Friday Oct 24th – Terlingua

On Friday morning I woke up again to the “light switch sun” that we get here in Terlingua.  One minute you’ve got gloriously backlit Chisos Mountains to the East, and the next you’re in full sun as the sun clears the mountains.  It’s like <insert supreme being of your choice here> flipped a switch and BOOM, you’re in full sunlight.  Best alarm clock I can think of.

View from my tent at sunrise.
View from my tent at sunrise.


Scenic camping spot, right next to the old toilet block.

Now that we had some time, I got the full tour of La Kiva.  I think it’s fair to say that Friday was the low (high?) point in terms of demolition.  In fact, I certainly hope so!  The structure has next to no roof.  Some vigas remain, but many need to be replaced.  All the floor inside is gone (except for the great room.)  Most of the stucco walls were too rotted to survive, and one even fell down of its own accord one night.  Walking around I marveled at how much work it must have taken to get to this point.

La Kiva interior during construction
La Kiva interior during construction
The front door remains.
The front door remains.
Panorama showing the full extent of the demolition
Panorama showing (most of) the full extent of the demolition

Most of the wonderful woodwork has been taken down and put into safe storage.  All of the decorations have been carefully preserved.  The great room has been turned into a command center, and is the only part of La Kiva that has wi-fi and air conditioning.  I camp out here  a lot when it’s in the heat of the day and catch up on editing photos and updating the blog.

On Friday morning, shortly I got up and made some excellent full strength coffee with my aeropress. (seriously- best coffeemaker I have ever used:  You can safely ditch the stirrer, funnel, and filter holder and pack this thing along with you wherever you go.)  there was a commotion in the parking lot.  I grabbed my camera and found that it was the first big truckload of building supplies being delivered.  This marked a turning point in the rebirth of La Kiva, and I was lucky to be there to witness it:


After the tour I went for a walkabout on the property.  There were many finds, including some rather nice camping spots.  Apparently “bring back the camping at La Kiva!” is a common refrain, and  I can see why.  It’s a beautiful area.


John cheerfully threatens me with a power tool.  Luckily, he’s standing on the other side of a trench deeper than he is tall.  We have an excellent relationship, provided there’s a trench there.

It turns out that I arrived at a good point to be an impartial sounding board for some of the very important decisions that were yet to be made.  As my parents were going to be out of town for up to a week, getting the final plan on the layout of the new construction was critical to avoid any delays.   I’ll let my Dad communicate the decisions via his blog (another shameless plug, and a shout-out to my sister Joanne who does a great job keeping it updated and available : )  My favorite contribution came to the floor.  The question was “do you want polished or rustic?”  My observation was that, when I go out drinking, I need all the traction I can get.  That seemed to be a compelling argument.

I spent the good part of the afternoon in the relative cool of the “Situation Room” and got caught up on photo editing and the like.  Around 5pm the serious discussions started, and were settled over beer and wine at the picnic table in the shade of the RV.   Once consensus was reached we headed over to Rio Bravo and had a very nice meal.   That was that for the day.  Crawled into my tent and did a really outstanding job of not thinking about anything related to work.  Bliss.