Saturday, August 1, 2020

Deming, NM

Last night I made it to Deming, NM on my "walk" from my house to my friend Kim and Heidi's place in Queens, NY, a mere 3 weeks and 61 miles after reaching Lordsburg, NM.

Lordsburg to Deming on the trail to Queens.
Yikes.  It's gonna take a long time to travel 2,423 miles at this pace.  In fact, I ran the numbers the other day and if I average 3 miles/day (which is about right), I'll arrive on their doorstep in 2.2 years.  Ugh.  For some reason it makes me sad thinking about how far in the future that is, which is so weird because it's not real -- I'm not actually walking there in real life.  My brain is doing strange things to my thoughts and emotions in the time of covid.

The stats so far.
To boost my spirits, Kim and Heidi are now "heading" in my direction by calculating the miles they walk and bike each day, so now the new plan is to "meet" somewhere in the middle.  None of us are sure where this will be, but we know that once we meet there virtually, we're going to meet there again in real life once traveling is an option again.  This makes me ridiculously happy, knowing that we're making plans to see each other in the future, and even better in some random, obscure location that likely isn't a normal destination for anyone else, but it will be for us because of this experience.

So Deming.  I actually have fond memories of Deming.  I drove through it many times in the late 1990s as I moved from Arizona to Florida and back, with a couple of trips in between to move my partner out there and back (turns out he hated Florida, so it just wasn't going to work for us).  On the final trip back to Arizona we pulled off at a park in Deming to wait out the heat of the day -- we were driving my 1972 FJ55 Land Cruiser while hauling a homemade trailer with tiny tires, and it just seemed wise to let everything cool down so we wouldn't overheat or blow a trailer tire or something.  I wish I could remember the name of the park -- it was green and lovely and a relaxing place to spend some time and eat some food.

According to Wikipedia, Deming is home to the Silver Spike commemorating the meeting of the Southern Pacific and the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe railroads in 1881, the second transcontinental railroad completed in the U.S.

The Mimbres River floods the Deming area once a decade or so.

There are numerous ancient Native American sites around Deming, and the area is rich in native pottery artifacts, as well as beads, stone implements, stone carvings, graves, etc.

In the late 1960s you could buy your own 1/2-acre ranchette in Deming for only $299, or up to 2 acres for $1196.

Parts of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull and Creed II were filmed in Deming.

Along the way I spotted these beauties in the yard within 15 minutes of each other:

An Anna's hummingbird showing off
A broad-billed hummingbird not to be outdone

I don't know if it's because we no longer have neighborhood cats patroling the neighborhood or if it's just been an incredibly productive bird year in southern Arizona, but the birds and lizards have gone crazy in the backyard.  I can't even count the number of times I've almost stepped on a spiny lizard because there are so many back there.

Also, a shout out to my friend Jarrod, who reminded me that a couple of weeks ago it was he who suggested I start researching the different places I travel through on this adventure.  Wow, seriously?  I can't even remember a conversation from 2 weeks ago now?!  Something's wrong with my brain.

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