I made a quick trip to Albuquerque in early December. Loved being back there in the crisp high desert sun. I made a talk at UNM about reading the job market, checked on my house in the city, and went to a baby shower for my friend. Good times. I also ate a lot of green chile, but not enough. I flew through Dallas, which shouldn’t have been dicey, but it was due to the crazy ice storm that marched in right after I flew out.
Christine picked me up at the Sunport (novel name for an airport). I forgot about the tile floors everywhere you go in ABQ, but the click clack of my suitcase was a quick reminder. So clean and nice. Also, the Sunport has free wi-fi, which all airports should have. And, at 7:00 pm on a Thursday, the airport was nearly dead. We went to O’Neill’s for the delicious chile cheese fries–worth every bite. Then she took me to my hotel–the Nativo Lodge. My room, on the fifth floor was comfortable and had a good view of an urgent care facility. If I tried really hard, I could see the mountains.
The next morning, Melina picked me up for a ride to UNM and breakfast at Richard’s Healthy New Mexican. Papas y huevos breakfast burrito with green chile made my morning. At UNM, I met up with Erin and family and headed over to the Frontier. I don’t actually recommend the Frontier for food, but the scene can’t be beat. I kind of forgot how in Albuquerque you see all swaths of humanity in all places. The town is much less segregated than where I live now. At the Frontier there are families, students from the university, homeless people who are having a cup of coffee in a warm place, tourists, and more. I miss that togetherness that just is in New Mexico. After our visit, I headed over to the UNM library to give my talk, which was well attended and well received.
Christine wanted to know if I wanted Saggio’s for lunch, but I was pretty stuffed from breakfast. I challenge you though, to say no to the green chile pizza that is Saggio’s specialty. I walked over to the SUB (Student Union Building) and grabbed a slice for her, but took a couple of bites myself. I offered to get her the kind with green chile and mushrooms, but they were out of mushrooms! By now you’re probably wondering what food I didn’t eat while I was in NM! I did miss Farina, a favorite pizza joint, Winning’s for coffee, and the Grove, a cute sandwich cafe in EDO. Walking around campus, I felt like I was on auto-pilot, muscle memory, yet I was always surprised by what I rounded the corner to see.
Friday evening, I went to dinner with my advisor and his wife at Trombino’s where we had a ridiculously good time. I had to call it a night fairly early every evening because a 2 hour time difference is killer when you get old.
Saturday began with a 5k at Balloon Fiesta Park. Myrriah talked me into it, and I’m so glad she did. She had to bring me some warm running clothes, because it was about 20 degrees out. I’m trying to put up a picture, but I think it’s going to have to wait. There was snow on the ground, and I was running in my five fingers. That’s enough to know that it was cold. Then we had race food, which was great. We wandered a very cold Shop and Stroll in Nob Hill, which was fun. Finally it was time to go to the baby shower. Gayle had made some very cute snacks and the baby shower was all prettied up. How refreshing to see our friend-family again; they have two boys and they have many of the same ideas and concerns that we do. I miss having them to hash things out with.
Sunday morning, it was snowing when I went to breakfast at the Range Cafe before heading to the airport. I was lucky to make it home, as the storm that had hit Dallas was hitting DC when I was slated to land. I did make it, after a long ground stop in St. Louis. The boys met me at the airport, and there’s nothing quite like little ones running toward you to make your day. A great trip, and a great return.
We got a huge snow storm on Tuesday, which I’ll try to write about as I catch up on this long neglected blog.