Monday, July 25, 2011

The monsoons, the monsoons ...

Beautiful, noisy rain last night! We really needed the moisture; we'd had a few brief showers in the last couple of weeks, but this one was a good rain, hard at times but prolonged enough to create puddles and rivulets and do some soaking in.

I found a ridge the other day that offered a good view of Western New Mexico University (bottom pic) and of Gila Regional Medical Center, where Sandy spent a couple of nights. She developed an abscess which had to be surgically opened and drained. Mission accomplished; all is well and Nurse Tom is performing wound care at a standard approved by the home health care nurse. That home health care program is, in my opinion, the most cost-effective medical program we have in this country!

In the meantime, while I was home tending the furry beasts, I saw not one but two roadrunners come by. I wasn't quick on the shutter, so I only got one of them.

Today is our 40th month anniversary ... an event in my life for which I am deeply grateful. Think we'll start the day by going down to Vicki's for breakfast! tv

Monday, July 18, 2011

Been lazy

I realized I haven't posted in a while. It's not that we died; it's just that we have kind of been enjoying being at home and have had a few other distractions.

Silver City did survive the Fourth of July with little fireworks-caused damage. Governor Martinez apparently has bipartisan support for a bill in this fall's special legislative session that would allow counties and municipalities to ban ALL fireworks in drought condition; right now they can only ban aerial fireworks, leaving sparklers and cherry bombs, etc., to set the place alight.

We actually weren't here for much of the Fourth. We spent three mornings helping Sandy's Kiwanis club strip and shred brisket for their annual Fourth of July BBQ ... and then we had to take off for a quick trip to Oklahoma for a family emergency. Nice, hot, steamy central OK ... where, after seeing "Larry Crowne" in an air-conditioned theater in Shawnee, we came out to 109 degrees and high humidity. (This morning, at 7 a.m., it was 72 degrees in Silver City and 36% RH!)

Along the way, we stopped at an elaborate Texas rest stop complex on I-40 east of Amarillo and my twisted mind enjoyed this warning sign ... made me wonder if rattlesnakes can read!

Sandy's daughter has a gorgeous red rooster, which Sandy beautifully portrayed in her blog. I sorta liked the silliness of this head-on shot.

And, of course, we got our Braums fix ... a couple of times! We almost religiously hit the one in Amarillo (the furthest west one we have found) ... as well as the Outback on the west end of Amarillo. For those not familiar with Braums, think GOOD ice cream (and good hamburgers, too)!

On the way back, as we were increasingly appreciating the drier and higher air, we stopped at the Blue Pool in Santa Rosa, out on the high plains of eastern New Mexico. Right in the middle of steppe country, there's a water-filled hole in the earth that is a SCUBA-diving mecca! Probably felt REAL good in the 102-degree sunshine.

Meanwhile, at home in Silver City, the thrashers have hatched a second clutch of eggs in their nest in the cholla. They are very active in their search for bugs for themselves and their brood (I've noticed they also get seeds from the bird feeder) and they drink from the little rocked-in pool behind the house. The deer come regularly to that same pool and we see other critters there, too, such as the fence lizards, towhees and the flame skimmer shown hanging from a leaf.

Overhead, we've been reminded each of the last few days that it's still dry and still burning in the forests ... the Sikorsky Skycrane and several fixed wing tankers have been making regular trips over us to fight some small fires (less than 4,000 acres total) about 50 miles north of us, in the Gila Wilderness.

We just finished two days of sitting the Grant County Art Guild gallery in the historic Hearst Church, up in PiƱos Altos, seven miles north of here, just on the other side of the Continental Divide. It's about 10 degrees cooler up there! Not much activity, but a few families stopped by from Tucson, escaping the heat.

Sandy and I agreed to take on the PR and Facebook presentations for the art guild, and I'm working on publicity for the August 7 Hiroshima Day remembrance sponsored by the Gila Friends Meeting, so I've been busily building a data base of media outlets ... hearkening back to prior times.

We've got one more class of pre-beginning (kindergarten?) Spanish. We missed one and I admit I'm not doing well, but we are getting the basics of pronunciation and maybe that will help us read signs, etc., and begin to build vocabulary. Sandy is also finishing up a Geo-modeling class and I start one on the history of Libya this week. WILL (Western Institute of Life-long Learning) is a real asset for seniors in this community!

Weekend after next we'll be back in Mancos for Mancos Days. Really looking forward to seeing the Mancos Valley and it's people again! tv