Tuesday, May 31, 2016

This Place is Still That Place (photo laden, fair warning!)

Out here in ghost town land, the present and the past are so very entwined. In the town of Chloride, a man has undertaken the task of basically buying the town and saving it for its historical value. Weirdly, the result, in my mind, looks sort of fake, even though it is real. Because surrounding it is the even more real, the unpretty real. Maybe it would be like going on the log flume ride at Disney if you were a real whitewater rider, the thrill is there but it is just not the same. Ok, that's what hit me after a two hour ghost town tour. Obviously I'm no expert.

What I am is curious. Especially after playing in the dirt yesterday, trimming some trees and bushes, and finding an old tool, the handle obviously hand forged, maybe a chisel? but under only the thinnest of coverings. Then finding out the road in front of the house was once part of the stagecoach route. Really. I can dig it. You are allowed to groan.

Some random views along 22 miles of New Mexico road. 

After being at Jack's Texas place a couple of times, while I respected the unusual desert (it ain't the Sahara, baby), the lack of much green and any water anywhere left me happy for Jack being happy but nothing motivating me to think, Hey! I could live here!. While I also couldn't live in New Mexico, I would sure willingly visit again for a while. There's water in this here place!

Lots of desert like vegetation but lots of green. Pecan trees are a big crop! 

I have never ever seen rain stopped in mid-air. There it was, coming down and then the lower cloud layer was the end of it. Jack says it was evaporating before it hits the ground. It was so strange, lightening, thunder, blue and gray skies and a half rain. 

The sign is about as big as the town. We saw a horse trailer and three cowboys and I wanted to take their photo sooooo much but this is a new place to me but Jack lives around here and they were looking right at us so I couldn't even do a stealth photo. Sorry!

There are a LOT of pristine and very cool old cars around,
tucked in with the plain and newer here and there

I think it's my fixer-upper

What is a fast dip like?

Some of the following are from the town of Chloride. You can read about it here. I like Chloride. I admire a guy like Mr. Edmund who singlehandedly is investing to save history. 

This cabin is from someplace else and moved here. It's pretty cool. I was taking photos through the window until Jack noticed the door was open...

The roof is amazing

This house is not fixed up yet. There are lots of places like this around,
adobe and old wood, tin roofs, some well over 100 years old.
Between the climate and wise construction, most wouldn't take
a bank robbery and a lifetime to rehab.

I like an entrepreneur with a sense of humor

We left Choride (named for the type of ore found there; again, more history than you can shake a stick at around here, and much of it easily found) and went back through Winston. And surrounding areas.

This little burro turned and posed for us, then turned away as if to say,
Show's over, go on now. So we did.

Some car choppin' going on

A great building AND two more donkeys

I don't know what the wood thing is, I was really looking at the construction.
Now I want to go back and see what the heck it is.

There is a log cabin company in Winston. This is part of the yard.

And this is one of their cabins. It's for rent.

Apparently we just missed the Annual Fiesta

Maybe an old bank? I know I've never seen adobe and wood
and a mansard style steel roof before 
 This building really intrigued me. Its false front, and the width of the boards (lots of really wide boards around here, walls, fences, floors)

No sign of what this was but who cares?

The facing boards of the false front cover even more amazing boards

This isn't on some tour, this is real life. I love it.

Jack said maybe we could get a drink at the bar. 

Contrary to the signage, he's never seen it open.
The screen door and window bars are fine.

What words are good enough? 

There are some very funky mail boxes around these parts. 
There's a road around Jack's that we couldn't quite figure out where it started and where it went, so on our way back we went down a couple of possibles. One road, called Muncie, led us to...the Muncie's. We turned around as Mr. Muncie was coming home with a horse trailer containing two saddled up horses, maybe from dude rides. 

The next road was probably the road we were looking for, but with a sign like this and no four wheel drive, we decided maybe another time would be better.

Some of the many fences that caught my eye.

Okay, I'll stop now! 

Have a telling Tuesday. Do something toe tappingly transforming.

Friday, May 27, 2016

Let the Games Begin

After closing up the houseboat in the best possible way and waving a blessing of safety on it, the summer journeying has begun. With Francie. And Renee, until we part at the airport this afternoon, she heading North while Francie and I head West. 

But first, because leaving a day early is an old island habit, we got to hang about in Old San Juan, a place that never fails to show me something new. Of course, these days, with my memory, the old is new again often.

An unknown beauty boat and Nestor sailing the bay
Yesterday was one of those 'I can't believe this day is here' days. The beginning of journeys always are, especially the ones planned less and less, with only goals to reach eventually.

Out at Zoni the day started with sky sirens.

I could have taken photos flying from Culebra to SJU but truthfully, we swooped out over the sea so damn fast it didn't occur to me to do anything but ride the thrill. The landing was the same sort of dashing derring-do, completely competent cowboy. We'd been delayed an hour and obviously the pilot was going to try and give us back a few minutes of that time. He did. 

And here we were.

Nope, not a Moroccan store, but maybe once?
Anyone slightly familiar with this blog knows I love doors. Old San Juan is a door junkie's pimp. 

Of course, there are more than doors here. There are forts. Two of them but they seem to be all of a piece, popping up behind whatever you were thinking you wanted to look at like a jack in the box surprise. 

It was a great day for flying kites!

What better history combo? Fort, lighthouse, beautiful day?

Great chairs!
My most favorite outdoor chairs in Old San Juan are gone; the domino chairs that used to be in one of the parks, sat on by old men playing...what else? And old women chatting And plantains being delivered by drivers who would stop to give unwanted advice. I loved that spot. What a disappointment it's gone. 

Disappointment can't last long with views like this.

Pigeon park

I'd love to know what this monk is doing with three almost naked nymphs

We found this in City Hall


If the smell of cat pee hadn't been so strong here
I'd have loved to do some illicit exploring

I was looking at part of this door and Renee noticed the knocker. Yay!
By mid-ish day, I was needing some refreshment and knew right where I wanted us to go. There is a great old bar across the street from the water and it was open, with two women there making alcapurrias. They gave permission and I captured the visual memory, which rarely fails to evoke the essence of the memory for me.

Hey, it's what I see

One day I really will get to all the museums 
Oh the influences!

I don't remember the name of the place we had dinner but it had a little of everything for everyone and my pollo mofongo was really good. 

Back at the place we stayed there was some commercial making going on. We sat entertained for a few hours, watching the acting going on from one balcony on one side of the street to another balcony on our side. I'm sure they appreciated our applause and occasional word of encouragement. Who wouldn't, right?

But finally a long day of walking won over a 30th or so re-take.

G'night, Francie
Francie didn't really sleep there but she was an ace tester for me!

Today we'll be heading to Albuquerque but we won't get there until tomorrow. In the meantime, there is coffee to find and suitcases to repack.

Have a fortunate Friday. Do something in fine fettle.