Apparently I didn't miss anything in the way of global events recently. Our mountains are still here, dry as they are. If the end of the world happened, nobody noticed it around here.
Sadly, it is so dry very few flowers are blooming, so the resident hummingbirds have hit the feeders hard. There is almost no water running in our creeks, and the blue herons quickly cleaned out any trout that still had a small pool to swim in.
Our pastures are a crunchy brown, and we wonder if the grass can survive even another day of these high winds. If this is now about to be measured as the hundred-year drought, then can the hundred-year flood be far behind? The very violent weather all across this continent surely makes my family wonder what will be next in this climate change cycle.
Our ranch work moves right along, about on schedule. The branding is done, so hopefully the cows will soon get into the higher pastures. But the grass is crunchy brown higher up, as well. Hopefully the grass on top of our mountains will soon be green, as the small pockets of snow melt. This will provide the needed forage for the elk and deer that have had little to eat in the early spring.
Statewide the bears have already invaded towns, looking for food, and the lions will soon be in the same category.
I wrote a column for the New Mexico Livestock Journal way back in 1971. My first venture into this newspaper world began with their March issue, and of course it was about our weather. Oh, yes we had a repeat of this winter back then. There was almost no snow in the high mountain peaks and I quote a paragraph from that long ago column: "Only New Mexico could have the crazy weather we've had the past six months: a winter storm over Labor Day, spring winds in November, no snow for Santa Claus, record-breaking cold and more of it in January, and then, as a grand finale, summer weather again in January." Our unpredictable weather from 40 years ago is still with us, in a big way.
I've always wanted a magic wand that can accomplish miracles with just a wave and a prayer. If I had that wand in my hand at this moment in time, I'd ask for a pipeline to transport all of the flood water that has destroyed so much of our heartland to be piped to our water-starved watersheds here in the Southwest. I realize drought is part of a weather cycle, but this too long dry spell is now dangerous in many ways.
And as a postscript to this column, congratulations to all of our graduating seniors. I, along with many of my age group seem to worry about the future of our big world.
A friend and visionary with far more wisdom than I have, just told me not to worry. She said these young people already have big plans to make the world better in every way, and they don't see the negatives like we old-timers do. I know she is right on this one.
Carry on, kids, and ... the world really is your oyster now. Yes, it may rain on your parade, but we need that rain and the sooner the better.
Editha Bartley lives in Gascon in Mora County. She may be reached at 454-0563.