CORNER WINDOW by Jeff Hartzer
#019, July 2008
Fun With Visitors
“Good For You, Albuquerque!” For a time, our Mayor’s administration had bumperstickers of the above slogan and there is no better time to recall this phrase than when you are showing off your environs to summertime visitors. Despite all the bad news in the world, visitors seem to be finding their way here with our pleasant temperatures even in summer’s full swing.
When visitors come a calling, it’s ‘damn the high cost of gas’, we’re gonna show them what we love about New Mexico. Coming down the tram from a fantabulous meal at the High Finance in the cool darkness of a new moon with the sparkly lights of our city and valley shining forth like diamonds was a recent proud moment for us to show off the town. Walking the walls of SKY CITY at Acoma Pueblo was also a spiritually high moment for us as “tour guides” to awestruck visitors. We take our surroundings for granted it seems, until “fresh eyes” come from other places. Taking out of towners to the Zoo to see the new exhibits and passing through the cool blue waters of our fair city’s Aquarium are done all too UN-often.
Showing our visitors six “varieties” of enchiladas and explaining the “green or red” phenomena while listening to Mariachis play, makes this a truly unique place where we live and dwell alongside a grand river in between mountain ranges. We forget until we see things through the eyes of others, the richness of our traditions and culture here. Feasting again, we watch the Isotopes crack the bats as the Sandia Mountains turn into their famous Water Melon Pink. Our still fairly new stadium built on the hallowed grounds of the Albuqueurque Dukes is one to be proud of and to enjoy.
The pleasures of summer seem heightened when shared with those from lowered elevations. To see the spread of jeweled lights from atop the Sandia Peak after sunset says it all. We didn’t even mind the Wal*Mart bag seen blowing through the cliffs of Acoma. This is truly a unique place to live and breathe. The worst elements of our Enchanted Land continue to be not so bad. Hurricanes, gas prices, food prices, and even the second Iraq war, all seem far away while munching on fry bread and watching Ravens fly. From explaining the mystery of swamp coolers and xeriscaping, to deciding how many Frontier Rolls one can consume, it’s all part of the show in a High Desert summer. The beauty of acequias, the joys of hummingbirds, crossing the big river, shopping, mariachi dinners, mountains, mesas, and... well, all in all, the High Desert is one heck of a place to live in.
Whether you have visitors or not, find some time to enjoy your cool home (inside thick walls with the swamp cooler spinning) but also take time to get out there and enjoy yourselves. Drink plenty of water on your own High Desert tour . Happy Trails!
Jeff Hartzer copyright 2008