Sunday, October 18, 2009
Northern New Mexico Trip
Last month, I had the amazing opportunity to go on a press trip to Northern New Mexico for work. It was an eight-day trip of epic proportions that I will be writing about for our annual travel issue in 2010.
We started in Santa Fe, which I'm sure many of you know, is one of my favorite cities in the world. There's something about Santa Fe that simply defies explanation: is it the light? The air? The people? The food? What makes this place so magical that even common doorways and mailboxes are photo opportunities?
I can't say that I know, but I do know that I was taking full advantage of every history walk, every restaurant stop, every moment — and full advantage of our new camera.
One of my favorite parts of the trip was a restaurant tour we took through the Santa Fe Cooking School. They take the group around town on foot, visiting four or five different fine restaurants, where you get to meet the chef and then sample some of his food, sometimes even right in the kitchen!
After Santa Fe, we trucked up to Los Alamos and Bandolier National Monument. It was a gorgeous day, if a little chilly, and our guided tour of the dwellings with the ranger was fantastic. (We also got a lecture on proper terminology. The people who lived here are no longer called Anasazi [which is the Navajo word for "strangers"], they are the Ancestral Puebloans. And, because in native beliefs, everything is always as it should be, they are not ruins, because there's nothing ruined about them! They are dwellings.)
We also got some of the history of Los Alamos when we went back to the city, which was fascinating. Because the city didn't actually "exist" during the war, the 150 children who were born there at that time all have "P.O. Box 1667, Santa Fe, NM" as their place of birth on their birth certificates. We stayed in a hotel directly across the street from Brandon's apartment, and ate at a restaurant where he and I used to eat!
After Los Alamos we headed to Abiquiu to visit Georgia O'keefe's home. (They don't allow any photos of her home, but it was lovely: very minimalist and modern.) Then we went on to Ghost Ranch where she had a second home and where she painted much of the scenery. We took a great tour where the guide pointed out the scenery and then showed the painting of it, which was fascinating. Beautiful country, too. It's now owned by the Presbyterian church, which uses the facilities as a wellness retreat center.
That's all for now! More when I upload more photos. To see the whole set that I've uploaded so far, click here.