Thursday, October 11, 2012

Road Trip Taos Part I: Are we still in the US?

Our trip began by fitting an upright vacuum cleaner into the small SUV along with luggage for three women who each needed clothing and shoes for warm or cool weather, shoes for all occasions, hiking to dining and in between.   Literally everything AND the vacume cleaner.

First stop?  Gallup, NM not on the itinerary.  When you live in Chinle you drive one and a half hours to get your vacuum repaired.  Luckily Gallup was on the way.

If travel is about learning I had already learned something new.  Now I know where to get my sewing machine repaired the next time I head out to Gallup.

In Santa Fe we found we had arrived in time for the Friday evening gallery walk.  I was introduced to a new favorite artist Dan Naminga.  His landscapes captured the big sky and mountains dotted with balls of cedar trees that we would pass through for the next few days.  Prices out of reach for this traveler but memories make the best souvenirs.

The trip really began for me as we headed out on the High Road to I had never explored.  Unexpected landscapes and culture felt like another country with villages more European than American.  The Spanish influence is authentic and refreshing.

Oops.  Forgot to mail that Net Flix movie before we left.

 Friendly shopkeepers were happy to share imformation about the place and the people, the artists in the communties.  The area is known for the distinctive black on black pottery style made popular by Marie Martinez.  I added to my seed pot collection.

Every village boasts an old Spanish chapel but Chimayo is the focal point of the area.  Chimayo and the surrounding area is known for Hispanic and Tewa Indian arts, pottery and weaving and for famous red and green chile.

Chimayo is also home to Santario de Chimayo known as a destination for pilgrimages through the ages and for miraculous healings.  The lovely grounds with many shops and chapels provide an unusual mix

(because I like rocks)


the sacred and the whimical.

And right around the corner?

  A cafe out of the countryside of Spain or Mexico or .....are we really in the US?