Delicious autumn! My very
soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth, seeking
the successive autumns. -George Eliot
The colors are just starting to take a turn here in Abiquiu, New Mexico. I imagine what it would be like to fly, floating lazily on updrafts while viewing the sumptuous turning of foliage to the robust colors of yellow and orange and red. From the east coast, through middle America, the southwest and then north to Alaska. Non-stop color.
Still, sometimes you have to leave your routine of walking, writing, eating, sleeping, walking writing… (repeat the same scenario day after day) and venture to the margins to get a little change of scenery and perspective. I’ve been at the ranch for almost a month, and have stayed pretty true to a productive work schedule.
But there’s a lonely old place called Tierra Amarillo, New Mexico; a small town nearby that I never knew existed, until now.
They sell much more than flat tires. At Tierra Wools, you can buy locally made rug tapestries, woven from sheep’s wool that is harvested, locally, and where the dyes to color those threads are hand-dyed, locally, and all that’s left to do is let the weavers spin their magic.
It just feels right and good to know the origin of your products, and that they were processed with tender loving care in your own backyard.
Side note: You wonder, who would sell flat tires? Well, a local artisan wants your old grungy, tubular discards so he can recycle them into functional floor mats and last-forever flower pots.
And then off to Chama, another small town up the road a-ways, and from there…
only twelve more miles before you cross the New Mexico, Colorado border. Only twelve more miles until you experience the Continental Divide. What’s fascinating about these areas is how two seemingly disparate regions co-exist right next to each other.
One minute you’re in the desert, and the next you’re at 10,000 feet, and breathing in the glorious thin air of a green mountain forest.
I love tiny, hole-in-the-wall restaurants. Another exploration off the ranch led to El Farolito’s in the town of El Rito. They encourage you to bring your own drinks, so Mary, the life of our party, brought tequila, mixer (she even brought her own ice) for all of us to imbibe.
Size doesn’t matter to tiny restaurants in small New Mexican towns.
All that matters is rip-roaring taste, which the El Farolito, Home of the Four-Time New Mexico Green Chili Champion, aptly delivers.
Tomorrow it will be time to get back to work. Back to my favorite chair in front of the most gorgeous view in the Southwest, and put pencil to paper.
But I’ll notice the changing of colors; and the slow turn of the land to a colder, stormy autumn…with only a little nostalgia for summer as she not-so-quietly, slips away.