Santa Fe, 57 Miles
"It takes as much energy to wish as it does to plan."
It seems we forgot about Tallahassee, Florida, as we checked into the KOA knowing the lows for last night would be thirty-six. Good grief it was cold! We huddled under the quilt and the moonlit potty run left us shivering and curled up in tight little balls. Being high desert, as soon as the sun came up so did the temperature and the day grew mild and pleasant. We headed to downtown Santa Fe.
Right off the bat, New Mexico rocked it with free parking, in a garage, and motorcycle parking to boot. Way to go! It looks like when the legislature is in session, they collect fees, but it must be Spring Break. Or the lawmakers collected enough graft and took a few weeks off. Okay, maybe not.
New Mexico claims the oldest as well as one of the newest capitols, as their Palace of Governors, built in 1609, was the seat of Spanish, Mexican and American governors. The new Capitol, built in 1966 and renovated in 1992, reflects modern tastes. Both QG and I liked it, although I thought the legislative rooms felt a bit cold and austere, after viewing ceilings that resembled the Sistine Chapel in others.
And NM's Capitol looks more unusual than any other, as it is cylindrical with a flat roof, reflecting the local adobe look, very nice. Being modern, it enjoys quality lighting and thoughtful architecture throughout.
Inside the building shone with white marble and light oak paneling. And the best attribute of the building wasn't the building at all, but the art. No state displayed as much art as New Mexico, with a plethora of walls enhanced with local flavor from Western to crappy modern (my opinion). And today check out the previous post for my Art Special Edition, as NM provided enough art to warrant their own post.
Santa Fe seemed like a wonderful town, not trying to fake their quirkiness like Durango, Colorado, but then QG pointed out the parking meters, ice water thrown in the tourist's faces. But the buildings, with their narrow streets and rectangle shapes, looked older but in good shape. It maintains a small town feel, even though the suburbs extend for miles out from the center.
We met lots of friendly people there, who stopped and chatted once they saw Libby. And the streets wound through the scrub desert, making for a relaxed ride. We did observe a great candidate for Stupid Driver of the Week, and she knocked another guy out of the running.
And now, culturally uplifted, Quilter Girl!
We have missed many art galleries before this, so the Capitol building was a nice surprise. Most of the other capitols had art, but it was usually paintings of previous governors. Here they had photos in one area and the rest of the walls were filled with glorious creations. Even the tables and chairs were handcrafted in the Santa Fe style. It took us a long time to work our way through the building.
Then we took a nice side trip, for me, to Jo Ann Fabrics. I finished the baby blanket I was working on for Christian and needed new yarn for one for Samuel. Starting things is so exciting and yarn nowadays is so much fun. A little fabric came home with the yarn, too.
We stopped for lunner at a restaurant called Harry's Roadhouse, recommended by the lady in the KOA office . It gets two thumbs up from us as it was totally quirky from the mismatched chairs and painted tables to the artwork for sale on the walls. The paintings were primitives and very tongue in cheek. The one across from our table showed a stone cottage with lights shining in the window, a condemned sign in the front yard with a couple of rats and a wrecking ball about to attack. The title was 'Thomas Kincaid's Nightmare.' Since the prices ran $1,500 the paintings are all still there. The food was very eclectic also. The special for the day was a fried kale sandwich. Kevin had their special turkey burritos on a blue corn tortilla while I had a turkey Reuben. It was great and if all the restaurants are this good, we really could live here.
And a first sighting of a Zero motorcycle, all electric. Looks pretty cool.
Check out the previous post for the Art Special Edition.