Friday, May 23, 2014

Waking Up in Abiquiu

I woke up in Abiquiu, in a tent, sun kissed and another year older.

My love affair with New Mexico started a long time ago. I've been going there since the nineties, mainly to Taos, but never spent any time in Abiquiu, a tiny village of Spanish and Native American descendants and where Georgia O'Keeffe lived and painted all those watercolored canyons and the pelvis bone with Pedernal mountain, her mountain, in the background. Pink waves of hills with black creases and grey shadows covered her canvases. The Cows Skull with Calico Roses and how she looked at blue sky through a white circle of bone. Through her eyes, the sun bleached bones were alive. I had studied her art and read every book about her and it was about time to go see what she saw.

When I had first seen the landscape of New Mexico, I felt as if I had come home. I felt different there. I knew I belonged there. And I couldn't quit going back.

I must have been taken in by the same things that Georgia saw. All those deep canyons, the piƱon dotted terra cotta hills, the vastness and the light. Oh, the intense light!

"I loved it immediately," Georgia O'Keeffe later recalled. "I was always on my way back."

See what I mean? We both had the same euphoric experience you might say.

Every day I felt like I was walking in and out of a Georgia O'Keeffe painting. Every day I would just stare and stare at the Red Mesa and I'd stretch my neck and fly in the Canyon with Crows.

Every day I didn't want it to end.

There were other places in Abiquiu, forever dirt roads that followed the Rio Chama and twisted landscapes leading to a monestary in the mountains. We spent a few hours there, being still. Places of kalaidescope colors mixed in with Native American ruins and ruddy arroyos. The river water was teal, cerulean blue and jade swirling around rocks like broken sapphires in the sunshine. We saw turkey vulchers circling every Mesa and ravens are surely obsessed with the canyons and cliffs as much as I am.

We visited villages and casitas with brightly colored doors, kiva fireplaces, smooth and rounded architecture, calming, secluded and exotic. Adobes that match the landscape is probably my favorite thing about this part of the Southwest desert. And the green chilie. And homemade blue corn tamales, shrimp burritos, smothered enchiladas and the warm and friendly people, a laid back atmosphere in cozy open patios.

Abiquiu, you treated me right. You are a jewel in those gold and lavender hills. I will see you again soon.

Very, very soon.

 

 

21 comments:

  1. so surprising, the little bits of colour amongst all that red dirt.
    and you, blanketed so perfectly.

    x

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    1. I love it when you drop in with your kind words and warm hearted spirit.
      XO

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  2. WOW Abiquiu looks AMAZING! I have always wanted to visit the desert someday. I am intrigued to see what it makes me feel like. I love all these photos - especially the one of the daisies from near the ground's surface. Cool perspective in that one. Hope you had a great birthday! Looks like you most certainly did :)

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    1. Hi Keith! Now it looks like you have two major places to visit when the time comes for you and Beate to explore the west.
      Taos and Yellowstone. And yes, we will be happy to be your guides. :)

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  3. :) You and New Mexico, woman. So glad it filled your soul, took your heart on wings, and caressed you with its colors. You were born for this place.
    And Happy Birthday!!
    xoxo

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    1. Your words are music to my ears!! I WAS born for this place! I've always known it.
      I've never felt the way I do any where else. I LOVE TAOS.
      Thank you, friend. xo

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  4. What a wonderful place. Your description makes me imagine a warm breeze, with the sounds of birds wings flapping as they pass by. Another place to add to my ever increasing list x

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    1. Do you think you'll get out to that country someday? Move it to the top of your list and we can go together!
      Big love to you, Audrey xo

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  5. yes yes yes

    love and light my lovely

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  6. Soulvitating! lol So happy for you. I understand your love, I too am smitten...

    "Every day I felt like I was walking in and out of a Georgia O'Keeffe painting." - swoon.... that was the most beautiful sentence I laid my eyes on today. THANK YOU
    for sharing all this beauty. Happy happy new year of beautiful life, to you PS. ;)

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    1. You're the best, you know that??!!
      Thank you for everything, my prairie sister out east. xxoo

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  7. Beautiful country and a great place to celebrate your birthday! From the way you write about that area, it's obvious how much you love it and it soaks into your being.

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    1. You ALWAYS say the right thing, Diana. EVERY SINGLE TIME.
      Thanks. It means quite a lot! xx

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  8. Lynn! I may have just gasped at the beauty in this post! I have a special place in my heart for the desert, especially New Mexico... And Georgia is one of my ALL TIME favorite artists, a few years ago I visited NM and got to go to the museum. What a delight! Although visiting Abiquiu would be even more of a treat!!! And Happiest of Birthdays, by the way!
    Oh, and did I mention that Nate and I are actually considering moving to the west coast? It is true, we will be going to check out NoCal in September!
    Wishing you all the best, sorry I haven't stopped in in a while!
    xo
    Britt

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    1. Oh Britty. So nice to see you!
      Gasp! When I read you are coming out west in September.
      NorCal is the best part of Cali!!! I hope you DO move up there, then I can come out to visit you!
      Where the mountains meet the sea. You will find it all there, girl. xx

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  9. happy birthday to you! i am so glad that you were able to spend it in such a personally meaningful environment. your photos are beautiful, and i know exactly what you mean about wanting to see a landscape as a beloved artist did. i have been on many such quests myself, always deepened by the experience. i love the second to last photo of the coral blossom finely focused against day's last flare of sunlight... just lovely.
    i'm back to cali next week and then will be home for a couple of months. i want to spend time on my own land and deepen my spiritual bond with the horses. we have found an excellent person to work with and magic is happening!

    today is a glorious spring-into-summer type day-- hope you get to go out and enjoy it!
    xoxo

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    1. Hi Janet. Your new bonding with the horses sounds wonderful as does reacquainting yourself with the land you walk everyday. A new appreciation. It will be good for your soul. Thank you for being here. xx

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  10. You have beautiful, beautiful pictures on this blog :)

    ashley-ashstash.blogspot.com

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  11. What a world to wake up to.
    Late Birthday love and a hug your way!

    xo

    Ash

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    1. Hey thanks, Ash. Everyday was a sight for sore eyes. I absolutely love that place! xx

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