An Art Lover's Paradise

Trip Start May 09, 2009
Trip End May 27, 2010

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Flag of United States  , New Mexico
Friday, May 7, 2010

We just spent a week in Santa Fe.  Both Jim and I had been here before but, in my case, for only a few hours while attending a conference in Albuquerque.  It was wonderful spending several days soaking up the culture of this wonderful artists colony and New Mexico's capital.

Unfortunately, we were too early for some of Santa Fe's renowned cultural assets -- its opera, ballet and symphony.  I was disapointed, although I can safely say that Jim wasn't!

So, we spent a lot of time in the galleries and shops here.  We only made a small dent -- there are over 200 galleries!  A tip for fellow art lovers -- skip the galleries and shops around the historic Plaza and head to Canyon Road where there are better and more great art galleries. 

As I mentioned before, I am a fan of Georgia O'Keeffe's art and Santa Fe has the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, so I was looking forward to that.  I enjoyed the exhibit but was somewhat disappointed in the relatively small size of the exhibit.  While we were there, two of the large exhibit rooms were taken up with a special exhibit of another artist's work, Susan Rothenberg.  She does large (almost wall size) abstract oils that were well done but I would have preferred to see more of O'Keeffe's paintings.   

We also saw an Ansel Adams exhibit, "Landscape and Light," at the Andrew Smith Gallery.  This was one of the largest exhibits of his work we had seen and it was wonderful.  Jim and I are both fans of Adams and we were excited that our timing was right to see this colection of his work.

In addition to its culture and art, Santa Fe is known for its pueblo-style architecture and its historical buildings and churches.  Among what we saw were the Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis de Assisi, the San Miguel Mission and the Loretto Chapel.  The last has a spiral staircase that was built with no visibe means of support.  It was supposedly built in answers to nuns' prayers and once built, the builder was never seen again!  The original staircase didn't have handrails which probably made it seem even more spectacular.

While in Santa Fe we had a reunion with our friends, Mariah and Ryan, whom we had met in Yellowstone and saw in Portland where they were living.  They are moving to Greensboro, NC where Mariah will be studying for her masters at UNC-Greensboro.  They were driving their moving truck across country over a two-week period to see some sights and were in Santa Fe for a night while we were there.  We met them (and a couple of their friends who were traveling with them) for dinner and caught up on our respective adventures since seeing them last October.  It was great to see them again and we hope to meet them again while they are in Greensboro.

Santa Fe was our last long stay of our trip.  From here on out, we are heading east towards Florida to start our hunt for the right town to settle in and eventual house-buying.  We still have some sights to see, so there will be a few more blogs.  By the time we reach Florida (5/25), we will have been on the road for one year!   But our travels won't be done, as we plan to take a three-month road trip every year as there are a lot of places we haven't seen yet.  We are, however, looking forward to putting some roots down first. 
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