Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Santa Fe

We left for Santa Fe about 8 am on Sunday.  It took us until almost 3:00 to arrive at our next campground.  We got set up and eventually had dinner outside.  We both cooked separate dinners but ate together.  Eileen won Mexican Train again!  I am starting to think I don't know how to play or the other three are cheating!  The wind whipped up and the fellows went to a trailer behind us that was left with its awning out despite the warning from the owners about the unpredictability of the wind at any time.  It didn't tear but the arm had come out so I don't know what needs to be done to fix it.  They closed it as best they could.  We have watched for these folks because there is a dog in the trailer but we have never seen them.

We drove into Santa Fe on Monday for a 10 am 2-hour walking tour.  The money collected is used for educational purposes and tipping is not allowed.  It was a very good tour and went for almost 2.5 hours.  Afterwards we walked back to the square and had lunch.  

We visited the Cathedral of St. Francis of Assisi that is also a Basilica which means it has historical  significance.  It was originally built in the 1600s and a preserved alcove still houses a wooden carved Mary, the Conquistador, rescued during an attack by the Spanish.

Outside was a sculpture of Kateri Tekakwitha, the first American Indian to be canonized as a Catholic Saint.  However, she was from the northeast region but is definitely shown as a southwest Indian.  

This is a relatively new sculpture depicting all that the Mexican people brought to the "new" Mexico.  It shows animals, musical instruments, a book of the history, fruits and vegetables along with the people.

There is a statue of St. Francis of Assisi in front of the church with animals around his feet.

We drove up Canyon Road to admire the sculptures that dot the area.  I took a photo of this elk because it looks so much like the ones in front of Anadarko Oil.

I liked this one in particular.

We also visited the San Miguel Church.

One of our stops was the State Capitol.  Their flag was blowing in the breeze.

I stopped to take this photo that shows how the interior of the blocks are restaurants, haciendas, plazas, etc.

We stopped at Sam's Club on the way home to pick up some things for Wednesday when we have Don and Trudy coming for dinner.  They are summering in Angel Fire but are going to spend a night in Santa Fe.

Eileen won AGAIN when we played Mexican Train!  I am about to give up!  However, there was only a 20 point spread among all four scores.

I finally got the photo of the Air Force Academy stadium.  

Tuesday we headed to Bandelier National Monument but learned from signs that you had to park at the Visitor's Center in White Rock and take a shuttle - that was a 30 minute ride!  We caught the 11:00 bus and it was more than full.  Ted and Tom had to stand the whole way.  We were given free entrance with our Senior Pass cards and had brought water but we should have had hats.  

We watched the movie and then started out the Main Loop Trail.  All of us but Tom had been there before so we only visited what interested us.  The scenery is spectacular.

A mule deer eating his lunch, totally unconcerned about us walking by.

Tom and Eileen climbed into one cave.  Going up was okay, coming down not so much.


The altitude, heat, walking and climbing was getting to us so we caught the 1:30 bus back to the Visitor Center and had lunch right around the corner and then returned home.  Don and Trudy were coming for dinner the next day and we had things to do.

Wednesday morning we went to El Rancho de Las Golondrinas (The Ranch of the Swallows).  It was founded 300 years ago as a paraje (stopping place) on El Camino Real, the Royal Road to Mexico City.  Today it is a one of a kind destination where the past comes to life.

We took the one 10:30 tour for the day.  This gave us enough time to see the ranch and get back for our 3:30 company.

Our tour guide was an older gentleman who came to Santa Fe as a bridegroom to a lady of Mexican descent, her family went back to the late 1500s.  He told such wonderful stories of the Mexicans, Americans, Spanish, Franciscans, not in a judgmental way but just the facts as they happened.  He was a delight to listen and talk to.  We stayed until 12:30.  

Carts used in the Mexico City and Santa Fe commerce.  It was a 6 month trip each way.

Outdoor ovens, brought to the area from Moorish influence.

The altar in the community church.

Chandeliers with candles that were lowered by rope to light.  Note the Stations of the Cross, surrounded by tin, that graced both walls.

A typical kitchen.  Note the cradle suspended from the ceiling.

A weaver using a wattle to spin wool.

  Demonstrating the loom.

Partially finished rug.

When I said we had seen Harris Tweed being woven on a loom under bicycle power she told me they had automated.  I responded we have seen automated looms but to be Authentic Harris Tweed it had to be made by hand.  After I walked away Ted showed her a photo of the guy in Scotland on his bicycle portion of the loom and she said "Really?"  Doubting Thomas I guess!

We returned home to prepare our dinner for Don and Trudy.  I put out spinach dip and crackers, salsa and blue chips and Eileen's cheese ball.  I figured everyone would be getting hungry so late in the afternoon.  Ted planned to use the campground's gas grill and I was going to use their oven for the sweet potato casserole I made the night before.  When Ted tried to use the grill, it was broken.  So he had to start our charcoal grill.  When I went to get the potatoes out of the oven, the entire office was locked until 6:15, another half hour!  Ted went searching for the owner and he rescued the potatoes that were fine thank goodness.   So our pork tenderloin with cherry sauce, sweet potato casserole, green beans, salad, rolls and Eileen's lemon pie came off OK in the end.

We leave for Albuquerque this morning but it is only about an hour away so we will check out at the last minute so we don't arrive before check-in time at the next campground.

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