Border country – Day 61 (4892 miles)


We are still very much in the desert, and these swirls of dust are a common sight, known as Chiindii by the Navojos, sounds much more spiritual than Dust devil!


“Can you hear that noise?”  A question John has asked me many times in various vehicles over the last 26 years.  I don’t think I have ever answered yes!  For me any strange noise originating from a vehicle is easily rectified by increasing the volume of the radio, sorted!  I realise this flippant manner is ridiculous and it’s a good job John takes this type of issue seriously.  So, he had the front wheels off to check for dry wheel bearings.  Luckily (well kind of) all was well with the bearings but he can still hear a noise.  It seems to get worse when we’ve been on the road for a few hours.  Tomorrow will be a good test as we cross the border into Mexico and want to get a few hundred miles south in what is likely to be plus 38c temperatures based on what we’ve had the last few days.  Watch this space.

Our last sightseeing trip in the US was the White Sands National Monument, aptly named don’t you think?










Can you spot Juanita?

By the time we left at noon the temperature was over 30C but the sand which is a actually gypsum was lovely and cool to walk on. Before being given national monument status in 1933 the areas was thought to be a possible site for gypsum mining but the price of raw gypsum was very low at the time.  In the museum, there was a board that stated the average human would consume approximately 28lbs of gypsum in their lifetime!  Apparently mainly from beer, wine, blue cheese, canned foods and toothpaste and if you like to lick plasterboard it could be more!

As we headed out of New Mexico and into Arizona we came to a US customs checkpoint.  We were travelling parallel to the Mexican border and didn’t expect to be stopped and questioned until be actually crossed into Mexico.  On hearing we weren’t US nationals we were asked for our passports, we had copies to hand but the originals were tucked away.  Initially we were told we had to get them out but the next question was “Where are you going after the US?”, when we confirmed it was Mexico the passports seemed to be forgotten and questioning switched to, “Are you going alone”, “Without a guide” and her final comment was “Well I wouldn’t be going down there!”

Mexico really does bring such mixed reactions, from those that have been, those that haven’t been plus the myriad of information in the media.

Well, we want to go and we’ll be fine, sensible and fine.????☀️.




14 thoughts on “Border country – Day 61 (4892 miles)”

  1. CV joint? Is it torsion bar suspension? If so to rear mounts go dry on Pajeros and the older version of the van I had…

    1. Thanks Will, I get the impression from Mr Mc that this information was gratefully received and very useful. We happened across a motor spares place today and purchased a grease gun. I think everything that can be greased will be tomorrow (talking about the van of course!).

  2. You will love Mexico!! I made the mistake of not getting stamped in to Mexico, both self and bike, which you don’t need to do if you are going back to the States (this is a few years back) and there is just an un manned border south. Had to fly back to the border from far south to get it. Boring and a casual oversight, but one born of the relaxedness of Mexico.
    Loving your lovely writings Jane! Hx

    1. Hi Harry, yes we did remember your blog entry detailing your “detour”, it certainly sharpened our minds! Even though we went through a pretty big border and did get everything we needed paperwork wise we were quite surprised at how little interest there was in any kind of vehicle check. Still it made for a pretty quick and painless crossing. We are planning a trip to Copper Canyon in the next week or so. Bit of a luxury to use the train and stay in a hotel for a night but supposedly it is a great way to do it. Hope you are well and having a good summer and Batty is in good shape. Love J & J

  3. What a fascinating place. So the beautiful white sand is gypsum. It looks great against the bluest skies, nature at its best.
    We had our first NRRA meeting and talked a lot about you both- but managed to get through the agenda items too, including insurance.- All is well!
    Good luck as you venture into Mexico- stay safe and I hope Juanita continues to thrive as you drive!

    1. Thanks Lisa, us and a new addition to the street to talk about! Insurance etc but have seemed a bit tedious so well done for getting through it, especially as they don’t have any decent gin to a the WH to help the evening along!xx

    2. The skies really are that blue, I used a polarising filter to remove the haze.
      Glad the meeting went well, thinking of you all.

  4. John, you are on the right side of the car for that noise but it is probably inside the car. Still can’t tune it out after 26 years?

  5. Hi John & Jane, great photos and blogs. It’s a great catch up. Sorry I can’t give John advice on the suspicious noise as I am more of a supply man. The forecasters predict that Autumn is arriving this weekend so I think we will all be a bit envious of the sunshine you are getting. Kieren and Zoe are off to Crete next week so the house we resume back to normal running. You probably don’t have chance to watch the Olympics but it has been fantastic, GB are second in the medal table! Even Lisa and Yasmin have been inspired, Yasmin is trampolining and Lisa has taken up runing.

    Take care and drive safety in

    1. Hi Neil, the wonders of wifi and our own VPN, we can get BBC I player so watched Super Saturday and the field and track tonight so have seen some of the exciting bits like both Mo’s races and the ladies 4 x 400m. Both times on campsites with rather slow wifi so a bit of screen freezing but still exciting.

      Wish Kieran and Zoe happy hols from us and tell the girls we look forward to FB videos of their new activities.
      Love J & Jxx

  6. Good morning from Egham – Just showed all BLOGS to Jen and Margy. Off to see Christian Friday. Love Dave, Jenny, Margy. Family party tomorrow.

    1. Love to all, enjoy tomorrow and give our love to Christian and family. Any chance of getting Margies tablet working ?Xx

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