348. Tierra Amarilla, Rio Arriba County (NM32)

This is the point at which I present my hypocrisy for all to see and judge. I found myself at a bit of a crossroads when I got here deciding what to photograph. With all the musing about administrative and judicial buildings, I thought it only proper to prominently feature the administrative complex below…

…as the main photo for this entry. But the county courthouse, located 180 degrees behind this vantage point, is so much nicer and more in line with the aesthetic I have been engaging. Yes, I chose to feature the prettier building over the more appropriate edifice. It was a difficult editorial decision to make (it really wasn’t), but these are the earth shaking decisions (it’s not that important) that one must make when all the weight and power (there is neither weight nor power) rests upon one’s shoulders (my shoulders are quite unburdened, folks). As an interesting sidenote, the courthouse was designed by Isaac Rapp, considered to be the father of the Santa Fe Style. All this stucco I’ve been complaining about all over New Mexico, therefore, is probably his fault. Given a time machine, I would happily punch him in the face, along with Isaac Newton, and possibly some other people named Isaac. Reflecting on this, I observe that my time machine physical assault list is actually amazing short. But that is neither here nor there (or should that be “now nor then”?) because the cache is the thing!

Grabbed on the way to town, it was a simple preform on a fence. And yet, that preform has an incredibly important role. In the most technical sense, I have completed the state of New Mexico. But I still had work to do here and more than just wrestling with my hypocrisy. Once the photography was done, I got moving again until I reached…

…a scenic spot in the mountains that I could not manage to capture to my satisfaction because the light was just overwhelming. But eventually, the mountains flattened out and brought me, as the sun began to reach the horizon, to the outskirts of Taos. I chose well to not make this drive in the other direction the first time I was here. I decided while I was in the area to do the Taos Geotour.

So I spent the night and got to it. I had found one for the original Taos find, so I began working on the other nine. I got six of them because three of them have been archived. Which created a problem because, since they’re still officially part of the tour, it meant that it is impossible to complete it. I am a weak man so I considered logging the disabled ones anyway so I could at least walk away with that souvenir. In the end, I chose not to. My hypocrisy goes only so far. Had I known that this would be the case, I would have skipped the town all together. I didn’t leave last time with a high opinion of this town and, as I drove away, I realized that my opinion had only gotten lower. If I never come back, I will shed no tears. And besides, I recently asked Groundspeak if I could have the souvenir anyway so there’s hope. [UPDATE 10/09/20: they gave it to me! I have completed the Taos Geotour! W00T!] I continued on into…

…the valley of Mora. Once again, I wish my camera could capture what my eyes could see, but the skill (and probably equipment) was beyond my efforts. But I was only passing through on the way to…

Las Vegas. I thought it only fitting, since it was basically on the way, to bring something to the person who told me about Cabinetlandia in the first place. I brought a small bon mot I picked up there in appreciation. I was rewarded for my kindness! Apparently, when I went to the courthouse, I went to the extension, not the actual courthouse itself! This is a much more lovely building than that…thing I saw before. In fact, when this publishes, I’m going to edit this courthouse into the appropriate entry so that it can be enjoyed as it should be in its appropriate place. But still I had more ground to cover. Heading back to the west again, I soon returned to…

Santa Fe. As mentioned previously, state houses are not my specific thing, but I was here so why not? I was close and it was only twenty minutes out of my trip so I went and got a snap and some lunch and then moved again. I had one last thing I had to do before I could leave and nothing would keep me from making it to…

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