Trip Summary Calendar - Where we went and when

July 11, 2004

Hello from Roswell, NM!

Hello from the land of UFOs and aliens. We have not (yet) been abducted. We did, however, tour the "International UFO museum and research center" on Friday. It's an odd little place. They take their UFO research seriously (with a dose of humor), and did a good job putting together a museum - on a shoestring budget. There's too much info for the space they have, and it isn't particularly well organized for the first-time tourist. But it was well worth the visit, if just to see why Roswell is so famous as a UFO center. When we post our Roswell photos you can see for yourself.

The whole town has some fun with the "alien" reputation. Near the museum are at least four "UFO memorabilia" stores, selling a wide variety of t-shirts, hats, inflatable aliens, etc. All with a fine sense of humor. We had lunch at the Crashsite Cafe. Several streetlights are shaped like "alien heads."

After lunch we went to the Roswell Art Museum, which is a fine museum for a small town. Included within the museum is the Robert Goddard Museum, dedicated to the inventor of the Rocket. Goddard was born in Worcester, MA and attended/taught at my alma mater, Clark University. After launching his first few small rockets in Auburn, he got the attention of Charles Lindbergh who arranged major financing and brought him to Roswell to continue his rocket experiments. The museum has more artifacts than I'd imagined existed, including several of Goddard's rockets, tools, and a recreation of his rocket workshop. Very impressive! Elsewhere in the museum are several more traditional exhibits, several Wyeth paintings, a Georgia O'Keeffe, and some very nice old furniture.

Roswell as a whole is a small, somewhat impoverished desert city. There doesn't seem to be an industry focus. Nothing about it is awful, but we haven't seen very much beautiful either.

Saturday we drove about two hours south to Carlsbad Caverns National Park. The attraction is of course the caverns, the largest in North America. WOW! We walked for about 90 minutes underground (and 750 feet down) before we found ourselves at the "big room," a huge underground cavern apparently the size of 14 football fields. The walk around the "room" is 1.25 miles, which we did. This was quite a sight. Stay tuned for photos.

It's Sunday morning now. Today will mostly be an errand day; laundry and so-forth.

Monday we're driving up to Santa Fe. Tuesday we're meeting Heather's parents in Albuquerque. This is Mitch's friend Heather, not the Heather from Raleigh who has known Alysa for several years. We're in the Santa Fe/Albuquerque area for a week, then headed further west towards the Grand Canyon. We need to do some Grand Canyon research to figure out where to stay; if anyone has any suggestions, please let us know!

Posted by Mitch at July 11, 2004 12:34 PM
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