On the way to Las Cruces

Day 79 –Tucson to Las Cruces

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A very uneventful day all told! We didn’t have anything planned for Las Cruces and saw it as just a stopover on our way across the country. Tucson to Las Cruces is about 275 miles and a fair drive so we spent a few hours in the car, with me catching up on downloading pictures and blogging and Brian keeping his eyes on the road. Other than some threatening clouds and some interesting rock formations there also wasn’t much to see on the trip – the only noteworthy thing I suppose is that it is a lot greener than I expected for this part of the world!
We got to Las Cruces and as usual I checked with the receptionist at the Days Inn Las Cruces what there is to see and do in the town. He gave me a map and told me about the old town area which is built in a kind of traditional Mexican style, or that is what I could gather anyway! We considered going to have a look, but with walking out of the question due to the heat, even at only about 1.5 miles away, we decided to give it a miss. I had a quick look at it on Streetview and couldn’t see anything that enticed me. The hotel was in the outskirts of the town, along with a host of other motels/hotels so there were a couple of fast food options to keep us happy. I kind of regretted not going to see the sights of Las Cruces the next day when a woman at the bar told us it is a really nice place!
We had a burger at Blake’s Lotaburger as it is a New Mexico chain so I had to try it. I had a classic burger with the added green chilli, while Brian had a double cheese and bacon burger. Brian’s burger was a lot better than mine and I definitely should have ordered a double rather than a single, but the fries were a cut above your usual fast food fries and I really enjoyed them. After our quick meal we went to the local Applebees where we got appalling service, so we didn’t hang about too long. Service over the trip has definitely changed, with it being a lot worse the last few days. In the northern states and on the west coast service has been amazing with people falling over themselves to help you, whereas here they seem a lot less bothered! You are still greeted with a friendly ‘How are you doing?’ but past that things tend to go downhill a bit!
The towns around these parts are very flat and kind of dusty looking; it is hard to explain but they just seem dry and hot and faded, as if they’ve been baking in the sun for too long. Towns are also few and far inbetween, and even then they are generally quite small and not the most inviting of places so we tend to just keep going and drive to our next destination. This is in sharp contrast to some of the more northern states as well, where there have been lots of little towns, but with coffee shops and diners and places that make you feel like stopping for a break from driving. I wish I’d been making more notes or writing more about the people and how places differ from state to state, but it is sometimes such a gradual change that you only realise a month on how much different things are. I think I am an obsessive chronicler of things, I want to put everything in a spreadsheet and analyse it – I may have more issues than previously realised!

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