We rolled into El Paso yesterday, making great time from San Antonio. The landscape is gorgeous and varied, going from ranches and farmland to mesas and mountains. Mom and I enjoyed more music and a lot of heartfelt conversation. The pups were so good on the road, again. I really think Biscuit might be over his car phobia.
Not long after checking into the Hawthorne Suites, we met my cousin, Kelly, and her husband, Patrick, for dinner. We even got to tour their house on base at Fort Bliss (after a very thorough ID check at the gate). Their home is so lovely–a renovated ranch style, on the historic side of Fort Bliss, with a huge backyard and decorated with such care. Kelly is very smart and talented with a terrific eye for mixing classic new elements with meaningful furniture, photos and mementos. They took us up the mountainside at dusk to see the view of El Paso and Juarez from above. The lights are really gorgeous!
We ate at one of their favorite Tex-Mex places, the Angry Owl. Admittedly, I’m a tremendous wuss about spicy food. Jalapenos. Yikes. Red pepper flakes. Sickeningly overwhelming to me. Ghost peppers. I don’t even like to think about them. The queso and tostada nachos were way too spicy for my tender taste buds. So I got my old standby, chicken fingers and fries. You can’t go wrong with that. Patrick had to leave at 3 am for training so we left early and went back to our hotel.
Mom and I learned the hard way that the trees around the hotel are filled at night with roosting birds, who do NOT appreciate being disturbed. And that the sparse grass is full of cockleburs, nasty tiny things the size of a tiny pea with sharp spines and a tacky green mass in the center. They stick to the pads and hair between the puppies’ toes. Ouch! We found a business across the parking lot with a huge sod grass lawn, and thankfully, no cockleburs.
Tuesday! We slept in (thank you two hour earlier time difference!), ate breakfast at the local village inn, and did some neccessity shopping at Walmart. Then we walked the pups again and met Kelly at the hotel after she got off work. I can’t recall the name of the mall but it was very nice, with a Macy’s, Dillards, etc. Mom got me a fabulous Michael Kors purse and dress to celebrate and commemorate our trip! She found some cute tops for herself, better suited for this scorching climate. Kelly also took us to the Nordstrom Rack, where I found a matching Michael Kors wallet for my purse, some Paige denim black jeans and a matching set of Munkee Munkee pajamas (Henley style shirt and tiny shorts, all covered in cute dogs against a pale blue background, with bright light orange ribbing around the neck and sleeves.
We finished off our day with dinner at Landry’s seafood. Our server, Lisa, was so sweet and did an incredible job serving us. Mom and I both had fried shrimp; Kelly had crab stuffed shrimp. Kelly and Mom enjoyed white wine, while I had a coke (I’m still taking antibiotics, so I can’t imbibe yet). She works east coast hours on mountain time, so she gets up at 5 everyday. We bid her farewell for the night. I’m hoping we can visit some cool spots tomorrow and have tons more fun!
This is the most satisfying and thrilling trip I think I’ve ever experienced. It is such a joy to be spending this much time with Biscuit and Skyler, with Mom (I am beyond blessed to have this time with her), and with Kelly and Patrick. Life is a gift and I’m appreciating every day.
Mom, Kelly and Me
Biscuit having fun under the sheets…
Mom on the mountain…lovelier!
Kelly’s first and ONLY needlepoint project with Bam (huh, just like my one and only needlepoint sampler with Bam)
Another view of El Paso and Juarez