Taos

I woke up this morning in my lovely hotel room.  I did yoga and made my way to the breakfast room where Alice was cooking for the guests.  I wrote in my journal as I ate the yogurt, eggs, toast, etc.  Towards the end of breakfast, Alice walked around, table-by-table, asking the guests if they would be OK with chili for breakfast in the morning.  When she got to my table, she said, “I don’t need to ask you, I know you’ll eat the chili.”

What? How did she know I’ll eat anything you put in front of me?  I guess I’m that obvious.

After I wrapped up my meal, I tip-toed to the kitchen to thank her for breakfast.  She asked me what my plan was for the day and I told her, she said “are you leaving right now?”

“No, I’m going to go up to my room to pack up.”

“What room are you in?” she asked.

I told her and she said “OK! Wait up there, I’m going to run home and get you something, I just live across the street.”

I went upstairs and brushed my teeth and packed my bag for the day, moments later there was a knock on my door and Alice had brought me maps of Taos, and post-it marked travel guides of the town and surrounding areas.  She got down on her knees and laid the map on the bed and highlighted for me (with the highlighter she had brought) the best route for my day.  I couldn’t thank her enough.  She shrugged it off like it was nothing and told me to enjoy Taos.

I drove into town, a whopping 3 miles from where I’m staying.  I stopped at the World Cup Cafe and ordered a picante mocha, the cute girls behind the counter made it just perfectly and we had a lovely chat while I waited.  Next I drove, 3 blocks, to the St. Francis of Assisi Church.

St. Francis of Assisi Church, Taos, NM

I went in and it smelled just as a church should–of sandalwood, frankincense, and prayers.  I got down on a kneeler and prayed and meditated for a bit.  I went across the street to the gift shop and bought a candle to light.  The attendant asked me who I was praying for, “I pray for everybody,” I responded.

She smiled real big and said, “then I think that size candle will do.”

“How are you today?” I asked her?

“Heartbroken.” She said, melancholy, “My brother died.  He died on Valentine’s Day.” She choked up.

“I’m so sorry for your loss.  I will pray for you then, too.”

“Thank you, mija. Have a blessed day.”

I went back over to the church and lit my candle.  I watched the flame as I always do, fascinated by the way it catches fire.  I stood a bit then went outside to admire the architecture and the structure of the church.

Look at that! There’s hay in the adobe. Amazing.

I wanted to take a backroad to the Rio Grande Gorge Bridge, but I took a wrong turn and ended up on a dirt road…AWESOME!!  I eventually looped back around and caught the right road but had welcomed the detour.

Dirt road, look at the clouds!!

I stopped at a fruit stand.  The fruit stand was closed so I went into the little shop next door (Blue Feather) that sold body lotions and soaps, I bought some lotion on account of my skin being super dry from the altitude and went along my way.

The road approaching the bridge is flanked with artists selling their creations, cool…but the Rio Grande Gorge Bridge is gorgeous, sorry can’t stop! Well, the bridge itself is not gorgeous, the gorge and the landscape are what is gorgeous.  My photos do not do it justice but maybe you can get an idea.

Rio Grande Gorge

Alice had recommended a brewery to me “somewhere over here” she had pointed on the map and I had driven by it on my way out to the bridge so on my way back towards town, I stopped at the Taos Mesa Brewery a super funky brewery in a quonset hut!  I chatted with Cam, the sweet lady behind the bar, “What brings you to Taos?”

“Well, I was in Albuquerque for a conference but I couldn’t stand it so I rented a car and drove here.”

“Oh, honey, I don’t blame you, Albuquerque is the armpit of New Mexico!”

Validation!! Not that I need validation but this was a real live New Mexican confirming my gut feelings about the icky, run-down city.

I ordered the Fall Down Brown (delicious!) and went outside where the sun was shining bright enough for me to strip down to my tank top and soak up some rays.  I wrote in my journal and enjoyed my beer until I decided I needed food.  I went inside and ordered the nachos.

Beer, sun, and snow-topped mountains…life is good

Cam said, “honey, I’m putting in a half order for you, the nachos are huge.”

“Thank you!” I said enthusiastically, I really appreciate the honesty and addressing the fact that this one individual (yours truly) does not need to eat a full order of nachos (or waste half or more of it).

The half order of nachos was still enough to feed a family of four…and DELICIOUS!

As I paid my bill, some people in line behind me told me I had to go to Taos Cow because they had home made ice cream…um…OKAY!!!! I have been known to drive distances for home made ice cream.  So it became obvious what my next pit stop would be…

Incredible mint chip ice cream!! The chocolate was very high quality and the ice cream itself had a consistency more akin to cookie dough, not perfectly smooth but melted in your mouth just right, if I had to guess I would say they use honey in making it…

Taos Cow is located in Arroyo Seco, a small town that the highway drives right through.  I parked in what felt like the middle of town and walked around the different galleries, prolonging my indulgence of the ice cream.

Storefront in Arroyo Seco

 

Beautiful

I rested in the afternoon and did some reading and as 5:20ish hit, I was called to go find the sunset! Unfortunately, the western sky was overcast so I just drove into town where I knew there was live music.  I headed to the Adobe Bar and had a margarita and wrote in my journal.  I was quickly over the scene and came back to my hotel room, where I sit now, in front of a beautifully burning and crackling fire, sitting in my bed, reading for the night.

Good night.

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