Special Weather Statement

Taos wood pile

Ten steps outside the front door (whew)

As such things go, this one didn’t seem too bad, except for the “s” word. We’ve been cruising along at ten to twenty degrees above normal for several weeks, anyway, so something had to give. The most important part of the forecast was, of course, that “significant snowfall is possible across the peaks above twelve thousand feet in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains,” which is where we are. Almost a mile lower than that. “All you people up there better watch out!” I shouted at the ceiling. (When would I ever get another chance?)

What that means for the rest of the world is that after the clouds clear on Saturday, I’ll get to take pictures and show you the first snow of the season. Just not here, exactly, which is fine with us. In any case, I’m prepared. You’ll note the genuine New Mexico wood pile in the photo. That’s 500-year-old piñon, I’ll have you know. A considerable portion of those chunks will light with just a match, which ought to give one pause. Heating with this stuff is kind of like running a damaged nuclear reactor. You get to say, “Hey, at least it isn’t cold!” about a dozen times before the chimney melts, and then you run away. This counts for high science in these parts, as opposed to low science, which is more along the lines of:

“No, I don’t known where the cut-off valve is on the hot water heater. Why do you ask?”

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John Hamilton Farr lives at 7,000 feet in Ranchos de Taos, New Mexico, U.S.A. As New York Times best-selling author James C. Moore tells it, John is “a man attuned to the world who sees it differently than you and I and writes about it with a language and a vision of life that is impossible to ignore.” This JHFARR.COM site is the master writing archive. To email John, please see CONTACT INFO on About page. For a complete list of all John’s writing, photography, NFTs, and social media links, please visit JHFARR.ART  

  • Candace October 10, 2014, 11:08 AM

    I saw a lot of woodpiles going thru Las Truchas and Las Trampas. I’m back on the Texas coast in 90 degree heat and humidity with mosquitoes the size of birds. Yuck. Thank you for your pictures and your great writing!

    • JHF October 10, 2014, 11:19 AM

      Thank you for your generous words… Yes, I’ll bet you did see a lot of woodpiles on the High Road. 🙂

      I remember that kind of heat and humidity from Houston and Austin, but especially from Maryland. Used to call Baltimore “Calcutta on the Bay.” I’m sure I simply couldn’t stand it now. On the other hand, I’m not looking forward to twenty below, either. If I ever work this out, I’ll let everyone know.



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