Show and Tell here. A Chaparral Notebook hidden deep in Cyberspace. A “carved out hole for me.”
At the Sandoval County Dump yesterday, I was moved to tears.
Why at the dump?
And so this personal space begins with beginning to answer that question – why am I so touched at the dump?
Three things to start:
1). I had not been able to drive “in the dirt” at the dump in a number of years, and now they have this whole new area available to the public, up the dirt road hill to the 3rd power pole: “Green Waste” “Metal Waste” “Wood Waste” (those last two might not be the official monikers). My spouse has been there lots, he told me this morning (i’ve been going to the Eagle Rock facility these last coupla years and have missed the switchover). He loves to go scrounging there. I like the fact that there’s a place to drive on the pink sandy dirt and a place where we ARE ALLOWED to scrounge. My spouse has scrounged us great stuff at the dump over the years. And many a time he was told “put it back.” A dump is a receptacle for all that we produce and then DISCARD. A place of redemption, potential redemption at any rate.
2). The area around the dump is no longer “just the wild mesa.” There are many many houses and businesses out there along Idalia Road in Rio Rancho, on what, ten years ago, was rolling ‘established’ dunes – the geographical feature that runs all up and down this particular north-south ribbon between Rio Puerco on the west and Rio Grande on the east. If I can apply what I’ve learned about dunes teaching at NMMNHS’s Young Explorers camp, the prevailing westerly winds have piled the loose, plentiful topsoil/sediment from the Rio Puerco into the banks of dunes all along the intermediary volcanic easement that stretches north and south in between the faults. eh – sorry that’s probably hard to follow. If you could see my hands moving with the explanation which I rely on usually, maybe it’d be clearer! The places where the layers of rock have dropped down or shifted up are the places that catch the sand deposited by the wind. And we have a few of those places, or faults, that run on either side of our Rio Grande valley, that originally made our river flow here.
I have been to this dump throughout my life – memories fill that space for me – end of days of clean-up – wide views of the western horizon – mingling time with my compadres and comadres in the satisfaction of end of work.
3). Recently read Luis Urrea’s Into the Beautiful North. The place the book centers on in 2nd quarter (and for too little time in the book, in mi opinion) is a dompe outside of Tijuana. Amazing family domiciles established at that dump in the book. It was a poignant read for me documenting the economic, social, political, community reality that surrounds me.
As my family used to say when I was little, ‘Old Méjico, and Nuevo Méjico.’ And now I say, Qué lindo es Méjico.
Adiós – hasta pronto.
Ancestors known from Tennessee Hills on this continent and from Island Moors, Northern River Valleys in Europe – from more recent Arkansas River farmlands and from High Desert gravel roads traveled at dusk or at night to escape the heat.
Granddaughter of Claire, Jim, Doc and Ted – all born in Missouri end o’ 19th century.
Daughter of Cirrelda and Jim who met in Hobbs, NM in 1947 on a blind date with others as their dates.
Sister of Elizabeth – jokester, supreme lightness of being, same as the touch she has on her baked goods, children and planted seeds.
Spouse of Jb – hip-wiggler, mind-jostler, kindly odd duck with the funnest jaw you ever saw, who sticks by me.
Mama Mountain of the Darling Daughter who, like her dad, dances in the delightful realm of the imagination.
Aunt of Niece Comadres – wonderful spirits to be connected to, in blood and heart.
Aunt of Nephew Compadres- loveable huggable bear men.
Niece meself, Cousin meself – Luckiest person in the world.