Day 2 : September 27 Santa Fe
We have all just returned to our ‘homes’ after an exciting and invigorating day two of our trip. Everyone is a bit tired but full of the wonderful happenings and sights of Santa Fe.
The first day of the carpool went well (we finally got the couple accountability numbers right after the third try) and we arrived in Santa Fe at about 9:30 for our trolley ride and tour of the city. The tour guides were interesting, had a sense of humor and were well informed. Our tour completed around 11:00 and gave us time
to go back and see some of the sights on our own. We met for lunch at the famous LaFonda (The inn at the end of the Santa Fe Trail) at noon. Its famous pueblo style Spanish architecture and décor with latilla ceilings was the perfect setting for a relaxing lunch. The meal was equal to the setting…fine in every detail.
After lunch we all met at the Palace of the Governors that features a Native American artisan market on the Portal. This is the oldest continuously occupied public building in the United States, constructed in 1610. After a guided tour of the interior of the Palace, we browsed the market on the portal. Metalwork, pottery, jewelry, sand painting, leatherwork and other goods were for sale by the native artisans who created them. We enjoyed talking with the craftsmen and purchasing some of the unique items on display.
There were many sites to see. Some went on to see the Miraculous Staircase at the Loretto Chapel (built in the 1870’s); it is believed to be the first Gothic structure west of the Mississippi. The staircase and its building were the object of a Hollywood film staring Barbara Hershey called “The Staircase”.
Others went to some of the famous galleries in town. The San Miguel Mission is the oldest church in the US, built in 1610 and worth the walk through. One of the proudest possessions of the Catholic Church in the US is the La Conquistadora,
Our Lady of Peace. This statue, only 34 inches high, dates back to the 12th Century when it was carried on a pole in the wars between the Christians and Moors in Spain. It is housed at the Basilica of St. Francis and taken out on a pole for the festival every year.
The day ended with a wonderful evening with food provided by the best cooks in New Mexico…our own caravaners! The potluck Hors d’oerves, great margaritas, and fine fellowship sent us all back to our coaches thankful for the blessings of the day. A special “thank you” to all the organizers and workers who make it all look so easy and comfortable for us!