Monthly Archives: May 2018

The NAN Ranch, Mimbres River New Mexico, May 8 – 14/18








We made out to the NAN Ranch on the Mimbres in New Mexico, a ten-hour drive in one pickup with trailer and three horses. April drove all the way. We met at the Lonehollow Barn as early as we could and loaded up, an exhausting process and then started out. It was a beautiful place, near the Arizona border, the Mimbres Valley a long green oasis in the desert. I was worried about Buck’s health, still am. But he’s getting old! I’m old already! What can one expect, But April and June were great companions, hardworking and knowledgeable and funny. The ranch is mainly a guest ranch although they run some cattle up the valley — also up the valley was the archaeological site which we were not allowed on of course; spirits of pot-makers lingering around the ancient clay beds, listening to the sound of the only river for hundreds of miles.







When we pulled in the gate was locked — they had forgotten to tell “the boys” to leave it open for us, so we had to climb over it and walk to headquarters, only about a mile, over a suspension bridge over the Mimbres.








I would load more pictures but this site is taking forever to load every photo. I get up and go downstairs and feed the dog and lay out my work for the next morning, come back up — still not loaded, still circles going around and around — and for this I got a new high -powered computer? I feel like drawing on the screen with a wax pencil.

So back home and no more traveling, Memorial Day today, thinking of my dad and his memories of Iwo Jima, when he saw the flag go up on Mount Suribachi — as always — got my flag up this morning. Rodeo last night down at the arena and from my place here on the ridge I could hear the announcer and the cheering and later the music from the dance. Too hot and too crowded for me but was relieved not to hear any sirens or medivac helicopters like last year, everybody okay, men and animals wrestling around in the heat and the dust, takes a lot of determination and guts. Also, nice to have the honor and prize money. Maybe some pictures from others if I can get them.



Appearances are over — not taking any more invitations. Things get so far out of hand here at home that I have not even hauled off the old water trough, it’s just laying there in the pasture rusting. Finally got the intrusive salt cedar prayed. We are in a serious drought again and so hauling hoses around trying to water trees, write, clean and all those chores that pile up when you’re gone…

But April June and I are heading for New Mexico with the horses, next week, a trip for pleasure, mo obligations to speak or sig, which I enjoy actually but it is exhausting.

Catch-up pictures:

I love this picture. This is June and Evelyn in Close Canyon, Big Bend State Park. I didn’t go this year (this was in February). You have to walk the canyon, and people pile up rocks in the most creative way. The year I was there we made angel statues. A very mystical place, love it.


This is me after with basal cell carcinoma surgery, one week ago. Another reason I haven’t got things done. Very small but haven’t played with the group in front of people with this dressing on my face. I am now down to a Band-Aid. Back to the pennywhistle. Next song to learn, ‘The Lonesome Boatman’.

Home-grown fruit! Went to Fiesta with my stepson and daughter-in-law and granddaughter and her husband and grandson and in fact almost the entire Johnson family and affines, in San Antonio, where they had an orange tree in the front yard and sent me home with a sack full. We sat up most of the night and drank and talked. This is the civilized way to celebrate fiesta in San Antonio. Different from commercial — more rind, less pulp, sweeter. Then the neighbors here gave me homegrown peaches — sweetest fruit I have ever tasted. These are my neighbors down the road, He is a hunter on one of the big ranches and some people he took out to hunt turkey misfired and shot him in the face with #7 bird shot. He went in today to have the last of the pellets removed. I am sure the peaches will be consoling. A very nice guy. So I went down to take them some oranges and both he and I had big bandages on our faces. Something in the air.