Saturday, March 31, 2007

spring snow

Part of the unrelenting charm of living at the southern end of the Rockies at 7,000 feet: seasonal transitions that often involve unpredictable events. A sudden plunge in temperatures last night and 2 inches of snow, for example, but with the predicted high temp today up into the 60s again. Fruit trees often push out flowers at the first sign of warmer weather and then get slammed with the return of frost and snow. Of course the indigenous denizens around here are adapted for these extreme fluctuations. It's the invaders like myself (even after 24 years I'm still not a local) who get our blossoms battered.

The view of the mist and snow in the foothills (haha, "foothills" that go up as high as 9,000 feet) from the un's apartment at sunset or in the almost-full moonlight yesterday is one way of accessing humility. Living in an environment where there are frequent reminders that we carve out a bare existence shaped by a meager generosity and vivid drama, maybe we get perspective. Having also lived in Philadelphia, Boston, New York and Los Angeles, as well as Bethlehem, PA, what's most apparent in Santa Fe is that humans persist in spite of the distinctly inhospitable environment, not in any dominant or prolific way but tenaciously, tentatively. Even with the relatively huge increase in population over the past 20 years, it's no wonder that New Mexico, the fourth largest state in the US, hosts a mere 2 million puny humans. Roughly 15 people per square mile. And that's artificially inflated by the few "urban" areas. The more rural areas have 4 or fewer people per square mile. Compare to the population of Manhattan, nearly equal to the population of the entire state of New Mexico, with almost 70,000 people per square mile. Or even Phoenix, AZ with about 2,800 people per square mile.

Masochist? Misanthrope? New Mexico's for you! (not the official New Mexico promotional slogan....which I think is still "The Land of Enchantment.")

Insect Trust in the background doing Glade Song, from 1970's Hoboken Saturday Night, hosting Elvin Jones on the drums. "You bring your toys to my house, I will open up the gate, we'll spend the day together making the sun shine. You bring your can to my house, I will open up the can, we'll spend the day together eating a sandwich." If anyone knows how Elvin Jones ended up on this recording, I'd love to hear the story.

My ex-wife's dog passed away Thursday. Kita (a Great Pyrenees/Akita mix) was a beautiful, noble and dignified beast with a few flashes of surprisingly clownish ways. I become massively attached to dogs; it's a sense of real loss for Kita to be gone. But for JG, I can't imagine how global a feeling it must be, as she was inseparable from Kita for 15 years.

I'll be setting up some kind of web platform to host audio files and some of the Duology duets will probably go up first. More info on that later.

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