Home from the City

140803-Abiquiu-asc_0664RLSs copyAnd so I made my weary way back from Sackcloth and Ashes, bringing with me a little package of ashes to sprinkle in my yard, and ran into one of those situations where everything goes wrong at the same time, just little things, and so I finally gave up and decided to get home before dark. That didn’t work out either. I’m getting much too old for these things, and my body knows it if my brain does not. So about at Abiquiu my eyes were not cooperating and I just zipped into the Abiquiu Inn. Yes, I know there is no such spelling; it is pronounced Abi-Q.

140803-Abiquiu-asc_0659RLSs copyThis is the first Inn I’ve stayed, that I can recommend, in a long time. Clean but not toxic, friendly, plenty of fresh air, hot shower, clean room and nice little roads you can walk around under the giant old cottonwood trees, and some others I don’t know what they are — probably walk down to the Chama River, we didn’t go that far. And in the autumn (not yet but soon) it is pure gold in the Valley. I always stop to photograph. Of course I locked my keys in the pickup, but the manager, Ben Wallace got me on the road again in the morning, after an excellent breakfast that made me think of Larry. Oatmeal with lots of additives. If I knew they had a coffee shop I would have been stopping often, as this is about halfway from home to Santa Fe. http://www.abiquiuinn.com

140803-Abiquiu-asc_0666RLSs copyI was sorry to miss the workshop that was held at the Rising Moon, http://www.risingmoongalleryandartcenter.com/, just up the hill from the Inn and near the post office. Unfortunately at the same time as the Sackcloth and Ashes, they had Jimmy Santiago Baca http://www.jimmysantiagobaca.com/ for the weekend. I did read one of his books, and you should too. The story of a life well lived.

140803-Abiquiu-asc_0667RLSs copy “Brown and old as earth,
Listen how the bells toll
At the new night’s birth
As twilight rubs on adobe walls
Her holy ashes.”

Now this morning, which I think is Tuesday, is already getting nippy, and I’m almost ready for summer, and now I am home again.

What an amazing Life is here.

140805-Bitsy-asc_0677RSs copyI just got a much more adequate solar system and have been rejoicing on the internet, but I have to be careful not to overdo as with more than one cup of coffee before the solar oven kicks in. Bitsy had a quarrel with a skunk yesterday and got ejected from the bedroom last night, so she went up to the loft, where I assume it is warmer, and did a bit of lonely whining. Then she came down (there really isn’t a bedroom, but I have put a net over my bed to exclude the Assasin bugs that may or may not carry chagas disease) and she sneaked up on the foot of the bed, on top of the net, looking guilty. I came up negative for chagas BTW, after numerous bites and a lot of exposure to the packrat nests that may or may not contain the parasite. It reminded me it is not always the OTHER GUY who bites he bullet. (Thanks to the local clinic and Dr. Palestine, I feel better about it). So that’s good. I don’t know about Bitsy. The vet didn’t want to test her. A&M has a study on Chagas disease in dogs in Texas. Not so rare.

The next challenge is the Peromyscus mice that moved in when the rats left, and potentially carry Hanta virus. But — I am courting at least two garter snakes that come out in the morning to bask, and I think they are having an impact on the mice population. It used to be rattlesnakes coming to bask, but we only killed two, younger, rattlesnakes this year and the garter snakes moved in, so I hope to have changed that balance. Look close and you will see her looking back. Measured by the fence, she is about 26 inches long. I also concreted one of the major rat/snake pathways.
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When the sun popped over the cliff this morning, the day clear for the first time in a while, our first visitor was a black headed grosbeak. This time it was either mother or young, and instead of just taking a few swallows of water, it hung around for about half an hour picking at this and that in the yard. And all this in between times I was moving the solar panels and putting stuff into the solar oven. When I went back in the cabin and sat down to read (In The Buddha’s Words by Bhikku Bodhi and Down the Long Hills by Louis L’Amour) I almost missed the wild turkey male followed by his little flock, as they paraded RIGHT BY as though we were not even here.

140729-plants-asc_0539 as Smart Object-1RLSs copy 2The season is short here, and one can see it change almost overnight. Leaves are beginning to turn, thistle seeds are dancing in the sun. But it’s not only in the plants and flowers and animals each doing their thing, but the entire biological body of Life turns to the sun, responds to the weather, and moves on toward the next season as unit.

Remember those movies where they shrunk down a submarine and toured around inside a human body? I stand here on the (figuratively speaking) endothelium of Life itself, not only observing out the window of a submarine