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If I had not been in my tent last night weighing it down, it would have blown into the next county.

It’s windy, cold (outside, but not in my sleeping bag), gray, and overcast this morning. But no rain. The weather apps kept telling me rain will begin “now” or “within 120 minutes,” but nothing. Not a drop. I had my rain gear ready all day, but finally put it away after setting up my tent.

In spite of the cold (perhaps because of it), I moved at a brisk pace today. I had to make up some of the four miles I didn’t walk yesterday as a result of the traffic accident. (No reports yet of fatalities in yesterday’s accident, but the skid marks look scary.)

I clocked 23 miles before deciding to set my tent up on the railroad track-side of the highway—the freight trains may be noisy, but so are the big trucks. And at least here I have less exposure to the highway.

Allsup’s is a chain of 300+ convenience stores in New Mexico, Texas, and Oklahoma. Outside the Melrose, New Mexico location, Shaun said hello and we chatted. He’d seen me walking and wanted to know what I was up to. I’ve had many drivers waving and/or honking “hello” to me at stops along the road. I find that most people are just plain friendly.

Hopefully I’ll be in a motel in Clovis tomorrow night—I do have a reservation. When the woman from Wyndham hotel group answered the phone, she actually said, “How may I grant your wish?” (Brother. That’s where I’d draw the line. Who thinks of these things?)

Artist of the day: Comedian/actor Steve Martin. I heard his Fresh Air interview today and have read his memoir, “Born Standing Up.” A very funny guy.

@ Melrose, New Mexico

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