Friday, March 28, 2014

GETTING A SPRING BITE ON THE FUTURE


An abscessed tooth dominated my past weekend. The evening before the pain started, PQ and I were discussing his need for a new bridge. It’s been over 25 years since he got the present one and it’s almost worn to the gum.  I was aware that my bad tooth needed attention too although there is another worse looking tooth that I expected to act up first. I was hoping that our financial situation would improve sometime soon and then I could get both teeth fixed. We hope to have our other house rented in May. Then we can quit feeding the credit card dragon before it gets out of hand and decides to eat us alive. 
I'm including photos of two drums we would like to sell if anyone might be interested.

Side One of PQ's  Double Sided Powwow Drum
The said tooth became so painful that all I could do was alternate double doses of Advil and Tylenol   After that, it was tolerable. until they weren’t effective anymore. While I paced around the house, PQ called a dentist who
Side Two: Double Sided Powwow Drum, "32 X "6-1/2, (sold)
advertised that he took emergencies but I guess that didn’t include Saturday evenings. I knew I wouldn’t be able to wait until Monday. While thinking about pliers, I decided to do some probing with a pointed plastic toothpick. This isn’t pretty, but I managed to break through the surface and drain the abscess. By then I’d acknowledged there was no way to avoid a visit to a dentist. I made an appointment on Monday. The dentist said in emergency he would have done the same as I did for immediate relief and gave a prescription for an antibiotic. then scheduled an appointment for the main work.

For Sale: Hand Drum, Vanishing People (Buffalo) "17, $350

Health wise, I’ve been very lucky, only one doctor visit in 22-1/2 years in Taos. That first year I had a serious abscess and the doc compassionately lanced it in his office to spare the expense of a hospital visit. The rest of the time, I’ve been able to treat myself. About ten years ago, I had two crowns done in Santa Fe and the dentist took payments. They don’t seem to do that anymore.  Back then, I could get some help from my folks but it still took months to pay off. Insurance has been out of reach for most of my working life. I trusted luck out of necessity. Astonishingly, it usually worked but age or karma catches up with us eventually. I hope this tooth situation is an indication that the need for such a high degree of luck is on the way out.

Actually, I began the Taos lifestyle before I moved here. I depended exclusively on luck or if you prefer synchronicity. The magic was that I could live fairly well although without any padding from month to month. Whenever I met a wall, it seemed that a solution would appear just in time. I would get a commission or sometimes something less orthodox. My first income in Taos was for shoveling snow, then a bookstore, next was part time in a bead store, unemployment, and finally the gallery job I had for 16 years. If I slipped backwards, it seemed that an opportunity to sell a painting or do a website would manifest. Regrettably, Taos has changed and so
 have I. 
 
The old Taos magic has dimmed. Taos is becoming more normal (not a compliment) except that jobs are still limited and don’t pay much, domestic violence and DWI’s are normal and reading the Taos News Police Blotter is still both tragic and hilarious. Realtors are in denial about current property values; otherwise, it seems like any other third world country. Of course, this could be a jaded perception.

Yesterday was a warm spring day, perfect for flinging tumbleweeds over the fence and raking wind borne trash out of the yard. I love my trees, bushes and flowers like family pets and I worry about them when we are gone. I suppose they sense a vibe and so it's a favorite for local cats and dogs, and I think that’s ‘cause they feel the love’. I’ve heard and seen a few spring birds and any day now, it will be nice enough for coffee on the patio. Our connection with Taos is nowadays concentrated on our little patch rather than the whole town. Last night the coyotes were out with their young’uns learning the lingo of yips barks and howls. Of course, PQ visits friends at the Pueblo now and then. Like his great grandfather Tony Lujan, he needs to be among his tribal members speaking Tiwa.  It keeps the native spirit happy. 
Mark Gordon, PQ, and Carol Baker in front of Mabel's House

We had a nice visit with Mark Gordon, Producer and Carol Baker, Social Media Director for "Awakening in Taos", on Saturday morning, and ended up at the Mabel Dodge Lujan House. Touching into that part of Taos history always brings back a reminder of why I love Taos. I suspect that the real magic of Taos has retreated to that timeless space behind the Pueblo for rejuvenation and perhaps, to rekindle the genuine spirit of the place. I can accept that, nevertheless I’m growing restless to move about in the larger world again. I hope that we will find a way to go to Arizona soon. Taos is sweeter when there is an option. Perhaps it’s a spring thing but I’m getting an urge to organize my books, dig through old boxes (did I really say that?) and start painting again. Taking inventory and reorganizing is a sign that I’m getting ready for the next step, whatever that means. I’m excited about getting my improved teeth into something fresh.