Thursday, October 18, 2007

Vacation, Day 6 - White Sands

Where's Day 5!? Day 5 was a traveling day. We pretty much pushed all the way down to Alamogordo, just shy of White Sands, so we could start at the park in the morning. If I have one important thing to say about day 5, it is this...if you ever find yourself in Las Vegas, New Mexico, stop at Charlie's Spic & Span Bakery and Cafe. It was absolutely delicious. The tortillas were baked fresh, the breakfast was incomparable, and I could buy a cup of Starbuck's to go.

If you're in Alamogordo, don't stop at the Kmart. They'll sell you the wrong sled for cruising down the dunes at White Sands, and their customer base includes this guy who apparently sees belonging to the Confederacy as a heritage issue, even though he's in New Mexico. I guess slavery does involve heritage issues when you consider the split up families and multi-racial children, although I doubt that's his point.

Maybe Heritage Not Hate guy was just sight-seeing like we were. Could be he thought White Sands meant something entirely different.

Eryn and I stopped at White Sands last year when we were taking Grandma south, but it was raining so hard a large part of the park was closed. This year it was all open and we got to go back into the center of the dunes. Looks cold, doesn't it? I kept expecting to slide all over the road while I was driving. It even looks like there's a fish house on the ice.

Here's Eryn fully enjoying riding a sled down the sand. This was the sled we rented from the park. The sled Jen bought at Kmart we gave to my Dad in Tucson. He'll probably have to pull rocks with it, because there's not much snow. There are a few pictures of Pooteewheet tumbling out of the sled if you head over to the Flickr set.

The whole family. Eryn's hot. Little Miss Brown was literally burning, and she was crabby with me for telling her not to jump off the catwalk before I could check for snakes and lizards and spiders that might be lounging in the shade.

Pooteewheet wrote this, not Eryn, but it's a good picture because it shows that they take a snowplow to the area to keep the roads clear, packing the sand up in little walls just like here in Minnesota after a 10" storm.

Grandma and Eryn standing in some ants so we could get a good picture.

SAND FIGHT! Way in the back you can see the crappy red sled Pooteewheet bought at Kmart. Eryn filled it full of sand. Pooteewheet left us out here after we figured out the sled was a bust while she went back to the visitor area to get a different one. It's sort of creepy sitting out in the dunes with no car and no one else around.

Another picture of Eryn with the sun to her back. This one looks very nice close up and cropped.

Tripod prints! It's because we in the White Mountains. I didn't meet any French kids, but there was an Italian couple at the visitor center. She wanted to go to the bathroom, so she dropped her purse on a bench and told him (I assume) to watch her purse. He was filming with a video camera, and smacked the LCD window shut, then made a multi chopping gesture with the hand, while mumbling under his breath in Italian. It was like something out of an old movie that takes place in Rome.

Finally, a picture to make Mean Mr. Mustard sad. After the apocalypse, there will be no one left alive to eat the Red Vines as they're slowly buried beneath the sands of our demise. Should he take a space ship into the future and end up here, chased by ape men and fleshy headed mutants, he will undoubtedly kneel down, head and arms thrust at heaven, Red Vines clutched in his fists, screaming, "Damn you. Damn you all to hell!" He's sort of likely to do something like that in the here and now anyway, so it's not such a stretch.

Here's the rest of the White Sands set.

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