Posts Tagged ‘New Mexico’

picking favorites…

Posted in journey, love, memory, nature, notice, ponder, secret suffering, time, travelComments Off on picking favorites…

An old friend asked me this morning,

“Of all the places you have ever lived, regardless of who you were living with or what was going on in your life, which is your favorite?”

I have lived in many places. Some for years at a stretch, some for shorter periods and have to say there are things I liked and disliked about all of them. I have discovered in all my ramblings that there is no perfect place, but there is what I call, your ‘happy’ place. And there may even be more than one.

I loved Kansas City, where I went to art school and made some of my longest lasting frienships. It was a city filled with art and culture  and a place I grew into adulthood.

I loved Vermont. There is no where on earth more beautiful than fall in the Green Mountain state.

I loved Utah, and it’s rugged beauty.

I loved Colorado and it’s  magnificent mountains and scenery.

I loved New Mexico, and always will. I rejoice when I am there, and cry every time I leave.

I loved New York – NYC – there is no city in the world more exciting.

And I love Texas … as they say …. I wasn’t born here, but I got here as fast as I could


But if a place has winter, I can’t last very long.

Winters with ice and snow that last for 6 months. It’s my lifelong burden … my abhorrence of winter. It started the first time I ever went to Florida during the wintertime in Buffalo , N.Y. I knew there was only one way out of winter, and that was to physically move away from it.

For years I lived where either school, jobs, or fate blew me. Most of those places, by life’s cruel hand were serious winter havens. Places like Colorado Springs, Colorado. Burlington, Vermont. Providence, Utah. Taos, New Mexico. Buffalo, New York. Hamden, Connecticut. Many of these places you will recognize as a skier’s dream. Not for me. I’d rather chew on aluminum foil than go skiing. So it was a shame to waste those long winters in those otherwise lovely places.

Winter and fleeing winter has been my lifelong challenge. I like to think that my discovery of Texas was meant to be, because it came along at  a time in my life when I least expected to move, or to find a partner in life again … and suddenly along came both.

Where you start out in life, may not be where you end up, so it’s wise to stay open to other places and what they have to offer and teach you. I have learned and loved things about all the places I’ve lived.  We are driven to find that ‘HAPPY PLACE”. 

   That place that says to your heart, “I was meant to be here.”

(featured image, canvas collage – HILL COUNTRY HOMAGE, by Catherine Massaro)

wishing doesn’t make it so… or does it?

I wished for love – I have been loved.

I wished for money – it came and went.

I wished for a car – it was freedom!

I wished for long hair – then cut it all off.

I wished for a job – I got a paycheck.

I wished for a warm winter – I still do.

I wished for excitement – and found it.

I wished for a divorce – and got it.

I wished for peace of mind – daily.

I wished for wonder – and it surrounds me.

I wished for escape – and learned how to leave.

I wished for a studio – dreams come true.

I wished for New Mexico – days of heaven.

I wished for connections – where is my tribe?

I wished for friends – they give me joy.

I wished for a road trip – to never end.

I wished for my youth – and I got a grandchild.

I wished for a good nights sleep – and to die peacefully in it. 

I wished for art school – where I found myself.

I wished for a pony – but never got it.

I wished for my period – most of the time it came.

I wished for a girl – and got a boy, with no regrets.

( see ART tab for  WHAT I WISHED FOR  canvas collage)


bye my friend

Posted in friends, love, travelComments Off on bye my friend

…till next year.


(photo by Catherine Massaro)

Taos tripping

Posted in explore, friends, journey, memory, nature, time, travelComments Off on Taos tripping

Usually around June, like a migrating bird, I start leaning towards Taos, New Mexico.

I must have been around 27 years old when I first learned of Taos. At the time I was hosting a weekly life drawing group out of my home/studio in Kansas City. Gosh it was a great group of women, one of which went on at great length one week about her recent trip to Taos, where she attended a week long watercolor group. My dear friend Maureen and I were mesmerized by her stories and made a vow to go that following year. Not only did we go that year, but for 15 subsequent years thereafter, we made it our annual painting trip. I recall only one year where we had a break – that was a post miserable divorce for me when I was stone cold broke, and during her husband’s kidney transplant. It was always the highlight of my year and I think hers as well. Eventually we abandoned the workshops altogether and simply went on our own.

If you have never had a great painting buddy as an artist, I can’t really explain the kinship. Nor can I relate the connection or bond you develop with a place. And that’s what it was like for  us and Taos.

So, here it is June, and here I go again. Sadly not to meet up with Maureen to paint, but happily to be with another dear friend and old neighbor, Victoria. Almost 10 years ago when I lived in Taos, Victoria lived across the road in her sweet domed house. Life on the Arroyo Hondo mesa, on the outskirts of Taos proper, was rugged and windblown but magnificently beautiful. Easily the most beautiful place I have ever lived. As always with these beautiful places I have been privileged to live in though – winter came. Cold, wind and the dreaded snow.

But New Mexico got in and stayed in my blood.

” …become intoxicated by this irresistible high-altitude landscape they now share with previous generations of settlers. As Georgia O’Keefe once wrote:”

“If you ever go to New Mexico, it will itch you for the rest of your life.”