3 Mar


 Judy Wills


One of the funniest things – and most irritating – about growing up in New Mexico, is that a whole LOT of the U.S. population doesn’t even know New Mexico is one of our great 50!  So much so, that the New Mexico Magazine has published a book of anecdotes people have shared.  It, as well as a full-page article in the magazine, is entitled One Of Our 50 Is Missing.  I have laughed – and growled – over some of the things people have encountered in this vein.



I never thought to have one of those experiences myself, but sure enough – it happened to me!

Some years ago, after we returned stateside from Germany, we were living in the small town of Seaford, Virginia.  It is a lovely little place, just eight miles away from Yorktown, which is part of the Historical Triangle in Virginia.  That triangle encompasses Yorktown, Colonial Williamsburg, and Jamestown.



There happened to be a Baptist Church in Seaford, and after “visiting around” the other churches in the Hampton Roads area, we decided Seaford Baptist Church was where God wanted us, so we joined the church.



Within the first year, our church hosted a youth group from Tennessee.  Seems like the man who had served Seaford Baptist Church as a volunteer youth pastor was a military person, and had been reassigned to a military base in Tennessee shortly before we arrived on the scene.  And he volunteered as youth pastor for the little church they joined there.  He brought his youth group to Seaford, and we provided the beds and food for the youth.  Since our house contained four bedrooms and three full baths, we signed up for two girls.  One of our bedrooms and bathrooms was downstairs, which made it nice for company to have their own bedroom and bathroom.  So our assigned girls stayed there.  Turns out, they were both named Kim.


The week went by quite quickly, and we enjoyed their company a lot.  The night before they were to depart for Tennessee, we were all gathered in the kitchen, just sharing and talking.  One of the girls stated that she didn’t think she would go on the youth trip the following year.  Why not, I asked?  Well, Max wants to take us to New Mexico, and I don’t want to go.  Why not, I asked again?  Well, I DON’T SPEAK PORTUGUESE!  WHAT???……Portuguese?  Well, they speak some foreign language out there, and I just don’t want to go!

Yep…….one of our 50 is missing!

Now, I may not – at that time – have been able to tell you exactly WHERE Tennessee was located on a map (I can now), but I most certainly knew that Tennessee is one of our 50 states!  Makes me wonder what the geography teachers in Tennessee are teaching!




1 Corinthians 10:26


3 Responses to “I DON’T SPEAK PORTUGESE!”

  1. DiVoran Lites March 4, 2013 at 9:58 am #

    I hate to take away any lingering hope you might have that the stiuation will improve, but is geography acutally being taught in the other 49 states any more?


  2. oldthingsrnew March 3, 2013 at 9:25 pm #

    I really enjoyed this story, Judy.



  1. Memories of New Mexico~Part 1 | Old Things R New - February 19, 2017

    […] I had a funny “One of our 50 is Missing” episodes – please see my post of March 3, 2013 post – I don’t speak Portugese. […]


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