When I arrived at the hostel, there was a man with a, full head of hair and a beard sitting in the common area with a blanket around him. I thought about offering him some wine, then thought better of it.
A German couple came and went without much interaction.
The next morning, the man revealed himself to be rather creepy. While everyone else was getting dressed and planning a day….he seemed content to stay in what seemed like pajamas as he pulled out a tuperware container full of stuff and began to cook. Who was this guy? Was he a permanent resident? What was he doing there? I ended up going outside or sitting on the floor in my room to use the computer. He creeped me out.
I struck up a conversation with a young woman about the area and she asked me if I wanted company at White Sands. Oh hell no! I thought. I am not interrupting this freedom with some stranger. I attempted a polite decline. When she mentioned that she was disoriented by the curves of the mountain road and the altitude, I was glad I declined. I think she was looking for a stabilizing influence. Ain’t nobody got time for that.
The hostel host had a wonderful, huge map of the area on her wall. She began to show me all the attractions that were within a day trip of the hostel, offering a second night’s stay if I needed it. It was overwhelming. When I told her that I was headed to the Grand Canyon, she suggested a smaller one on the way, calling it magical.
I decided to go up to a sun observatory, then to White Sands and the Proving Grounds.