I'll remember to bring paper towels and window cleaner on my next long road trip.
We stopped at a gas station to buy some heavy duty window spray before getting back on the road.
No, this is not the Frontierland ride at Disneyland.
We saw these rock clusters on the drive between Tucson and New Mexico.
As the land flattened out, signs along the road warned us to pull off and turn off our lights during sandstorms. In New Mexico a sign urged "Extreme Caution." It was windy as we left Deming, and we could see a sandy haze in the distance.
Fortunately we didn't experience any extreme conditions.
As we drove through El Paso and Juarez, I checked the online Edible Santa Fe hoping they might mention some place to eat in Las Cruces. I came across an announcement of Restaurant Week in Las Cruces. Peppers at the Double Eagle Restaurant in the plaza at Mesilla was listed. They are known for their very large green chile cheeseburger. They were listed in the Green Chili Cheeseburger Trail 2011. I also consulted the New Mexico Culinary Treasures Trail.
The timing was right for lunch as we approached Mesilla, a tiny town that feels like a mini Santa Fe. The restaurant was easy to find on the central plaza. The restaurant is inside an historic adobe house built around a garden courtyard.
We decided to split the 1/2 pound burger (they also offer an 1-1/4 lb version). And we ordered the smoked salmon appetizer to start.
A squeeze of lime and a dab of sour cream accent the salmon on top of cheesy toasted sourdough.
Half a hamburger was plenty. We should have asked for medium rare. They have their own beef aging room so the flavor was good but we would have preferred it rarer.
For dessert we ordered a Banana Brulee Cheesecake.
The cheesecake and the bananas were sprinkled with sugar and then caramelized with a torch. The glaze drizzled on the top appeared to be honey. The whipped cream and cherry weren't important additions. The cheesecake was light and flavorful without them. This turned out to be our favorite part of the meal.
Second Note to Self: Don't believe everything you read on TripAdvisor or Yelp.
We'd been warned that Fort Stockton is a place to sleep on the way to your destination so not to expect too much. I read as many hotel reviews as I could find and chose the one currently at the top on TripAdvisor.
I suspect this hotel has the same interior designer as the hotel we stayed at in Kingman on our last trip. Like that one, the textures in each area compete rather than work together, creating a cacophony of colors and textures.
Here's the hallway outside our room.
Inside our room.
The colors sort of work but there's no place in this room for my eyes to rest.
This is my favorite room. Nothing seems to work together tastefully. It feels like they used leftover materials in similar colors.
Okay, so we escape the room for dinner at the highly Yelp rated restaurant next door... a Chinese buffet. But according to Yelp reviewers it's an exceptionally good Chinese buffet... and I believed them.
In retrospect the pizza in the car left over from last night would have been a better choice. Granted fresh vegetables and fruits may be hard to get out here in the middle of Texas, so they are probably a bit floppy by the time they get here. But to top off the experience we were seated in the Fox News TV section of the restaurant. A huge serving of the O'Reilly Factor pretty much rounded out the meal.
We'll be leaving early in the morning.