Saturday, July 5, 2008

The land of Wild Hogs and The Man Who Fell to Earth

Today, I decided to go for a hike in the Sandia National Forest. I wanted to take the Faulty Loop trail which is about 8 miles up and around the mountain. The last time I went up this trail, I went the opposite way and ended up getting lost because the trail is not well marked in this direction. I bushwacked and backtracked and cut across the mountainside until I ended up several miles beyond my destination. I had to hitch a ride back to my parked car because it was so far to walk back. So, this time, I packed a map of the Sandia Mountains, water (very important), snacks, camera, phone, rain gear, and cd player. When I pulled into the parking lot, two couples came over and told me the trail was roped off. I guess the forest was closed off because of fire danger. They were asking about places to see in the area. I knew they were from out of state, so I advised them to go to the town of Madrid for the day. This is the town where Wild Hogs (starring Tim Allen, John Travolta, William H. Macy, and Martin Lawrence.) was filmed. Also, back in the seventies, they filmed The Man Who Fell to Earth (starring David Bowie, Candy Clark, and Rip Torn) in Madrid and other places in New Mexico, such as Fenton Lake, First Plaza Galleria Mall, and the town of Artesia.

Some time ago I did a picture tour of Madrid, so I will now enclose them for your viewing pleasure.

On the way, near the town of Golden, there is a pretty fence made of antique colored glass bottles.

Madrid was once a coal mining company town. Then the mine closed and the town died. In the seventies, hippies started homesteading the area, at first, occupying the old company town shanties, and then, building new structures. Madrid has continued to grow until now it is a thriving art colony. There is a mining museum and a tavern/restaurant. At Christmas, they put up so many lights, Madrid can be seen from outer space.

This is Madrid in the late seventies. People were actually living in these old shacks. The old coal mine is completely gone now. It burned several times before it was finally torn down.

When first entering Madrid, you come across this impressive stone archway leading into a courtyard.

Notice the art on the outside wall.

One of the locals. ;)

There are some very interesting shops

Another local
View of the town from the mine hill

The mine hill nowadays

Another view of the mine hill

Looking down on the whole town

There are lots of artsy things around town

Bikers hang out at the Mineshaft Tavern.

Some more of the local art- a totem pole.

Maggie's Diner set from the movie, Wild Hogs.
I hope you enjoyed the photos. I always enjoy visiting Madrid. I bought some local turquoise earrings there last year, very pretty flat green stones.

Anyway, back to my day. Since I couldn't go hiking, I went shopping. I bought cds of Cat Stevens and Lou Reed. Did I tell you, Cat Stevens was my first musical hero, even before Bowie? I have all his albums except Matthew and Son. Today, I bought Tea for the Tillerman since I had misplaced the old one. I even have the Teaser and the Firecat first edition storybook illustrated by Cat Stevens and written in three languages.
T4tT is basically the soundtrack for Harold and Maude. I love that movie. Only, the last time I watched it, I cried and cried. My mom turned eighty years old last year and at the end of H & M, it's Maude's 80th birthday. I will not spoil the movie but it's a classic. Cult, that is. Harold is a young man who is terribly unhappy. He is always trying to kill himself, until he meets Maude and falls in love with her.
Trailer for Harold and Maude


Twinville said...

I like all the photos you took in Madrid. John and I both have a fondness for Madrid. Noone else ever seems to understand why.
It's such a unique place, isn't it?
Never been there for the holidays. Had no idea about the lights. We'll have to go this Christmas season.

I've yet to see H&M, but you've piqued my interest. Love the Cat Stevens Trailer.
I must listen to more Cat Stevens music to help burn away the unending replay of "I want to Live in a WigWam" in my head. Bwahahah!

the7msn said...

I had no idea that "Man who fell to earth" was filmed in Madrid, one of my most favorite places on the planet. I LOVE the Mineshaft Tavern, especially their corn chowder. And, I kid you not, every time I've been there, I've ended up dancing in a conga line. Unintentionally of course. But I'll be walking to the ladies' room and those happy patrons just grab whomever's nearby and make you join in.