For some reason it’s come up a lot in conversations lately, but last month I marked one full year of living in Clovis. I got to thinking the other day about the memories and mental images that really stick out from that period of time. For one of the most prominent, one need look no farther than the image which adorns the header of my home page. It was (according to google image search) taken somewhere in the Clovis area, and though not particularly large or visually stunning, it begins to convey the vast, open, almost featureless terrain of much of New Mexico.
I’ve spent many, many hours driving through this inhospitable, arid landscape. It often feels like a journey through not only space but time as well (somewhat akin to entering Clovis itself). Why is this so? For one thing, cell coverage is faint to nonexistent for vast swaths of the state. I remember once, on a drive to or from Denver, I actually tallied the miles I drove between one 3G signal and the next, reaching a number somewhere north of 300 if I recall correctly. I, along with many or most Americans in the 21st century, had started to take for granted that regardless of my location, I could not only make a phone call but text, email, read the news, download or stream music, find the nearest pizza parlor, check for sun/rain/snow wherever I was headed, watch frisbee highlights or fail compilations on youtube, etc, etc, etc. As it turns out, my assumption was decidedly off the mark.