It was a “girls get away week-end” and we arrived in the early evening, after spending the day soaking in the mineral waters at Ojo Caliente. My friend Pam and I just wanted to have some quiet time, away from our normal life routines, and experience the wide open spaces of Ghost Ranch. The roads from Ojo to the ranch were winding and everywhere the scenery beckoned a closer look. “…The skies and land are so enormous, and the detail so precise and exquisite that wherever you are, you are isolated in a glowing world between the macro and the micro.” -Ansel Adams
This was our room, up on the mesa. At night the quiet was thunderous, a roaring silence unlike anywhere I had ever been. Not a dog barking or even a cricket could be heard…it was a quiet to contemplate, no noise of any sort, a quiet to allow into the soul and think back upon when life roars all around. I wanted to save it in a jar, like the lightning bugs we caught as kids, and open it up when I needed a dose of Ghost Ranch!
It was Georgia O’Keeffe’s backyard where she spent years painting and living in this remote land. I am so captivated by her lifestyle, her art, and the dedication she pursued in painting. She had a vision, and was true to herself. The world interpreted her work through their paradigms… she did not intervene or acquiesce to their interpretation. She remained in her own flow and personal truth. I read that from the first time she came to New Mexico she stated, “I loved it immediately…from then on I was always on my way back.”
Behold the cerulean blue skies!!
The vast spaces and landscape are beautiful, so many vistas to capture with my camera.
“From heaven the Lord looks down and sees all mankind; From his dwelling place he watches all who live on earth – he who forms the hearts of all, who considers everything they do.” Ps 33:13-15
Located in a small rustic adobe casita, the Ghost Ranch library is a special place. Filled with books from floor to ceiling on a variety of subjects, open 24 hours a day, an original card catalog system for keeping track of books which you check out on the honor system, it is a place for seekers. I am drawn to books and libraries and always seem to find just what I am looking for even though it is serendipitous! Naturally I discovered an amazing book in this quaint place and wrote down many quotes in my journal.
“The painting is like a thread that runs through all the reasons for the other things that make one’s life.” Georgia O’Keeffee
This is how she lived….this is how I want to live.
Ghost Ranch is filled with many gifts. A place for creativity, reflection, discovery, and contemplation. There is something sacred about it, not in the religious sense, rather in a raw, unaltered, perfect sense. I think that is what I found most attractive and perfect. It is simple. Adobe architecture accompanies the landscape and does not draw attention to itself. It is a place for subtle transformation, quiet reflection, conversations and making art, prayer and laughter, and discovery that can only take place when we step back and open our eyes.
A place I am on my way back to.
If you like the western landscape and Ms. O’Keeffe’s work, put Ghost Ranch on your bucket list, it surely will not disappoint.