I won’t live long enough to produce meaningful tree ring data, so I’m not spending much time making a milestone out of 2020. I am trying to see things as seamlessly as I can.

The sun rose on Redondo this morning as it usually does while there is still so much work to be done in Washington. My knees started aching last year, right at age 70, but I still walk in the hills. My good fortune is: My routine still flows, knots and all.


The xmas cactus by Cowboy’s food bowl has withered a bit, but morning coffee and breakfast are still good.


I did not take pictures of Cabezon this morning because it looked like smog had settled near its base. It was clearer yesterday, as Cowboy saw, and the storm forecasted for tomorrow probably will push today’s dirt away.


Coyotes and bobcats came with the territory and remain.

The not-so wild horses have nice winter coats and there appear to be plenty of people to feed them.

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There were some grand sunsets at the end of 2019, but I can tell you from living just north of the Sandias for 30 years — this plus my previous Placitas place — don’t bother keeping count: There is some kind of rock and roll here every night. There is a new house in my Sandia view and the BLM may be thinking of trading off the 197 acres between us. Even so, I have walked with four dogs on this little chunk of public land at least 10,000 times and hope like other other quiet, resident walkers here that it remains home-free.


Despite fears of development, I got past sunset melancholy years ago.

Now I await moonrises and dawns only a sleep away.

I reach the five years since treatment mark for my second cancer on March 25, but it seems the landscape of cancer is changing. I still hope for moonshots for kids, but for adults I am less often hearing words like cure. Treatments have improved and “living with cancer” seems to be edging out “battling cancer” in everyday terms. But I take “living with cancer” to also mean that cancer is a chronic disease.


What I am most sure of at the brink of 2020 is that I have been lucky for 70 years. Every day I see Cowboy and mountains, blue sky and birds, I know I am still.

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