At the frame stage of this house, while I was still living in Utah (see previous posts Of the Land, The Long Goodbye and Coming to New Mexico), I came to Truchas to do a walk through with the builder.
I honestly didn’t know anything about this place I would soon be calling “home.”
The entire first day I was here, everybody, and I mean everybody: the builder, the electrician, the plumber, the real estate agent, the septic guy, my closest neighbor, the store owner—you get the idea here, EVERYBODY—asked me what my plans were for protection. Protection? Yeah, you know, like GUNS. Did I have a handgun and, preferably, a shotgun as well? After all, I was a woman alone, living way out away from town, up against the huge expanse of land grant…
Well, no, I didn’t have guns and I wasn’t planning on getting any. This was met by worried glances fanning out through the small crowd.
Everybody, and again I mean everybody here, told me I needed to rethink my position, that I MUST, in fact, buy a gun or guns before I moved here and I needed to also take a course in how to use them—that I needed to be proficient. This really wasn’t optional as far as they were concerned.
Seriously, they said.
And you need a big dog, too, someone added. No one smiled.
Everybody took up a discussion about where I needed to put my locked gates; how the land grant road that backed up my property was the weakest security link. My neighbor offered to talk with the land grant president to see about sealing it off with a locked chain. Everybody agreed this was a good idea.
And then they all left.
Needless to say, I was feeling a bit uneasy about my new home, gazing around it with new eyes, seeing potential danger where before I’d seen only beauty.
Silently, I climbed the stairs to the second floor and walked out on the framework that would become my living room deck. I sat and opened my backpack, pulling out a small bottle of wine and the wine glass I’d brought with me for the occasion. I poured myself a glass and sat pondering. Surrounded by thunderstorms off in the distance, the fragrance of rain on the air, I raised my glass and toasted the life I didn’t yet know.
And as the sun set on my day I made a decision: I did, in fact, need protection, but not the kind I’d been counseled to get. The protection I was thinking of was lightening rods. I would call a contractor the next day.
As to the other, I never bought guns and I have never looked back.
Love to you all,