North from Carlsbad our next stop was in Albuquerque New Mexico. When our Southwest trip was planned, we had visions of mountain biking in the area. By the time we arrived reality had set in. After month into our road trip and a couple of weeks in the remote regions of the Southwest, it was time to restock.
The most direct road route from Carlsbad to Albuquerque goes through Roswell New Mexico. We were sure to linger in Roswell and maximize the chances of an alien encounter. For sure we did see plenty of aliens. They weren’t very scary, at least to us. Gigi, on the other hand, did find the aliens worthy of caution on approach. After debating the purchase of a “Will abduct for beer” T-shirts, we headed back on the road.
Albuquerque has stores. That may not be much of a revelation, but to us, after to being in the hinterlands for so long, it was a welcome relief. There’s even a Whole Paycheck in town. Now we could buy the fresh vegetables that we had missed for so long. We could choose something other than a three-week old head of iceberg lettuce long forgotten in a convenience store cooler. When we left Albuquerque, the small fridge in the trailer was loaded to the gills.
We did manage one small piece of tourism while in Albuquerque. Near our RV spot, the National Museum of Nuclear Science & History (formerly named National Atomic Museum) is located not too far from Sandia Labs. This museum features displays about all things nuclear. Particularly interesting are the displays related to the thermonuclear bomb. We might not have found the aliens in Roswell to be scary, but the array of megaton bomb tipped armament on display at the museum was truly frightening even with the “physics packages” removed. It is difficult of even conceiving why anyone would choose to use one of these things.
I seems Becky has learned to love the atomic bomb, though. At the museum she hopped on board of the casing of a nine-megaton Mark 53 Thermonuclear bomb. When she straddled the bomb Major T.J. “King” Kong-style ala Dr. Strangelove I was left to ponder whether it is possible to disrespect a thermonuclear device?
We left town soon after our visit to the Atomic Museum. Perhaps it is just as well. The thermonuclear etiquette police could not be too far behind. From Albuquerque we’d head west back to Arizona. As long as the National Parks weren’t shut down in the Federal budget debate, we’d visit Petrified Forest National Park.