August 31, 2001
Dear Subscriber:

My favorite people are dogs. I suppose that goes without saying
since we have four of them living with us (Not one among them
with papers; They're all pound refugees. They all get a little
nervous when the Animal Control truck drives by the house. Old
habits die hard).

I think the reason I'm so taken with canines is because I like
funny and dogs tend to be funny without trying. I don't think
they go through their days thinking of what they can do next
to make people laugh, they just come by it naturally.

Peg and I were in the village this morning for breakfast. We
stood on the boardwalk talking to friends when there was a
commotion at the corner. It was Luna the Bulldog and she was a
little upset.

Everybody in the village knows Luna. She belongs to a 
shopkeeper on the boardwalk. She's an English Bull with lots 
of personality and has grown up mingling with the tourists. 
Her main station is right in front of her human's bike shop,
but she takes herself to a nearby vacant lot when nature calls,
and after she's done, she comes right back to the shop. I think
she's attracted to the shop by the warmth. I am a firm believer
in the idea that love exudes warmth. Luna knows where her warmth
comes from and that's the shop where her human is. Unless she
has excused herself for a few minutes and is visiting the vacant
lot, you'll always find her at the bike shop.

Today, however, her human had evidently become preoccupied,
because Luna's large, economy-size, I Can't Believe It's Not
Butter plastic bowl had no water in it, and Luna was tossing it
against anything that would make noise.

She made her point and got the desired reaction. Luna's human
stepped out of the store and picked up the bowl. I yelled "get
that poor thirsty puppy a drink!" Luna's human laughed and
soon emerged with the bowl full of water. Luna sniffed it and
walked off. She wasn't particularly thirsty but the stress of
an empty water bowl was more than she could abide.

Luna is the village dog, but she's not the first.

I'll never forget Molly. Molly was a sort-of-Lab-sort-of-
Shepherd. She belonged to the village fire chief, but you could
find her just about any place in town where there might be an
opportunity for a free hand-out. Molly was a hustler.

Molly was the village dog back when Peg and I ran a small cafe
on the boardwalk. Molly loved Cheetoes and knew Peg and I were
good for at least a small lunch-pail size bag a day. She knew
she wasn't allowed in the cafe, but she would lay just outside
the threshold with her nose over the entrance...her eyes darting
here and there looking for those orange crispy goodies. She
never broke the rules but she certainly could bend them.

She knew there were free dog chews at the First National Bank.
They were designated for customer's dogs that came through
the drive-through, but Molly would apply the "sad look" on
bank employees and paw the glass front door Lassie-style. She
got more than her share of freebies.

Then there was Charlie. Charlie didn't wander the streets. He
was always with Gary (Charlie's human and the village newspaper
editor), but he was a village dog just the same. Charlie (a toy
poodle), besides being Gary's constant companion, was also 
known for his love of bacon. Charlie would dance for a piece 
of bacon. I don't know who his choreographer was, but he could
put Bojangles to shame.

Molly and Charlie. They wore tags around their necks that
designated them as belonging to a person, but in reality they
belonged to the people of the village. It may be more accurate
to say the people of the village belonged to Molly and Charlie.
When they left us, their humans cried.

The whole village cried.

Molly, Charlie, Dusty, Scooter, Thor, Ginger, Daisy, Delta...
and others that achieved fame only because they loved their
humans...many of them are gone now.

That's the toughest thing about being a dog fan. You tend to
out-live them.

Luna is Cloudcroft's DVD (Designated Village Dog) now. Her
responsibility is that she must be pleasant to the tourists and
put up with the constant pats on the head from the children. 
She has big shoes to fill. She can handle the pressure of that
responsibility as long as there's water in her bowl.

Don Vanlandingham

The wettest summer in the past 5 years. No fire restrictions
in the forest.

Does this mean a wet and snowy winter is coming? No way of
knowing for sure, but the moisture during the summer gives 
rise to hope.

Highs are in the lower-70s. Lows in the lower-40s. Still
almost daily afternoon showers.
The Cloudcroft Bears lost their first football game of the 
season to Hagerman 41-nothing. They play their first home game
this weekend against Jal at 2pm Saturday.


Silver, Saddle and Apache campgrounds have undergone major
renovation by the Forest Service and are now open.
(News of local interest? Let us know. Call us at 505-682-3234.)
Mountain bike sales and rentals. Lots of beautiful places to
explore around Cloudcroft on a bike. Outdoor gear. Winter wear.
Imports. (505) 682-2769 or highaltitude@hauns.com.
The Library will be CLOSED September 1-12. During that period,
we will be moving everything (except the Children's Department)
into the newly expanded area of the building. This will allow
the contractors to completely refurbish the remainder of our 
Q - Is there going to be a Fall Festival in Zenith Park this
year? It usually takes place the first weekend in October.
-Debbie Staggs.

A - ART IN THE ASPENS, a juried art show, will take place in
Zenith Park October 6-7.
September 1-2 -- Labor Day Fiesta. Sidewalk sales,
entertainment, street dance, and games for kids.
For more information, call (505) 682-2733.

September 1 -- Cloudcroft Bears vs Jal (football) (home).

September 7 -- Cloudcroft Bears vs Tularosa (football) (away).

September 8 -- Mile High Grand Prix. Ski Cloudcroft.
Proceeds benefit Special Olympics.
For information call (806) 794-0624.

September 9 -- 42nd Mile High Enduro. Starts at Triple M
Snowplay Area. Route is environmentally correct.
For information call (806) 794-0624.

September 13 -- Demonstration by Jim Folan on Batik.
Cloudcroft Art Society 1-3pm.
For information call (505) 682-2494.

September 15 -- Enchanted Jazz Festival.
Alamogordo, New Mexico.
For more information, call (505) 434-0559.

September 15 -- Cloudcroft Bears vs Hatch (football) (home).

September 15 -- Dinner with Governor Johnson.
The Lodge, 6-7pm social hour, 7pm dinner, $30 per person.
Tickets at Copper Butterfly or by sending a check to SMSA,
PO Box 1213, Cloudcroft, NM 88317.

September 16 -- Governor's 10k Run/Walk.
40k Time Trial Bike Race.
For more information, call (505) 687-2133.

September 15-16 -- Hot Air Balloon Invitational.
White Sand National Monument.
For more information, call (505) 682-3785.

September 21 -- Cloudcroft Bears vs Ft. Sumner (football)

September 22 -- Oktoberfest. Holloman AFB.

September 28 -- Cloudcroft Bears vs Lordsburg (football)

September 29-30 Aspencade Tours.

October 6 -- Cloudcroft vs Faith Christian (football) (home).

October 6, 7 -- Art in the Aspens. Juried art show. Zenith

October 6, 7 -- Aspencade Tours.

October 12 -- Cloudcroft vs Capitan (football) (away).

October 19 -- Cloudcroft vs Animas (football) (away).

October 20, 21 -- Apple Festival. High Rolls.

Cloudcroft Art Society meets the second Thursday of each month
in the Old Red Brick School House. Call (505) 682-2494 for
more information. Beginning in October, the monthly meetings
change to the first Sunday of each month, 2-4pm.

Senior Van from Timberon to Alamogordo leaves the Timberon
Lodge promptly at 8:30 every Tuesday morning.

If you have news of public events in the Cloudcroft area, email

For an online calendar of area events, click the Events Calendar
link in the left column of our home page:


Dear Newsletter:

Thanks so much for your newsletter this week!

Lonely times indeed here in the beautiful mountains. You see 
Mr. Don, my husband is a firefighter here for the Forest Service
and has been gone now for 13 days and still counting. First to
California, then on to Oregon and now he is at St. Mary's 
Mission, Washington helping to control the fires there.

Lincoln National Forest is so lucky indeed to have these people,
but we are even more blessed to have a safe wet forest now, so
that are personnel from here can be where they are needed. 
Counting the days for their safe return!

And thanks again for keeping me company with your newsletter!


Dear Newsletter:

Just read your latest newsletter. It's no wonder that your 
"trash dump story" generated so much response. It was a great
piece of writing. My wife and I are going to be in Cloudcroft
at The Lodge for the first week in September. I have never been
to Cloudcroft before. My father and mother went about 45 years
ago to go skiing. We are looking forward to a week's respite 
from the heat in San Antonio.

Arnold Krause

Dear Newsletter:

The dumpster diving email responses suggest that all of us have
been relieved that there are others out there who admit to 
doing the same thing!

I too was a dumpster diver a few years back, and let me tell
you, I have acquired quite a bit of amazing stuff. I lived in
El Paso, right by Sunland Park Mall, and one morning, I was
throwing some big boxes away (don't do that--recycle!), at the
dumpster behind a sports store.

Wellllll, I peeked in and saw a WHOLE dumpster full of new 
(yes, new) running shoes. I abandoned all shame and scrambled

It took a while, but I managed to find about three pair of Nike
airs as well as some New Balance shoes. Most, alas, were for
right feet (as opposed to left), but hey, I managed to find 3
in my size. I went back every day that week and guess what? The
lefties were there about three days later! The only drawback
was that many were sprayed with blue spray paint, ostensibly to
deter divers like me, but nothing a good paint solvent couldn't
cure. And the ones that still showed blue? Perfect Cloudcroft
running shoes--the shoes you know will get dirty anyway.

I also peeked in the trash behind a major bookseller, and yep,
found tons of books and magazines, the only drawback being that
the covers were torn off. Heck, I tear covers off accidentally
all the time, so no problem!

However, I must admit, my pride got in the way, and I no longer
do that, but after reading the replies from readers, I am
starting to reconsider! I must warn those who are getting ready
to drive down to the major malls--many city ordinances do not
allow this to occur--dumpsters on private property can make you
liable. Check city laws before you dive in head first!

P. A. Kemp 

Dear Newsletter:

I have not been back to the Cloudcroft - Alamogordo area in a 
long, long, time. I still have property in Timberon - just can't
turn loose of that string back to NM.

I read and enjoy every Newsletter. Thank you.

I was wondering if any "locals" read the Newsletter. The "dump"
story seems to have brought letters from several, so I guess
they do!

I identify with you. All my life, I have looked at the stuff
others toss away and wonder what I could made out of it.

My favorite "find" came from a dump in Eastland, Texas when I
was a preteen. Some of us boys would ride to the dump and to
see what we could find. Boys that age could do that in those
days. This was just a few years after WWII.

One day I found a WWII compass! It was still in its cardboard
box with the Army nomenclature on it. It was like new! Probably
was. It was built by a watch company and looked like a pocket
watch. You pushed the button and the top popped open and 
released the needle from its latch and showed North. It had a
sapphire bearing!

Such a treasure! 

I am over 60 now and yes, I still have the compass and its box
and I still look for treasures.

Good luck in your "diving".

Terry Gattis
Wichita, KS

Dear Newsletter:

Just returned this afternoon from a 4-day visit to Cloudcroft.
It was too short to say the least. It was 96 degrees when we
pulled into our driveway. I almost refused to get out of the
car. Four days of 70 deg had me totally spoiled.

Really enjoyed the letters regarding dumpster diving. I've
never participated in the sport myself, but have a friend who's
husband qualifies for membership in FOODD. Forwarded your 
newsletter to her so she could see that he is in good company
and not the complete nut she claims he is.

Enjoyed the shopping and lunch at The Lodge and already look
forward to the next visit.

Betty Alexander
Corpus Christi, TX

Dear Newsletter:

I wanted to send this message along to let everyone at Ski
Cloudcroft know how much my family and I enjoyed going there
this past spring. I understand that there is a possibility that
it may not be open for skiing this coming winter. My family and
I had more fun there (tubing and sledding only) in our one day
visit than we had fighting the crowds at other slopes during
the entire week or our trip. 

Yes, it is true that there weren't many people there, but that
made it more personal and fun for those that were there. 

Everyone became friends and talked to each other and we all had
a blast all day. And when my son (9 years old) rolled head over
heals down the mountain without his tube...everyone was there
to help us pick him up when he reached the bottom. We went to
our cabin and changed him into dry clothes and wiped down his
many scrapes...and then it was back to the slopes for more
sliding and laughs. 

I hope that when we return this year we will be able to have
more fun at Ski Cloudcroft. I am sure that everyone who has
been there in the past will agree. 

Jody Delgado 
Buda, Texas

Dear Newsletter:

I have a question... and maybe if you don't know, one of your
reader's might.

Is there anyway to get to Guadalupe Mountain National Park from
Cloudcroft without going around through Carlsbad? On some of the
maps I have looked at, it looks like you could enter by a 
gravel road from Pinion. Any ideas?

I really want to go but don't want to drive back through 
Carlsbad -- I'll be almost home to Houston if I do that!

Becky Virtue
Rebecca's Retreat


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Copyright © 2001 Cloudcroft Online
The Travel and Visitor's Guide to Cloudcroft, New Mexico.
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