Although this story starts out in Vaughn, New Mexico, in early February of 2018...it goes back 58 years earlier.
Charley Claymont Coyote and his wife, Alice, had been looking forward to February 9th, 2018, which was to be one of three days Charley was scheduled to have off from where he works as locomotive operator for the Union Pacific Railroad...The coming days off were to be the 7th, 8th and 9th. It was to be on that 9th of February he and Alice had planned on a special treat for the cubs in Roswell. Being their hometown of Vaughn, New Mexico, with a population of barely over 400, is halfway a ghost town with not much to do, any special treat is a blessing the cubs look forward to. Poindexter (Dexter) Neumeig Fox, age 91, a retired but still active scientist at Roswell, has been a friend of Charley and Alice going on 17 years, thus a long time friend of the Claymont Coyote Family. Poindexter having, 'special connections with other animals he knows', was able to make prior arrangements for the family to see what he and his fellow scientists where he works at the call, "The Stranger from Hanger 84". That stranger is the preserved corps of an extraterrestrial from a UFO crash in Corona off of highway 54 in the year of 1947. That one remaining corps was never removed to Patterson Air Base in Ohio, but rather kept in a secluded location at the laboratory research complex at the Roswell International Air Center (RIAC) where Poindexter works (formally Walker Air Force Base). Charley and Alice's cubs; 14 year old Jack, 12 year old Rhonda, and 8 year old Clarence were excited about getting the rare chance of a lifetime to actually see a real extraterrestrial.
During an evening visit from Poindexter Fox at the Claymont Coyote Family residence, two days prior to the 9th, Clarence, being the youngest cub, asked, "We gonna see a real live Martian?!". As Charley and Alice got a good laugh from Clarence's question, Poindexter replied, "Well, our extraterrestrial visitor is not alive for one thing. And as for being a Martian, we don't know of the origins of where he came from". "Not everything from outer space is from Mars, Clarence", older brother, Jack, taunted Clarence. "Okay now, Jack", Charley got onto his older son. "Don't you remember when you were Clarence's age, you thought everything from outer space was from the moon?". At that point, Jack could only reply, "Well. Uh...", as Clarence stuck his tongue out at Jack and went, "Mnnnn". Then Rhonda added, "I bet he's from Venus, the Morning Star. That means he would have to have been a sweetie". "For all you cubs know, our friend may not even be from this star system", Poindexter mentioned as he adjusted his round lens, plastic frame glasses he had worn since 1946 when he was age 19. Poindexter then mentioned that he had already gotten the authorization and security clearances needed for the family to go see 'The Stranger from Hanger 84', as Alice brought out some coffee for Poindexter, Charley and herself. "Oh, thank you", Poindexter thanked Alice for the coffee. Poindexter then mentioned to Charley and Alice that the Horizon Innovations laboratory research complex where he and his fellow scientists work is located in the area of the Roswell International Air Center (RIAC) used by the New Mexico National Guard. And that location was chosen for security purposes due to much of the projects there being highly classified. Thus, Poindexter emphasized that it is imperative that the cubs be on their best behavior, and not get into anything at the lab. "What kind of stuff do they got there", Clarence asked. "You need a high level security clearance to know that", Poindexter answered Clarence. "It's classified material. I'm not allowed to tell you". 'The Stranger from Hanger 84' is in a restricted area and normally off limits to anyone else...But as Poindexter Fox mentioned, he has connections with long time friends who were able to clear some security hurdles to make the arrangements...Even then, Poindexter and fellow scientists had to get authorization from a National Guard general who is a long time acquaintance with the scientists there at Roswell to pull the strings to make it happen. In spite of Poindexter Fox's old age of 91 years, and occasionally using a walking cane, he still enjoys working part time, participating in engineering, design and testing on projects that will become the future planes, rockets, defense weapons and other high tech stuff. Poindexter would impress the cubs telling them of the 'cool stuff' they've tested, only if it was declassified and already released for public knowledge...As for anything still classified, Poindexter could not, and would not, discuss it. Jack then asked Poindexter, "What's the fastest rocket you all ever fired?". "Bet-cha it must-a looked like lightning?", Clarence added. "Remember what I told you cubs about classified material?", Poindexter reminded the cubs. "We, uh, need a security clearance?", Jack acknowledged. "Right", Poindexter replied. "You cubs don't need to be asking Poindexter things like that", Charley told the cubs. Poindexter then mentioned to the cubs, "Always remember an old saying. Loose lips sinks ships". "I've never heard that saying before", said Charley. "But it does make a lot of sense". The cubs were finally getting the picture that Poindexter Fox is under oath to never breath a word of classified projects to just anyone...Although, Poindexter still always does find it to be a thrill to get that occasional opportunity to take part in the test firing of a latest designed rocket or missile, or participating in the testing of new high tech explosives, or being among the first in a group of scientists to test the latest lasers, weapons, vehicles for military use, and remote controlled droids and drones (including the full size droids and drones designed for war time use)...all of which he and other scientists also took part in designing and building prototypes of. Poindexter always has been at liberty however, to share how as a veteran of the scientific community for over a half a century (since 1953), whenever a younger scientist encounters what seems like a 'dead end stump' in calculating and designing a project, Poindexter Fox has always been someone they could rely on to provide solutions when such problems arise...Thus, Poindexter Fox, with his expertise and years of experience, does carry a lot clout. "Quite a long and impressive work history", Charley commended Poindexter, then asked, "You're, what, 91. You wouldn't mind if I'd ask you if you'll ever retire?". "Oh, I've been collecting a retirement pension from Horizon Innovations for the past 35 years, and social security for the past 26 years", Poindexter Fox answered, then went on to explain that even though he collects a retirement pension from Horizon he had been working for over the past 65 years, plus his social security, the intrigue of the field of science, engineering and testing cool stuff has always been in his blood all his life, and always will. The 9th was going to be on a Friday, a school day...However, as Charley and Alice had informed Poindexter, they already made prior arrangements for the cubs to take that day off from school. Thus, everything's a go for the 9th. It was getting late, and the cubs still had homework to do for school the next day. "I'll see you here Friday", Poindexter said as he was leaving. "And remember. It will have to be very early". "We'll see you then", Charley replied as the family bid Poindexter a good evening. A while after Poindexter Fox had left, the cubs got their homework done early enough to fly their radio controlled drones outside for a while. They flew them at a very low altitude because of the municipal airport on the other end of town...After all, Mom and Dad didn't want the cubs to fly their drones high enough to put a blip on the airport's radar. After a while of fun flying the drones, it was time for a bath, then off to bed...There was school tomorrow.
Thursday the 8th was a day before the trip to Roswell. Charley, Alice and their cubs live in a tan and white double-wide on the south edge of Vaughn, located just off the east side of 8th street which shares the same right-of-way with Highways 54 and 60. Vaughn is not that big of a town, and with the school being right there in town, the cubs could walk to school in about 30 minutes. Breakfast that morning consisted of; pancakes made from Bisquick with Bright-n-Early brand pancake syrup (20% corn syrup), Hot Pocket egg and cheese burritos, home-fries made from fresh potatoes that came from a real grocery store in Santa Rosa, Lucky Charms cereal with whole milk (the whole milk also came from Santa Rosa) and Tampico breakfast beverage...Charley and Alice also had instant coffee. After breakfast, and before the cubs left for school that morning, they were told not to mention anything to their classmates or teachers about going to see 'The Stranger from Hanger 84'. "Don't even tell anyone it exists", Daddy Charley instructed the cubs. "Poindexter had to get high level authorization to make this trip tomorrow possible". "What about when we get back? Can we tell them then?", Rhonda asked. "Never", Mama Alice told her. "The location of that extraterrestrial is suppose to be a secret". "Poindexter's taking on responsibility for your actions by doing this for us", Charley told the cubs. "Let's not kick him in the ass for him doing so...Okay?". With that said, the cubs then agreed to keep the trip tomorrow, and everything about it, a secret...Then it was on with the backpacks and off to school, and remembering to look both ways before crossing the streets on the way to school. Jack, Rhonda and Clarence arrived to school and got to their classes on time, after which there were the usual cubs who came strolling in late. Clarence's 3rd grade class had a good laugh when their teacher, Mrs. Ginger Spaniel, announced, "Class. I need your attention so we can call the roll"... ...No sooner than the teacher made that announcement, some of the cubs called, "Here, roll. Where'd ya go, roll?". Then most of the rest of the cubs chimed in, "Cinnamon roll, where are you?", and, "Where did you roll to, roll?", and, "Com-ere, roll". "This is not in the least productive", teacher, Ginger Spaniel told the class, in which it took her three minutes to get the class to settle down... ...Teachers were not allowed to paddle the students, and the cubs knew and took advantage of it. When Mrs. Spaniel was finally able to do roll call, even then, a few cubs would blurt out a quick, "Here roll", getting a few giggles from the class. On the 2nd and 4th Thursday mornings of each month, an hour long French lesson, hosted by Fifi Poodle, aired on the school's education TV network...And the 8th was the 2nd Thursday of that month. As Ginger Spaniel set up the TV for the program to begin, Kenny Wolverine got the class laughing when he called out, "You don't wanna here my French! My daddy paddled me for it when I said it last!". "Kenny. Cool it", Mrs. Spaniel called to the cub. As the French lesson aired on the TV, cubs who brought soda straws to school would shoot spit wads at the image of Mrs. Fifi Poodle on the TV screen...most of the spit wads which stuck fast to the screen. One point of the French lesson aired Fifi Poodle explaining, "And when you say 'Yes yes, Sir', you would say "Oui oui, Monsieur...Now repeat after me - Oui oui, Monsieur". Charlot Squirrel spoke up, "If Monsewer was told to wee-wee, then he needs to go find a potty", which got the whole class busting out in loud laughter. With other such wise cracks from other cubs throughout the rest of the lesson, no one really learned any French that morning. In the middle school, Jack's 9th grade class and Rhonda's 7th grade class weren't any better...and there were students texting on their cell phones during class. Science teacher, Mr. Grayson Moose, was beginning a 9th grade teaching segment on the rain cycle, in which he asked, "Now, class. Can anyone tell me where all water comes from?", expecting an answer being that it is evaporated from oceans, lakes and seas. "I know!", an adolescent lynx called out. "From a faucet!". An adolescent hyena called out, "If you the teacher, why you askin' us?". As it was, 40% of that science class was already having battles snapping rubber bands at each other. In Rhonda's 7th grade math class, the teacher, Miss. Wanda Panda, asked, "Who here can tell me how to evenly divide a dozen apples, each being the same size, among 32 cubs?". "MAKE APPLE SAUCE!", Rufus Aardwolf called out. "No. Apple pie", said Linda Prairie Dog. "That's better than apple sauce any ole day". "As much as I don't want to, I'll have no choice but to call those correct answers, being this class is on a Common Core curriculum", Miss. Panda said. "Although I was actually referring to how to divide the whole apples". In Clarence's 3rd grade class, during a history lesson, Mrs. Ginger Spaniel asked. "Who here can tell us the name of the ship the Pilgrims sailed to Plymouth Rock on?". No one answered, so Mrs. Spaniel gave a clue, "A well known moving company was named after that ship". A coatimundi cub got the class laughing when she spoke up, "The U-Haul". During lunch break, there were the occasional sounds of paper bags being popped in the cafeteria. And some students would have soda battles where they would shake cans of sodas with a thumb partially blocking the opening of the can as they would let the soda squirt under pressure at each other. When lunch time was over, the cafeteria, like it was everyday, was left cluttered with paper plates, soda cans, plastic utensils and other trash on the tables and floor that cubs didn't even bother to take to the trash cans...After all, the notion among the cubs was "The janitor can clean it up. That's what he's gettin' paid for". After lunch, when classes were back in session, an adolescent weasel in middle school sounded a three second blast off a Seachoice brand portable air horn in the hallway. https://youtu.be/YyzySBQLd14?t=10 The young weasel was caught blowing the horn in the hallway, and was given a three day 'vacation' from school with a letter to be brought back signed by his parents. This was pretty much the norm in a typical school day...And in the hallways there was the typical graphite on the walls along with other signs of vandalism to the building. After school let out for the day, the cubs who walk to and from school were always careful not to get run over by the hot rod high school students in their low rider Hondas, Toyotas and other such cars racing by. Those were the modified four bangers that sat two inches off the street, with the wide tires, and loud bumble-bee exhaust...Other cars that did not fit that description were a few old pick-up trucks, a couple of late model Mustangs, a retro late model Camaro, a 2008 Dodge Magnum station wagon, and several ordinary basic cars. Jack, Rhonda and Clarence had been instructed by Mom and Dad to always let the high schoolers clear out and have the road first before beginning to cross the streets on their way home. Vaughn being halfway to being a ghost town of a population of barely more than 400, there wasn't really a whole lot for cubs to do. The nearest movie theater, The Odeon, is in Santa Rosa. Just west a ways of Santa Rosa, on what is now Interstate 40, use to be a social gathering place with things to do. Old timers use to refer to it as "The Hop on Route 66" back in the day when they themselves were teenage cubs and young adults. It was a place where they could take their sweethearts dancing, playing the pinball machines, and they served really good home made ice cream and great shrimp 'n' onion rings. However, that was a generation or two ago. Back in 1973, lightning struck it during a thunderstorm at about 4:00 in the morning. The Hop, although still salvageable, was never reopened also due to the loss of business because of limited road access caused by I-40 replacing route 66...The badly fire damaged, boarded up building is all that has remained over the past 45 years. There was always watching the trains come and go. There was the Union Pacific Railroad running through Vaughn, that runs parallel to Highway 54. Going northeast it runs through Santa Rosa, and to the southwest through Duran and Corona and eventually to El Paso...That's the line Charley Coyote works as a locomotive operator. Then there is the east/west Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) railroad (double tracks in most places) that runs along the north edge of town. Just west of town, two BNSF tracks are elevated on a long, built up grade running for several miles from one end to the other. At the halfway point where it reaches to 60 or 70 feet up, both BNSF tracks cross above the Union Pacific line, one on a bridge, and the other on top an arch overpass, so if two trains are crossing paths, no train has to stop. The BNSF train crosses over above the Union Pacific train...When the cubs in Vaughn take the time to walk west of town, they always get a thrill when ever they see a BNSF train and a UP train happen to arrive at the upper and lower parts of the fly-over at the same time. https://youtu.be/EmBc_I5uLDU?t=156 To the east, BNSF line runs through Clovis and eventually to Chicago, and to the west of Vaughn it runs past the south edge of Encino, and on out to California. As far as the cubs getting the opportunity to watch an Amtrak train go by, neither of those two branches have run passenger service for many years...even way back before the cubs were ever born. The cubs just had to be satisfied watching the freights. Sometimes, cubs would watch the private planes take off and land at the municipal airport just northeast of town beyond the BNSF tracks. Two well known general mercantile stores had gone out of business years ago...actually across a street from each other. What use to be The Anthro's Store and Sander's Mercantile are now boarded up abandoned buildings. Several other businesses are gone as well, all those of which are now boarded up buildings, and some of which in various stages of falling down. With the economy like it is in that area, Charley Coyote and his family are very fortunate Charley has the job he has with the railroad that pays well. Upon arriving home from school, Jack, Rhonda and Clarence greeted Mama Alice and Daddy Charley as they usually do. "Looks like something got spilled on you today, Son. Let's get you a bath", Alice said to Clarence. "Some cubs had a soda battle again at lunchtime", Clarence replied. "And I got caught in the crossfire". Jack mentioned, "Frankie Weasel blew a boat horn in the hallway today too". But as Charley had always told the cubs, he said, "You cubs don't need to be fooling around in school like they do. They're the ones who will be digging ditches and scrubbing toilets for a living when they grow up". "Try not to pay any attention to the distractions they cause", Alice advised the cubs as she was preparing supper. "That's why they do the things they do...for attention", Charley added. "Don't give them that attention. Keep your attention on your school studies". Before long, Alice had supper about ready, which consisted of; instant potatoes with margarine, canned mackerel on white rice with onion powder, and canned green beans, and with white bread and instant tea. That kind of meal was due to an issue of availability and not an issue of affordability. On Charley's income, Charley and Alice could afford better food, but about the only places in Vaughn to buy food were a couple of convenience stores like unto the Kwik-Marts, Travel Marts, Stop-n-Shops. Those were an Alsup's, a Cash-n-Carry, and there was a liquor store that had a small inventory of grocery items off to the side...all of which sold canned, instant, packaged and cheap line grocery supplies...some of it being a bit overpriced too. In order for the family to have accessibility to better quality food, such as was in the case with everyone else who lived in Vaughn and in the surrounding areas, they always had to take the time out to make a run to Estancia or Santa Rosa where there were real grocery stores to shop in, and not those stores like the Kwik-Marts and Travel Marts. Charley mentioned to Alice, "While we're in Roswell tomorrow, what do you say we stop in a grocery store and get some good food to bring back to the house". "Oh definitely yes. Some real food, instead of what these holes-in-a-walls around here sell", Alice replied. After supper, the cubs played online video games and interacted with friends on social media for a while before going to bed...Tomorrow was going to be the big day the family goes to see 'The Stranger from Hanger 84', so the cub were certainly looking forward to that.
Although this story starts out in Vaughn, New Mexico, in early February of 2018...it goes back 58 years earlier. Things were different a few generations ago...Perhaps some was for the better back in the day, and some of which improved for the better as time went on. The world was certainly different once upon a time from what it is today
Being I never got around to creating pics for this story, I am posting as it is rather than to continue holding it up from being released. I will at a later time make a pictorial version of this story and / or add pics to this one.
The story is in several parts. Other parts of this story will eventually follow.