pistachios, green chili pistachios, garlic pistachios, cinnamon pistachios, the whole gamut really. I tasted some of their wine. It was good, in particular, the pomogranet wine was light and refreshing. We bought some pistachios and candy and headed back on the road. Later, we ate some pistachios - wow, they are fresh and delishious!
We continued on to Tucson, AZ, which is about 8 hours from Roswell. I had been to Tucson 20 years ago. Either we didn't go to the same parts that I had been to or else the city has grown enormously...horrendously since I was there. Also, there exists the possibilities that we didn't go to where I had been or I had been to some sort of suburb.
Anyway, it was a bit of a disappointment. I've got memories in Tucson from 20 years ago, and I suppose it's time to leave them behind me on the dusty open road.
We ended up going on to Scottsdale, AZ. We arrived around 8:30 and were fairly tired. We checked in to a motel and then walked over to eat dinner at a Mexican restaurant.
Tomorrow we plan on goofing off in Scottsdale/Phoenix a bit (REI) and then heading up to Sedona where we plan on some hiking and some camping. Next after Sedona will be the Grand Canyon.
More adventures to follow.