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Final vacation post

Sunday morning I was a little late getting back out to Philmont as Irma wanted to make a special breakfast for me. She's one of those ladies that always thinks you need to eat something. So it was eggs over easy and real bacon and sourdough toast with homemade apricot jam...mmmmmm. So I made it back to Philmont around 9:30. I found Brad and helped him do some cleaning of the camp. A lot of people had pulled out early and many were out on the service project so there were very few of us to police the grounds and make sure everything was in order. But not much was amiss so it was not a really big job.

I told Brad that Dawn had called me back and he started teasing me about going on a date. But I could tell he was a little jealous. I told him I was going to take her flowers and he laughed at me and rolled his eyes. I told him, "Man, you never go see a beautiful woman and not take flowers. Just like you don't go see an elder without a gift."

He said, "Good man!"

We got everything cleaned up out at Rocky Mountain Scout Camp and then headed for the PSA office to drop off keys and such. Then Brad and I found a quiet picnic table at PTC and he wanted to see all the stones and things I keep in my feather box for healing. I brought them all out and we talked about each one. Then we had a long discussion about Shamanism and the shortcomings I see in Christianity. It felt good to be in that role of teacher for a little bit. Like it was something I was supposed to be doing. I gifted Brad a few stones and some aromatherapy oil I keep with me. He said he'd need to find a bag for them and I promised to take him to Shirley Dale's place so he could get one.

We left PTC and went on to the Trading Post to get last minute souvenirs then he followed me to town. Shirley was closed so we went over to the Rockin Lazy B Gallery where I knew she had some of her bags on consignment. Brad picked out a nice one and I bought him an ice cream while we looked at the art. I showed him my jewelry and photography. Then he said he needed to go so we shook hands and parted ways. He was going to Albuquerque to see his mother who is in a nursing home there and hen back home to Overland Park, KS.

I went back out the Philmont to stop by the Seton Museum where I had donated something earlier in the week. It was a 1955 Philmont Staff Photo I'd found on Ebay last year. They wanted to be sure to give me a letter for the donation. Then back to town to go over to my cousin Tracy's store, Blue Moon Eclectics..

I told Tracy of my dinner plans and she told me there was no where I could buy flowers in town on a Sunday. She thought it was sweet that I was taking Dawn flowers and said someone had sure raised me right. So I resolved to pick a bunch of wildflowers in Cimarron Canyon on my way up to Dawn's. She helped me pick out several colorful ribbons to wrap around the flowers.

I went back up to Buddy and Irma's for a bit to shower and get ready for dinner. Irma came home for a bit and I told her I wouldn't be using the couch that night. She asked me if I had a date and then giggled at me. After she left again, I put on my last clean pair of jeans, a long-sleeved denim shirt, a black western vest and my new Dan Post western boots. Then I headed up the canyon. I found a nice patch of wildflowers a few miles out of town and picked about 14 different varieties in all the colors I could find, bound them with the ribbons and headed up to Dawn's place. I got there a little early around 5:45 and gave her the flowers.

She smiled really big and told me she loved getting flowers but no one ever thought to give them to her. She gave me a big hug and then found a vase for them. She asked me what kind of food I'd like to eat and I told her Mexican. She asked me if there was any other kind. She offered to drive since she knew Taos better than I did and we made the short trip to the Guadalajara Grille. Place had absolutely no atmosphere but man, was the food ever good. I had the burrito plate and she had fish tacos and we both had a beer. Negra Modelo for her and Corona for me.

Over dinner we talked about old friends at Philmont and people we knew in common. She told me about her current love interest and from her description I told her she must really be in love. She was happy I said that and smiled for a long time about it. Afterward, on the drive home, I told her about the 8 month relationship I'd had with Kate Griffin who had worked for Dawn at Philmont in 88. She just shook her head and kept saying, "Kate, Kate, Kate."

When we got back to her place she made me a pot of chamomile tea and she made coffee for herself. We talked for a long while about various things and eventually got into a discussion about animal spirit guides and stone healing. She brought out some stones her lover had given her from a trip to the Grand Canyon and asked for my impressions of them. I meditated over them for awhile and then gave her my answers. She wrote them down and seemed very pleased with them. Then she asked to see the items in my feather box and wanted to know all about each of them. I gifted her with a few of the stones and crystals and she wrote down the healing properties of each. She told me about her encounters with various spirits and asked me for advice on them. I talked to her about that for a long while. Finally she had me cut some labels for some soap she is making while she addressed invitations to her upcoming gallery showing in Taos and we continued talking from different rooms.

Finally she started to get tired and suggested we go to bed. She showed me the guest bedroom which was very nice. Well appointed and decorated with her art from various years. I went to bed and read for an hour or so before falling asleep. In the morning, Dawn made me more tea and some toast out of rocks and twigs bread before shooing me out of the house. She wasn't being rude, she just needed to work. Being an artist as well, I could understand that. So I bought some of her soap, gave her a big hug, told her good luck on the show and with her lover and headed back down the canyon.

I put my mix CD of Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young into the player while I wound my way back down towards Eagle Nest. That music just seems to fit that country. Dark Star came on and gave me the perfect lyric to describe the last day, "let the memory of the evening
Be the first thing that you think of
When you open up your smile and see me".

I stopped a couple times on the way down to get photos of various things that caught my eye.

When I finally got to Eagle Nest I turned left and headed up the Moreno Valley to Elizabethtown. It's an old ghost town I've been driving past for years but have never photographed extensively. Standing there in the ruins of the old hotel with Baldy Mountain off in the distance is a surreal experience. Just imagining all the lives that have passed through there. I stayed for about an hour before heading back down the valley, past Eagle Nest Lake, and back into Cimarron Canyon. At the top of the pass, who should I spy, pulled over to use his cell phone but Ed Pease, the President of the PSA. He had business in Taos and was going up to see Dawn. I talked with him for a bit and told him to tell Dawn he wanted to be a charter member of her fan club along with Brad and I. He laughed and said he would.

Then I went back down into the Canyon, found a pull off spot down by the Cimarron River and got out to sit on a rock and meditate for awhile. That's a sentimental place for me, having swam there with more than one former girlfriend and many times just sat and meditated to the sound of the rushing water. I had a nice little vision while sitting there that put me in a really reflective mood for the rest of the day.

I gradually made my way back to Cimarron and started making the rounds saying goodbye to people. That's always such a bittersweet thing to do. I went over to the St. James and Roger, the owner sold me a case of Shiner Bock. On the way out my cooler was full of fruit, lunchmeat and granola. On the way back it had a case of Shiner, 4 oranges and two bananas...breakfast of champions.

I saw Jim and Connie at the Rockin Lazy B. Had my last butterscotch Sundae at the art gallery, bought some gifts from Tracy over at blue Moon including a Corn Maiden fetish for Deb. Hit Cimarron West for a Western straw hat for Deb. Ate one last meal at the Burrito Banquet and then headed over to the Old Mill Museum to say my goodbyes to Buddy and Irma. I was sad to say goodbye to them and stalled as much as possible. Going down into the basement to see the old millworks and then buying some beads from Buddy's supply of jewelry making components he sells there. Actually he gave me the beads in exchange for me helping him to find a new supplier of silver chain. Finally I hugged and shook hands with the two of them and headed out of town by way of Miami where I used to live. I explored there for a bit and then drove on to Springer with the Tooth of Time in my rear view.

At Springer I wanted to visit an old Phillips 66 Gas station where I used to always stop for gas/diesel. But when I got there I found it had closed in 2004 just after the last time I had stopped in there.

The feeling that gave me was something akin to finding out a childhood home had been torn down. Realizing that was one more thing I could never go home to. I can't tell you how many times while running low on fuel, late at night, that all night 66 Station saved my bacon.

So after that it was on out towards Clayton NM where I saw my second perfect rainbow of the trip. I drove into the rain at Clayton and it never stopped on up into Oklahoma to Boise City and then into Kansas. Not too far over the border I hit a patch of clear sky just for a minute or two and got out of my car on the side of the road to look around. I could imagine the desolation the early settlers must have felt seeing miles of grassland and listening to the constant howl of the wind. A huge storm was blowing in and I prayed out loud to let me get around it before it hit.

Luckily All I got was a lot of rain and some pretty strong wind. But I'd seen tractor trailers overturned on that road before so I was wary. Late that night I started looking for motels to stay in. Many in the small towns had No Vacancy signs so I drove farther than I really wanted to, finally stopping after 1 am in Florence, KS at the Holiday Motel. I woke up the diminutive desk clerk who finally granted me a room. You could tell I had interrupted something. He kept glancing back at his own bedroom and trying to hurry through the room registration. He practically threw the room keys at me and then ran back to his room, slamming the door behind him and shutting out the office light. It didn't take me too long to crash after the long drive and I was off to never never land.

Driving a long way the first day has it's rewards. There was an abandoned grain elevator up by Strong City, KS that I've wanted to photograph and this gave me time. So A short drive later and I was there at the elevator. I spent about an hour there exploring around before finally hitting the trail again. It was about 6.5 hours back to the farm from there and I was back in hard driving mode. So I put some 80's Hair metal in the CD player and cranked it up driving through Emporia, up through Kansas City to Cameron, MO and then back across MO to stop in Hannibal to get gas and then an hour up to the farm. I was there by about 5 pm. I rested a few hours and was home with Debra at the city house just after dark. We sat around and talked and cuddled for a long time before I gave her the gifts. She was really happy with them. We cuddled some more and then went to bed, happy with each other.

And that dear readers was the end of my vacation.

Now if you want to see all the pics, go here.

Peace,

Wander

Comments

( 23 comments — Leave a comment )
brotherskeeper1
Aug. 17th, 2006 06:40 am (UTC)
That's quite a post of your trip. I especially like the photo taken from the entrance of the old hotel.
wander
Aug. 17th, 2006 02:53 pm (UTC)
That's a very popular photo to take in that place. I just wanted one that was my own. Now to start posting things in rural_ruin. Has anyone posted today in there yet?

W
brotherskeeper1
Aug. 17th, 2006 09:46 pm (UTC)
I don't know if anyone has posted in rural_ruin today. I'm just finishing up with email comments and haven't read my lj yet.

wander
Aug. 17th, 2006 10:09 pm (UTC)
I posted the old Cordova Church Pix in there today.

W
starshaman
Aug. 17th, 2006 11:49 am (UTC)
Great memory, or did you take notes...hehehehe.

I was in Strong City KS a month ago, a friend I can't possibly describe in words is living there, I've seen that elevator ;) I wonder if your friend knows what's interesting to do in Overland park? Only got a month until the move!

Love the pictures. I've been lacking of late in my picture taking, I used to be rather good at it, but lately I don't take any at all....
wander
Aug. 17th, 2006 03:00 pm (UTC)
I go through phases of not taking pix too. Probably something else occupying your attention. You are in luck with my friend. He works for the Overland Park Convention and Visitor's Bureau. He just took over a new position trying to get big companies to hold meetings there. So he's probably the perfect person to ask. I'll ask him for you. Yeah, I knew she lived in Strong City, I even looked in the phone book and found an old address and phone number for her. But I couldn't spend the whole day looking so I went on. After I get the end of summer travelling over with I'll make a point to go see her there and you guys too if you are still around.

Oh and that was all from memory, of course the pix helped. As I've been writing the posts, I've remembered even more.

W
starshaman
Aug. 17th, 2006 05:14 pm (UTC)
I find it highly significant that I forgot you Know Chimera, hehehe. She used to send me things you wrote via Email, snipped from LJ. And Now I forget she reads your posts as well, LMFAO,PP.....
wander
Aug. 17th, 2006 05:52 pm (UTC)
Yeah she used to keep mentioning the Bryan person like I knew who she was talking about. It was only after I saw a few of your comments on her posts that I tied it all together.

W
ryl
Aug. 17th, 2006 02:27 pm (UTC)
That rainbow picture was just...wow.
wander
Aug. 17th, 2006 03:02 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I stood there looking at it long after it faded away.

W
ex_earthsist869
Aug. 17th, 2006 03:09 pm (UTC)
Seconded.
wander
Aug. 17th, 2006 03:25 pm (UTC)
I was awestruck. 2 perfect rainbows in one trip. Kinda like finding a bunch of four leaf clovers.

W
(Anonymous)
Aug. 19th, 2006 01:23 am (UTC)
vacation
I stumbled in here after looking at another site, something about twin souls i think lol now i cant remember. interesting how great writing will get ya distracted. lol

I have to say you write very well and i was kinda surprised that i could 'see' everything you were describing even before i looked at the pics which was after i read it all. i dont normally do that with others writing unless its a book. so i felt i should post a message and comment on the wonderful writing. sounds like you had an awesome time. im sure ill read more as i get the chance to, thanks.

many blessings to you and yours
Namaste,
Rinda
wander
Aug. 19th, 2006 01:32 am (UTC)
Re: vacation
Nice to hear from you. Add me if you like. I think you came through as anonymous on this post.

You could probably feel much of me coming through in this post as I live in that place in my heart most of the time.

Peace,

Wander
(Anonymous)
Aug. 19th, 2006 01:55 am (UTC)
Re: vacation
well, id add ya but i dont have account through here.

i dont really write much but have been feeling i should start. wondering if me finding this a hint, ive never heard of livejournal before today. I do keep my own journal on-line, in my e-mail account, but that is more personal. besides, once i get going i always have plenty to say (thinking this may be more due to the fact that i dont know how to shut up then actually having something to say, giggles) all sillyness aside, for now, if i get around to it ill create an account. thank you for the invite and if i do create one ill add yas.

blessings of love and peace
Namaste,
Rinda
(Anonymous)
Aug. 19th, 2006 01:58 am (UTC)
Re: vacation
duh if i could only remember to reply to ALL of the previous reply... sheesh.

i was gonna comment that that is exactly why i could feel what you were writing, it is from the heart i pick up on that easily. though i dont always identify it so well, still working on that part. thanks for the clarification, appricate it : )

Rin
wander
Aug. 19th, 2006 05:54 am (UTC)
Re: vacation
If you were willing to make an account, I'd be willing to pay your first two months of membership to give you all the priveledges thereof.

Wander
rinda_marie
Aug. 20th, 2006 01:33 am (UTC)
Re: vacation
i very much appreciate the offer and would like to say thank you very much. ill accept, but to be up front with you im letting you know things are very unstable in almost every aspect for me and my family right now so not sure if ill be able to keep up with any payments after that two month period. should you still be interested that would be wonderful and if not i very much understand and would not be offended in anyway. either way im creating an account after i send this off.

your offer inspired me to wonder who this person was that has just offered to pay for something for someone he dosent even know. so off i went and explored your journal a bit and your jewelry site. quite an interesting journal you have. i love your site might just find me intersted in some of it as i have a native american heritage as well but as of yet it is not documented in any way. seems there are a few other things we have in common but cant go into that right now, im gonna go meditate for a bit after i create this account. then some chat room stuff to do, lol all kinds of things and im already getting tired cause its dark at nine pm already, i think summer comes and goes in the blink of an eye round here. anyways, im out for a few thanks again and ill add ya.
wander
Aug. 20th, 2006 01:43 am (UTC)
Re: vacation
A free account isn't a bad thing just doesn't have all the whistles and bells of a paid account. I just figured you'd like a paid account for a couple of months to see if you like it. It's dark here now and I have to journey tonight as well. Transitions are afoot it seems. A group of bats took up residence in the tree next to my house last night. So tonight I need to see why they are hanging about.

Welcome

Wander
rinda_marie
Aug. 20th, 2006 02:10 am (UTC)
Re: vacation
wow - your two sweet, three sweet even thank you thank you. should be interesting to see how things work out with this journal thang. as i said before i love to talk and have been thinking about writing and now you've given me such a perfect opportunity ill certainly take it and use it wisely.

mind if i add you two my yahoo? i hate adding others if i dont ask first even if there ID has been made public info, just a personal thing i guess. gonna try and chill out and do something constructive tonight or just chill out and flow with the go... or is that go with the flow, i always seem to get those confused...

blessings always,
Rin
wander
Aug. 20th, 2006 05:49 am (UTC)
Re: vacation
Sure, add me. I'm not always on. Email is the best way to get me if you need me for something. I check in with YIM periodically though. By the way, if you are interested in checking out our shamanism community, you can find it in my listed communities on my info page. Just look for stonebear and follow the link.

W
turtles_path
Aug. 20th, 2006 09:51 pm (UTC)
wow, what an incredible journey. i've been absolutely mesmorized by your eloquent telling and showing here. i am often touched by just how much your heart really does shine through in your writing, especially here.

i've visited a few mid-western towns at this point but i still haven't been anywhere that i could possibly see a full end to end rainbow like that. amazing.

as always, thanks for sharing. :)
wander
Aug. 21st, 2006 03:24 am (UTC)
You get out in the semi arid desert areas at the base of the mountains and you can see for miles in most directions. I've never seen a complete rainbow back here in Illinois. Even if I'm not in the city, trees and farm fields get in the way. I live in that place in my heart most of the time so I guess it comes through in my writing.

Thanks,

W
( 23 comments — Leave a comment )

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Wander aka StoneBear
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