Driving through Texas now. Big wind farms on both sides of the road and in all directions. Cows grazing in some areas, and in other areas, the remnants of cotton plants. Lots of them, so much that the fields look snow-covered. Some of the windmills are close to the road and you can see just how enormous they are. In the distance, passing trains at least a mile long and loaded 2-up with containers, make a picture of conservation and energy efficiency, while old technology oil pumps that dot the foreground provide a touch of irony.
Some of the pumps seem like onesy-twosies. Willem calculated how much you could make a day if you had only 1 small pump in your backyard.
I’m writing this while we’re driving, and we just ran over a big round clump of tumbleweed that literally did tumble from a field onto the highway. A few miles later we saw a coyote by the side of the road.
Starting to see lots of cactus plants now and the terrain looks more dry and dessert-like. The oil field scenery goes on for miles. We stopped in Pecos at a Subway. All the cars were covered with dust and mud and the patrons were mostly oil field workers, covered in the same dust and mud.
Every now and then there were whiffs of oil as we drove along and in one stretch, a big refinery. Smelled like the NJ Turnpike. Passed Midland, which is a pretty big town. But everything still seems mostly unfinished and in the process of being built. In fact, that’s actually what’s happening. Feels like a boom town along the whole strip.
As we approached the hill country the terrain changed again – into lovely low mountains. We checked the altitude and discovered that we were at 3900 ft. We reached 4600 ft before leaving TX.
The landscape changed again as we approached the El Paso metro area. Very cosmopolitan, lots of traffic, shi-shi stores. After a quick Starbucks stop (you have to take advantage of them when you find them!) we headed out for New Mexico.
Crossed into the state – our 7th so far on this trip – around 4:00. The mountains in New Mexico look different than the ones in TX. They’re higher, rugged, and have a little snow on top. I realized that we had actually been driving on a high plain since reaching the hill country of TX.
Final stop of the day was Deming. Only 250 mi from Tucson! We’ll be there by 12 or 1 on Monday.