The Story Behind My Gravatar Picture

My gravatar picture was taken while my husband and I were hiking with our old rescued Cattle Dog through White Sands in the southern part of New Mexico. It was my first visit there. White Sands is astonishingly beautiful… amazing… and ethereal! Now a National Park, White Sands contains more than 145,000 acres of rolling fields of powdered white gypsum, so it isn’t actually sand at all. The gypsum seems to go on forever, as far as the eye can see. Gray mountains far off on the horizon keep watch over the other-worldly scene.

This is the best place that I have ever hiked. Our sweet dog, Lady, loved it too. As you can see, I got a great picture of her resting on a gypsum dune with the biggest smile ever.

The beauty and unfettered freedom of our hike was all the more precious that day, because of what had happened the night before. My husband and I were driving down a very dark, unfamiliar, isolated mountain road. The road was covered in snow and ice, so my husband was being extra cautious as he drove.

Suddenly, red lights and sirens came around the curve behind us. My husband pulled over and stopped, expecting the police, border patrol, and sheriff’s vehicles to go around us. They stopped behind us instead, and a voice over a loudspeaker ordered us to exist our vehicle with our hands above our heads.

I glanced back and saw that there were assault rifles pointed at us. We were ordered to kneel down on the ground, then lie face down in the snow. We were handcuffed, frisked, and marched back to the sheriff’s van, where they ran our ID — and discovered that we were not the armed and dangerous criminals they were looking for!

My husband and I both have PTSD. His is from combat with assault rifles. Part of my trauma involves guns, as well. So… being arrested like that was flipping SCARY!

We stayed the night at a motel and neither of us could sleep very much. But the next day, as we went hiking through White Sands — suddenly everything was okay again. Our trip to White Sands is a wonderful memory, which is why I am so fond of this gravatar picture that my husband took of me, “silly hat” and all. πŸ™‚

Our arresting adventure happened in 2009, almost eleven years ago. My dimples are now wrinkles and all that hair has turned white and gray. How time does fly!

This post was inspired by: https://reluctantpreachersdaughter.wordpress.com/2020/10/20/unmasked-the-stories-behind-my-signature-blog-pictures/

If you enjoyed my story, I’m sure you will enjoy the Reluctant Preacher’s Daughter’s post even more. Thank you for stopping by and God bless. ❀❀

33 thoughts on “The Story Behind My Gravatar Picture

  1. successbmine October 20, 2020 / 9:35 pm

    Wow, that was quite a scary experience. But I’m glad you had such a good day after it. It looks like an amazing place to hike.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Linda Lee/Lady Quixote October 20, 2020 / 10:59 pm

      Thank you! Yes, it is a great place to hike. I would love to go there again, but it’s more than a four hour drive from where we live now. I love hikes, but I’m not that fond of long car rides.

      Like

  2. Tricia October 20, 2020 / 10:03 pm

    Wow, Linds that is quite a story! White Sands looks stunning too, I’d love to get out there sometime. Sweet dog too. Aren’t they all? πŸ™‚

    Liked by 2 people

  3. @preacherbiker October 20, 2020 / 10:05 pm

    It was a great time to be there with you my love

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Lesley October 21, 2020 / 2:44 am

    Oh my goodness, Linda, what an experience! And you both suffering from PTSD to start with! I can’t imagine what it must have been like going through that.

    Your photos are brilliant! Lady looks so happy – I think that’s what makes dogs happy . . . just to be close to their people and enjoying fun together. And that ‘sand’ – it’s surreal, but beautiful. And that hair is beautiful too, no matter what colour it may be now. πŸ’–

    Liked by 3 people

    • Linda Lee/Lady Quixote October 21, 2020 / 9:35 am

      Thank you so much, Leslie, for your kind words. Lady was the happiest I’d ever seen her on that day. She had a very hard life before we adopted her. In fact, Lady had PTSD very badly, too. So she was the perfect dog for us. ❀

      Liked by 1 person

      • Lesley October 21, 2020 / 10:15 am

        And you and hubby were perfect for her too. She was one of the lucky ones. x

        Like

  5. Wordscroll October 21, 2020 / 3:17 am

    So much for innocent until proven guilty! I once had a swat team order me, by megaphone, out of my house, hands up. They had blocked off my entire road, which was lined with cars. All because a woman had told them I had a gunman in my bushes. Long story, but the “gunman” was my 6 yr old, playing with a stick. While standing at gunpoint, I figured it out for them and called the real “culprit” out of the bushes. He came out, hands up, but he volunteered that part, seeing there were 8 rifles poised ready. 😬
    I’m sure all the people stuck on the road had quite the speculation going on! And though embarrassed for the swat team, I couldn’t help laughing; the whole scene was just ludicrous!
    Funny how some stories never make the paper.πŸ€” My son declared no one would believe him, but a kid from his class was witness from one of the cars blocked on the road. My daughter, returning from a friends, was also stuck on the road; and my other son, sick at Grandma’s, was upset because he missed the whole thing πŸ˜„
    Who needs soap operas?

    Liked by 3 people

    • Linda Lee/Lady Quixote October 21, 2020 / 9:39 am

      I keep picturing this crazy scenario in my mind. A SWAT team at your house because your six year old son was playing in the bushes with a stick? That must have been a very lethal looking stick!

      Like

      • Wordscroll October 21, 2020 / 9:54 am

        Well, as I said it is a long story. Her real reason was much more complicated. She made up the story to get police to my home in a hurry. It worked! They told me that they had left a shoplifter they were after in Walmart to rush to my home. Needless to say, the officer in charge said he tried to have her prosecuted but they said there wasn’t enough evidence. I say they were embarrassed and didn’t want it in the papers.
        It’s too long of a story to go into her motive behind it all, but it definately was an interesting day!

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Purple Rose October 21, 2020 / 7:44 am

    That had to of been terrifying! πŸ˜“

    Years ago, I remember going through New Mexico on a greyhound bus and being stopped. It was at night and the officers climbed aboard looking at each person. People were getting pulled off I think and being asked for identification. I’m from the east and I had never seen anything like it. When an officer got to me, he carefully looked me over and asked if I was an American. I was traveling alone and holding a teddy bear I believe. πŸ˜‚

    Living in AZ now, I understand what was going on back then. Doesn’t make the memory less scary though!

    It is good that you were able to make some wonderful memories and find the beauty that does exist in this world. You are very resilient. πŸ’•

    Liked by 2 people

  7. hatrack4 October 21, 2020 / 9:08 am

    What a story! Great thing that you did as told, even though the police had the wrong idea.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Lee/Lady Quixote October 21, 2020 / 9:32 am

      Right! And when you’re existing a vehicle with your hands in the air, under the glare of spotlights and with assault rifles aiming at you, you don’t want to make the kind of moves it would take to close your vehicle door. We left both doors wide open, and our very protective dog was barking furiously in the back seat. We were so thankful that I had recently bought a seat belt harness for her and she was securely belted in, unable to jump out and run to our rescue!

      Liked by 2 people

      • hatrack4 October 21, 2020 / 7:25 pm

        That might not have gone over very well. But the best stories are the ones you are around to talk about.

        Liked by 1 person

  8. simplywendi October 21, 2020 / 10:32 am

    oh my goodness, I can’t imagine your fear………it makes me ill just thinking about it…………glad you were both ok and the memory of the trip is still a pleasant one.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Paul Martin October 22, 2020 / 5:53 am

    Crazy Experience! 😜.. But you left with a great picture and a story to tell! πŸ‘

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Cindy Dawson October 23, 2020 / 11:15 am

    Oh my! I think I might have had a heart attack! Sounds like the police might have “jumped the gun”! Blessings Linda!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Linda Lee/Lady Quixote October 24, 2020 / 9:11 am

      We just happened to be driving a pickup truck that was the same make, year, and color of the vehicle they were looking for. Our license plate was different, of course, but they probably assumed that the bad guy had stolen a plate.

      What you said about a heart attack — that was my biggest concern. Not for me, but for my husband. He’s had three heart attacks! I was very worried about that, especially with the high altitude of the mountains that we were driving through. While I was face down in the snow, being handcuffed and frisked, I was silently praying “Lord, please don’t let my husband have a heart attack!” Thank God, my husband made it through all right. A couple of years later, during his biannual visit with his cardiologist, after the ekg, treadmill test, and bloodwork results were done, the doctor told my husband that his heart had healed to the point where there was no longer any sign that he had ever had a heart attack. Praise God!!

      Liked by 2 people

      • Cindy Dawson October 24, 2020 / 9:16 am

        That’s an incredible testimony! God is faithful! Thanks for sharing “the rest of the story”! Blessings to you and your family!

        Liked by 1 person

        • Linda Lee/Lady Quixote October 24, 2020 / 9:40 am

          Thank you! Blessings to you and your family, too!

          I was thinking yesterday that I need to write a part two, with the rest of the story — not just about my husband’s heart, which is a great story all by itself, but also about how my husband went to the sheriff’s office, right after our refreshing walk through White Sands, to thank him for the work that he and his deputies do. The sheriff was surprised, to say the least! I also want to write about what happened right after that, when the shock of everything caused my husband to forget that he had not yet paid our home mortgage that month. The ultimate repercussions of our arresting adventure in the Sacramento Mountains of New Mexico is too long to write in a comment. So yes, I need to write a follow-up story! God is indeed faithful! ❀

          Liked by 2 people

  11. thewheelchairteen October 24, 2020 / 4:49 am

    That must have been terrifying, and awfully bad luck. I’m sorry that you both had to go through that – but I’m also so happy that you had such a great day afterwards. Being around endlessly beautiful nature helps to put it all into perspective and makes us appreciate the beauty of this earth instead of the ugly bits. I can definitely understand why you made that your picture – what an incredible story!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Linda Lee/Lady Quixote October 24, 2020 / 9:27 am

      Dear Simone, I feel honored and blessed to see your comment on my blog. Thank you! Last night, I was telling my daughter about you. I said “Simone’s story, her positive attitude, and her writing ability are so amazing, I have urged her to write a book. Every time I read one of her blog posts or watch one of her videos, I think that this awesome young teenager should be world famous and in the news, instead of all the garbage that’s usually in the news.”

      It’s true, the world could learn so much from you and your story. ❀❀❀

      Like

  12. Alexis Rose October 24, 2020 / 10:53 am

    Whoa! How scary!! Wow! Im glad that you had beautiful Lady in your lives ❀️

    Liked by 1 person

  13. ibikenyc October 24, 2020 / 1:48 pm

    I have nothing to add to what everyone else has already said.

    SO glad y’all came out of it okay, and it’s. . . interesting to know the story behind your photo.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. bluebird of bitterness October 25, 2020 / 11:18 am

    I think you’ve had more near death experiences than almost anyone else I know. I’m so glad and thankful (and astounded) that you’re still with us. β™₯️

    Liked by 1 person

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