Nearly Midnight


So, it’s nearly midnight, and compulsively, semi-religiously, and as a matter of my aspiring-artistic sense of discipline, I’ve GOT TO WRITE.

I’ve just washed my face after waiting more than six hours to wash it, because at 5:30 PM we spontaneously had some friends over for some of my world-famous curry and cocktails.

Well, okay, the latter wasn’t mine after all, as I handed over the all-important responsibility of getting drinks right to Kevin. As I anticipated, his smile and congeniality made up for any deficiencies we might have had at our makeshift cantina-at-dusk: think - no tonic, no simple syrup…

But that’s okay, ‘cause Kev handled it well. Besides, the company was splendid and the curry wasn’t half-bad either.

Nonetheless and allthemore, after a few hours of revelry and mutual appreciation of our surroundings and then bittersweet partings, I finally came into my bathroom, squeezed some soap foam into my palm, rubbed it into my face and rinsed.

Now, this all may seem like an insignificant moment to you, but to me it represents an all-too-significant fact of life here at the top of Horny Toad Road in Cerrillos, New Mexico: if you’re going to live in the country, you’re gonna get dirty.

Whether it’s because the wind gusts are blowing dust up from the arroyos and through your hair and into your ears and up your nostrils every minute of every day, as soon as you step out the door - or it’s because you’re simply working hard and up a sweat, trying to build a hacienda and a farm with 40 acres and a mule - either way you have to accept that dirt and dust and dirty fingernails are par for the course at the Living-in-the-Country Club.

And that’s not a complaint by the way. If anything, I’m practically bragging that I don’t have worry as much about appearances, like them city folk do. Oh, I still take a shower every night (although, my kids might not), but in the morning I’m free to just put on some overalls and my boots, because I know just before the cock crows I’ll be sweating already, because I’m doing something outside that simply has to get done.

And then there’s the “fun” part of living here - not that working and getting dirty ain’t fun for me, as indeed they are enjoyable necessities - but it behooves me to mention that I SHOT A GUN for the first time today (now yesterday) too.

I took Enzo and Maddy, and we went to Dr. S’s place down below us, where he was generous and kind enough to instruct us on how to shoot and handle a pistol, both a 22 caliber and a 45.

Surprisingly, we weren’t bad shots either, being former city slickers and all.

That all said, I’m not convinced that bearing arms will become a hobby as exciting as the thrill of champagne for me. I’ll no way or no how ever be a trigger happy kind of guy, as I’m fine remaining a Buddha-statue-loving and laidback passivist who appreciates listening to the Eagles more and more.

Although, in the same breath I will admit - I also BOUGHT A GUN (fast forward a few hours) today. My buddy and neighbor arranged it for me and I put my money down sight unseen, putting all my trust and faith in him that’s it’s the right starter pistol for me: a used H&R 22 caliber 9-shot revolver.

I told him, “Okay, I’m game, but my only intentions and interest at this point is to protect the homestead. And to do that, it will require some strong security preventing the kids and unauthorized others from gaining access.” He reassured and promised me to set me up with a trigger guard and a biometric gun safe that requires your thumbprint to open it.

A little more exciting for me is the notion that we’re on the precipice of brokering a deal to host our first two WOOFERS here - my eldest and his girlfriend, who just graduated from Princeton and are figuring out what to do next. Thus, I worked fastidiously much of this morning to outline a course of action and a business plan to effectively make them our first ranch hands for the next six months.

Prospectively, not only will it be an amazing opportunity to bond and have great family time, but together we’ll establish the farm and hacienda, and learn how to build and run a business that serves to benefit humanity and the earth.

So, there you have it, exciting things are happening at Hacienda Domínguez.

Now, I just have to learn to ride a horse - so that I may officially join the fray of bleeding heart liberals that ride horses and carry guns that I have the distinct pleasure and honor of living with and calling my friends out here in Cerrillos.