By Judy Eron
Prologue : I don ’ t know how it happens . Maybe it ’ s just a bit of synchronicity , but frequently Danielle Gallo , editor of Cenizo , writes her “ Cenizo Notes ” column on the same theme as I am considering for my next article . This story is another example of that . In the Winter 2023 issue , Danielle wrote that , with the new year , she was especially aware of the people she knew who are no longer around , whether through death or moving away . “ I find the longer I stay in this one place , the stranger it is to lose members of my community . . . founding families and matriarchs fade away .”
I hadn ’ t even seen that issue of Cenizo yet , and I had already been in motion with this story .
I ’ m not a hoarder . What I am is passionate about nostalgia . I love things that remind me of certain events , times , people . For example , I have a large plastic tote ( I call them vats ) labeled “ Memory Tee Shirts ,” full of shirts I never wear but are from events I ’ ve attended and performances I ’ ve been part of over the years . I like looking through them and remembering , and I can ’ t bear to part with them . I have another vat that has the first , second , and third drafts of my book that was published 18 years ago — why would I need these initial drafts ? Well , I simply like to remember the steps I went through to get to my finished manuscript . And so , I save them .
In an effort to pare down , I have been weeding through these vats , through old files , articles , photos , and such . Some things have not been too hard to discard . Some memorabilia I am putting in a pile to send to friends or family . Some things I ’ m keeping and reorganizing .
I came upon one big folder labeled “ Terlingua Ranch ,” full of the history of Terlingua Ranch from as far back as 50 years ago when it was first developed . There were some of the early sales materials , advertisements , brochures with maps . There were old Terlingua Ranch newsletters and newspaper articles . As I read a few of the items , it seemed clear to me that they should be part of an archive , that other property owners would be interested in these pieces of history .
So I called my good friends Brad and Marilynn , who both know a lot about Terlingua Ranch , each of them having been on the Board of Directors . Indeed , they said that these documents sounded interesting , and we made a time to get together .
At their house , I spread the materials out on a table . One by one , I looked at each item and then handed it to Marilynn , who skimmed through it and handed it on to Brad . Some of them were
Jerry McComb , UPS driver extraordinaire , delivers our solar panels to my late husband Jim .
legal descriptions and early bylaws . There were also newspaper articles and a few photos . Piles began to develop : what to consider for an archive , what seemed less relevant .
I came across one of the weekly columns from the Alpine Avalanche by Lucille Muchmore . Now there was a character , someone who , to use Danielle ’ s words , was one of the matriarchs of Terlingua Ranch . I laughed a big delighted laugh , seeing the column and her photo , and passed it on to Marilynn , saying , “ Look — Lucille Muchmore !”
No response . Marilynn and Brad both stared at me with no recognition . “ Lucille Muchmore ,” I repeated . Still nothing . “ How could you not know Lucille Muchmore ? You must have at least heard of her ?” Lucille was so much a cornerstone of Terlingua Ranch that when she moved away at age 84 in 1999 , after 20 years living here , a goodbye article to her was the lead story on the front page of the quarterly Terlingua Ranch newsletter .
Well , no , they had not known her and had never heard of her , a figure always outspoken at board meetings with her caustic comments and criticisms . Such a colorful character ( her business card read “ witchdoctor ”), it was mind-boggling to me that they wouldn ’ t have heard of her , and I had to consider the probability that this once-important figure at the ranch was not even a memory for many people . I watched as the article went onto the
20 Cenizo Spring 2023