July 11th, 2006

Every prairie dog hole is a gold mine, every molehill is a mountain, every creek is a river and everybody you meet is a liar.
–Jack Parker


From time to time, I get people who wonder if I’m a little too hard on Santa Fe when I remark that it has all the freakishness of San Francisco but without the water. There are other people who wonder if it can really be as bad as I make out. Finally, there are people who ask me to sum up my experience of living in the “City Different”. I’m happy to say I can finally answer all those people at the same time.

That’s right folks, I’ve done it. I have found the most perfect Santa Fe story ever. One small article in the Santa Fe New Mexican has encapsulated all of this whacked out town more accurately and succinctly than I could ever dare to imagine. Thank you, Tom Sharpe!

Eight Tibetan Buddhist monks, dressed in maroon robes, saffron shawls and yellow fringed hats, stood in the shade of a small cottonwood tree in Frenchy’s Field on Wednesday to bless Santa Fe’s imperiled prairie dogs.

The monks’ multiphonic chanting, called “overtone singing,” vibrated the hot afternoon air and perked up the prairie dogs nearby. Several stood up on their hind legs. One began to squeak, as if to answer the chant.

The blessing kicked off efforts to relocate prairie dogs from city parks, school campuses and other sites around Santa Fe to more rural locations. Although relocations began as early as March, they were suspended in mid-May to allow the animals time to give birth.

Santa Fe. Not only do they relocate prairie dogs, not only do they get them blessed by Tibetan monks, they also give them maternity leave.

To be perfectly honest, I’m seriously considering never writing anything under the “New Mexico” tag again. What could I possibly add to this?

Oh, and please check out the comments on the news article. It’s an e-ticket extravaganza.


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