The Sandoval Signpost

An Independent Monthly Newsmagazine Serving the Community since 1989


El Rinconcito español

Cacarear y no poner huevos no es nada bueno.
To cluck and not lay eggs isn't good.

Cada moneda tiene dos caras.

Each coin has two faces.

Criticar es más fácil que imitar.

It’s easier to criticize than to imitate.

Submitted by SOS-panyol, Placitas—Spanish instruction that focuses
on oral communication skills,

East Mountain Historical Society hosts Mike Smith, author of Towns of the Sandia Mountains

On November 18 at 2:00 p.m. the East Mountain Historical society will host Mike Smith, author of Towns of the Sandia Mountains, who will sign copies of his book at the Sandia Ranger Station in Tijeras.

Despite their seemingly impenetrable western facade, the Sandia Mountains of central New Mexico have been home to humankind for millennia. Ancient cultures ventured into these peaks for the creeks, game, and shelter. The Spanish established protective outposts along the canyons and intermarried with local tribes. Civil War soldiers passed through en route to their infamous battle at Glorieta Pass. Navajos marched around the mountains' southern end after the confinement that ended their Long Walk. Anglo settlers cleared the hilly land and built cabins. And tuberculosis patients moved up into primitive resorts, hoping that the mountains' abundant sunshine and fresh air would help them heal.

Today the tiny resorts and traditional hamlets of the Sandias are established villages and communities—Carnuel, Tijeras, San Antonio, Cedar Crest, Sandia Park, San Antonito, Placitas, and others—and the rough dirt roads that once saw the passing of ox carts are highways and even an interstate. The area's history lives on, however, in crumbling adobe walls, bits of rust, fading memories, and in this photographic retrospective.

Towns of the Sandia Mountains contains over two hundred images gathered by local historian Mike Smith from public archives, historical societies, and private collections. This is the first book to share the history of the Sandia mountain towns with a general audience.

Placitas Library book sale November 18 and 19

The Placitas Community Library volunteers will hold a book sale at the library on Saturday, November 18, from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and Sunday, November 19, from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

There will be a large selection and great bargains with hundreds of books to choose from. Hardcovers will be $l and up, while paperbacks will start at $.50. A selection of CDs, children’s games, magazines, and even videos will also be available.
Free refreshments will be served to keep up your energy while you shop, so come early and get the best buys.

Proceeds will go to the Friends of the Library, which raises funds to cover the library’s operating expenses. Call Judy, at 771-0253, if you have any questions or would like to donate books for the sale.

King Tut coming to Las Cruces

Las Cruces will welcome a three-thousand-year-old visitor this week—sort of.

More than one hundred meticulous reproductions of artifacts collected from King Tutankhamun's tomb are on display at the Branigan Cultural Center through the end of January 2007.
This dazzling collection of artifacts was created by artisans of the Pharaonic Village in Egypt under the supervision of the Field Museum and Metropolitan Museum of Art. The artifacts are handcrafted replicas of the original items found in Tut's tomb when it was discovered in 1922, by Howard Carter.

"The Branigan Cultural Center is pleased to bring a nationally known, high-quality exhibit to the people of southern New Mexico and West Texas," said Garland Courts, manager of the Branigan Cultural Center.

Las Cruces will be the only city in New Mexico, Arizona, California, and Texas to host the exhibit.

The Branigan Cultural Center is at 500 N. Water Street, on the north end of the Downtown Mall. Exhibit hours are Tuesdays through Thursdays, 1:00 to 7:00 p.m.; Fridays, 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., Saturdays, 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.; Sundays, 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. The center is closed Mondays.

Admission to the exhibit is $5 for adults and $3 for children. For more information call (505) 541-2158 or log onto

Orphans from Goromonzi

Orphans from Goromonzi show the animals they made from Play-Doh.

Goromonzi Project celebrates

The Goromonzi Project is celebrating its first anniversary, and the year has been eventful and successful beyond my wildest dreams.

We started the project of feeding and educating orphans in the Goromonzi Rural District when I was visiting my family in Zimbabwe in October last year. By chance I came upon a group of sixteen destitute orphans and the old man who was taking care of them. I promised them that I would ask sixteen of my friends in Placitas to pay the $350 they each need every year to buy some food and pay for their schooling and school uniforms.
Since that time, Warren Buffett has given away $30 billion to help make a better world for these children to grow up in. Bill Gates has announced plans to spend the rest of his working life doing the same. Madonna has started her own project in a village in Malawi, and Angelina Jolie is making a similar splash in other countries.

You may think that with all this interest and energy focusing on the 13.2 million orphans in sub-Saharan Africa that there is little need for a tiny organization that started by sponsoring sixteen orphans. However, when I visited the children in September the gratitude and warmth with which the community welcomed us told the whole story.

When we started the project I had no plans to expand beyond the original sixteen children, at least for the first year but life has a way of messing with one’s plans. There are now seventy-eight children who have sponsors and many of them are sponsored by people who live in Placitas. There are more than 650 orphans in Goromonzi and one of the ideas that we are working on at this time is a school lunch program. Goromonzi covers a very large area (approximately thirty square miles) and as there is little transport, food distribution has many challenges. We have also set up a general fund, which is used for things like basic health care and for supporting children under the age of two.

There have been many small but noticeable improvements for the children during the past year. There is now a borehole and running water at the God Help Us Orphanage (where I met the original sixteen children). The vegetable garden has been planted with Maringa trees. These trees are legumes, and the leaves and seeds can be eaten and are a good source of protein. It is widely believed that these trees help to boost the immune system. The roots can be used to purify water. We are also buying much of the food to feed the children from the local peasant farmers and as a result these farmers are taking a greater interest in the children. We held an appreciative-inquiry workshop for the adult leaders in the community, and one of the women stood up and pronounced that in twenty years time there would be no more orphans in Goromonzi.

We had a play day and lunch for the children in September. About 250 or three hundred of them came along. Some of them had walked fourteen miles to get there. The children played jump rope and Frisbee; they made paper flowers and played with Play-Doh. The biggest hit of all was that all the children made a bead necklace for themselves. There were beads absolutely everywhere and the noise they made was very loud and wonderful. Each child had a plate of food at lunchtime. We sent them all home at three o'clock, as some of them had a long way to walk.

My grateful thanks to you, my friends and neighbors. Thank you for your interest and support for the Goromonzi Project. If you have any questions or would like further information, you can call me at 867-2293.

World statistics

If we could reduce the world’s population to a
village of precisely 100 people, with all existing human ratios remaining the same, the demographics would look something like this:

  • 60 Asians, 12 Europeans, 5 U.S. Americans and Canadians, 8 Latin Americans, 14 Africans
  • 49 would be female, 51 would be male
  • 82 would be non-white, 18 white
  • 89 heterosexual, 11 homosexual
  • 33 would be Christian, 67 would be non-Christian
  • 5 would control 32% of the entire world’s wealth, and all of them would be U.S. citizens
  • 80 would live in substandard housing
  • 24 would not have any electricity (And of the 76 percent that do have electricity, most would only use it for light at night.)
  • 67 would be unable to read
  • 1 would have a college education.
  • 50 would be malnourished and 1 dying of starvation
  • 33 would be without access to a safe water supply
  • 1 would have HIV
  • 1 would be near death
  • 2 would be near birth
  • 7 people would have access to the Internet

World Peace Flag Organization is a U.S. nonprofit organization formed 1996.

Lecture on the Archaeology of the Pajarito Plateau”

On November 14, as part of the Friends of Tijeras Pueblo Monthly Lecture Series, Dr. Bradley J. Vierra will present the preliminary results of a multi-year excavation project at Los Alamos National Laboratory.

A series of forty archaeological sites was excavated dating from seven thousand years ago to the early twentieth century, including ancient Archaic campsites, Ancestral Pueblo room blocks and Hispanic homesteads. Together, this information is changing our perspective on the history of human occupation on the Pajarito Plateau.

Dr. Vierra is currently cultural-resources team leader with the Ecology Group (ENV Division) at Los Alamos National Laboratory. Over the past twenty years he has conducted pure and applied research in archaeology, most of which has been done in the American Southwest and northern Mexico. His research interests include hunter-gatherer archeology, stone-tool technology, and origins of agriculture, Archaic in the American Southwest and Mesolithic in southwest Europe. His book The Late Archaic Across the Borderlands: Forager to Farmers has been published by the University of Texas Press.

The presentation will be held at 7:00 p.m at the Sandia Ranger Station, in Tijeras, 281-3304.

UNM plans American Indian Student Day on November 8

American Indian Senior Day will draw high-school seniors from across the state to the University of New Mexico on Wednesday, November 8, from 8:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

Along with interactive workshops on higher education, staff will supply students with information on financial-aid, scholarships, and on-site admissions, and there will be a tour of the campus.
Deputy Secretary of the New Mexico Indian Affairs Department Teresa C. Gomez is featured as the keynote speaker in the Student Union ballroom at 11:00 a.m.

“This event provides visiting students exposure to the wealth of academic options at UNM and an opportunity to interact directly with UNM's native community,” said Tammy James-Pino, planning committee cochair.

The University of New Mexico is the state's largest university, serving more than thirty-two thousand students. UNM is home to the state's only schools of law, medicine, pharmacy, and architecture and operates New Mexico's only academic health center. UNM is noted for comprehensive undergraduate programs and research that benefits the state and the nation.

For more information, call (505) 277-6343 or (800) CALL UNM, Extension 3.





Ad Rates  Back Issues   Contact Us  Front Page   Up Front  Animal News   Around Town   Classifieds   Calendar  Community Center Community Photos Community Profile  Eco-Beat  Election  Featured Artist  The Gauntlet  Community Links  Night Skies  My Wife and Times  Public Safety Sandoval Arts   Schoolbag  Time Off