Wednesday, August 20, 2008

I'll just post it here:

...which for a moment distracted me from the fact that the train car smelled like the museum of history. And I was reminded immediately of that dark room, the bison under glass, its patches of leathery black skin peeling like paint chips between tufts of brown thicket, its lips eerily marbled under some manner of taxidermic preservative as it grazes in perpetuity on thin yellowing shafts of plastic grass.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

We made our approach into Albuquerque as the remnants of Hurricane Dolly dissipated over New Mexico, descending through thick white blotches as the pilot told us that things would most certainly get bumpy before touchdown and to hold onto our hats and loved ones lest we careen down the aisle.

Down the aisle. A capital idea.

We rented a car and drove northwest to the Hacienda, a small adobe structure in the brush-dotted hill country between Santa Fe and Albuquerque. The altitude was high and the air dry. My nasal passages grew prickly, my skin tanned quickly.

On Sunday the friends and family arrived. By nightfall, several of us were on the patio under a blackening sky with drinks in hand and warmth in our bellies. As the stars went out and I pledged to retire, Ben and Alberto chugged scotch and went down in flames.

On Monday, Alberto was nowhere to be found. Ben and Dave and Rebekkah somehow emerged unharmed. Lauren and I wheeled into Santa Fe proper and secured a license for wedlock. Later, as we headed out for a group dinner, Alberto writhed on the bathroom floor and the poison continued to work its way out.

The skies cleared on Tuesday and Lauren and I decided that yes, we would get married that evening as planned. But first, the boys headed off to play 18 holes at the local links. We negotiated the fairways for a fair part of the hot day. We had beers at the clubhouse as my nerves kicked in, nuptials imminent.

We married outside under a partly cloudy sky, the backdrop a long, barren valley spotted with bulbous shadows.