We stopped in Truth or Consequences, another of those sleepy southern New Mexico towns, but this one with a little notoriety. Those of you who are closer in age to myself and Jan will probably remember the old quiz show Truth or Consequences hosted by Ralph Edwards back in the 50’s on the radio. The town, originally known as Hot Springs accepted Edwards’ offer to rename itself on the tenth anniversary of the radio show and for the next 50 years Edwards would show up to celebrate the renaming of the town, which officially took place on April 1. The “fiesta” continues till this day.
The town hosts numerous mineral-rich, sulphur-free hot springs in riverside pools with beautiful mountain views. We took a one hour soak in a private pool overlooking the Rio Grande river with the hot springs registering 108º, and felt so much better for the effort. If you are ever in Truth or Consequences, stay at the Riverbed Resort.
Thirty miles from Truth or Consequences is Spaceport America, the world’s first purpose-built commercial spaceport designed to make space and sub-orbital travel as accessible to everyone as air travel is today. This was a really cool place – the new space age and all very real.
It is home to Virgin Galactic’s WhiteKnightTwo and SpaceShipTwo as well as SpaceX’s Falcon 9R. There are over 18,000 acres at the facility and the spaceport is actively recruiting additional tenants, including Blue Origin, the spaceship company owned by Jeff Bezos of Amazon fame. Funded by the state of New Mexico and Sierra and Dona Ana counties, Spaceport America will provide cutting edge facilities and a wonderful location for astronauts to train and ultimately realize their dreams of traveling to space.
The house that Richard Branson built, Gateway to Space Terminal.
You walk up the Astronaut Walk and into the gallery that hosts numerous interactive exhibits, a G-Shock simulator (Jan did this), and panels of the history of space flight.
The Spaceport Operations Center was kind of open to visitors, although access was limited because of a planned mission later in the day. The state of the art fire station was super impressive, with the monster fire truck (we’re in the driver’s seat)getting up to 60 mph in three minutes.
The spaceport hasn’t lived up to its promises yet, and the locals are little upset that a lot of their tax money was used to help build the facility and little in return has happened. But if you believe that space travel and sub-orbital flights are the next frontier, then hop on board on any of the many industries that support this travel. Space entrepeurniship is the next huge market, and our kid’s kids are the one who will be leading this journey.
Ahh – Kung Pao Chicken. A basic entrée at almost every Chinese restaurant in the world. This recipe from my favorite spice shop, Savory Spice, uses Shichimi Togarashi, a seven spice blend all rolled into one and available at Savory Spice Shop in person or on-line. This dish is good!