New Mexico

Driving into New Mexico was thrilling, as we drove through major, zero-visibility dust storms and were pelted relentlessly by tumbleweeds. At first I was swerving to try to avoid them, but after hitting one, I realize that they disintegrate upon impact. The only ones that I was still leery of were the ones that moved very slowly. They seemed thick. But fortunately, were easily avoided.

We stopped in Albuquerque to teach a class. I arrived well over an hour early so we stopped and played for a while in a nearby park.

Class was full and we had an awesome time. The last time we were at this studio, River wasn’t allowed in. He was sequestered outside, but a student took pity on him and quickly drove him to her house to be out of the heat while we were in class. This time, River was allowed in. I was about to pass by Albuquerque without teaching Goldfinger, but after a chat with Ashley, the manager of Studio Sway, we came to an agreement that River could be inside with us.

After class, I headed to Santa Fe where I was going to stay at a friend’s house. This friend had actually come to Albuquerque to take my class, but left right afterward and was going to meet me at the house. It is a lovely, big house in a new development. It was a very brown neighborhood, with rock lawns and clay colored home. It looked like a neighborhood in Bedrock.

The following day I woke up and taught Goldfinger at Studio Nia Santa Fe to another large, enthusiastic group of Niaficionados.
 I stayed afterward for a while to work with Mark putting together the playlist for the Men of Nia Jam happening the following day. 

After showering, I left River with my hosts and took a trip to the Natural Grocer where I was able to stock up on organic veggies, beans, nuts and humanely raised meats. This grocery turned me on to a brilliant ahead-of-the-curve idea. Instead of bagging my groceries, he asked “Do you want a box?” I said yes, and he retrieved one from a stack of boxes that they got their wholesale deliveries in. Rather than break them down and send that cardboard to the recycling plant, they send them home with customers’ purchases inside. The boxes are brilliant because it’s easy to carry what would probably have taken three or four bags all in one box. And there is zero rolling around in the car. I love the idea and will be carrying this box for my groceries for as long as I can.

That night I had a nice discussion with my friend, Michael, who was once a Buddhist monk. I thought I was going to start a deep conversation by asking if he considered Facebook relationships ‘real’. He told that “real” is a very specific Buddhist concept but then proceeded to answer the question I had asked. But I was intrigued by his comment and asked him to elaborate. It turned into a wonderful lesson that left me feeling so full of spirit and joy. I enjoy learning about Buddha’s teachings.

The following day I spent in the kitchen. I cooked kale, broccoli, sweet potatoes, chick peas, acorn squash, zucchini, pork chops, sausage and beef top sirloin steaks. I divided everything up into about ten meals and included some nuts and seeds in each meal, as well. As long as I maintain my cooler with fresh ice, I should be all set for healthy and easy food for about six days! I’m psyched!

That evening, we had the Men of Nia jam. It was so much fun celebrating male Nia teacher energy! The Santa Fe community was clearly ready for this, which was the first Men of Nia in Santa Fe. I look forward to more.

After class Mark took me out to Back Door Pizza and we enjoyed a “Santa Fe” style pizza, which included chicken and green chili. It was delicious; like an enchilada pizza, almost. 

The weather on this day was all over the place. One moment it was nice and sunny, and River and I were playing in the back yard. And then it was cold and dark from clouds. Someone said it was snowing at one point, and at another point it was hailing.
 Outside of these strange weather events, the air had been painfully dry, leaving my sinuses cracking and bleeding. It helped to use my neti pot and also to eat and topically apply coconut oil. I was also drinking water like a fiend.

The next morning, I woke up and did laundry. Then I had just enough time to catch Mark’s Nia class. It was nice to be able to relax and receive a class. Immediately after, we got back on the road. Next stop, Texas.

As we rolled out of New Mexico, the mileage for this trip, since we left Seattle the day after Easter, is 3000.


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