Raton, New Mexico
April 11-14, 2018
We drove north of Santa Fe to spend a couple of quiet days in the small town of Raton. It’s amazing how locations within the same state, only a couple of hours away from each other, can feel like worlds apart. Raton was home to a coal mine that closed 17 years ago, so now it’s 1/2 small NM town, and 1/2 depressing ghost town. I wanted to do a photo collection of all the old, interesting, hotel signs in 50’s & 60’s style that still stood proudly, if a little delapidated, in front of motels, the doors and windows covered with boards. The town K-Mart just closed last week, and the lovely visitors center is usually closed because it’s only run when volunteers are available to sit at the desk.
But that was all ok with us. We’ve had a wonderful but busy few weeks of exploring fun new cities and getting to know amazing new friends. So a couple of quiet days in a sleepy little town was just what the doctor ordered.
The sites in our campground were by far the closest together we had ever seen. When we first rolled into our site, we quickly realized that the sewer connection for the neighboring site was completely underneath our RV steps, so we maneuvered over a few feet. At that point, we were so close to our utility connections on the opposite side that we couldn’t open our slide. We moved back over into a centered position, hoping that no one would be assigned to the site next to us on either side. It seemed that this place only places campers in every other site to avoid a problem, but I can’t imagine what it would be like to camp there with it full.
The girls & I considered driving out to a nearby volcano, but some interesting spring weather convinced us to just stay home in our PJ’s all day instead, sipping hot cocoa, reading, and watching videos.
We also met another full time RV friend and enjoyed a great evening of chatting about life on the road over a selection of local beers.
Since we’d stayed up late to soak up time with this friend, I was especially slow getting up and around the next morning. I went by the office to ask if a late check-out would be permissible. The tall, gruff woman who managed the place, with a face that seemed perhaps Native American, but short, shock-white hair that reminded me of my own grandma replied, “Oh, sure. We aren’t gonna come out there after ya with a shot gun or anything.”