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50 Latitudes (USA) Feature

The 50 Latitudes Feature will showcase Latitudes from a resident of each US state in their own words to illustrate that despite age, sex, location, or occupation, every living being on the planet has a favorite Latitude.  A person's favorite Latitude is not restricted to their home state.

Entries in New Mexico (1)


New Mexico

At the age of 5 my parents would drive from Raton, NM, Southwest to Cimarron, Red River, Clear Creek, and by the Palisades on the return trip to Raton.  My dad was a photographer back then and would take pictures for post cards and stop at the various stores to sell film and photographer supplies that were sold in the 50’s.

This drive is a picture perfect place, especially in the fall.  In Northern NM the Rocky Mountains are rugged, tall, and magnificent.  On the side of every slope is cascaded with green pines and golden aspen trees in the fall.

When driving down the 13 horseshoe curves on a the side of mountain near Red River, I would look out the car window and see patterns of yellow mixed in the mountain green of pine.  With a child’s imagination, I’d see yellow animals all among the green.  Mixed within the yellow and greens would be small amounts of red from Virginia Creeper Vine or a Mountain Oak.  These made for great red eyes in that yellow cat on the mountain across the valley from the road we were on.

As the car descended down the curves, I would look out the back window of the car to see the road which we just left growing higher with each foot the car went.  The tall thin tree trunks would replace the road as it disappeared from view.  Only a new vision would appear, the dark brown trunks of the pine mixed with the white barks of the aspen was like Zoo cage bars holding those yellow imaginary animals in their places on the side of the mountains.

And at the bottom of this road was a peaceful stream where we would spread a cloth for our lunch picnic.  What grandeur place could God have created both from a child’s eye and now from my adult eyes?  I close my eyes and still see the silver sparkling water running over those rocks as the sun reflected back into my eyes.  It was like seeing a stream of silver dollars.  And then the sound of the rippling brook, it is loud and ever so peaceful just like God talking to me.  With eyes closed, there is the smell of the pine mixed with other woods that awaken the senses even more.

When the words “time to go” woke me from my slumber, I boarded the car with the hope of a return trip.