Somehow "fatigue" must have set in me, Spirit also, as we are just waking up from a 12 hour sleep! It was a week in Alpine, experiencing some bitter and cold weather, arriving back here a couple days ago, same spot, same scenario on Roger’s property. It is definite that we are leaving in a couple days. My forwarded mail is late, we will not even wait for it as Del Rio will be our next destination and somehow I know it will catch up with us. The US Postal system has always worked in the past. It has been an inner battle within me regarding our Journey, we have been here a long time, we have friends coming in these coming weeks, stay or not stay, hard to explain really, but we need to move on. It is a desire, it is within, it is a feeling of stagnation as much as we feel at home here, I think we know at least half of the town by now, it has started to feel as the travels have stopped as the other side of the coin of Life has made its appearance.
As we already said some of our good byes yesterday at the Christmas Art Show, I know that we will miss this place, the familiar kind faces, the unequalled sceneries, the comfort of camping here. And maybe that’s what it is, everything has become too familiar, too expected, too settled, the senses might have lost all the surprises that have been part of new adventures. Del Rio, Laredo, South Padre Island, Corpus Christi, maybe make it through Louisiana and finally arriving in Atlanta before January 22nd to greet my mother who is flying in from Munich, Germany. It is winter, the days soon will start getting longer again, but the cold is just starting to make its mark and traveling north is out of the question. I am by the way open to suggestions from you readers familiar with the areas mentioned as this will be our first time on those roads and through those towns. I do know to move on with much caution near the border and we will most likely need to stay in campgrounds for safety reasons. The beautiful and free BLM lands will most likely not happen till the month of March when we start heading west… again.
I keep hearing from the ones that I meet "you will settle down soon", I don’t think that far ahead, I just know that it is not within me to do so. Our stay here already has proved it to me this time being, like a 12 course meal I long for the next plate with new colors, new tastes and new senses. Vast empty lands are hard to find in the winter, I know that we will be amongst more crowded areas then what we are used to, specially when we arrive in Atlanta. I am already mentally getting prepared for it, specially considering the photographic passion I have lately developed. What a contrast buildings, high rises and traffic are going to be! The same with the crowd that will be so different from our present experiences… It is going to be as traveling in a different world, and still being the same.
It is not going to be as the picture above which was the location of the Christmas Art Show we attended. It was quite an experience and as usual lessons where given throughout the day… as an attentive student of Life, I did learn a lot… mainly mistakes not to repeat! I had called the person in charge a couple weeks ago to reserve a spot as I have my own little table, big enough to display my Art cards and Spirited Doggie Treats. Even stopped by on Friday to make sure that there would not be any surprises… and all was well, did not expect any. Being my first time at such event I did have some excitement build up within me, at the same time with no expectations. Well, I am not a local, I am not part of the "group" if I can loosely use that term, and very quickly I was directed to set up outside. Unless of course I preferred to be by the entrance, away from it all and mainly in a more obscure area. Art Cards need light…
I could only look in from and through the wired windows that were separating me from the… I realized… "pros". Bric a Brac worthy from the days of the Can Can era, loose and colorful apparel hanging and displayed with much knowledge from past experience, the "group" did not leave us any space to setup in a more controlled environment, considering that, in case you did not know, Terlingua is a windy and dusty town.
My Art Cards have a new format… they are glued on a white folding note card in which an envelope is inserted, and both are in turn inserted in a crystal clear and sealed envelope. A printed label on the lower back of the cards has our web site address, the year and also the location of the picture. They do look good even if I must say so myself! The Treats also now have a new label… Spirit’s picture wearing his helmet and Doggles with his new sticker is on the label, including again our web site address and the ingredients that makes up the Treats… Peanut Butter Treats very soon! They have been unanimously very well received by the way as I have been asking for feedback… not a single dislike… I can for sure say by now that it is a winning recipe.
More vendors showed up, there was a "chili" booth that I had seen at the chili cook off… there was a massage booth also selling over priced slices of pie and one dollar cookies the size just slightly larger than a quarter, a couple more photographers well known in the area with prices almost double as mine… some drove and some were driven…
I had taken about 75 Art Cards with me and I would say that 2/3rd of them were of local scenes. The choices were good, I think many had already seen our web site, as had send the link to the local Terlingua Blog a while back, giving them the web address of some pictures taken at the Recycling benefit. As the sun shined on us, a welcome warmth made its presence and my first lesson was about to be learned… do not leave freshly made Spirited Doggie Treats in the sun! The bags will build up condensation… it was a bad move. There was nothing I could do about it by then, only explain the facts, as there was no harm to its quality or taste… the bags just needed to be opened up and let to dry. I almost sold out by the end of the day.
Unfortunately the worse had yet to come, a cold wind started blowing, luckily with the help of a friend I was able to move in a less windy area, but with not less of the fine dirt still blowing everywhere, specially with more burst of wind as again it had changed direction, kids running around followed by clouds of more dirt and dogs kicking up the ground after taking turns lifting their leg! Almost sounds like the trailer of a bad movie! I gave up trying to keep the Art Cards clean… all I could say was "the Art Cards are $3… the dirt is free…". Unfortunately, as the "organizer" did pass by too many times by our table and was filled in on the situation, there was not a hint on her part of maybe making just a bit of room for us to be inside… I came back last night with about only 25 Art Cards left, people did understand about the "free dirt"… they did love the pictures of the local scenes, and after all, the crystal clear envelope itself is there to protect the picture.
There was music most of the day, very nice local talent that blended in with the Chisos in the background. Some reasonably priced Tamales was for lunch and of course Spirit throughout, as another vendor watched my table, had his share of Treats and even some companionship from the other local dogs. I tried to put him in the Christmas spirit… his expression did not seemed of a welcomed addition that day! It was as he was saying "get this thing off my head!"… Will try next time with the helmet on also! Poor guy puts up with so much… with so much grace…
A few asked me, readers also, why we are doing this… This being the Treats and Art Cards… I would have never believed of this path 14 months ago myself. First of all, it is fun, it is good. It does give me a chance to bake for appreciative customers of the canine family… I had requests for many of the pictures taken along the way… and as the second leg of the Journey is about to start, fuel cost being up, having to use campgrounds with fees for the winter time, the extra income had become a must in the budget if we want to continue covering the distances throughout this country as we plan to. And last… as I always remember what one said not too long ago… it is "honest". These sales are part of a different budget then the contributions which solely go to our Internet expenses. We have always been incredibly grateful to everyone that has contributed… The continuance of the Blog… full length articles in the Magazine "My First 100 Years" and many more Recipes to come… for $1 a month… it keeps us going. We now even have new buttons for the "Spirited Doggie Treats" and "Art Cards" above in the logo…
It was truly a great day… much learned… all positive for the next time… and as always "you be well".
The feedbacks are coming in… this is from real people… with real dogs!!!
* My dogs went crazy over the Spirited Pumpkin Treats!
* Ara, just wanted you to know someone ordered our dogs some of your treats and they loved them.
We are always under deep appreciation toward the readers that have send in a contribution helping this website’s expenditures. For those who have not, continue enjoying the site, pictures, recipes, and if you feel it’s worth $1 a month, the contribution button is above, snail mail is below…
Ara Gureghian 853 Vanderbilt Beach Rd #245 Naples, Fl 34108
Always, be well… Ara & Spirit