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Lifestyle

Jul16

Pilgrimage to paradise, days four and five

Wednesday, 16 July 2014 Written by // Jay Squires Categories // Jay Squires, Travel, Lifestyle, Living with HIV, Population Specific , Sex and Sexuality

Days four and five on Jay Squires’ blogging journey across the American South-west find him still in Santa Fe, New Mexico with friends. and then on to Gunderson in Colorado.

Pilgrimage to paradise, days four and five

Day Four

I slept late and Ed and his buddy Joe slept later. They’re very old.  ;-)

Today was “hit the town day.”  Ed had big plans but we couldn’t get off the dime. The sofa was way too comfortable. Finally near the end of the afternoon we got motivated and left for one of the city’s best museums –the State Capitol.

New Mexico has a history dating back to the Spanish conquistadores.  The city is very old and until fifty years ago the state used a capital building constructed in the 16th Century.  The new building is sharp and echoes the predominate adobe architecture of surrounding neighborhoods. The building isn’t the draw, though. The contents are. The state has amassed a multi-million dollar collection of art by New Mexican artists that is a visual treat and a satisfying meal.

Primarily drawn and brushed, the collection spans the centuries. Pre-colonial art is exhibited side by side with modern abstract pieces.  Sculptural pieces are sprinkled throughout and some are massive. One is a figural representation of a bison’s head constructed of bottle caps, bits of photographic film and cut up beverage containers. It is amazing.

The exhibit was well worth more than the cost of admission, which was free. Ed and I were required to leave to make the daily Wal-Mart stop, where footwear was acquired. Hot springs require flops. Then we prepared for another evening dinner out.

This night Ed invited three friends to join us. Joe was Ed’s friend who, like me, was crashing at Ed’s place. John was a retired doctor with homes in Santa Fe, Washington DC and Palm Springs.  Clint was a retired muscle porn actor with more health problems than me. We all hit it off immediately.

In fact we did more than that. The age range of the group was 52 (me) to 79 (Dr John) yet before long we were giggling like school girls and dishing like the experienced queens we were. I can’t remember when I had more fun with a bunch of queers. I decided later that it was because we were completely uninhibited and no topic was off-limits. I dished my disease with the rest and Dr. Oz would have been proud. This was the most fun I ever had in a conversation discussing AIDS.

The night ended too soon and it was back to blogging and then to sleep.  A long, tiring ride was scheduled for the next day.

Day five                                         

We definitely slept late due to the previous night’s gay old time.  Now it was time to make my goodbyes to Ed and Joe.

I had them sit for a pic. Max the dog wasn’t cooperating until the last. You all saw the results on Day 3. That pic will be a souvenir of two friends, one old, one new, both to be cherished.

Before I left Ed resumed the assault. Since I arrived he had been putting the hard sell on me, trying to convince me to move to Santa Fe. From what I’ve seen of the city, the notion is very tempting. I explained to Ed again that I couldn’t consider it until an event happened that I wished I could delay as long as possible. When my dear father passes I will be free to live where I wish, and where I can afford to do so. Until then I must resist the relocation urge that has struck me lately.

The balance of the day was beautifully mundane as what would otherwise be a boring drive was transformed by the beautiful country through which I drove.  Destination was Gunderson, in southern Colorado, the launch point for my next adventure, a canyon boat ride in Curecanti National Recreation Area.  Look for day six for that nautical tale.

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