Did I fall off the face of the earth?


No, something far worse, I fell into the abyss of  procrastination.  I wrote this entry months ago and saved it as a draft which sat in my computer ever since… so here it is.

I relied on my husband’s ramblings about our roadtrip on his blog Fuzzypictures.

But we have different takes on life…

The landscape changes from state to state.  We hoped to camp near Alburqurque but even at what we thought was the end of the season, the campgrounds were booked.  Jene chose the Nativo Lodge.  In spite of the 104 temperature, the indoor/outdoor pool was void of guests so we had the place to ourselves.

We went to Old Town, Albuquerque in search of a few trinkets to purchase directly from the artists who line the sidewalks.  (Much like in Santa Fe).  I bought a pair of earrings from artist, Mary Rosetta who travels the circuit from the Santa Domingo Pueblo.

IMG_9190 IMG_9192

Climbed rocks at high noon at the  Petroglyths National Park then a little R&R was called for – a dip in our hotel pool.      


There was a festival at the Islata Pueblo, we walked around, bought a few more baubbles, chatted with a couple of native American artists.  We stowed our cameras in our backpacks because of the numerous “No Photos Allowed” signs.  Spent the rest of the afternoon, sheltered from the oppressive heat at the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center nearby.

Storms were threatening, as we headed north to Bandolier National Monument Park, AZ – Juniper campgrounds.  We set up camp as the thunder drew closer and closer.  A sprinkle of rain drops started to fall.  The tent was up, but as the shower turned to a downpour, we went into the car for shelter.  Oh crap, the flaps of the tent were left open… during the 45 minute deluge.  (hmmmm, guess it wasn’t the passing shower that Jene said it would be).  Our bedding was soaked.  (Luckily the other sleeping bag was still in the car and we hung the sheets out to dry).   Double, full arched rainbows appeared but we could not locate the elusive pot of gold.




We took a scenic route to the Tent Rocks (which took about 3 hours longer).  Again with threatening clouds, we hiked our way through the slot canyons.  It’s amazing what the wind and water will do to sandstone.  Mother nature’s sculptures.

Canyon de Chelley (pronounced de Shay) was our next stop.  We hurriedly set up the campsite and fired up the coleman stove as the more darkening clouds move closer.  We dined inside the tent as torrents of water pelted from the sky…


After breakafast, we drove to the north rim for some photos and on the way back, Jene pulled onto the shoulder to shoot some interesting rock formations.  I heard a pop and then hissing – ohhhh CRAP – the new front tire was losing air.  He ran over a cut metal post that stuck out only inches above the dirt and gravel.  The closest Firestone Tire store was in Gallup, NM, nearly 100 miles back.  We emptied the trunk, changed the flat, and headed there.  The afternoon was folding into the evening when we stopped at Window Rock and the WWII commenorative statue of a Navaho Marine “coder”.  The code that could not be broken, enabling the USA to win the battle at Iwo Jima.  We got back to the Cottonwood campground 15 minutes before their cafe closed and the rains started.  Not much you can do about the weather.  The sky changes quickly but is really cool to witness how quickly what was puffy white and scattered clouds band together and grow dark and looming.  July thru Sept in NM and AZ is monsoon season and the arid earth can’t absorb the rain so you get quick flash floods (which is how slot canyons were formed and why they change constantly).


Native American Coder

Native American Coder

Window Rock

Window Rock

Canyon de Chelley spider rock

Canyon de Chelley spider rock

just one of those things in a store window

just one of those things in a store window

tent rocks

tent rocks


tent rocks slot canyon


To be continued: Monument Valley – on our way to the Grand Canyon.






About maryduranteyoutt

Necessity is the mother of invention... I parlayed my work experience into my personal endeavors of photography and print- making. At the age of 56, I retired and pursued my dreams once again. Photography is my passion; I want you, the viewer to come into my world. My images will connect to you and touch each of you differently and they will have you walk away with your own version of the story I started…I try to capture the feel, the essence - the very being of my subject, whether it's a portrait of a child, a friend or a stranger. In my cityscapes, I want you to hear the footsteps on a quiet street or to look closely at the ordinary moments that we all tend to rush past without stopping to notice. This is how I look at life, at the intimate details that sometimes go unnoticed: the bright smile of a child, the hardships that some people have witnessed, the sheer joy of a dancer or the beauty of nature when you take a closer look. This is what I want to share and that is why I will continue on my path.
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1 Response to Did I fall off the face of the earth?

  1. Ah memory nice to see things from a different point of view

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