Day 83–Cuervo, NM

Ed and I packed up everything this morning.  We would be leaving Tucucari and moving our headquarters to Santa Rosa.  After breakfast of eggs and pancakes Ed dropped me out on the I-40 frontage road that would comprise all of today’s run.  The frontage road is formerly Route 66 and has all kinds of old buildings where there used to be stops for motorists.  Most of them now look like they could be in the set of a Mad Max movie.  Part of the road is range for cattle and I do have to negotiate around a few that are in the road.  The vegetation is changing too as everything becomes dryer.  The higher vegetation like mesquite and cedar are thinning and brown grass is the predominate ground cover.  Sometimes there are views to the horizon and at other times the land is rolling with low hills.

Ed is able to meet me every 2 miles through this area with refreshment.  That is a good thing too because there is no water except muddy cattle ponds and only one service station/post office/convenience store along this road.  The high point of the day is a phone call from John McRae of Iola, Ks.  It has been several weeks now since I was there and we have talked a few times.  John has been reading my journal and we mostly talk about what is happening today and what the area looks like.  I always enjoy hearing from friends by phone.  Quite often there is nothing different for miles and the voice of friends brightens my day.  I finish the day at Cuervo, a small town (???) with a post office in an old mobile home.  It is one of the Mad Max places. 

Today is dedicated to Edward Abbey, one of my favorite authors.  He wrote several books with settings in the American southwest.  I have read most of them.  My favorite is “The Monkey Wrench Gang”, a fictional account of a group of eco-terroists who try to save the southwest from all kinds of modern intrusions.  Another favorite is “Desert Solitare”, the true story of his time as a ranger in Arches National Park.

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