I love to drive. I inherited my love of driving from my dad, and I'm fairly confident that love will transfer by osmosis to the girls. We've been throwing the kids in the car for long hauls since they were babies. Most families don't consider 7 hours in the car quality family time, but the Rileys are road warriors.
We made our annual pilgrimage to Albuquerque this weekend for the New Mexico State Feis (that's an Irish dance competition for new readers of the blog). We normally spend a couple days in Albuquerque, but they changed the weekend, so we drove over Friday and came right back yesterday.
Meg and I really enjoy the drive to Albuquerque, especially Hwy 26 from Deming to Hatch. We discovered Hwy 26 on our first trip back up north after we moved to Tucson, and we've been taking it ever since. Hwy 26 is only about 50 miles long, a short cut between Interstate 10 and Interstate 25. There is very little traffic, and if you do have to pass someone, it's never a problem. Hwy 26 is a classic two lane road, and the scenery is fantastic: wide open, big sky country. It's the kind of road that makes you feel like you're driving in an older America, in a simpler time. It's the kind of road that just makes me feel good.
We stopped on the way back yesterday to eat at Sparky's, an old school burger joint with a Southwestern twist and a Hatch institution. Sparky's was hopping, and I have feeling it does pretty well, Hwy 26 funneling hungry tourists through its doors. The food was just OK, but it's not about the food, it's the experience. We bought t-shirts for the girls, and they're very excited about wearing them to school this week. Meg bought some chile powder at one of the many places selling a plethora of chile products, and we were on our way.
It's always fun to drive a road like Hwy 26 and catch a glimpse of small town life in a cool place like Hatch. There are a lot of great roads and small towns in the US. Got any you want to share from your neck of the woods?