We Cross the Divide

This is how the day ended: we crossed the Continental Divide (from where rivers drain to the Atlantic, to where rivers drain to the Pacific) . . .

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. . . and we met delightful Sheri, proprietress of the Cimarron Rose B&B.  Sheri is a gentle soul who is kind to people and is surrounded by amazing wildlife attracted by her lush property and her care.  She gave us a big discount as “Friends” and a second discount she reserves for “humanitarians”.

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Sheri was not the only person to touch us today with generosity.

Yesterday we (and you!) met Gilbert.  He said he hoped we’d meet again.  At about 10:15 this morning, a white Tacoma pickup pulled off Historic Route 66 ahead of us.  Gilbert was at the wheel.

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Gilbert told us about himself.  He is a retired deep-rock (2600′ down) uranium miner.  The mines were closed; the workers were paid a settlement sum, and promised periodic medical checkups.  Gilbert’s health is pretty good, but the amputation of his leg made things more difficult.  Jeffrey encouraged him, noting that when we met, Gilbert was walking, going places, doing better than some people who have two whole legs.

Gilbert asked for Jeffrey’s phone number.  Jeffrey gave Gilbert a card and invited him to call.  At about 1:30 PM, Gilbert phoned to say that his wife wanted to meet Jeffrey, and asked where we were.  Jeffrey told him: heading south on NM 53.

A few minutes later, Gilbert and his wife Becky pulled up alongside Jeffrey.

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We stopped to talk, and took their photo with their permission.  George, always looking out for us, drove up too, to say hello.

Gilbert said again that his people welcome refugees—and he said, a bit sadly, that no one asked the First Nations who should live in America, and that America’s leadership does not care about his people’s problems.  Then he and Becky gave Jeffrey a generous cash donation for Human Rights First, and asked God’s blessing on us.

Think of how far out of their way Gilbert and Becky went to do these kindnesses.  We are moved by the purity of their generosity and love.

A few other sights:

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Letisha took and shared this photo yesterday, before we biked into the worst of the sand.

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George snapped this photo at Sky City Hotel (Mt. Taylor is in the background) as we got rolling this morning . . .

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. . . and this photo as we passed him to enter Grants, NM.

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Grants has many relics (like this motel sign without a motel) from the heyday of Route 66 . . .

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. . . and modern Route 66 kitsch too.  Jeffrey snapped this pic of me on the Sprint 26.  The giant frame is illuminated in neon at night.

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This enormous bull pawed the ground in a cloud of dust . . . and stopped before we could snap a photo.

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Ranch country.

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Foreground volcanic, background sedimentary.  Desert geology is raw.

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We followed this bike route—on the shoulder of a lightly trafficked road—for almost 30 miles today.  It had wonderful stretches that were wide and smooth, and parts with loose gravel and broken pavement.  Bikes are an afterthought.  But at least they’re a thought!

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Experience confirms George’s observation that New Mexico has unusual highway signs.  Another we saw on a bridge: “Gusty Winds May Exist”.

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This beautiful tree, in the El Malpais National Monument, thrives at over 7400′.  At that altitude, Jeffrey . . . manages.  Tonight we’re staying at about 7700′ (over 2300 meters) above sea level.

 

Tomorrow we head northwest.

5 thoughts on “We Cross the Divide

  1. Good morning Jeffrey. You daily/nightly thoughts keep me smiling and lower my concern level. It may not be the most brethtaking scenery right now but the random meetings with Americans sure takes my breath away and continues to inspire. As do you.

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