>One Door Closes…Another Opens…

November 21, 2009 at 7:45 pm (Uncategorized)


Never once in my life did I ever consider becoming a park ranger. Yet here I am, not quite a park ranger, but I sure look like one, working for the National Park Service – America’s Best Idea – in Big Bend National Park, Texas.

How’d this happen? Well, it happened rather suddenly.

I can be thankful for that huge stack of job applications back in Maine that didn’t even garner an interview. It left the door open for a job I never considered before, and one that I might like to do for years to come.

I am still amazed at the direction my life has taken on rather short notice. If it weren’t for my advice to a young photographer looking to live in Alaska to photograph wildlife, I may not have ever considered applying to the National Park Service myself. But since the art show business has been dismal the last couple of years, I lost my migratory flyway to warm winters. I browsed the job listings to see what kind of seasonal opportunities there might be and spent many hours applying to about six parks.

I thought my chances of even being contacted were one in a thousand, and when Jim Hines called me in September and offered me the job as fee collector (Visitor Use Assistant), I immediately put the holiday portrait ads on hold, found a great housesitter for the cats and chickens (thanks Julie!) and mentally placed myself at Big Bend. I’ve never been to this part of Texas before but my brother raved about it, and it felt right. It is also closer to my family in Houston and Beaumont (600 miles away instead of 2300).

Big Bend is Way Out In the Middle of Nowhere, Texas. And that’s the charm. It is so uniquely beautiful here. I will be posting my observations on life here, and photographs will be on my gallery at http://www.photoartgal.smugmug.com.

So ya’ll come visit, hear?

Inside the entrance station

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