Outside a Canyon Road gallery
The almost-full moon was sinking behind gray-streaked clouds in a mackerel sky this morning. My neighborhood roosters and ducks were sipping un-frozen water as I walked by—although snow is on the way. Downtown, the Pink Adobe is happily re-opened and galleristas are loading up farolito bags with sand. When colder nights come, that elf-like being Jack Frost will be out scribbling patterns on windshields. Frost, the freezing cousin of dew, most often appears during cold, cloudless nights. Ancient Anglo Saxons believed evergreen plants and trees were sanctuaries for the woodland spirits during winter. Santa Fe’s juniper trees with blue berries and pine trees sporting pinecones are looking like steadfast havens.
A house near Canyon Road
There is the sense that Santa Fe is a haven itself, with 30,000 strollers predicted for Canyon Road’s Christmas Eve Farolito Walk amid gallery decorations and bonfires, streets closed to traffic after 5pm. But I don’t know that Santa Fe is any different than Los Angeles when it comes to deep, inner thoughts—and when I used to produce Mike Harrison’s legendary talk show on KMET FM radio, I remember holiday callers could be depressed, the holidays being a time for reckoning with the state of our lives under the frivolity. With reckoning comes insight and then energy for change if it all doesn’t measure up. “All the best for 2011—we deserve it!” wrote an unemployed friend on a Christmas card I got today. Hopeful words! “Good fortune,” wished another. “The secret to happiness is lowered expectations,” a friend once commented. Too true. And also to be grateful for every bit of good health, peace, prosperity, and goodwill.
Above: My mustang Ryo in Tesuque, NM. Our barn owner in Malibu described him as Ghandi-esque because Ryo didn't fight for the best feed bin like the other horses. When Ryo died in Tesuque, I turned on my car radio to hear John Lennon singing "Imagine"... that was Ryo "living life in peace."
PHOTOS BY WOLF SCHNEIDER