The oil wells continue from Texas to New Mexico but the color of the earth changes from a deep, clay red to a hazy brown. It’s all desolate and eye-popping, utterly foreign.
We pressed on over Cloudcroft which turned into a trial by fire lesson in mountain driving. My nerves are still recovering. Note to self, do not follow google maps without checking elevations.
What followed were two intense days where I schooled myself on torque bands, weight distribution, and strategies for going up and down the mountains. I’m about to test all that knowledge on the road from Santa Fe to Taos. My next digest may be about how I had to abandon my camper on the mountain.
These trips are somewhat about throwing myself into the deep end and finding a way out. It’s a stressful way to learn for someone with anxiety, but I always emerge to something better. A more solid idea of the world and how to maneuver in it. One by one, removing the obstacles to coveted experiences. Reshaping who I am to myself.
I spent two days at White Sands National Park which is a gem of a place. Sunrise hikes in my bare feet, sunbathing for ten minutes at a time in the intense sun, making my lunch in the perfectly minimal picnic shelters, sunset walks with the ranger; I did it all.
This is a place to forget yourself.
There is no room for intrusive thoughts in the face of such beauty. I am immersed in it, and the joy of trying to take a good photo.