Since leaving Odessa we have pushed forward pretty hard: two days without water hook ups in Balmorhea sledding the sand dunes, one day drycamped in the Guadalupe Mountains to hike the Devil’s Hall trail, and a half day parked in the visitor center lot in Carlsbad for cavern hiking. Simply put, we were tired and needed to stop for preferably three days of recharge, in every respect: we needed full hook ups to get our batteries, water tanks, and black water tank charged, topped off, and emptied, respectively. We were way behind on laundry and needed to catch up on this blog as well, but on a more basic level, we just wanted to settle for a couple of days after a very fun but hectic schedule.
While we normally prefer nature to cities and towns, if it is a particularly interesting “people place” then we can certainly be lured in. Since our next major destination was generally north-west, and the famous town of Roswell was only 90 miles or so north, it fit the bill perfectly. We checked the RV reviews and our favorite bloggers for park recommendations. If we possessed a tow vehicle we likely would have opted for one of the state parks on the outskirts of town, but lacking a tow we needed something close to the action within bicycle or walking distance. We called our tentative top choice, learned they were completely full, then called Trailer Village RV Park and got one of their last available openings.
The park is clean, well maintained, nicely decorated and landscaped (allowing for the general browness of New mexico in winter) fully equipped for 50 amp service, has inclusively priced cable and WiFi (very good by RV park standards), with coin laundry rooms available. The no-nonsense co-owner, Debbie, checked us in, gave us the run down on the park, secured our 10% military discount (also honored for Good Sam members, must pay cash to receive this discount) and got us situated in short order. After discussions with several of the longer term park residents, we feel we lucked in to the right park. One of the other options has theft and security issues, and our other top choice was described as an empty lot behind someone’s house, regardless of how good their customer service reviews are. Besides, Trailer Village RV Park is the closest to downtown Roswell: 1.4 miles. Bottom line: if heading to Roswell, don’t let the somewhat typical and uninspired name fool you, this is the best bet for a full hook up park in town.
Best of all, Trailer Village had three other rigs from RVillage.com present, our first ever encounter with people for that group after several near misses in Florida. RVillage is sort of a Facebook for RVers, but without the drama and predatory data mining. You register, check in to campgrounds, see who else is present, send them a message to plan a get together, etc. Best of all, when headed for a destination you can see who is already there and ask questions in advance. Thus we met Janet and Randy, Janice and John, and Mike. We got together for drinks and fantastic appetizers (thanks Mike, that coconut-pineapple-habanero jam was indescribable) which, under the influence of four bottles of wine, morphed into a full meal when Randy pulled out what I can only describe as the least healthy yet utterly delicious thing we have had in months: a pork loin inside a hollowed out baguette, with the whole thing wrapped in bacon. He cooked it on his Green Egg, and in tandem with my step dad’s strong recommendation, has us pretty much convinced that we need to get one of the smaller versions of this remarkable device.
The Roswell contingent at an unofficial RVillage.com rally
There was also this nearby town with a UFO fetish. We spend most of our second day in the heart of UFO mania. Pretty much every small business and even many of the chains push the alien thing hard in their street front advertising. It makes for an entertaining photo opportunity from nearly every corner. We got so wrapped up in it that we nearly missed our opportunity to visit the International UFO Museum. Because we arrived only half an hour before closing they let us in for half price ($2.50 vice $5 each). Yes, I’m deeply skeptical, but it was a fun and interesting to tour. My only criticism is that they need to update the displays; some of them appear to have stagnated in 1975 or so.
The aliens are EVERYWHERE in downtown Roswell
Three days is sort of the sweet spot for us in terms of length of stay at parks, though as many longer term full time RVers mention, everyone tends to slow down their pace as time goes on and you get beyond the “OMG I must see everything right now” early phase. Next year a week my be the prefered stop length. But after three days in Roswell we were eager to get back on the road towards the Petrified Forest, Sedona, and Grand Canyon.
One of these things is not like the others, one of these things, doesn’t belong.