South


true grit floridians 2

Your fearless fellow borderlander returned to Miami just in time to ride out Hurricane Irma.  With 6.5 million under mandatory evacuation, it was safer to stay put than add to the chaos of the roads – where gas shortages were prevalent 4 days prior.  Then, a day or two before […]


water ballerinas 3

From the ever-borderland of Miami Beach, here is some water ballet from the Momentum Dance Company, performed at an Art Deco gem, the National Hotel. ★Happy Independence Day!★ ” order_by=”sortorder” order_direction=”ASC” returns=”included” maximum_entity_count=”500″]


border classic: review of alan weisman’s la frontera

La Frontera: The United States Border with Mexico by Alan Weisman My rating: 2 of 5 stars This sprawling journey along the Mexican border is a classic in borderlands literature: it sings the songs of unsung lives while also crossing into identification with our southern neighbors. Identification can help understanding, […]


you do voodoo

Where else but in the borderlands of New Orleans can you visit the spiritual borderland of voodoo? Last year I visited the town’s Voodoo Museum, which boasts that it is “the ORIGINAL and ONLY actual VOODOO MUSEUM in New Orleans, and the World.” Beyond the starkness of the claim, much […]


gulfing

Up from Brownsville, TX, the land border changes to a sea one, arcing across East Texas, through Louisiana all the way to Florida.  The luxury of hugging the Gulf and escaping the interstates is pure road bliss.   [please hover over images for captions]   ” order_by=”sortorder” order_direction=”ASC” returns=”included” maximum_entity_count=”500″]


tex-mex border

After Big Bend, Texas plunges south again, transitioning from the desert southwest of Pecos (where law, west of the Pecos, was the Wild West) to the balmy tropical climes of the Rio Grande corridor, with the border towns of Del Rio, Laredo, Hidalgo, and Progreso.  Come see parts of the […]


texas farm road 170

Among the most beautiful, and long, border-hugging roads in the US, Texas Farm Road 170 runs alongside the Rio Grande and, further south, enters Big Bend State Park.  This is my third drive along the enchanting valley, whose desert blooms and emerald rivering startle every time.  Running fifty miles from […]


el malpais nat’l monument, nm

El Malpais: the badlands of central-west New Mexico offer sharp lava rocks covering a 40-mile valley sided by smooth sandstone bluffs, just east of the Continental Divide.  The McCartys Crater poured lava 2,000 to 3,000 years ago, making the valley all but uninhabitable.  Sandwiched between Navajo and Acoma reservations, the badlands […]


gulf coasting in florida

On a recent roadtrip, I got to take my time along Florida’s Gulf Coast, from Tallahassee south. What a quirky variety the coast boasts, with more old time Florida than the Atlantic corridor. Unfortunately, my mission to see the Mermaid Water Extravaganza at Weeki Wachee was stymied for the second […]


borderlands in santa fe

The first reading west of the Mississippi was so welcome and overdue, as much of the story takes place out West (north and south). An edited video from the reading: My nephew Christopher is the professional-level videographer.  Thanks to everyone who attended and asked such good questions.  As reward, a […]


santa fe book reading

You are cordially invited to a reading & signing by Ben Batchelder of his recently launched American adventure, Borderlands USA: Or, How to Protect the Country by Car, presented by the op.cit. books and Earthdog Press, in Santa Fe, New Mexico on Friday, July 10th from 6-7pm. Come travel with Ben […]


rio grande road bliss in texas

The remote border between southwest Texas and Mexico is among my favorites.  It follows the Rio Grande and dips down into Texas’s big bend (following the river), entering several of the least visited parks in the nation: Big Bend Nat’l, and State, Parks. TX Farm Road 170 has to be […]


miami beach readings & photo exhibit

The Miami launch of Borderlands USA in October had three separate readings, with an exhibit of photos from the journey plus a “border tasting” of Blenheim Ginger Ale (lots of ginger!) from South Carolina, and took place in the lovely Miami Beach Botanical Garden.  Thanks so much to so many […]


book launch reading & photo exhibit

    Come to the book launch, hosted by Earthdog Press, of Borderlands USA, with public readings and a one-night only photo exhibit of images from the journey by author Ben Batchelder. Signed paperback books will be on sale for only $10.   The Botanical Gardens are located at 2000 […]