In the era I refer to as “BNM,” before New Mexico, I lived in several other states.
Montana, Wyoming, and California were the most recent ones before touchdown in SENM. In the time BNM, I never experienced desert life. I remained totally oblivious to large, alien-looking insects, spiny plants which bloom overnight, and perfectly pastel sunrises and sunsets. These elements delight me and can frighten me to this day, but they are a part of the beautiful, complicated tapestry of my SENM home. For me, this is a land I am learning to love, and the most loveable aspect of all is the people of our community. It is the community folks that absolutely MAKE the experience of Carlsbad and our region. Carlsbad folks participate in all kinds of activities: trail running, car cruising, river fishing, biking, making music, and many, many more. Our community is out and about living and experiencing the desert, making it our home.
In the most extreme and sometimes inhospitable conditions, community members persevere. They serve up playful culinary dishes using the climate’s well-adapted chile. They carve mountain bike and hiking trails out of the caliche (if you have not had the opportunity to check out the La Cueva trail system, then I highly recommend a visit). The community isn’t vibrant and exciting by chance, no, it is the result of the hard graft of the locals who imbue it with the spice of life. This land is loved, and I am learning to see and appreciate the love for it, too, thanks to all the folks who take the time to share their passion for it. A few of those folks have collaborated with the Focus team and contributed to the pages of this latest edition of Focus on Carlsbad. As you begin to read the following pages, listen to the voices of Carlsbad who keep life in the desert fresh. And be reminded that this is the land that we love.
Editorial Director, Focus on Carlsbad
Editor’s letter originally published in Focus on Carlsbad 2021 Summer edition.