WHATS IN THIS BLOG: • The Jemez River and its scenic beauty. • Hiking to a perfectly lovely waterfall.

The Jemez River starts in the Jemez Mountains about 1.5 hours drive from Albuquerque. Soon after this you come to the Valle Grande – an immense crater left after a series of volcanoes about a million years ago. Drive a little further and you come to Bandolier National Monument, one of the best-preserved ruins built by the Ancient Ones around 1100 AD (that’s 900 years ago). A bit further and you come to the science town of Los Alamos, where they built the bomb. It’s an enchanting area!

Kim and I hiked along the East Fork of the Jemez last week. At the end of May the grass is lush and green, and the scenery is spectacular.… More “Hiking toward Heaven – East fork of Jemez River”

WHATS IN THIS BLOG: • The killer mountains. • The Peralta gold legend. • Peralta Canyon hike.

THE KILLER MOUNTAINS. The forecast called for rain, but i didn’t believe it. It rarely rains in Phoenix, Arizona. In fact, it was February 2018 and it hadn’t rained for 3 months. I drove east, past Apache Junction, and circumvented the Superstition mountains, rising like a terrible black menace from the plain. The magma that was forced up thousands of feet resulted in a huge block of basalt that has few natural stream outlets. The steep rocky walls are forbidding barriers to outsiders, except at a few trailheads.

The Apaches believed gods inhabited the rocky valleys and turreted hilltops, making rumbling noises when a thunderstorm struck in the summer monsoons.… More “The Superstition Mountains: Hiking near the gold legends.”

WHATS IN THIS BLOG: • How to get to Yankee Boy. • Jeep pics of waterfalls and wildflowers and mountains. • Three unusual conversations.

This is a long blog, but if you love pics of the Rocky Mountains, you can just look at them (but please click to enlarge them to gain the full oohs and aahs). If you love jeep trips, and mining history, read about them. Also, if you love conversing with travelers, here are a few great examples. Lastly, if you love music, be sure to read the last para about Rachmaninoff and Tchaikovsky. If you have no love for any of these, wait for the next blog.

YANKEE BOY BASIN LIES IN COLORADO, above the old mining town of Ouray, which is named after an Indian chief.… More “Yankee Boy – a Jeep Adventure”

WHATS IN THIS BLOG: • The hike began at Las Vegas. • Pictures of the hike and the stream. • Conversations on the hike.

OUR HIKE BEGAN AT LAS VEGAS. That’s Las Vegas, New Mexico, which is an hour north-east of Santa Fe. I’d never been there and found it to be a delightful small city (15,000 population). It contains a university (Highlands University).

After the hike we drove around the plaza, which was typical Spanish construction in a square to protect against attacks. The city began in 1835 when land-grants were issued by the Mexican government. In 1846 during the Mexican-American war, General Kearny in the Las Vegas plaza claimed New Mexico for the United States.

The lawless, as well as the lawful, poured in with the railroad in 1879.… More “A Hike Toward Heaven: El Porvenir out of Las Vegas”

WHATS IN THIS BLOG: • A game-changer: children helping starving children. • 100 kids and adults packaged 12,000 meals in 2 hours. • I look terrific in a hairnet! • Takeaways. First of all, LAST WEEK I ROLLED UP AT 7 AM (YES, I CRAWLED OUT OF BED AT 5:30 AM ON A SATURDAY). To my horror, the registration lady said “You can’t do this, because you are wearing sandals. You need proper shoes.” Since I drove 30 minutes to get there, I debated with her since I am an engineer after all. We deadlocked until a well-dressed young Hispanic woman intervened. “You could cover each of your feet with a hairnet.” I laughed at the idea, but the registration lady accepted me on this basis, and handed me three hairnets.… More “I experienced an awesome way to wrap nutritious food for starving children”

WHATS IN THIS (DIFFERENT) BLOG: • A brief comment on several hot topics: Heart disease in women. Words to boost self-belief. New superbug arrives. Positive thinking helps people age. Great Barrier Reef is dying. An American switches to Aussie football. • Everyone’s psyche needs hope……providing hope is not difficult.

THIS BLOG IS A LITTLE DIFFERENT. The first part is a series of 8 images each of which summarizes a hot topic.

The second part is a simple method to provide hope to another…. the psychological benefit for both giver and receiver can be huge.

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A SIMPLE WAY TO PROVIDE HOPE TO ANOTHER: “I’d like to show you an illustration,” Michelle said as she stood up. She extracted a length of thin, shiny rope from one of her many pants pockets and gave it to Darby.… More “Hot topics + how to provide hope”

WHATS IN THIS BLOG: • In a secretive night meeting, a spiritual leader talked about being born again. But the listener didn’t get it. So the leader compared it to the wind, which didn’t seem to help the listener’s understanding. • 2,000 years later, a young engineer named Joshua talks about how the wind of the Spirit blew dramatically into the lives of his family.

But first, MY DAD USED TO TALK ABOUT BEING BORN AGAIN. As a young man who had a nervous breakdown, and four young kids, he needed help. He got it from Billy Graham who preached about it over the radio. Billy Graham got it from Jesus. So what did Jesus have to say about it? Not much.… More “A secret meeting. A frustrating conversation. A life-changing mystery”

WHATS IN THIS BLOG: • Arguments for life beyond earth • The spacecraft Kepler’s search for other planets • The beginnings of life • Implications for Biblical faith

This blog is excerpted from an article in Time Magazine entitled The Perfectly Sane Case for Life in Space (by Jeffrey Kluger, April 2016).

ARGUMENTS FOR LIFE BEYOND EARTH: • Scott Sandford works at NASA Ames Research Center in California. In his lab he swirls together the gas and dust of interstellar space and chills it to -388°F. Then he blasts the mix with the kinds of radiation that exist in space. The result is thousands of chemical products, including molecules like amino acids – stuff that life uses.

• There is a growing belief that life does exist out there.… More “Some truths about human life beyond earth”

WHATS IN THIS BLOG: • What is a felony? • Do people with felonies deserve a second chance in the workforce? • The felon in Les Miserable.

First of all, this article is dedicated to Don and Lola Compton, who have led Shalom Ministries for over 45 years. The ministry began for hippies living in the mountains behind Santa Fe, and broadened to include inmates in penitentiaries in New Mexico. Part of the mission is to provide training for jobs and mentors when inmates are released, and to connect them with halfway houses. Please pray for Don’s recovery as he is in rehab for another month or so, after a debilitating health breakdown. If you would like to send a card: PO Box 90910, ABQ, NM 87199.… More “Would you hire or recommend a person with a felony for a job?”

WHATS IN THIS BLOG: • Photo of my grand-daughter Kara at the Prom. • I had only once before visited a homeless establishment, even though I’ve been in church all my life. • My avoidance and ignorance has now been replaced by a deep respect. • A practical mix of compassion and discipline leads to an inspiring success story.


First of all, have I ever been homeless? I slept in my car one night after a serious spat with my wife. I climbed the Truchas Peaks in New Mexico, and slept in a tent for two nights, when a bear came into our camp and stole some food. In other words, these homeless stints were temporary.

HAVE I EVER BEEN HOMELESS IN A MORE PERMANENT SENSE?… More “If ever you or your kids or grandkids had to stay in a shelter for the homeless …..”


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