Feeling Nostalgic: Summer Monsoons in Albuquerque

Daily Origami is a way for us to record our off the cuff thoughts, feelings and observations about the world around us. Published every weekday, Monday through Friday.

Where are you going?

Jennie here.

The summer monsoon season in New Mexico is my favorite time of the year to be back home in Albuquerque. As heavy clouds roll in, you’ll see the locals quickly scatter home in their pickup trucks and cars to avoid the imminent storm. I love staying home and listening to the torrential downpour and the rolling thunder, and watching as lightning illuminates the purple sky.

It’s really something else. I guess that’s why they call New Mexico the Land of Enchantment.

Need some ASMR? Here you go:

When I think about New Mexican monsoon season, three things come to mind:

1. Any local brew from La Cumbre Brewing Co.

They specialize in a handful of beers and don’t do any fancy marketing, just beers served and made the best way they know how. This brewer is a true testament to New Mexico because true natives are low-key and don’t need all the bullshit marketing.

2. Dion’s green chile pizza.

In New Mexico there is only one eternal debate that happens between locals: Red or Green? Chile is the way of life here and you’ve got to pick a side. I am a green chile advocate and junkie myself. And the best way that I enjoy my New Mexican summer nights are with Dion’s “The 505” pizza because it’s the best you’ll ever have.

Note: Their menu changes daily.

3. Shaved Ice from Pop-Pop’s Original Italian Water Ice

God I love this place. It’s been over a decade since my first gelati at Pop-Pop’s but it’s still this affordable, small, hole-in-the wall Italian ice dispensary with Philadelphia sports paraphernalia all over the walls. And it’s still the perfect antidote to beat the summer desert heat.

My personal favorite: half strawberry lemonade and mango gelati. It’s the perfect combination of sweet and tart and reminds me of the happiest moments that I had growing up in this strange city.

For me, these things mean a perfect night at home gazing up at the stormy New Mexican sky.