Just as I was leaving Santa Fe, I got a reminder from an old friend that I had to check out the art collective, MeowWolf, before I left. So I headed over in the bus and spent $20 for a ticket. Best 20 bucks I have ever spent. MeowWolf was amazing, really something unique and unlike anywhere I had ever been before. I spent 3 hours there exploring what once was an old bowling alley and now is an artists playground. Stimulating all your senses to explore, solve mysteries, interoperate interactive art and have a great time. MeowWolf is really hard to describe, but a super trip place I highly recommend to kids or adults of any age. I spent a few hours there, stopped at a taco truck in the parking lot, and then headed out towards Texas on Route 66. I stopped for a dip in the Blue Hole of Santa Rosa, the Mesalands Dinosaur Museum, and a few other other oddball Route 66 gems. I find a lot of "worlds giant ball of yarn" places to take breaks while driving on the app Roadtrippers and Atlas Obscura. Roadtrippers also helps me log where I've been and where I'm going. It helps create the easiest drives between destinations and places to see. It's been 3 months and 7 states. Next stop is New Orleans and the east coast.
I arrived in Santa Fe and camped in a Sam's Club parking lot for a few days. I enjoy big cities as much as I enjoy being out in nature. It's easy to find free camping in more rural areas or in small towns. You can look for free camping in parks, designated free camp sights, BLM, etc. In the city I have to find Walmarts, Sams Clubs, fairgrounds, etc. for a free overnight stay. I use an app for the cities called rvovernight. Sometimes if there are other RVs or vans boon-docking, I introduce myself to them. In this Sam's Club there was a man, his dog and his 13 year old daughter camped there who were so friendly, they would invite me onto the roof of their Winnebago to watch the sunset every night. This young 13 year old girl was brilliant, creative and a coding wizard. I enjoyed the time I spent with them. During the day I ventured into downtown Santa Fe. Got to visit the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum. She's always been an idol to me, and I enjoyed reading more about her life and seeing her works in person. There were some interesting old churches to see, but most of Santa Fe seemed like wealthy older tourists. I went to a giftshop and bought some postcards. While I was scraping the bottom of my backpack to summon up the last of my change, the woman next to me very non-chalantly spent $800 cash on a silver necklace.
Driving into New Mexico with a brand new transmission was a relief. No more worrying about breaking down, for now. I passed through Taos, a small Native American town. It was a really neat town with lots of local artists. I had a great time, till an older gentleman offered me free jewelry in exchange for some "special favors". I politely declined, and on my way out the door I avoided his grabby hands. Traveling alone as a woman, men sometimes make unwanted advances. I kept on rolling south to Santa Fe. The drive between Taos and Santa Fe was fantastic. Along the Rio Grande river all the trees were changing color and the views were fantastic. I took the drive very slow and probably annoyed everyone driving around me. The bus is slow already, but in New Mexico I realized my speedometer was reading 10mph slower than I am actually driving. This mistake was probably made during the transmission fix.