Exploring a ranch to find places to read and feeling like Frodo in Sky City, New Mexico

So sometimes, soifollowjulian goes on vacation. And I never travel without a few books to read. Because that’s the greatest vacation of all: immersing yourself in a book in another state.

I visited my Aunt Eva in New Mexico last summer. It’s one of my favorite places in the world. Everything is so beautiful, so solitary, so noble. The desert’s soundtrack on a sunny day is obscenely loud in its emptiness. There are no vehicles, no phones, no planes. There are grasshoppers, bees, birds, and cattle. There’s the ever-present fear of the rattlesnake and so you hear fake sounds in bushes. You avoid holes in the arroyo. You hear the wind blow the bushes and see the tumbleweed push past. And the smell. Of dirt. Clean, non-allergenic dirt. Not that city dust that affects your allergies. Just clean dirt pounded down by the rain then dried and cracked in the sun.

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