Becky and I blinked at each other in stunned silence. Becky said "So we could just turn left on Menaul and go the half-mile to I-25 and head north?" "Sure," said the clerk. "That would work too."

Becky turns into an eggplantIt worked just fine. At R.E.I., Becky picked up a green rain hat and a purple nylon poncho. They were completely effective against the weather, even though they made her look like an eggplant.

Since we were already up on the northeast side of town, we decided to try the Tramway in spite of the rain. Becky pointed out that you can see a spectacular view of Albuquerque on a post card in any gift shop, but the real fun of the Tramway is watching the the trees and rocks a thousand feet below you while you swing up the mountainside.

We howled with laughter at the topiaried sagebrush that lines Tramway Road NE near Albuquerque Acres West, like somebody's trying to turn them into boxwoods.

The clouds pulled away from the base of the mountains as we approached Tramway. It wasn't a miracle or anything like that; the sky remained overcast and the rain continued to fall, but at least we could see the mountain. We shared the gondola with only four other people--rainy serendipity.

View from the tramBecky was right. The view below was magnificent. You see it as you would from an airplane, but traveling slowly enough to absorb it and savor it.

I pondered the geology of the rift valley and how long it took to produce that landscape.

Becky has a talent for drawing my attention to things that she enjoys and that I would miss otherwise because I live so much in my head. "Look down there--the fall colors are already showing." "There's a waterfall." "Wouldn't you love to ride outside, on top?"