Bienvenido a Nuevo México

The view from Tramway, on the descent to Interstate 25.

The view from Tramway, on the descent to Interstate 25.

I managed to squeeze in my first ride as a born-again resident of New Mexico yesterday.

Nothing special, just an hour or so riding the Tramway bike path north from Rancho Pendejo, peeping out the terrain, getting a feel for things. We’re just a couple of blocks from the path, which links up neatly with the Paseo del Norte trail about 20 minutes up the hill. Other east-west feeder routes abound, and I hope to explore them directly.

I think this is Sandia Peak, as seen from the base of the road to the tram.

I think this is Sandia Peak, as seen from the base of the road to the tram.

Lots of folks on bicycles out and about, most of them roadies, though there’s also some class of mountain-bike trail network in the area that I’ll inspect at some later date. Right now, the old plate is full to overflowing with chores and annoyances.

For starters, we have no Innertubes at the new place, and won’t until Oct. 3. This forces me to play “Hipster In the Coffee Shop,” a role for which I am far too unhip.

Also, and too, the cell service is only slightly evolved beyond the log drum, smoke signals, or two tin cans linked by a waxed string, so using the iPhone as a mobile hotspot is right out. One bar on the iPhone does not a data connection make. Coupled with the dearth of Innertubes this renders communications a bit, shall we say, spotty.

Likewise, we have almost none of our shit — the movers won’t show up for another four days or so, so we’re getting by with some stuff we bought from the previous owner and whatever we could cram into the rice-grinders.

Speaking of which, two of our three critters have more or less successfully made the transition via Subaru to new quarters. The lone holdout, Field Marshal Turkish von Turkenstein (commander, 1st Feline Home Defense Regiment), spends the wee hours walking the battlements, inspecting the perimeter, and issuing challenges to foes only he can see.

As did Herbie Goldfarb in “The Milagro Beanfield War,” I find my brain going all foamy, like a vanilla milkshake, from lack of sleepzzzzzzzzzzz. …

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24 Responses to “Bienvenido a Nuevo México”

  1. Jon Paulos Says:

    I feel for Turk. Hope he settles in okay. Maybe a mouse or two under his belt will help his sense of security.

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      Jeez, me too. If you leave the bedroom door open he jumps on you, yowling like one of the larger devils freshly escaped from Hell. If you close the door, he tries to batter it down. It reminds me of my college dorm days, or maybe that night I spent in the Denver City-County Jail back in 1977.

  2. Jon Paulos Says:

    Oops, I mean THE Turk. Let us get our titles correct when referring our four-footed masters.

  3. Libby Says:

    FM Turk is a sensitive boy!

  4. Libby Says:

    I use Feliway in the cat carrier and car and the vet uses it liberally in the room before my cat arrives. It makes a BIG difference in my cat’s comfort in the car and at the vet. Have you tried it?
    Expensive but worth it. The spray bottle last a long time and you will use it in carriers and car over and over again.
    Also, Bach’s makes products just for cats or I have put Bach’s Rescue Remedy in the water bowl – the vet told me how much (a small amount). Don’t remember the precise amount.

    • Steve O Says:

      Wish I had heard of that stuff when I moved to Colorado.

      Become void in a pick up with a U-Haul and a Forrester. Me, the wife, two cats and two Great Danes.

      The Forrester was stick, so by default I had to drive it. And we realized at the last minute that with the trailer behind the pick up, we couldn’t get the tailgate down so that the dog ramp would fit. Our 180 pound mail was already arthritic, so he had to ride in the Forrester with me and the two cats. The poor boy just cowered in the corner, curled up small enough to fit in a standard gym bag. Meanwhile, the fat cat played in one side of the carrier, curled up and moaning, while the other one paced like a caged tiger.

      I don’t even remember what we did for litter boxes during that trip. I think they were in the U-Haul, and we stopped around midday and let the cats run around in the trailer for a bit.

      I’ve never been accused of being smart and most definitely am not a quick learner, but the only smart thing we did on that trip was, instead of paying the extra fee to put them in our hotel room, we just got and adjoining room just for the animals. The Danes thought they were living large, no pun intended, each getting his own queen size bed for the night, while the cats climbed up onto the towel rack and curled up in a freshly laundered and folded towel set

  5. khal spencer Says:

    Moving cats is almost as much fun as herding them. When we moved out of a condo in Kahala to our place in Hawaii Kai, we heard these unnerving muffled howls and thought the place was haunted Turned out to be our cat Friday, hiding in closets and letting out shrieks that sounded like they were coming from Abu Ghraib.

    A decade later, flying to BombTown via LAX from Hawaii, we attempted to make the journey easier on our cats by turning them on to Valium. Well, Ella nearly tore the cat box apart and was a magnificent struggle, so we gave her more valium, and she got worse. Turned out she was having a bad trip; apparently some cats react badly to valium. Wish we woulda known that.

    Moving is hard on everyone. Except our dogs. They have taken a real liking to weekends down at Chez Solana.

    • md anderson Says:

      How is the move going? Have you found the local roadie routes yet?

      • khal spencer Says:

        Barely had time to take a whiz down there. We have been going down on weekends or after work to meet with electricians, floor renovators, and various other people who will trade my money for their hard work.

        I found some nice routes out of town over towards Buckman, and Las Campanas. Some of those roads are weird but nice and the scenery is almost as nice as I’m used to in BombTown. It looks easy to get up to the ski hill road in Fanta Se from our new estate, too. Plus, ride up into Tesuque or all the way to Pojoaque. Should be interesting. We should drag O’G up kicking and screaming to his old haunts.

      • md anderson Says:

        Sweet. Sounds like a great plan!

        There’s lots of loops you can cobble together on the streets in the NW quadrant between Tano Road, Camino la Tierra and the 599 frontage. You can also cross east over the Tano bridge and do loops around Sierra del Norte, Hyde Park Rd, and Bishops Lodge or Old Taos Hwy. Lots of short steep little hills around there.

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      The Turk is finally relaxing a bit. We shifted him and Miss Mia Sopaipilla from the street-side bedroom to the master bedroom, which has a walk-in closet with some nice high shelves. Perfect for keeping an eye on things-slash-hiding from boogeymen.

  6. Pat O'Brien Says:

    That Tramway path looks really neat. At first I though it was a 2 lane highway with a nice shoulder. I assume the green strip in the distance in the photo is the riparian area along the Paseo Del Norte path. Now I think I know why you thought the location of Rancho Pendejo was OK. Sweet.
    Went riding with “Big Motor” Reggie this morning. Wore my old ass out again, but I enjoyed every minute.

    • Larry T. Says:

      THAT’S a bike trail? Wow. Bigger (and certainly smoother) than most of the streets here in Rome, except for the big ones Mussolini hacked out back-in-the-day. You’re making me jealous PO’G since we’re bikeless at present. Won’t be long now as l’Eroica’s is a week from tomorrow and we’ll bring some road bikes and MTB’s down here afterwards. Then I’ll be doing the roaming around to see where the locals ride.

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      Actually, gents, that is a two-lane highway with an excellent shoulder. I’ll take some pix of the Tramway path, which runs parallel to the road, next time out. It’s pretty damn nice too.

  7. John Dallager Says:

    Roasted Hatch chiles have hit the big time in the last week or so in Bibleburg. Hope you’re taking/will take advantage of your closeness to the mother load and other NM delights.

  8. John O Says:

    We’ll have no 4 legged animals when we visit next week. Maybe you’ll be back on the bottle by then.

  9. md anderson Says:

    I arrived in Albuquerque by bike last Friday about midday. We came through Tijeras Canyon on old Rt 66 with a screaming tailwind that had us coasting at better than 30 mph. Unfortunately our tour leader has a love for old 66 and kept us on Central Ave all the way to our hotel just past Rio Grande Blvd. 8 miles of El Centro in heavy traffic. Stuck behind city buses a couple times then a sprint to get around before the next light. Hadn’t exercised my urban warrior skills in a while so they were a tad rusty. But I got us to our hotel intact, though I think the guy who was riding my wheel nearly had a heart attack a couple times. Personally I would have taken a different route across the city, but Central was the most direct, especially when having to route out-of-towners. Too many lines on the cue sheet is counterproductive.

    • Patrick O'Grady Says:

      Central is direct, a’ight, and about as much fun as racing an individual pursuit with Beelzebub around the Lake of Fire. I don’t even like driving the sumbitch. But then again I’m real old and sissified.

      • khal spencer Says:

        No, you got that right, Patrick. Central sucks big time. Almost as much fun as time trialing down St. Francis Drive in rush hour.

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