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A cloud of black smoke pouring up from the Jemez Mountains caught my attention 10 years ago.
I was looking for the next thing to do in my life. A fun, 20-year escapade in film and video as a producer-writer seemed to be winding down.
Swinging from vine to vine for the next project seemed to work for a quite awhile.
I got to travel around the world and made films for the Smithsonian Institution and PBS, explored the Maya jungles and covered the First Intifada in the Gaza Strip.
But the day came when health insurance and steady work seemed like a better idea.
Journalism had been a missed calling for me. It seemed like a low-tech version of the image gathering and information synthesizing business I pursued in Washington, D.C. and Santa Fe, but actually there was a lot more to it than that.
An ad in the paper led me to the Los Alamos Monitor not long after the smoke cleared on the Hill.
The time after the Cerro Grande Fire was an ordeal for the town as many homes had to be rebuilt and there was a great deal of stress and dislocation.
But even more than I suspected, it was the beginning of very interesting times, not only in the community but at the laboratory that makes the town go round.
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