Wednesday – Went exploring, I had seen a snippet of someone saying there were petroglyphs in Conejos County along the Rio Grande by the one lane bridge. I knew exactly where the bridge was and doubted there was two of them. SO I went down there and scouted around for a few hours. I was flustered and about to give up when I noticed some rocks piled strangely, so i went up for a closer look. Indeed, they had definitely been arranged in circular formations and reminded me of the apartment buildings of the Pueblos in Bandelier. I kept looking and finally found the petroglyphs. Tons of them!
There was also a sort of lookout spot, a higher ledge still shaded into the side of the cliff, rimmed with rocks. One large rock sat against the back wall and seemed to be the sort of place the chief would sit. I ran my fingers over the petroglyphs, amazed that hundreds or even thousands of years ago, someone else was here carving these. I wanted to make a mark too, leave something for history in case these faded in 500 years, mine would last another 500. I found a bare area of rock and started to grind a rock against it, i found it rather difficult, im not sure how they made such precise shapes really. But I started getting into it and the moment that I lost myself in it, the rock i was using broke and I jammed my finger violently. I took it as a very clear message that this was not my place and I had no right to be marking here. I sat down in the chiefs chair, first apologizing and then asking permission to sit there. I sat there for some time, just looking, thinking, breathing.
I noticed that there seemed to be a sort of jetty running out partway into the river. And there were three rather large mounds which looked very out of place in the landscape. I wouldnt doubt there is something in those mounds, but Im worried about disturbing what I might find. The curiosity eats at me tho.
Thursday – I went back to the same spot with the petroglyphs and camped by the river. When I got down there I realized there was no suitable firewood anywhere. So I drove back up the road a few miles and grabbed sticks from the side of the road. Clouds were starting to come in and looked like a good sized storm was going to hit soon, so I rushed back and quickly got into the river. I felt like I had to bathe and cleanse myself before resting in this sacred place. Plus I havent been swimming in a while and wanted to hehe. But I found myself hesitant and scared as I waded in, and had to talk myself through it. There was nothing to be afraid of. I didnt like the seaweed on the bottom touching my ankles, nor how the sandy bottom sank in quite a bit when I stepped on it. The current was rushing, and I imagined myself getting caught or stuck in the middle and the current pulling me under. Of course it was all ridiculous.. reasonable concerns but it was no big deal. I made myself go in.. it was shallow even in the middle not more than 2 feet deep. When I got out I took off my clothes and didnt bother to put any new dry clothes on. I hiked around naked and it felt completely natural. I wasnt worried about anyone seeing me and I felt completely comfortable and at ease. I could almost feel the spirit of the place running through me, my shoulder blades lifting, the muscles protruding, the sun staining my back.
The winds started picking up considerably. I called mom and we had a pretty good talk. Then I got the fire going, it was easier than i expected with the wind goin how it was. I cooked a buffalo hotdog and ate like 10 roasted marshmallows. Yummy Yummy.
I was really tired that night and lay there dozing and watching the fire with a blank mind. Finally I fell asleep but soon was woken up by the wind flapping my tent around. I fell back to sleep but woke again with my tent collapsing on me. I got up and fixed it and fell right back asleep. A short while later it collapsed again and I gave up and brought my sleeping bag to the car. I sat in the car for a while just looking at the stars in a half asleep numbness and started munching on the chips and marshmallows in the car. It was like an odd feeling, my brain almost didnt even register that i was eating. I just ate and ate and ate the whole bag of chips and the whole bag of marshmallows. It felt automatic. Ive never eaten like that before. When it was all gone i fell back asleep in the car. I woke up several more times through the night and then packed up and drove home at about 6am. I downed some caffeinated tea and then drove up to Alamosa to pick up the veggies from the CSA on friday morning. I felt pretty crappy the rest of the day.