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Posts Tagged ‘Chile Roasting’

Sandia Gold

Sandia Gold

You know it’s autumn in New Mexico when you find yourself standing in a grocery store parking lot next to a rotating wire mesh barrel, watching the new chile crop turn from bright green to charred black as it roasts. You can see the gas-fired heat waves shimmering up into the deep blue October sky.  And oh that aroma! Some folks may go for the cinnamon in a baking apple pie, but as for me, I’ll take that pungent, unforgettable autumn scent of roasting chile any day.

But then, after all, I am a New Mexican. A daughter of the American West. Oh not by birth but definitely by choice. As Emma Brown points out in a profile of Annie Proulx in High Country News:  “Proulx moved to Wyoming from Vermont in 1994 and right away went about challenging the notion that you can’t know the West — or write about it — unless you were born and raised here.” As Proulx herself continues, “… the stories just are there because the place dictates what happens.” (For this entire fascinating interview go to : April 13, 2009 issue of High Country News at www.hcn.org)

I know I’m no Annie Proulx but I do know I’ve loved my thirty years living and exploring the West. From its great open emptiness of basin and range, to Figueroa Street in downtown Los Angeles, from saguaros to sagebrush, from broken glass strewn roadsides to pristine glacial lakes, from my desert’s annual eight inch rainfall to my southern Oregon coast wintertime cottage’s 75…where do I begin to tell you all about it?

Right here. On an aspen-viewing hike to Sandia Crest, the mountain rampart that holds Albuquerque, my hometown of choice, in its hand.  From above, looking down into an inaccessible canyon, waves of yellow gold autumn leaves mixed with the green of those not quite yet ready to give up their chlorophyll, the scene is as breathtaking this Wednesday as it has been for myriad October hikes past.

So come. Join me as we Wander West. Let me show you around my Home on the Range.

PHOTO ESSAY:  SOUTHWEST AUTUMN

Magdalena Backroad

Magdalena Backroad

Autumn Wetland

Autumn Wetland

Sycamore Bronze - Gila Country

Sycamore Bronze - Gila Country

Chamisa Dunes

Chamisa Dunes

Rio Grande Cottonwood

Rio Grande Cottonwood

October in Deming, NM

October in Deming, NM

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