Back in New Mexico again. I don’t like Texas – as soon as you cross the border it’s all God and guns.
I’ve relocated to Carlsbad, ready to go see the caverns tomorrow. Boy, you’ve got to remember to fill up with gas around here. I looked at the map and thought there might not be that many gas stations, so I filled up. In the event there weren’t any at all for 200 miles. Practically the only thing I came across was a security checkpoint, where they made sure I didn’t have any Mexicans clinging to the underside of my car.
I had a short hike in the Guadeloupe Mountains but I didn’t have water or food so I couldn’t stay long. The mountains are a Permian coral reef, and it still blows my mind to sit on rocks like that and visualise them underwater, with the corals and crinoids waving their tendrils in the current, and then think that when they actually did that, humans were not going to exist for another 250 million years.
I went straight past the unpreposessing entrance to Carlsbad Caverns National Park because I want a whole day there tomorrow, and drove into Carlsbad itself. I wasn’t terribly impressed until I stumbled upon Lake Carlsbad, close to the middle of town, which is a beautiful turquoise colour. I’ve no idea why – the only times I’ve seen water that colour it has been caused by rock flour ground down by glaciers, and there ain’t no glaciers in New Mexico!
32° 8’14.65″N, 104°29’6.24″W
Today’s sensations: I started out feeling serene, as if things were finally getting sorted out. Then my mood bounced around for the rest of the day, trying to dodge a bunch of thoughts that kept throwing themselves against my brain.