The Last Resort
Jane Goes to Graduate School
West Texas is a barren land in the heart of the “bible belt”. My family has strong ties to the land they work. For a hundred years they have been ranchers and farmers and leaders of community. Over the years, I have often felt like a square peg trying to fit into a grid of round holes. I first moved away from West Texas when I was 17 and returned there to live when I was 35. I am the only one in my family and my extended family who has ever moved away. My family has never understood why I would ever want to leave, for them there is no other place to live. My southern heritage is rich in story and experience at the same time it is tarnished by violence and pain. But it is my home and a land that has a permanent hold on my soul.
After my children grew up I found myself entertaining the idea of going back to school for my self to study art and photography. It took me three years to work up to the idea that I could go back to school and two more years to apply and actually come to Arizona to study photography. I left West Texas for a second time.
My husband Dan is a bit older than I am. When we moved to Arizona we chose the most affordable living option, which happened to be a trailer park for senior citizens. The idea of a community for people 55 and over was a completely new concept for both of us, I was by far the youngest resident and soon after we got here I realized that I was living in an old folks home. It was depressing and a little scary. But I responded to my new environment by telling stories. I had found another place rich and complex.
The Last Resort is a place that exists in my head as much as does in my environment. It is a reflection of my experience both in the park and at home in West Texas. Personally it is both terrifying and redeeming.
I found out the Corner decided She died of a heart attack in her sleep. The way most of us would like to die. It turned out She was beloved after all. She was beloved by the other side.