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On My Own In Santa Fe. It Is 4/07/10 in Albuquerque, NM.

Deciding to get a later start, Brian drops me off at the Rail Runner Station around 8am… I wait, wait, wait – finally ask someone to read me the train schedule (I forgot my glasses at the house)… next train is 10:30am…I call Brian and he gets me.

I sit in on a small glass he is teaching on the Christian theological history: today is the introduction of election vs. freewill and the debate between Pelagius and Augustine. Cool class – I would be a full time student forever if I could.

Class ends a bit short so Brian can get me to the train depot.

I arrive in Santa Fe at about 12:30ish and walk over to Loretta Chapel (now a museum) – I take a few photos but I must admit, the best photo would be directly under the mystery staircase (which has been done and looks great in B&W… it is roped off now, so no such deal for me). It is a nice chapel, but as a museum, it is dead. This brings me a better understanding of intention and identity, living and dead … but I DO like the design of the offering plaque on the prayer candles.

I walk over to St. Francis Cathedral and snap a few.

Over in the chapel of La Conquistadora, Our Lady of Peace, I talk to a lady in a wheel chair. She tells me a story of why she is in a wheel chair: she had a heart attack, was in a coma, awoke to see her children crying – she was suppose to day within minutes before she cheated death and came out of the coma…she thanked God – it was a miracle, but a while later she had another heart attack and this one left her paralyzed. She was not ever suppose to walk again, but she prayed to the Lady of Guadalupe and came to this chapel everyday (in the wheel chair pushed by her son), praying that she might walk again so she can do her house work. She is able to walk a little now…

I am dizzy today… this has been happening a lot lately… I stop in at the coffee house Brian, Fred, Skip and I were at yesterday and have a Texas chili and pear iced tea. It fills me up but doesn’t stop the mild vertigo. No time to stop I have only 5 hours in Santa Fe… so I visit the Episcopal church and then walk up the Canyon Road gallery walk.

I only enter one gallery, the Brookover Gallery to see David Brookover’s photos. http://www.davidbrookover.com/ I prefer his large black and whites; some shot film with a 8×10 land camera and some with a digital medium format. I end up talking for a long while with Carol Van B, who works there but is from New Jersey. When the subject turns to what I shoot (the cameras hanging from my shoulders are a giveaway that I photograph “something”), I tell her I am mostly akin to a journalist… that statement leads to my church documentary, etc. We have a good talk for almost half an hour; she is very kind and friendly. She says she is Catholic and misses the New Jersey church she grew up in. She hasn’t had the feeling here when she prays like she does when she is home in that church.

I part ways as I have only about 30 minutes to get back to the train station for the 5:20 train to Albuquerque. It should only take about 20 minutes.

On the way down Canyon Road I am called into another gallery and although I say I need to catch a train, I get persuaded to see the “best photographer in Santa Fe” – the gallery owner turns out to be from Laguna Beach… (the man who called me in originally must be the photographers father or father–in–law or something…). I work my way to the door, and finally pull away from the talkative gallery owner and continue down the road. It is going to be tight for the train…

I arrive at the train station – the train is there – I pick up my pace (the backpack of equipment and the hiking boats make running difficult on my knees). But I am just about there…and the train doors start to close. Ahhhh. I am standing in front of the closed door banging on it and anything that looks like a button that might open the door…no luck – waving toward the engineer hoping he is looking (I am thinking this is a subway in New York or the L in Chicago). I look to the back of the train and ht every next car has the door open with a train attendant standing in the door just looking at me and I run over to him to get in but he will not step aside. I ask if he will let me in and he says no, they are leaving. I say the train isn’t moving, and he says we have a schedule. “But the train isn’t moving – you can let me in.” He shakes his head and the train slowly inches forward with me walking next to the open door one inch from the platform and me trying to reason with the guy to just let me in… now I ma jogging and I can still make the jump – I say I have to get Albuquerque – and he says, “take the next train – and next time get here on time”.

It is a day for missing trains.

Well I wait and take the next one, the 6:15.

I am sitting there and I hear a lady across the aisle from me talking to a young man. She is in her mid-late forties, goth sort of, black hair like a helmet, unattractive, she has a son, and talking loud enough so we all can hear about exploits. (she references her breasts as those of a mother when talking about another woman’s breast that are worse and pierced but her ex, TJ, finds this “blond” attractive who is now stripping naked while on a table dancing the coyote ugly, and TJ wants to have them both at a swingers party…). Her stories are vulgar, dark, sexually exploitative (one of her lines was, “… now, if I am going to cheat on the guy I am with, it is going to be with someone attractive”). She seems to get invited a lot to swinger parties which she will not participate in, but, she keeps getting invited, “..what? Who are these ladies, your stripper friends; you want me to service these guys at the party too? No way, I don’t care how much money they have…” It goes on and on and I finally move to another seat where I can’t hear her life. Too dark for me and not as cool as she seems to think she is. If she doesn’t like it I wonder why she stays around those people…

I arrive at the train station and Brian takes me to the Calvary Service where he is on staff for tonight’s service.

Prayers are being said over huge crowds and the place is hoping. The vibe here is totally different from the vibe on the train – dark and light.

I wonder if the woman on the train would find something different if she were here and witnessed the love expressed here at Calvary.

The night concludes with just Brian and I watching a documentary on Joy Division, a post punk band that had an influence on a lot of bands in the 80’s including Brian’s first band, The Electra.

Tomorrow I leave Albuquerque but for now, it is bedtime.

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