Rose Garden & St. Patrick Cathedral

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAs our friends also wanted to discover the city then we were going around “touristy” places in El Paso. I mean, El Paso is not a place for regular tourists. There’s not so much to see or do but there are still some cool things and some museum to see.

So one of our stops was to the Rose Garden. I can say that I didn’t even think that it was existing as we were in the desert. But it does exist, although as it was late in the summer then the plants were getting really dry and it was losing its beauty. The weirdest thing in this garden was the sun clock because it was under the tree. So how can you tell time if the sun is not shining on it?!

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASt. Patrick Cathedral for Europeans looks like easy little regular church. For America it looks fancy and not an usual church as their culture there is a lot different. Inside was life size cardboard of the pope. So now I can say I have met the pope.

So if you should somehow end up in El Paso, then those two places are to check out. If it wouldn’t be so hot outside all the time then rose garden would amazing! So by any chance, it is better to go in spring when the temperature is still bearable and plants are freshly green.
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Marfa & Balmorhea, TX

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASo another weekend we went to meet some S. friends and took his sister with us. Really close to Marfa is a little Prada boutique just to look in. It is a super small house. But as Marfa is artsy town and full of galleries and hipsters then it made sense to have this shop there.

Marfa is a small town so we were just walking through heat to different art galleries. I would say they were really from one wall to another. But mostly we had just a big question what those artist were thinking making this art and then what were galleries thinking of having them?! In the end of those galleries we went to one local bar to get some cold drinks. I just love this place!! It was so film-like and cosy and full of stuff, just stuff.

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAnyways, we were in luck because they were opening a new gallery or a super big exhibition house . So everyone joining the opening got free bbq meat dinner and drinks. Also there were mariachis playing music. Although it was sad that no-one was dancing to them.Before we were heading to Odessa where we stayed at our friend’s place then we went to see Prada boutique again as others didn’t see that before. The road to Odessa was long as it was late ans driving in the dark.
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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe next day we had 2 other joining us and we went to Balmorhea. There is the largest spring-fed swimming pool in the world. It is a bit expensive to get to the park but as you can’t go swimming outside in the desert then it was cool to go with such heat. For me the water was quite warm but I’m used to cold water in Estonia. Some went diving also but I more enjoyed just legs in the water and sun on my skin. I’m not so friendly with the water.

As this part of Texas is in the desert then there’s not so much to see but those few places are still incredible. Also I was happy to explore the city in another way. Not always just buildings.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Gila and City of Rocks, NM

Our second road trip was to Gila National Forest which is close to Silver City, New Mexico. It is known for its Cliff Dwellings. The road there was so beautiful as we got out of the desert and into the mountains. Driving trough forests and over mountains.. Breath-taking!

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAs we had a storm just the day before then we couldn’t walk the whole hiking track to see the dwellings as the storm broke down some trees. So we could only walk on the one side of the cliff but at least we saw the main sights – the dwellings. It is actually amazing how people in the old times have build walls in the mountains and lived there. We had  a really lovely guide who had a lot of stories about people living there, most of them just assumptions but still amazing.

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The way back we made few stops to see the green views of the mountains. Living in Estonia the mountains are the thing I really miss and need.

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City of Rocks was actually right on our way to home, so we went to see it. It is not an actual city, it is called like that because of big are full of big rocks. It is best place to have adventures and climb the rocks and have fun! It has multiple camping and bbq areas. Also there’s a lot of Jack Rabbits. Not just a lot, the place is full of them! We had to drive so carefully trying not to hit any of them.
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On the way back home we were blessed with an amazing sky colours and a rainbow:

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Shooting and scenic drive

Oh wow.. I really didn’t have any motivation to continue my summer story but don’t worry, it will be finished! I am writing everything in advance to automatically post them after every few days.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

So as I got to spend July 4th in America again then obviously I needed to celebrate it! A day before the actual big day we went shooting in the desert with some friends. Never forget ear plugs! We did and I am not used to so heavy sounds, so I got ringing in my ears even the next day.

So we were shooting some different shotguns and in the end regulars guns. Honestly, I have no idea about what kind of guns they actually are. It was just my second time shooting actual guns. But as it hurt my ears a lot then in the end I was just throwing clay targets.

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As we had regular gun with us and we had some full water bottles left then we took turns to shoot them. I tried also and I hit half of the shots I had which I am really proud of. Same time our friends had a really hard time to hit anything. They are really shotgun people.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Also one of those free days we went to the Scenic Drive. The city is a lot different in the summer. The city is in the desert but it had quite a lot of artificial greenery. I just love driving around and seeing the city. Even more going on top of the mountain and seeing the whole city. Right now being away I really miss seeing mountains everywhere!
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Road to USA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASo yes, I have been away for a while again. I always think that I have more time when I am home but it is usually always the opposite. So I spent my summer in USA and I wanted to start from the beginning.

First I spent some time home with family celebrating the Midsummer’s Eve with grilled meat and had a bonfire during the sunset. And yes, the best meat is a bit crispy on the side and also my mom prefers a bit burnt, but it is still good burnt.
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So the next day on the way to Tallinn we made a stop in Viru bog. The weather was warm and sunny and perfect to walk trough the bog. A long road is with a boardwalk and has a nice view tower on the way. One the most beautiful bogs in Estonia that I have seen so far. Also you can go swim in those little lakes there.

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe next day we had a cruise to Stockholm to spend some more sisters time together before I went away. As we have been in Stockholm so many times then we are always trying to take a new route. This time we headed west of the city center, had a walk around the little island and went by the city hall.

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And then it was just around 30 hours of traveling to get to my final destination. I know it is long and I had so many airports but it was all worth it and El Paso is kind of middle of nowhere for the planes. So I went Stockholm-London-Chicago-Houston-El Paso. I had an overnight in London and that was a weird experience. First when last flights finally left I got a place to fall asleep. After a while security guys started waking people up and asking for nationality. Then they took as all away from the general waiting area and took us to one of the gate’s waiting areas. As all people staying overnight were there, then were some annoying kids screaming and middle of night they started asking for passports again. Finally in the morning we got back to the general waiting and then it was just enough time to charge my phone and get to my plane. WhatsApp-Image-20160627

And the coolest part was that as Chicago-El Paso was overbooked then they were looking for voluteers to get the later flight. As I didn’t have an exact seat number yet and I was last on the list then I got offered quite a big voucher money to get there few hours later. As I didn’t have all the tickets back yet then it was really good way to get better tickets back to Chicago.

And here’s a picture that describes best how we felt when I finally got there. I was really really tired and same happy and he was super happy.