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Palabras Pintorescas: Longtime friends pay a visit to Camp Davis

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By Editha Bartley

It can’t get any better than this! That is just one of the remarks I’ve heard about our July weather here. I have measured 12.19 inches of rain in July. That might be a record for July here. The transformation from desert to lush, green and blooming mountains is unbelievable.
Long-time friends from Dallas have just left after a fun week’s visit with me. David was a camper at Camp Davis when he was a kid, and his parents stayed with us that last week of camp when they came to pick him up.
The class, group that were in camp together (the camp was a month long back then, with girls there for a month, then boys for a month .... I don’t think camps run like that now) get together for a week’s stay at camp now. This is sort of a mini-reunion, and every one of them has quite a story or two to tell.
I have figured it out: Camp rules were made to be broken, and they surely were inventive.  Actually, that is the fun, the beauty of spending time at camp. Friendships made in this environment obviously are permanent.
David, Julie and I    always spend a day in Taos when they come to visit. We play “typical tourists” and visit the shops around the plaza. We were surprised by the amount of imitation southwestern art and particularly jewelry these shops had in their cases.
The stuff is not made in America, and many of the shop owners are foreign born as well.
The very good art (yes there are some beautiful art galleries there as well) is expensive and apparently does sell. We also spent a day here in Las Vegas and I note our shops and galleries are fabulous.
Our Chamber of Commerce needs to promote our town nationwide. We met tourists from all over  this country going from shop to shop in Taos. I don’t think they know Las Vegas is just over the hill with so much to see and do. And, why can’t I find an ad in New Mexico Magazine this month? Did I miss something? Advertising pays, guys.
And, I now have Laird and Lees Vest Pocket Dictionary on my desk, thanks to my cousin. She found it in a drawer full of old “stuff,” and it is very old.
This is the 1910 edition, and it was my father’s and below his name in both the front and back he wrote: “If found return to owner  Carl H. Gellenthien.”
This dear little book fits in a plastic sandwich bag with room to spare. It is complete, but ragged and its covers are no longer attached.
The first page describes the contents:  “Webster pronouncing dictionary including leading synonyms, speller, gazetteer of the world, and toasts and speeches for all occasions. 30,000 words — New Edition, thoroughly revised. With a vocabulary of one thousand words, a man can transact all the ordinary, business matters of life. Gladstone.”
I know where this idea was headed. There is so much more fun and educational material in this book.
Doggone it — I’ve run out of space, so this word picture of a very old dictionary will be continued!

Editha Bartley lives in Gascon in Mora County. She may be reached at 454-0563.