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When I lived in Albuquerque NM, The Land of Enchantment

Updated: 6 days ago


Full disclosure we only lived in Albuquerque for a week but it was the first time we stayed in a short term rental or hotel without any home to go back too. After 18 months of downsizing we had everything we owned in our Toyota Tacoma and some precious mementos left behind in a small storage room in Colorado. In truth it felt like we were starting a vacation and in some ways, even today two years later, that feeling has not gone away. Life's everyday pace feels different when you are always new in town and won't be staying for long.


It appeared that Albuquerque was happy to have us by the sunset we were welcomed with as we drove into town on that first night. Mike and I grew up in Arizona and even though we have seen many southwestern sunsets we both agree that they never fail to impress. This sunset on Sunday, March 7th, 2022 filled the sky with swirls of lavender, orange and soft pink. A stunning array of pastel colors over the backdrop of the mountains surrounding the city. We took it as a sign we were on the right path.


I chose our first new temporary home which was an Airbnb located in the Old Town neighborhood of ABQ. It was walkable to dining, groceries, shopping and entertainment and most importantly, since we still have to earn a living, high speed internet for Mike to do his job. The location was excellent and as a bonus the rental had a bird theme, as in birds everywhere. Not real birds but stuffed birds, ceramic birds, bird cages and even a tree with birds in the bedroom. It became a fun game to find them stuck on the fan, in the air-conditioning vents and on top of the refrigerator to name just a few. In my old life I would never decorate with so many knick knacks. In this new life though, as a professional nomad, I did not seem to mind them. It's probably because I did not have to dust them or commit to living with them full time. They do say "life is for the birds" but if given the choice I prefer mine real and living outside.


When Mike and I sold our home in Colorado we both agreed that we did not know where we would want to buy another one. That helped bring about our nomad plan. Why decide for now? Why not live a bunch of places and figure out where we want to be as we go along? If life gives us the privilege of growing older and wanting to settle in again we will pick somewhere we know we like because we have lived there. As far as Albuquerque goes, would we settle there? Yes, we would. It's got beautiful mountains, lakes and valleys. The weather is pretty good, maybe a little windy at times but not overly hot or cold. The people seem friendly and the city has a cool offbeat vibe. The food is off the charts and you don't have to pay a lot for it. It is steeped in arts, culture and history. My favorite scene being the lowriders who cruise the downtown strip in their tricked out cars. My Dad, who passed when I was a teenager, was a "car guy" and so the rev of the engines and smell of gasoline made me feel at home. On the flip side people drive way to fast in the city making it dangerous for people who use their feet as transportation. I learned very quickly that pedestrians in the cross walk mean nothing to the majority of drivers. There is a state wide campaign to slow people down so if you are reading this and live in ABQ spread the words "slow down" cause other then a bunch of speedsters you have a great city. Please take in to consideration readers that I had not yet been on the New Jersey turnpike which means I didn't really know what speed was. I'll get to that experience soon.


Before I move on to living in El Paso I'll leave you with a few favorites from our time in the "Land of Enchantment".


Monte Cristo liquor Store and Steakhouse. If you are generation x like my husband and I this is the kind of place your parents took you to for a steak dinner. The only thing that has changed is maybe a few of the staff and you aren't allowed to smoke inside anymore.


The Guild Theater- the oldest movie theater in ABQ near the University. Mike and I attended Dan Savage's "Hump 2022 Film Festival" which was two firsts for us. One we had never been to a film festival and two never watched porn in public. It taught us more then we expected and not in any sort of sleezy way. We learned people are different, weird, wonderful and brave. To understand what I am saying give it a try for yourself. The festival comes around every year and will be in a city near you. Dan Savage, fyi, is an american author, media pundit, journalist and LGBTQ+ advocate. He also founded the non-profit It Gets Better to uplift and empower gay youth.


ABQ Botanical Gardens and Aquarium - In my new life as a nomad I am also playing around with taking pictures. What better place to practice then a place with flowers, plants and fish. A great way to spend the day and the grounds are beautiful done.

Stock Photo


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