Winter Near Taos
Life in New Mexico has been quite the adventure this past week, Dear Reader, with record-breaking snowfall measured in feet rather than the usual sparse and crystalline inch. Alex and his girlfriend arrived safely at Albuquerque International Sunport in the thick of it [one of the last flights in before flights were grounded left and right].
Driving south on icy highways through blizzard-like visibility to fetch them, we nearly ended up in a ditch south of Santa Fe. It was one of those out-of-body-holy-shit moments as we skidded and fishtailed in eery slow motion, high-beams bearing down on us alarmingly fast.
How the truck missed us, I still don’t know.
With driving conditions impossible that first night we ended up staying over in Albuquerque, unprepared for an overnight [no toothbrush, change of clothes, or gluten-free snacks in sight]. The next morning, driving was still grim. Thanks to pal Joey’s expertise we were able to get two rooms in a brand new Hilton hotel in downtown Albuquerque to wait out the rest of the storm. On the way we popped in to an eerily vacant Wild Oats for a few gluten-free edibles.
Driving home three days later was easier, yet chilling, as we passed two dozen cars still stranded off-road in various ditches and snow banks. It took us six tries [at a running and gunning start] to climb the winding snow-packed road to our casita. Note to self – a Honda Fit does not perform in snow. Now I know why native New Mexicans all drive pick-up trucks.
The week with Alex was fun – albeit rather snow-bound. There were plenty of pinon fires in the kiva, books to read and movies to discuss. There was Scrabble, a convivial evening with Joey and Will [four-wheel drive vehicle owners] and lots to eat - enchiladas, quesadillas, chocolate chip bars, spicy glazed turkey meatloaf, penne with roasted peppers and [turkey] meatballs, blue corn chips and jalapeno-lime salsa, popcorn and root beer floats, and a fudgy new flourless chocolate cake - find the recipe here.