Stan's Tuesday Walks

A Weekly Feature
by Stan Evans,
President, Santa Fe Always Online

August 6, 2002

My neighbor and walking companion did not show up this morning at the appointed hour of 6 o’clock, so I set out on my own. Alone with my thoughts, I wondered what I might write about today for this feature in Santa Fe Always Online. For the last couple of weeks I have not submitted a column, for fear that I was boring my readers. Actually, there are many things I would like to write about, but I hesitate sometimes, thinking that my talent is not up to the job. Many writers have such self-doubts, I am told.

One of things that has been on mind for quite a while, but I haven't yet written about, is the fact that so many of the people living here have missed most of what Santa Fe and surrounding areas have to offer. I'm sure this is true all over the world—but when it comes to missing out in Santa Fe, that hurts me. Why? I guess that I find this city such a wonderful place that when I see people missing so much of what it has to offer, I want to somehow grab ahold of them and say, "Let me show you around."

Here goes my effort to explain what I mean. Maybe after reading this article you might feel that the thought of me being mute for a few more weeks is not such a bad idea. In fact, it isn't that I haven't been writing—it’s just that I haven't been pleased with the results. I'm never totally pleased, but boring is boring. Yet eventually my thoughts just bubble out, and I guess I have to say something or I'll bust. Anyway, here goes.

Each of us has limiting parameters, like blinders that block our peripheral vision. These parameters (such as our upbringing) are what limit our life experiences. But it is amazing to me how narrow these parameters are for most people. And I mean most!

New Mexico, the fifth-biggest state in the Union, has so much to offer in a variety of ways that it is impossible to talk about them all in an article such as this. Most Americans are proud of their states, and I'm not trying to do “one-upsmanship” on anyone. But I do have to say that this part of the country is pretty darn special.

In spite of New Mexico’s amazing variety, however, I find that many people who live here or visit see and do very little of what this area has to offer. The museum lovers only see museums, fishermen only fish, hunters only hunt, skiers only ski, opera-goers only go to operas, and others only come to do what they come to do—which is generally very little.

So if you’re planning to come to Santa Fe, I implore you—don’t limit your experiences to the interests you already have. Add some new ones.

Just because you not a skier doesn't mean you can't take a ride up to the ski run in the summer or fall and look at the beauty that surrounds Santa Fe. Just because you’ve been bored in a museum or gallery in the past, don’t pass up the wonderful museums and galleries in Santa Fe. The items on display are simply amazing.

I guarantee you that if you give yourself a chance when you come to Santa Fe and do things that you never did before, you will make marvelous discoveries—all the more marvelous because they will be new. Again, I say, Santa Fe is truly a special place. Don't let your past limit your future.

Saddest of all, several of my Santa Fe friends who have lived here many years—and in some cases all their lives—have experienced very little of what our city has to offer. No matter how hard I've tried to convince them to go and do some things they've never done before, they've resisted my efforts.

One friend who passed away a while back always ate in just one café in the more than 50 years he lived here, in spite of Santa Fe’s wonderful array of restaurants. And he was a wealthy man. To him, once he found a place that satisfied him, he felt no need to look any further. It pains me to think of all the dining adventures he missed.

I have another friend, also quite wealthy, with limited experience with respect to Santa Fe, even though he was born here. One day I asked him, "Do you know the major difference between you and me?" He said no, so I said, "You have a million dollars (he has much more than that), and I've had a million dollars worth of fun." I don’t think he understood. He thinks he's done it the best way. I just wish he had at least tried my way.

I guess what I'm saying is that when you come to Santa Fe, take time to do things you have never done before. And if you find yourself enjoying these experiences, maybe when you return home, you'll try some things back there that you never tried before. You might be surprised how interesting and fun new adventures can be.

Have a great day.

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