Deming, NM, to Nogales, AZ

I had a decent stay in Deming. My hotel room at the Grand Motor Inn was really good and a bargain at $48. It was freshly renovated and the bed was super comfy. I got my best night’s sleep in a long while there. But I did not appreciate that they vacuumed from 8PM until well past when I finally fell asleep past 10PM. It didn’t stop me from going to bed, but it did make it hard to listen to the show I was trying to watch and it felt almost impossible to relax. So points off for that, but after such a good night’s sleep, I can forgive a lot!

The only real restaurant within walking distance was the one attached to the hotel and it was well rated, so I ate there. First time reviews have lead me completely astray. All but one thing in my meal were appallingly abysmal — the watery salad, the super cheap instant potato flakes covered in canned gravy, and the overheated frozen veg. But the steak was absolutely perfect by my standards, a sharp contrast to the rest of the meal. They at least got the important part right! Thanks, Ed and Linda, for commenting so late with restaurant suggestions. 😉 😉 😉

After dinner, I walked to the Walmart just for the leg stretch to see if they had what I wanted clothing-wise. Nope, it was all plus size cold weather gear, not a tee-shirt or a pair of sandals in sight. So that confirmed that I needed to stop in Benson today.

I had thought to do a lazy morning at the hotel, but was ready to go around 7:30. Or, rather, I wanted to hang out with a huge pot of coffee and a book. I didn’t even trust the coffee at the hotel restaurant (even though it smelled good) and didn’t feel like making my own, so I decided to drive to the IHOP down the street because I knew I could get a giant carafe of good coffee for just $2. After sitting for a bit, I decided to try their food for the first time and ordered two pancakes with bacon, which wound up being surprisingly good. Glad to know that a pancake house knows how to make pancakes! 😀

I left Deming just shy of 9:00 and headed for the Walmart in Benson, directly on my way to Nogales. I discovered it on the way to Nogales last year from Tombstone and like it a lot better than the one in Nogales. I got there around 10:30 local time, so 11:30 by my body clock.

Unfortunately, they also didn’t have any warm weather clothes. I guess Walmart stocks its stores the same regardless of the climate. 🙁 I did get one thing on my list, some comfy cheap capris to wear around the house. There were two identical size medium pairs in black, so I snagged both. At $3 a pair, I would have been silly not to! But I struck out on tee-shirts. They had lots of camis and tank tops, though. I also got all the things on my friends’ shopping list.

I then made a stop for lunch before pointing the truck towards Nogales. I like this drive a lot, off the interstate and through some windy and scenic backroads.

My first stop in Nogales was the post office, where there was a package waiting for me. I was amused that my driver’s license signed Rae was not good enough to prove that I’m Rae versus my legal name (it’s been good enough for banks and other post offices), but my business card was satisfactory!

The hotel was just a half mile from the post office and if it hadn’t been so dang HOT, I would have parked there and walked. It would have definitely been easier than driving. Nogales isn’t an easy to city to drive in.

Even though my reservation said check-in was at 3PM and it was only about 1:45PM, there was no problem with letting me have the room right away. I’d booked through and had followed up with a request for a quiet room preferably upstairs because I would have to work. The hotel is undergoing major renovations, so they put me up in a block at the back that is not in service yet, in a HUGE newly renovated room, and told me to make sure I ask if I need anything because they might forget I’m there! 😀 They also put in a proper desk and computer chair for me! Wow, talk about service! I also get a full cooked breakfast every morning, all for just $65 per night including the tax! I figure I can take advantage of breakfast by monitoring emails on my phone as I walk to the restaurant and bring my laptop there to do any assignments that come in.

I just wanted to crash by this point and not have to go out again for a bit, so I went right back to my truck and drove to Mariposa Road to run a few more errands. First stop was Don Smith Insurance, where they still had me on file. I got a liability only policy with legal coverage for $127, roughly the same price as last year in USD. I was in and out in probably two minutes!

Next stop was Safeway, literally next door, to get some lunchy and snacky stuff to make simple meals in my room. I also got a six-pack of Bud Light and have four nights to get through six beers… 🙂 Final stop was Panda Express for dinner.

I’m ready to drop; it’s been such a long weekend! But I’m so pleased I made it here without incident! I start work in 12 hours (5AM), so I’ll be turning in very, very, very soon.

Walsenburg, CO, to Deming, NM (with a Stop in Santa Fe)

Another very, very, very long day, but it was the last big one. It’ll be a short haul tomorrow, then three days of sort of rest, then 2.5 reasonable days to my Mexican casita.

I had an okay night of sleep and was on the road by about 6:45 because I had plans to meet John for brunch in Santa Fe, 3.25 hours away. It being the crack of dawn on a Sunday, the espresso bar I’d been hoping to get my coffee at was shut tight, but there was a fresh pot of decent coffee on a the 7-Eleven, where I had to get fuel anyway.

It was still quite dark out when a car passed me honking madly. It wasn’t until the passenger rolled down his window and yelled, “GO RIDERS!” that I realised they were fellow Saskatchewanites!

I paused at a rest area and caught a Colorado sunrise.



Next rest area, probably in New Mexico at this point, had markedly different vegetation than what I’d been seeing up to that point:


I’d asked John to choose a place not too far from the interstate and he suggested Cafe Fina, which was right at the on and off ramp to I-25. Very convenient! You order at a counter, get a number to place your on your table, and then your meal is brought to you. John had Tex-Mex brunchy food and I had lunch food. We both had a very delicious coffee. We ate outside and the weather was perfect for it!

Vicki has requested photos of food, so here is the yummy chicken, bacon, caramelized onion, and cheese sandwich (hold the mayo) I had with a really good salad:


John and I had a quick catchup, then it was time for  me to head off again. I was due for fuel, so I asked him where I should go and he said that if I wasn’t desperate, I should wait to get fuel at a pueblo a short distance down the road. He was right. I paid less than $2 a gallon!!! AND they gave me a free coffee. 😀


My next stop was Socorro, where I paused to do some hotel research and scored another deal on Priceline. From there, it was a very long 2.5 hours to Deming, where I am hoping to get a good night’s sleep. I’m in no rush tomorrow and probably won’t get going till mid to late morning. There’s a Walmart almost right next door, so I might do my shopping there instead of stopping in Benson. Perhaps I should check the sales tax rates before I decide!

I’ve been seeing Mexico tourism-related signs for a bit now. I can’t believe I’m already essentially at the border!

Off to find a cold beer. It is HOT out!