Catching Up Again

John Hamilton Farr

My wife thinks this picture is very weird

Another Nagasaki Day birthday coming up on Tuesday! I don’t know why this is so important to me. It always is, at any rate, perhaps because I’m a Leo and was born on such a historic date. Everywhere I’ve ever lived (except here in Taos), I’ve known scads of Leos, and there always was a Leo party around this time of year. I’ve never heard of any other sun signs having parties for themselves. Can you imagine a Scorpio party, for example? I’m not sure I’d want to go!

There’s a lot going on here now. For one thing, we went to our local bank to get pre-approved for a mortgage loan. No, really. That was exciting. Our loan officer’s preliminary estimate of our “capacity” would buy us a nice home in rural Kansas, probably, and the final decision comes down today. I already wasted way too much energy being afraid we’d be approved, because then I’d have to face some other issues, but now I hope they do for general purposes of self-esteem. There isn’t any property at this time we’d actually like to buy—Taos being Taos and the case since pretty much forever—meaning the entire exercise is fraught with mystery and hope, as usual. (This may be relevant.)

But as I took my exercise walk yesterday, I had a revelation about my life. It is my birthday in a few days, after all. It’s also true that I could stand to have no more of these epiphanies, because they get me into trouble! Nonetheless, I realized that here I was—we should probably stop right there—observing from the leading edge of all the energy that brought me to this moment, and that all I had to do was keep on walking. The past was not a factor. There was a sense of being in the moment that was liberating.

On Tuesday we’ll take a trip to far northeast New Mexico. When I was a young pimply-faced Buddy Holly fan, my family took a camping trip from Abilene, Texas all the way to Yellowstone. Our first overnight stop was at Capulin Volcano National Monument, thirty-five miles east of Raton, NM. That was fifty-six years ago, and I am going back! One needs a destination, after all. But this is not the biggest thrill.

While running my eyes over the map to see how far it was to Capulin, a name jumped out at me and gave me goosebumps: Folsom! Folsom, New Mexico, where archeologists first found evidence of prehistoric hunters in North America—mammoth bones with embedded spear points, just nine miles north of the volcano! Yet even this is not the best. I spied another way to Capulin, you see. By taking very old New Mexico Route 72 from Raton all the way to Folsom and then turning south, we’d pass through a section of the state I’ve never seen. Here’s what really did it, though [full text at Folsom link above]:

“…the descent from the Mesa is spectacular.”

What mesa? I didn’t care, they had me at spectacular. Folsom itself is virtually a ghost town, fifty-six souls as of the last census. If we see another car before we get there, I’ll be surprised. This is absolutely perfect. Perfectly me, for sure, and damn if the whole idea didn’t pop divinely out of nowhere. I have goosebumps on my goosebumps, too.

Hoo, boy.

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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  

  • Fw August 5, 2016, 6:18 PM

    Well John, you are looking as handsome as ever..!! Have a great trip to Capulin. Have a wonderfully exhilarating Birthday, John..!!
    Cheers, Fred

    • JHF August 5, 2016, 11:15 PM

      Thanks, Fred! There will be a lot of pictures…

  • Rita August 5, 2016, 6:28 PM

    Happy Birthday from me, too. Eureka Springs used to be full of Aquarians and we knew how to party, too!

    • JHF August 5, 2016, 11:21 PM

      Thanks, and I believe it. I haven’t been to a real party in so long, it hurts. You know, rock & roll and stuff. Vomiting, danger, much hilarity!

  • Anne August 5, 2016, 8:52 PM

    Happy Birthday! Enjoy the sights and the goosebumps!

    • JHF August 5, 2016, 11:22 PM

      Thank you! Maybe I’ll get to shoot some video…

  • Peter August 6, 2016, 4:35 AM

    A happy birthday to you and good luck with the mortgage! Always looking forward to the stories and pictures of your adventures.

    • JHF August 6, 2016, 10:41 AM

      Thank you, Peter! Be sure to come back for pictures from my Tuesday trip.

  • Marti Fenton August 6, 2016, 10:25 AM

    Happy Birthday! But, Leos are not the only ones who throw their own Birthday parties. Aries start to remind you a month ahead and then throw their own party. (I’m a Gemini, but all fire signs make sure that other people know their important days) On the house: Maybe you could alter the Zen saying to,”when the buyer is ready, the house appears”.

    • JHF August 6, 2016, 10:40 AM

      Well, Leos are the only sign I’ve ever known to throw a party for a bunch of Leos. We should do a survey. 🙂 I dunno about the house, but maybe you’re right. In some respects, I’m still not ready! You know how that goes. Sure, we could buy a place, but then what? I think too much, obviously, but another hundred grand would shut that down.

  • Judy Copek August 6, 2016, 2:57 PM

    Have a great (and memorably) birthday. The trip sounds lovely.

    • JHF August 6, 2016, 7:37 PM

      We’re spending the night in Raton in a nifty retro motel, too. Then back to Taos the next morning. You wouldn’t believe how undeveloped and wild the whole route is.

  • Frank Powell August 6, 2016, 8:48 PM

    We get together for our August birthdays. Got about 6 of us”Leo’s in the family left, a few having passed on. But we are a party bunch.
    Happy Birthday to you, mine is the 7th. If I’d known I was going to live this long…… All in all it’s been a great ride!

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