A worthy trade… NM

Sunday, July 2nd, 2017

“It is not the end of the physical body that should worry us. Rather, our concern must be to live while we are alive – to release our inner selves from the spiritual death that comes with living behind a façade designed to conform to external definitions of who and what we are”
~ Elizabeth Kubler ~

A Star is born C PCTB

As I sit here on a Sunday afternoon… in this small home I bought in New Mexico, throughout a moment of quietness I cannot help questioning myself of such an act even though I know this step forward is the correct one. Since The Oasis got sold, as time has gone by wanting to plant new roots while the previous ones vanished, it has been a constant search almost incontrollable to duplicate those few acres we resided on in Texas often in winter months. They were the perfect acres for years ago. This past year however proving they are no more so convenient after two surgeries considering the closest hospital was 250 miles away! With that search in mind we headed North, had a great time in Utah, Colorado, but the magnet kept pulling me South even if the weather was going to be scorching hot. I think if I remember well we dropped to New Mexico a couple times looking for some land. I did come across a great offer, a few actually, but just could not clinch a deal when I started thinking about re-starting all over with a structure, septic, power, water, you name it while dealing with so many people, permits and covenants. I had given up and we had one more day to spend at the “Valley of Fires”, a quiet campground near Carrizozo.

Campfire SM

One more day, one more night meaning one more evening and for some then unknown reason opened the Internet on homes for sale in the area. Curiosity? Most financially untouchable, some financially doable but pure disasters, fixer uppers. A few photos of a small home jumped up and talked to me. With a wonderful Real Estate Lady we looked at it the following day extending our stay. Lucky me, it had just been inspected thoroughly just a few days ago because of prospective buyers who then found it to be too small and I realized when all would be said and done including some furniture, it would be pretty much an even financial trade with The Oasis. Just as 11 years ago when it only took me minutes to decide on our Texas Base Camp, it also only took me minutes here! Of course I am making a long story short. A gravel fenced yard area within a larger sized also gravel fenced and gated area would keep Spirit very happy. I must say on my end all is still very strange. A brand new bathroom in itself is a long ways away from the days spent in a tent. From such tent to a camper which is now parked in the driveway, to a small home but huge for us, I am taken back while Karma has propelled me forward giving us a space for the years to come. A space only a couple miles from a Hospital, food shopping and jokingly I say “unfortunately” a mile away from a Home Depot and a Lowe’s…

Camping on Grassy Lake Rd. C 

There is much to describe of course, like a couple storage sheds, a pear tree, some agave plants while all is gravel with some sort of carpeting underneath it to halt the weeds from growing. It is an old home yet has been very well taken care off with new electric wiring, new plumbing and water heater, carpeting, all freshly painted inside out and on and on. This will do as we spend a couple of months this summer setting it all up while I await for some furniture. Summer has always been the hardest season for us on the road. The crowds are out as the mosquitoes and bugs galore, it is hot unless as we have so often done stay at high altitude but yet, when one goes up one needs to come down! We should be back on the road by fall. That most pleasant time of the year. In the meantime we are close to National Forests, BLM lands and 15 minutes away from the “White Sand Dunes” National Monument.  Much more…

Highway 79 AL

A week or so has passed. There is still no furniture besides a mattress, my camping table and chair which actually do not together accommodate a sitting  position when typing so it is a stool instead. So how do I really feel in this two bedroom one bath? That is the question I have been asking myself more than once a day. More than a question it is a feeling that at any moment someone is going to show up and kick us out! Of course we could continue living in the camper which is hooked up to its own power on a separate circuit just like in an RV Park [but not!!!]. There is a full usable bathroom here and the same for a kitchen, why not live here? The fridge is just about empty as I realize how immense this thing is. It is not even one of those giant jobs with two doors. What am I going to put in there? Food for six months? We have a washer! I already did one load and hang a line outside for drying. I will not get a dryer or a television for that matter. Music instead. From minimalistic to this and yet I don’t want to hit the road yet.

Los Cruces PCTB13

I am not at a loss! I am just dumfounded at the chain of events. It feels right as I do call here “our last resting place”. It has been a long road these past years, good past years while I look forward to the coming ones onto more… new roads.

A foggy Oasis

Stay well, always.
                          Ara and Spirit

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30 Responses to “A worthy trade… NM”

  1. Randy Says:

    Ara, I am absolutely giddy with happiness for you and Spirit. Now not only can you travel North when it’s hot but South when it’s not. Enjoy your new basecamp with amenities.

  2. Zelda (Pam) Says:

    Dear Ara & Spirit,

    You sound at peace. Enjoy your new home as you “make it yours” and enjoy life without so many anxieties and responsibilities of life on the road. Yes, it was wonderful, but we too have also realized that the ambitious, long trips we used to enjoy are not worth the anxieties any more. We are still looking forward to meeting up wth you somewhere convenient perhaps yet this fall.

    Hugs to both of you!


  3. Joseph Schmoe Says:

    Although we often feel that we can control our fate, our fate occasionally appears totally out of our hands. An interesting paradox – one that has been pondered by many for a very long time.

    Regardless, I am quite sure you will find beautiful images to capture and many quandaries to think over.

    Stay well and pet Spirit for me.

  4. Steve Says:

    Ah, found the comment section. I just sent you a message on your Facebook page so I’ll not repeat that here. I have always liked the area you speak of from my computer here in Indiana. I’ve traveled the west in the past a few times and the area you have chosen has always had a pull for me. I’ll look forward to reading how you feel about your new home and new area in future posts. I’ve been looking at houses in that area online for the past 5-6 years so I probably have seen the one you bought at some time. Sounds like you have hit the jackpot with an affordable house, fenced yard and fresh upgrades to the home.


  5. Steve Says:

    I hope this doesn’t turn out to be a 2nd comment but the first one gave me a ‘duplicate failure’ msg when I tried submitting my comment.

    I am familiar with the area you speak of. I have looked at the Alamogordo area for the last 5-6 years and look at the houses for sale on a regular basis online. Like you I find a lot above my price range and too many fixer uppers inside my price range. Sounds like you got a great deal with price, recent paint and updates and fenced in land for Spirit. I look forward to read how you like your decision, the area and the house and any future photos of the area.

    Enjoy your new home.

  6. Carol Savournin Says:

    Oh, Congratulations!! You will make it into a wonderful home. Sleep peacefully … enjoy your new space. So very glad that you have found a place to roost!

  7. MrsB Says:

    I just have to say that it eased MY mind that you’re in a good place, literally and figuratively.

    So, grow where you’re planted. It’ll be good for both of you.

  8. JMA Says:

    I found your blog tonight; in that rabbit-hole internet fashion I landed on a post from 2011, then skipped around reading posts and then read this latest. How wonderful you have found a place that feels both comforting and challenging, familiar and alien all at the same time…I think those are the best kinds of places. I rooted myself in New Mexico a couple of years ago, there is a redemptive, soothing quality about New Mexico, perhaps the antidote for the human condition for some of us. I enjoyed reading your blog, especially those of an intense self-reflective nature that touched on ideas of validation and expression. I hope your new adventure is filled with joy and vigor!

  9. Don McGilvray Says:

    That is excellent news, Ara! Fitting to find it posted today, my 76th birthday! I can understand your desire to be closer to convenient medical care… I live just across the street from the employee parking at one of the Spokane area hospitals, hoping, of course, that I won’t ever need their services but realistic to know that I could need them at any time!

    I’m happy for you and Spirit, knowing that you have a place to call “home” yet still giving you the freedom to travel as you see fit.
    Good for You!!!


  10. Bill Says:

    Congratulations! NM is a great place and a new base for you.


  11. Shauna Bishop Says:

    Ara and Spirit,

    I am so happy that your have landed in a new space. Love the photo’s by the way! Amazing as always…I read your posts all the time. Have never written. We know Tyler from riding. San Jose Tyler. We have an FJR. Love the stories and your cooking. Cheers to your new home. I hope you and sweet Spirit are very happy.

    Shauna b

  12. leilani Says:

    Congratulations! Putting down roots & giving Spirit some permanent territory to mark in his senior years is a fantastic way to celebrate the 4th of July.

    It’s not the end of freedom on the road, either – you still have your camper, after all – but this house gives you & your dog more options to choose from each day & so, looking at it that way, you’ve really gained *more* independence.

    If I’m guessing correctly approximately where you are from the hints that you gave, you can have Home Depot-type ‘civilization’ there on the edge of the desert but still escape in just a few minutes up (and up & up!) to the pines in Cloudcroft to beat the heat & recharge in solitude whenever the spirit moves you. (pun intended)?

    It seems like an excellent choice for you in particular since there are so many completely different landscapes to explore & photograph nearby.

    Enjoy! 🙂

  13. judith Says:

    Oh I have always loved the area around Carrizozo….not where you ended up exactly, but it does sound like the right thing. It’s OK to have a big refrigerator. And an indoor bathroom. I’m older than you, so trust me on this. Ha.

  14. Connie T Says:

    Good luck, enjoy your place. If you have a Big Lots there, they sell furniture for cheap prices. I bought a bed there and two comfortable living room chairs. The chairs were on sale for $220.00 each.

  15. Ara & Spirit Says:

    Thank You Connie.

  16. Ara & Spirit Says:

    It is indeed a beautiful area we have most of the time skipped. Ah! yes, the comforts of Life coming up with age… Have a great day. Thank You.

  17. Ara & Spirit Says:

    Yes, there is a lot around here and once settled a bit more on to Cloudcroft for sure and more… Thank You.

  18. Ara & Spirit Says:

    Ah! Tyler, my favorite Lady… Her and I have not been able to connect for a while. Hopefully next time she is out we will. Between the surgeries and the sale of The Oasis it has been some turbulent times. Soon. Thank You for writing.

  19. Ara & Spirit Says:

    Yes it is all around. We will soon start exploring for sure. Have a great day.

  20. Ara & Spirit Says:

    Thank You Don and hope you never have to go across the street!!! My spine and hip surgeries have been fine but I don’t think it will ever be the same! Might have something to do with age??? Have a great day…

  21. Ara & Spirit Says:

    “The antidote of the Human condition”… I like that as so much has changed. This is about it for us as a Home Base. Soon we leave… Have a wonderful day and Thanks for writing.

  22. Ara & Spirit Says:

    Trying the best we can one day at the time… You do the same and Thanks for writing. Have a great day.

  23. Ara & Spirit Says:

    Thank You and I still owe you an email! So much going on as you know the drill. Soon things will calm down between the paint brushes and this and that! Stay well you two….

  24. Ara & Spirit Says:

    I ponder about that often also! I keep calling it luck, Karma… Having sold The Oasis the only day we were there in months, finding this place the last evening around this area when I had given up… But I think more our path is designed to be and have to follow our instincts adding the most important aspect I have learned on the road “be kind”… Have a great day.

  25. Ara & Spirit Says:

    To the both of you, yes! who would have known… Hope you come and visit, there is room for parking!!!Have a wonderful day.

  26. George Says:

    Here’s something for you and Spirit, which seems somewhat appropriate:


  27. john Says:

    glad you found your next 0asis… alas, we are still searching for ours…

  28. Ben Devine Says:

    Ara:. I guess congratulations are in order… Look at the change as something Spirit deserves & you are still needed to do his bidding. Hope all is well… It has been a long time since I looked at your travels…your FB post popped up & I thought I would comment. I’m still riding 2 wheels (650 V-STROM), and have plans to put a sidecar on a 2014 1000 V-STROM before the end of the summer. I want to be able to bring my dog (Django – a fox terrier mix I rescued 5 years ago). I named him after Django Reinhardt). Hope all is well… Take care,

  29. Andrea Van Vorhis Says:

    I am so sorry we did not get to meet up this summer! But I am happy that you found your wonderful place in NM! I just got back to Ohio, which still does not at all feel like “home”– only the mountains do. Some day I will find my last resting place there 🙂 Enjoy that beautiful, beautiful land out there, and give Spirit a kiss on the nose for me 🙂 HUGS! <3

  30. Denny Gibson Says:

    Best wishes on your new home base.

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