Saturday, July 4, 2009

Rt. 66- City of Gold

The road to Sante Fe turns sharply north. We leave desert brush country for the higher climates. Pine trees and adobe homes are abundant. Some of the homes are spectacular. Sante Fe, the Capitol of New Mexico has a long history. The native Americans and the Spanish mission system still heavily influence the city. Sante Fe has been a major crossroads since it's beginning. The Sante Fe Trail and Pecos Trail were already in long use before Route 66 arrived.

Route 66 into Sante Fe pictured. The old route takes you into the heart of the city. Everything is adobe styled due to strict building codes. the only difference is which hue of tan the exterior is painted. I thought this all nice, but sorta of boring. Why not let a little color in? I found out why.

Below is the Cathedral of St. Francis of Assisi, the heart of Sante Fe. It architecture is more formal than adobe, but still tan in color.

Sante Fe is a city filled with art. Galleries are everywhere. Musicians are on the corners and good restaurants are plentiful. This is a wonderful city to visit.

Below is the New Mexico Museum of Art. It is on one corner of the plaza, just down the street from St. Francis. The sun was going down and it was time to find some place to eat or so I thought.

As I walked past St. Francis for the second time, I noticed how the sun's rays turned the dull brown color of it's exterior into GOLD.

All over the city, the tan colors I thought dull a few hours earlier had changed. Each one strained to be more brilliant than the next!

St. Loretto Chapel, below showing a golden glow at sun down.

Walking around Sante Fe at sundown, it easy to see how the Spanish could be led to believe in the cities of gold. They searched for gold to fill their pockets, when it was the gold of natures beauty that they were blind to see all around them.

The statue of the sleeping bears below is one of many art works all around Sante Fe.

Artwork that is nature based like the bears and the little Indian boy below are two of the prevalent themes of work in this area.

It is the last drops of sun here in Sante Fe. I missed my chance to stay at the El Rey Inn. The style is of an old adobe inn, with flowers dripping off the balconies and fireplaces in the rooms. This will be another place to return to.

Instead, I stayed at the Comfort Inn on Cerrillos. The hotel is decorated in Southwestern style and the staff was excellent, 8 towels.

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