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By Reid Wright

The descending sun illuminated smudged fingerprints on the Plexiglas gondola window soaring high over a small Bluegrass concert in Telluride’s Mountain Village. Wealthy vacationers and ragged local workers gathered in awkward harmony to sip wine and stitch a crude patchwork of blankets and lawn chairs on the soft grass, or bop and sway to the twangy music that echoed from the mountainsides.

Time to go.

The soft whir of tires accompanied me over the pass, where 14,000 foot peaks stand boldly against the sinking sunlight. By the time I crest the hill above Dolores, the skyline is just a neon silhouette, where the Ute sleeps soundly.

Colorado is like an off-again on-again girlfriend of mine. Every time I leave, it gets harder.

I’ve landed a job as a reporter at The Carlsbad-Argus in Carlsbad, New Mexico. I feel extremely lucky to have found work in a struggling industry in a troubled economy. It must have taken an act of divine intervention for me to be selected out of the more than 130 applicants (thank you whoever you are).

I now have my very own cubicle — a flimsy platform from which to launch my quixotian assault on the corruption of the world.

I promptly did an inventory of the desk drawers to see what I have to work with. Among files of city council agendas and criminal files (a bit difficult to discern between the two), I found a plastic spork, can of Pepsi, orange skittle, ketchup packet and a sketch of what looks like the nude backside of a female double amputee.

It seems my short-lived predecessor was better equipped as a sketch artist than a reporter. His caricatures of Carlsbad City Council members were probably more telling than anything he ever wrote about them. I also found what appeared to be a hand-written note passed around during a meeting:

Is she the DA?

She looks scary … Like she has a broom

I know she didn’t sleep her way to the top!

The other staff have been very friendly and welcoming, everyone working together to find me an apartment. Apparently, because of an influx of potash miners, the rental market in Carlsbad is quite competitive. It could be a little while before I have a place to stay, which is probably for the better since having a home and a job at the same time could be too much stability for me.

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3 Comments

  1. sounds like you have landed the perfect job for this moment in time. Hope you find a place to shower. Good Luck Love Mom

  2. maybe you ought to consider becoming a columnist… though i’m interested to discover what there is to report about in such an obscure town.

    • Thanks. You’d be surprised how much goes on down here. It’s been almost a death a day since I got here. Hope that’s not all there is.


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