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. 🙂
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!