I visited Ojo Caliente Hot Springs, which was said to be the oldest spa facility in the United States.
As the phrase "Things present are judged by things past" implies, was it able to gain new knowledge and insights by learning old things?
Santa Fe, the capital of New Mexico, was built in 1610 as the capital of the Spanish territory of Santa Fe Nuevo Mexico, long before the founding of the United States.
An hour's drive north of Santa Fe is Posi-Ouinge, the ruins of one of the largest villages of the Tewa tribe of American Indians.
It is presumed that the Spanish settlers built Santa Fe a short distance away from the Native American settlement in order to make their conquest more efficient.
The ruins are located around the hot springs, so it is obvious that the springs were important to the natives.
Using the same water, the oldest bathhouse built by whites in the U.S. is still in existence.
The first public bathhouse was built here in 1868, long before New Mexico was admitted as a state in 1912.
The building from the time of its opening still exists, and it served as a historic bathhouse offering Finnish-style saunas.
The adobe style architecture gave the place a resort-like atmosphere.
Clothing were required in the spa areas, except for the private pool which needed an additional fee.
It was a very popular facility, so the drawback was that it got crowded with many visitors on holidays.
Still, if I entered first thing in the morning, I was able to enjoy it in an almost private setting.
The Large Pool was obviously chlorinated, but the water was lukewarm, suitable for a burning body.
There seemed to be several sources of springs, and each pool was named after one of them.
This indoor one was the Soda Pool.
The water had a lot of air bubbles in it, and it felt sizzling near the water outlet.
This was the Iron Pool.
The freshness of the water was particularly excellent, with the spring water gushing straight out of the ground at the bottom.
I was a little surprised by the name Arsenic Pool.
Perhaps because the pool is the smallest in size, the bubbling was more pronounced than in the Soda Pool.
There was also the Mud Bath.
It was nice to pack my face and body with colloidal mud and bask in the sun in New Mexico, which was blessed with 340 days of sunshine a year.
This was the Lithia Pool.
Numerous water outlets were available for massages.
The dark green water has been recognized for its exceptional value since the time of the indigenous people.
If you read the passage in the Analects of Confucius that gave rise to the famous saying "Things present are judged by things past," you will find that the latter part is omitted.
Confucius said that "Things present are judged by things past. Then you will be a good leader."
In other words, it is not enough to soak in the oldest hot springs in the U.S. and learn the values that are still relevant today.
When you get out of the water, you are expected to teach and guide others.
That is why I will be sending out information on hot springs.