Truth or Consequences is a tiny town. There really isn’t much here besides the hot springs. I am rather embarrassed to admit that I have no desire to explore the hot springs even though several people have briefed me on the various places to go have a soak.
So I’m really not disappointed that I only really had today to go out and explore, or that just about every restaurant and shop in town is closed on Mondays. I didn’t come here for tourism, but to work. If I had been in a more happening community, it would have been much harder for me to focus on work this past week. I did about eight days of work in five and I am exhausted, but now I can take a few days off this week without worrying about it. I am going to be very busy with work soon enough and have actually turned out work for today through Wednesday!
So Truth or Consequences is a spa town that used to be called Hot Springs. Its tourism industry hinged on the healing qualities of their water. In 1950, radio host Ralph Edwards announced a contest that he would do a show at the first town that changed its name to Truth or Consequences, the name of his program. Hot Springs won.
I read some really interesting info about the name change today, mostly that it was rather contested and the town was polarized about it. But it really sounds like it was a major win for the town because of all the free advertising Edwards’ program would bring. Plus, there are hot springs everywhere, but there is only one Truth or Consequences.
So that’s the very brief history of the town. I left home around 10:00 this morning and hit the visitors’ centre about two blocks away. The main core of T or C is very walkable.
The lady at the visitors’ centre was friendly and helpful. She confirmed that the museum, hot springs, lunch, and visiting whatever boutiques were open were all there was to do today. She gave me a map and off I went to the museum.
The Geronimo Springs Museum is the nearly ubiquitous small town museum, filled to bursting with local artifacts arranged as logically as possible. Admission on the website said $6, but it was just $5. Staff was very cold and unfriendly and so I have no idea why since they took my money and ignored me for the rest of my visit.
I spent a little over an hour in the museum, but could have stretched that out a bit more if I had read more of the historic documents presented. It’s a very good little museum and I learned a lot about the local history and colourful folk inhabiting the area, including the famed Apache warrior Geronimo. Here are some highlights:
It was too early for lunch when I came out, so I went back home to research restaurant options since the most appealing place, serving Asian-fusion (!), that was recommended by the visitors’ centre lady was was closed. I went back out about an hour later and decided to try the downtown burger joint, A&B, since reviews for their burgers were really good. It wound up being a rather disappointing and expensive meal at $7.42 for a cheeseburger, fries, and drink combo. The burger was okay, with a good bun, but I prefer the meat to be seasoned a bit and this was just a ground beef topped with lettuce, tomato, mustard, and pickles. Very juicy, though, I’ll give it that. The fries were disappointing. For my beverage, I rediscovered the wonderful U.S. offering of real brewed non-sweetened iced tea.
After lunch, I walked down Broadway and window shopped. There were so many cute little vintage and antique shops I would have liked to stop in, but, alas, they were shut tight. Then, I saw an oasis in the desert, the Moon Goddess shop, with its door open, so I went in. Aaaaah. My kind of shop, New Agey and smelling of patchouli and full of treasures. I was there for ages, going through all the racks when I realised that prices were reasonable! Unfortunately, there was almost nothing in my size, but I did get a really good deal on a long black skirt, so my digging wasn’t for naught.
The owner and I had a nice chat about the quirks of small towns and she was surprised when I told her that Mondays are a very common day off in all sizes of communities because so many places are now open on Sundays. She rang and packaged up my skirt and off I went home.
I’m tired and still fighting a cold, so I hope that this post doesn’t sound like I have any negative feelings about T or C. Museum people notwithstanding, the folks here are really friendly and it’s a lovely little community with all the services, much like Assiniboia. I’m really glad that I stopped in.