Published: August 9th 2012August 9th 2012
Dear Family and Friends, it has been three days since my last travel blog post. That sounds like a bit of a confession; which it is. Let me wrap up our last day in Santa Fe before I share thoughts and reflections on our short stop in Taos, New Mexico.
Our last day in Santa Fe was terrific - sightseeing, shopping and a fantastic dinner at The Shed. We spent the vast majority of the morning at a shopping complex called Jackalope
where multiple artists and shops are all found - everything from furniture, home decor, plants, pottery, jewlery and so on.
We met a really nice couple from Oaxaca, Mexico who were in town for a few days giving ceramic demonstrations and selling their beautiful pottery and sculptures. We carefully selected a vase with calla lillies on it and the couple made a clay flower arrangement for us as we watched.
We had a turquoise necklace made for Jenny and picked up a few additional fun things for ourselves - the last succulent (African Golden Candelabra) to fit into the truck bed and a set of four metal sculptures in the shape of mariachi players. Rusty, but
so detailed, each mariachi sculpture is playing a different instrument: drums, an accordian (that's for you dad!), a trumpet and a violin. They are simply wonderful and will be a terrific addition to our side landscape.
We also took in the Santa Fe Museum of Art - a small collection but filled with prominent New Mexican artists. A nice way to close out the afternoon. We did a bit more shopping and to finish off our visit, we had made plans to have dinner at The Shed
. A very popular restaurant in Santa Fe, the wait for a table was almost an hour and we arrived right at 5:30pm when the place opened! But the dinner was worth every minute of the wait (and the fresh margaritas didn't hurt any!) The dinner was a perfect close for this stop on our tour. Jim had chicken enchiladas and I enjoyed a cup of the green chile stew and a chicken quesadilla.
The next morning we were sleep deprived from the awful bed at the hotel in Santa Fe. We then began the 71 mile journey to Taos, NM. We arrived in Taos in the later part of the morning
and got checked in and unpacked before heading to the plaza to take in some sights. We had a craving for an old style strawberry milkshake but what we settled for was a totally unremarkable shake at a local ice cream shop. Little did we know that this shake would set the bar for the entire stop here - unremarkable.
No offense to anyone who lives in or loves Taos, but this has been the least favorite stop during this year's trip. Service in shops and restaurants is spotty and unfriendly, the traffic makes Tucson look like a deserted highway and it was here that we actually visited a margarita bar staffed by a woman who had never made a margarita before (four days on the job).
What was notable was breakfast/lunch. At the recommendation of the bartender at the La Fonda Hotel in Santa Fe, we went to Michael's Kitchen Cafe and Bakery
. There, I enjoyed my first ever Indian Taco, which was delicious! A sopapilla covered with ground beef, onions, cheese, red and green chile sauces and lettuce and tomato - it was terrific and a phenomenal first!
After breakfast, we went accross the Rio Grande Gorge Bridge
which was neat - 650 feet over the Rio Grand and is the fifth highest bridge in the US. After that, we took a looooong drive along the Enchanted Circle. An 85 mile scenic byway, the view was beautiful including a glimpse of Wheeler Peak, New Mexico's highest point. Along the windy road, we stopped to rock hound, searching for treasurers for our pots.
Tomorrow we are officially moving westward with an overnight stay in Durango, Colorado.
There are more photos below