Coronado was here-faces of Pacheco

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Juan Andres Pacheco.  Former caretaker of this portion of America’s vast grassland.  He wasn’t the first.  The Native Americans…the Spanish…the Mexican vaqueros once inhabited this land.  Natives still roam the landscape.

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Along with current ranch occupants.

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The ranch family tree keeps branching.

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Coronado explored this part of North America searching for the Seven Cities of Gold.

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He didn’t find the cities.  He found the great American West.

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Did he observe how the sky swallows one up in this part of New Spain?

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The blood of Coronado’s lost horses beats true in the hearts of our equines.  The land and beast stewardship continue.

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Doesn’t matter your age.

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Doesn’t matter your sex.

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There’s no time to question.

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Just get the job done. It doesn’t have to be pretty, but sometimes it is.

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Wisdom is available. Listening required.

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Years of abundance blend with years better forgotten; drought, fire, record snowstorms.

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Loss is a companion.

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 Pulling on boots can signal hope.

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Work is unending.  Cattle don’t consult calendars or time pieces.

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Moments treasured with family and friends in precious, cool water.  Perhaps we’ve found our Cibola?

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don’t even THINK it

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You KNEW it was coming, didn’t you?…..the obligatory, boring garden post. My own personal Field of Dreams..if you plant it, the tomatoes will come……

We’ve had rain.  It’s green in this high plains desert.  We are thankfully basking in the green-ness.  The grass is happy. The wheat is happy.  The cattle are happy.

It’s been one of the best Spring’s ever (OK….we’ve had some breezes!) and we are grateful.  Here is what green wheat looks like in the Spring….if we’ve had rain.

Here it is in June….being harvested.  Notice the gathering storm?  It’s always the Amazing Race to get the wheat harvested before the June storms wreak their havoc.

Here’s the Texan in a grain truck during harvest.  He’s a happy camper.  Grain in the grain truck before the storms. All is right in the world.  Amen and amen.

In gorgeous, wet years like this, it’s natural to do some worrying.  When the crops are this beautiful and things seem so right…….I sometimes think about…..I can’t bear to say it because I don’t want to tempt fate.….it’s wrong, I know…..lean in close to the computer and I will whisper it to you………hail.  Henceforth, I will refer to it as the h-word.  Don’t mention it and it doesn’t exist-you with me?

I only have my little Field of Dreams to fret over.  But I think about the Texan overseeing acres and acres of gorgeous wheat.  He takes it in stride, cause he’s been at it a while.

His grandfather started all this….then his Dad….then the Texan and his family.  He’s been in wheat fields since he was knee-high to a grasshopper….or a jack rabbit….or a coyote.  He’s pretty much seen it all.

Some years there is heartbreak.  When this stuff….the h-word falls from the sky.

The h-word NEVER falls in a bad year.  It only falls when there is the best crop EV-AH glowing in the field, waiting expectantly for harvest.  It only falls when the farmer has faithfully worked….blood, sweat and tears….toiling in the field.  When he feels he has supremely succeeded and grown something worthwhile and GORGEOUS.  The heavens, planets, and stars have aligned perfectly to produce something spec-tac-u-lar. That’s when it falls; violently, painfully, and forever unwelcome.


Heartbreak.  Despite the best efforts.  Despite doing everything right!  Made me ponder how the h-word falls in our lives and brings destruction and grief.  One minute, our crop is growing, green and hopeful.  We’ve made our plans.  We’ve dotted every ‘i’ and methodically crossed every ‘t’..  We’ve fertilized, watered, sprayed for weeds and pests….the sun has shone and we  stand expectantly on the shore overlooking something extraordinary.  Then swiftly, the storm rages and we are left slack-jawed among the ruins.  It happens.  I can’t tell you what it means.  I can’t fathom why.  I won’t offer an easy answer….you draw your own conclusions.

For me, recovering involves a measure of acceptance.  And some time for sadness and grieving and railing against the heavens.  Then, it is important I take the next step and plant the next seed.  The seed for the future.  It doesn’t matter how small the seed (or the step), I just need to do my part and plant it.

I don’t know how the Texan has done it all these years. I’m beyond grateful for his example. My seeds and garden are vastly smaller. I look at my humble garden…my expanding tomato vines…..and pray for the best.  For today, I will revel, wallow and indulge in the blessed green. 
Hope your week is beautiful.