Monday, August 16, 2021

Serendipity Run

Sometimes I go out for photography with no specific objective or destination, just to (a) get out of the house and (b) open myself up to new visual possibilities.  Earlier this month I made such a trip with my friend, Bruce.

At dawn we headed south from Albuquerque on the surface/frontage roads along I-25 (NM 45/314; NM 47; NM 116), paralleling the Rio Grande, and ended up six hours later in Socorro about 80 miles away.

We would stop whenever we saw something interesting . . . no timetable, no deadline.  Here are some of the things that caught our eyes.

An abandoned restaurant . . .

Signs for a Native American pueblo smoke shop . . .

An irrigation channel bringing water from the Rio Grande to a cornfield in the valley . . .

A pre-Covid "Work from Home" opportunity . . .

A "re-tire-ment" home . . .

An old Camelback truss bridge over the Rio Puerco near Bernardo, NM . . .

An interesting sign . . .

and a few Roman Catholic churches still in use in the villages along the way:

Cristo Rey Church, Bosque, NM

San Antonio Church (north), Bosque, NM

San Antonio Church (south), Abeytas, NM

Bruce also spotted an abandoned church building hidden among the trees in San Acacia, NM:

Interior of San Acacia church

Of course there were also cemeteries in the villages . . . some associated with a church, others standing alone.  I looked for unique or unusual grave decorations, statues, etc.  Here are some examples.

From San Antonio Church (north) cemetery:

(I haven't figured out what Superhero logo this guy is wearing.)

San Acacia Cemetery (not connected to the abandoned church, but with a miniature version of it):

San Lorenzo Catholic Cemetery:

La Sagrada Familia Catholic Cemetery (Lemitar, NM):

San Miguel Catholic Cemetery (Socorro, NM):

And in virtually all the cemeteries there were statues or images of the Virgin of Guadalupe, a venerated symbol for Mexican Catholics, representing the miraculous appearances of the Virgin Mary near Mexico City in December, 1531.  The Virgin is typically depicted as a young woman standing on a crescent moon upheld by a cherub, looking down to her right, hands together in contemplative prayer, surrounded by a body-length sunburst.

Here's a more stylized version, with a playful cherub beneath the Virgin:

And a more ominous setting for the Virgin:

But my favorite serendipitous find of the day was this angel in a box:

Here's a closer look:

By mid-afternoon Bruce and I were "shot out" so we headed back home.  A good day!

If you would like to see these images (and more) in a larger format, please visit my photography website, Todos Juntos Photography, by clicking here.