Tuesday, December 22, 2009

My Challenge to You

I just met a wonderful woman named Lisa setting in a local coffee shop where we shared some thoughtful ideas and experiences. It is always refreshing to meet people along your journey. I would like to challenge all my friends to talk to someone outside of your circle of friends and share a part of yourself and listen to their story. It is amazing what you can learn from others.

Today I met a woman writing a pile of cards to sent to her loved ones at a coffee shop. She was warm and full of kind words. It was a conversation that we were equally present in. She share stories of the area and stories from some of her travels.

The other day I encountered a homeless woman that had just arrived back in Albuquerque from Las Vegas. She told where to get a huge cup of coffee for cheap and where to get a free meal except on Thursdays. I think I enjoyed her company as much as she did. She had asked for 40 cents and I didn't have any change but I am the one that came away from the conversation richer.

So try it have a conversation with a stranger. I would love to hear of your experiences.
Best wishes to all

Monday, December 21, 2009

Holy Tamales


Staying with my Aunt Melly and Molly has been a great experience. I have thoroughly enjoyed catching up with them and getting no them after many years of being estranged. They have a beautiful home, great food, and seem to be up for adventures too.

For the first time ever, I got to enjoy Thai food at the Orchid Thai restaurant Melly and Molly shared a few of their favorite Thai foods with me. Uuuummmm… it was delicious. Then they took me to the river of lights show at Rio Grande Botanic Garden. It was so neat. I got to ride a mini train from the parking lot to the River of lights. Then, we experienced a fabulous light show of animals and larger than life plants made of lights. The children’s place was very neat. In classic Ryan form, I was acting my age (somewhere around 10) as we weaved through a maze of larger than life creatures and plant life. At the end we went to Snow people’s land. It was a work of art itself. A person could spend hours looking in to the land of glass and fiber optics. Thousands of snow people living their lives behind planes of glass made for happy pointing and conversation. We all had an amazing time.

The next day we cooked tamales and cakes. I learned to make tamales and pound cake. Melly and Molly are really good cooks. I may be spoiled for the rest of my trip. These were the best tamales I have ever had. I am so lucky to have some to take with me on my journey.
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Baby Limo

It is amazing how insecure driving a baby limo can make a person. WOW what and experience! Tiara and I went Christmas shopping and I was helping push the stroller. I would say this was like pushing a limo down a one-way alley, the wrong way, trying to avoid smashing into a trash truck, while protecting something priceless like babies. Call me crazy but it made me a little insecure. Once while shopping, A lady commented on how beautiful the boys were and that I must be a very happy father. WOW WHAO!!! All I could think of was how glad I am to not have children now and how I could see myself having children one day. My ears turned red immediately and I was so embarrassed. I guess to some folks that would be just another day at the office but for me babyland is intense. I have a great appreciation for mothers and especially parents of twins. Ethan and Dylan are very cute and much loved by their mother’s Tiara and Trish. It was truly an experience worth sharing.

Couch Surfing Cherry


Despite my nerves and fears of meeting new people I stopped in Las Vegas, NM to couch surf. It was an amazing experience one that I will never forget. I made some new friends and got to experience things that a normal vacationer or passerby would never. The couch surfing host I stayed with was wonderful. When I arrived at Rebecca’s house, my nervousness left and it was like reconnecting with an old friend. We talked and shared our stories for a bit; then she did her thing a while and I got to do mine. Then Rebecca took me to a couple of local bars where we met a couple of her friends. I met Jesse and Ben. We shared stories and talked about a variety of things for hours. They also shared some places that I might be interested in visiting along my travels. In the morning, Rebecca took me to a local coffee shop called the Traveler’s CafĂ© and a great little local burrito joint. Had it not been for Rebecca and couch surfing I would have not stopped at any of the local establishments that I was fortunate enough to experience. I found that being open to new experiences and adventures enabled me to meet new people and experience the local things that many miss. I also found that I have a lot to contribute to others as well as others have much to offer me.
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Tuesday, December 15, 2009

I'm off


Well here I go. Today, I left for my much anticipated journey. But not before I lost two yahtzee games to Bernice and Tony and received a warm send off from Lisa. I am grateful to all the wonderful people in my life. I hope to meet many new wonderful people along the journey. Which brings me to my first stop, Las Vegas, NM; where I met my first couch surfing host. My host Rebecca is very nice, laid back and just a cool person. She has a wonderful funky house with lots of personality. The weather here is great; I am warm and very comfortable. Tomorrow I will get to experience New Mexican food and a good coffee shop here in Las Vegas. Then, I am off to Albuquerque, NM to stay with some great friends and my Aunt. Stay tuned for my tour of Albuquerque.
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