May 23, 2013
Eagles Nest - Angel Fire (New Mexico). Finally, some pretty scenery. I had just come over a pass… elevation 9,820 feet, and thru an area called Red River. It was more than pretty actually. It was gorgeous. Just what I had envisioned when I'd thought about what the Rocky Mountains in northern New Mexico might look like… commanding… statuesque… elegant… and truly magnificent. Next time I'm in the area I'm gonna make sure I'm feeling less in a rush, and stop and take more pictures.
I'd just come thru a spectacular area, and was getting ready to go thru some even more meaningful terrain…
I stopped at the side of the little one lane road I was on, at an old wooden bridge. I drank the crystalline, sweet cold water from Coyote Creek, which wound it's way down this pristine little valley I had found. I took a picture of the bridge, and filled my spare water bottle with it's nectar, and vowed to save it for a special occasion.
I drank the water like it was expensive champagne or fine cognac. I took little sips and savored the flavor, keeping the taste in my mouth and in my memory for a long time. I must've stood beside that bridge for 30 minutes… an eternity for me. I had found the reason I'd chosen this particular route. I was in heaven. I need to go back to this bridge someday. With a truckload of 5-gallon water bottles and an equally larger amount of time to spend there, rather than the measly 30 minutes I allotted myself on this day.
I had only gone around two or three bends in the road before I came up to another little wooden bridge… this one, with a car parked just past it, and three young 70 year old ladies standing at the middle of it.
I stopped next to them, right in the middle of the bridge, turned off Honey's engine, and took off my sunglasses. They told me they'd stopped because when they'd passed me just minutes before and noticed me writing in my journal and realized they wanted to stop and enjoy the moment too. They had been traveling for several days from the east coast and were almost to their turning back point in Santa Fe. They asked me what I had written in my journal, and I told them the truth (I am looking at my journal while I type this)… I had written the words, "This is why I am here."
There was not a mention of names between us, but the moment was very intimate. One of them asked me where I was born and when I told her… "Just south of San Francisco." She responded with a loud and proud, "I was conceived in San Francisco." I came back with an equally loud and even more melodramatically proud, "I was conceived in the Grand Canyon" (which is true).
It was priceless, these few moments with these strangers from a different generation and from a different part of the Country. Sometimes I think back and wish that I'd traded names and contact information, and then I remember… these are the moments that are supposed to be anonymous. It's not the names or the numbers that make moments like this special. It's something very difficult to express.
We stayed right there, talking in the middle of the bridge for at least 10 minutes, without me even getting off Honey. I took a picture of them with their camera, but thinking back on it now, I purposefully chose not to take a picture of them, knowing but not realizing it at the time that I wanted to keep this part of my adventure as private and as special as possible.
Eventually a car came around the corner. I took in a deep breath… let out a long, slow sigh… put on my sunglasses… fired up Honey… nodded my appreciation and respect to the old chicks on the bridge… and took off with a big smile of complete contentment and love in my heart.
I must go back to this area… an approximate 75-mile stretch from the north end of the Taos Loop… highway 434/ 38… from just north of Red River, south to Las Vegas (New Mexico).
Glenn Kramer is one of my best and longest known friends. We grew up together in a small central California coastal community called La Selva Beach, and except for a 15-year period when we ran in different circles after high school, have been close friends our entire lives. He's my best client and one of my very best friends. He loves me, and I do not take that lightly.
I have met only a small handful of individuals who have been able to maintain their love for me for more than a few years or so. I am a very high maintenance individual. Demanding of myself and of others, especially when I care about them. Like my dear old mom used to say… "All I'm trying to do is help you to be perfect… just like me."
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It was at dinner that Glenn told me he'd decided to turn back. I wasn't too surprised. Disappointed yes, but not surprised. I'd prepared myself for the very real possibility that Glenn was just not cut out for a cross Country adventure with someone like me. There were no hard feelings, at least not on my part.
But the teasing and kidding I'd been giving him about his parking maneuver and his battle with heat stroke had taken its toll on him. He wasn't happy and said he'd be heading back to spend a few days in Las Vegas the next morning. Oh well, I'd done all my previous road trips solo so I was certainly not gonna let his lack of ability to laugh at himself, keep me from enjoying myself.
I felt bad that we were separating, but I hope he recovers from the drama & trauma of this trip, and decides to ride with me again someday. Glenn and I have always had our differences, and will probably butt heads again… but in the end and from the heart… we are from the same Tribe, called: "Brothers from different Mothers."
I wasn't more than 10 miles out of town before I'd completely gotten over the problem with my friend. Glenn and I are close and we truly love each other, but our personalities are not very similar. I'm better on my own. I have yet to find anyone who can enjoy my company for more than a few days, without taking some time alone, or else suffer from some sort of insanity or other mental disorder.
Welcome to another installment and opportunity for you to get to know me better, and hopefully also a chance for you to get to know yourself better at the same time.
For those of you who have not read any of my previous autobiographical action adventure stories… I will tell you… my stories are meant to serve three purposes:
(1) To allow me to express my own thoughts and feelings, for the selfish reason of my own self-awareness and betterment.
(2) I hope some of you will perceive it as gift to you, to be able to become more aware of your own thoughts and feelings, in such a way that you may also gain personal insight and therefore benefit in some way, within yourself.
(3) Simply for something to distract you for a while.
Although I have lived almost my entire life in this three dimensional world that we refer to as reality… I have also experienced brief moments in a completely different reality, and it is at these times when I feel most alive, nourished, and grateful to be alive.
I have chosen to use my three dimensional adventures, out on the open roads of our Country, as a vehicle to travel into the inner realms of the vastness which exists inside each of us. Personally, I am most comfortable when I am exploring these regions of duality… the physical geography of the Country where my body thrives, and the emotional geography of my soul where my spirit resides.
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As soon as I turned over and saw the clock, I knew my four hours of rest was gonna have to do. Over the years, I've learned to be able to tell the difference right away, between waking up and being able to go back to sleep, versus waking up and not. I envy the people who can lounge in bed… waking up slowly… enjoying the semi dream state of that la la land. Sometimes I can relax and enjoy this state of (semi) awareness, but typically once my brain starts turning… it's like a rollercoaster… an E ticket ride, as I like to say.
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It didn't take me very long to find my way back to The Grand Hotel (in Jerome, AZ). I'd stopped there on my last trip thru the area, and had a great time… with the employees mostly. Young college aged kids, with lots of good fun spirit. I usually identify more with the younger generations than I do with my own. So many of the people my age are just too old.
None of the kids that had been there during my last visit were there, but Jason the bartender told me he'd heard about me from Kayla and Matt, who weren't working that day. I love it. I have a reputation. It's nice to know that once in a while, all my hard work and effort pays off.
May 21, 2013
I woulda been at my sister's house by then, except for the detour I took to try and find the ceremonial grounds of The International Community of Christ at Red Rock. I wanted to say a prayer for my sister that she continues to find peace without the Church in her life. I wanted to call her and surprise her after I had done my 'prayer service' for her, but I couldn't find the place, and called her for directions.
She wasn't willing to give me the emotional energy it would take her, to tell me how to get there. What a shame. She was the 'second in command' of the Church for about 25 years, but when the Founder retired and his sons took control, they ousted her. They wanted to turn the Church into a business, and Jackie wanted to keep it a Religion. What a fiasco. The membership is dwindling. The Church is dying. My sister is heartbroken. Gotta change the subject…
Jackie's house. Mark (her husband) was out teaching… either tai-kwan-do or trumpet… I'm not sure which. He's also a para-legal… a very amazing man. He played with the Philadelphia Philharmonic Orchestra in Carnegie Hall a few years ago. I love Mark.
I spoke with Cheri (Jackie's grand-daughter) and Derek (Cheri's husband), petted the two black labs and… had my first hug with my youngest great-grand-nephew JC. Jackson Claybourn was born about 4 months previously, and I was in heaven. He smiled up at me from my arms while gazing into my eyes. He played with my lips and got his finger smudges all over my sunglasses. Wonderful wonderful.
I had upset Jackie with my attempts at sending her my healing energy, and I knew from experience that I wasn't gonna be able to make things better, so I made my stop in Reno pretty short.
In my opinion she's a very good example of the old adage, 'there's a fine line between genius and insanity.'
She is one of the most gifted people I've ever met… focused and extremely capable of great things when she wants to be. Like some of us though (me included), the voices in her head tend to distract her and she gets sidetracked and goes in unproductive directions. I used to tell her that if she went towards the light, instead of the dark, that she would get everything she ever wanted.
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Mimi pulled her car into the handicap lot… parked right up against the curb in the red zone… opened up all her car doors… and turned up her stereo… all the way.
She then proceeded to start 'rocking out' and dancing like a mad woman. Yep, Mimi is shy and demure, just like me. I just had to laugh out loud, when I joined her. The parents and other family and friends of the graduates really got a taste of life from the outlandish parents of the most loved graduate at the facility. I took off my shirt (again) and started waving it in circles over my head. It's a typical occurrence when Mimi and I get together in a party atmosphere. We like being the lives of it. We feed off each other, and wind each other up into whirling dervishes. She has always been able to get me going.