February 6, 2010

Zuni and the Muskrat

Telia and I recently returned from our much anticipated trip to Zuni Pueblo, New Mexico. Apologies for the platitude, but it really is a land of enchantment. On Tuesday morning we made a sunrise drive west from Albuquerque over the Continental Divide, through El Malpais and past El Morro to Zuni. There was a moment when the sun hit the Ponderosa Pines over the sagey divide that impressed itself so deeply into my memory that it has become my inescapable image of the New Mexican landscape. So living and haunting like an unknown former love.

The clinic itself is temporary while the new ten chair office is completed. Even so, all the trappings of dental technophilia are present including implants, digital radiography, Cerec, IV sedation cart, rotary endo, etc... The clinic is occupied by pleasant and industrious dentists who work well together with a staff of no contention.

Zuni Pueblo is home to the most ancient extant pueblo tribe, the A:shiwi, better known as the Zuni. Unlike many other tribe whose religious rites have become more ceremony than sacred devotion, the ancient traditions are still an integral part of their culture. Consequently, many aspects of their culture are kept private out of reverence and visitors are asked to refrain from taking photos of locals, town and ceremonies.

Will we get the job? I hope so. If it is offered to me upon graduation/licensure I will take it without a second thought.

About the Muskrat. Today, in the backyard there was a rodent-like mammal scurrying across our snowy lawn. At first I didn't even know what manner of creature I beheld. It looked like a beaver and rat had tied the knot and made babies. But after some google image research I have concluded we have a muskrat burrow in our backyard. Dry, it has a thick brown coat with long, leathery tail like a beaver, but less like a pancake and more like a rat. Good times. If it pops its pretty little head up tomorrow I will take a picture.