When I knew for certain that I was going to be able to afford to go to New Mexico for this residency, thanks mostly to a certain Mr. Miller who bought one of my larger works and of course to my loving husband for supporting me, I thought to myself, I’ll need a hat while I’m there, among other things. At first, I thought about getting a cowboy hat, but then I thought, better yet, I’ll get myself a hat just like the one Georgia O’Keeffe wore. So, I started my research, I scoured the internet for places that might sell said hat. I wasn’t quite sure what the name of the hat was, I found various descriptions and names like; Parsons Hat, Bolero Hat, Spanish, Mexican, Zoro hat, etc. Finally I stumbled upon The Old Town Hat Shop and voila! I had found my beautiful Georgia O’Keeffe hat, resplendent with silver conchos and a chin strap. I ordered my Ole Spanish Bolero immediately and thought about how much I was going to enjoy wearing it and channeling my inner Georgia O’Keeffe. The only thing I was worried about, was maybe looking a bit pretentious, screw it I said, I’ll be fine. I also realized, after the fact, that the hat shop was actually in Albuquerque, what? That’s crazy but so fitting. The next day, the hat shop called me saying that there would be additional costs for shipping to Canada, I was so excited to see the area code come up on my phone. We decided that it would be less expensive if I picked it up in Albuquerque, so that’s what I’m doing. I fly into Albuquerque arriving at 6:15 pm on the 26th, I’ll be staying at the gorgeous Ramada Inn at the airport, the cheapest and most decent hotel according to Will. I found an Irish pub in town where I plan to have dinner, I’ll ask my Uber driver to find me a liquor store so that I can have a bottle of wine for the night. Then Wednesday morning, I’ll get up, get myself to the Old Town Hat Shop, pick up my precious hat and high tail it via Uber to Los Lunas to pick up my rental car, a tiny Mitsubishi Mirage, that I’m praying will get me around sans problemo!
Various other assundry items purchased for this big adventure include portable art supplies, consisting of water colours, sketching supplies, and a small oil painting kit. I plan to stop and sketch as much as I have time for, I have also borrowed a good digital camera from a generous friend. Journal entries, videos as well as the expected selfies will be plentiful. I’m hoping that I can create a following, engage people interested in my work and processes and tell really good stories.
The only major concern I have at this point, is whether the American government will shut down again. If that happens, I will not be able to get into many of the national parks and monuments that are on my hit list. I will be absolutely devastated if that happens. The entire focus of this trip is about seeing these incredible landmarks, places like White Sands National Monument, the Bisti Badlands, the Carlsbad Caverns, Shiprock, Chaco National Historic Park, the Taos Pueblos, the Gila Cliff Dwellings, the Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks National Monument, and the Bandelier National Monument, just to name a few. I don’t exactly see myself jumping fences to get into these magnificent places. I’m also hoping to tour some ranches and farms with my friend Mr. Will Dooley and it would be so awesome to meet some local families, and be invited to a home cooked meal. I’m not Anthony Bourdain, but I certainly admired him and have loved watching his shows, especially watching his interactions with locals as he travels around. There was a great episode on New Mexico, I took notes obviously.
I think that’s it for today, stay tuned for more entries coming this week. Adiós por ahora amigos!