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Riding into Santa Fe

July 18, 2008

Well I’ve officially entered travel mode, and have started my ventures with a trip to New Mexico. 

Things started off yesterday, a quick flight from Burbank>Phoenix>Albuquerque. While sitting on the tarmac in Phoenix I recognized an old rugby buddy of mine flying back from a conference (you’ve got to love this small world of ours). We caught up at the baggage claim, and he offered to give me a ride back up to Santa Fe. Which was perfect, cause after finding out how expensive renting a car for a week was I was going to take a shuttle. 
So on my way down to Santa Fe I got to hang out with my old friend, his Wife, and his two year old Finley. I got to sit in the back with Finley who was super cute. We invented a game where he threw his stuffed cat into the air and I would catch it above it, he’d say “uh oh” I’d repeat, then I’d toss the cat back down and he’d break into giggles. Very cute. Driving up I-25 it was great to see the New Mexico landscape again. Long stretches of brown earth dotted with sage brush, all mirrored by the spattering of clouds in biggest bluest sky you’ve ever seen. Off in the distance huge mountains tore up from the earth, clinging storm darkened clouds about their tops like grey scarves in the wind. 
We rolled into Santa Fe, and I was dropped off at my friend’s place. Soon the sun began to sink into the horizon and the day turned golden from the majestic dusk light. We caught up with each-other, then went out to dinner at “The Shed“, a local Santa Fe favorite. Food is definitely one of the things I miss the most about New Mexico, so I was ecstatic when my two blue corn chicken enchiladas with green chile arrived (with a side of posole and pinto beans). I ate everything, and had to hold myself back from licking the plate in public. Afterwards we strolled about the Plaza as the full moon rose above the Sangre De Cristo Mountains, highlighting the shadowy clouds with silver edges. We walked about the Plaza, peering into the myriad of galleries and stores lining the streets. Turquoise and silver jewelry, black and white photos of Bob Dylan, hand woven Native American rugs, and beautiful ornate clay pots were just some of the pieces decorating the lit windows. It was a perfect New Mexican night, the clean crisp air carried the steely guitar riffs from a local bar, and the shadowy plaza was bustling with spring-colored tourists. It was great to be back. But no matter how warm my soul felt as I walked through the dimly lit streets of the plaza I couldn’t help but remember I was one of the tourists now.
The next day my friend picked up her kids and hung out for a bit. It had been two years since I’d seen them, and it was scary how big they had become. Time certainly doesn’t stop when you leave. She dropped me off and I rented a car to venture out on my own in my old home. early on I remembered that I never truly learned the street names, but it didn’t matter too much as I homing pigeon my way about town. Visiting my old boss, some friends at my old college, and checking in on my house. Right now I’m tucked into my old wi-fi spot, the “Santa Fe Baking Company”  (isn’t it funny how everything has a website now?). The evening shower has rolled in, and I’m ducking away for a bit to blog, and purge on more green chile (a frito pie to be exact). Tonight I think we might check out the new Bat Man movie, and tomorrow I will be meeting up with my old rugby club for the “Santolympics” (water balloon toss, drinking, pad jousting, drinking, drinking, relay runs, drinking, then probably a pub crawl in the plaza). Sunday I will be heading to see my family in Taos, which I’m very excited about. It’s been about two and a half years since I’ve seen the house, and that was before we started landscaping it, so I’m very excited to see what it looks like with new flowers and Aspen trees. 
And with that I’m off. Venturing back into the grey storm clouds and brown adobe city of Santa Fe
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