Sunday, January 3, 2010

A Mouse in Santa Fe

Last Monday, Mabel was in by the bay in San Diego.
I could have gone,
but I decided to sit at home and wait for Santa Claus
while the family was away. When the opportunity came up on Saturday
to go to Santa Fe,
Mabel put on her poncho,
but then let me go instead.
Our first stop was Canyon Road.
Canyon Road is a very old, historic
narrow road in Santa Fe.
It used to be a residential street,
but now it is lined with galleries in historic buildings.

I found this charming Victorian porch
with a snow covered garden and icicles.

The wicker furniture on the porch
remembered summer days of reading,
and napping and chatting;
memories now asleep in the winter.

The sign on the white picket fence
said that visitors were welcome,
so we entered through the front gate.

Although there are some private apartments
within the building, it was a historic house.

I found more icicles dripping off trees
in the shady side of the building.
We could go no further due to the private resisdences,
but the icicles and peeling paint were secret delights!

Better than the expensive art in the art galleries!

We walked down the main hall
back towards the garden we had first seen.

We will have to return in the spring or summer!

We continued walking up Canyon Road,
looking at buildings and art sculptures...

...and signs of residential life.

We drove a short distance in the car to
the San Miguel Mission Church.

The church was established in 1610.
It was ruined in the Pueblo Revolt of 1680,
but rebuilt in 1712.

Although it is still a place of reverence,
it is also a place for tourist to learn about the history
of the church.

Up front, there are windows on the floor
showing the top steps of an early dirt stairway
and excavation of the earlier structure.

I'm reflecting.

The original bell was cast in Spain in 1356.

The silver charms along the wood frame
are milagros, or tokens for miracles.

The bell, confessional, old photos and paintings,
and window covered portions of old adobe
educate visitors toward the back of the church.
There sure is a lot of history in this little church!

After we visited the church,
we walked through the Inn and Spa at Loretto.

What a scenic place!

The architecture is meant to remind people
of the Pueblos, which have boxes built on top of each other
and next to each other.

The electric bags (farolitos) still line the roof
like Southwestern Christmas lights on a building.

The Loretto Chapel
is another early Santa Fe church,
built in the mid 1800's by a group of nuns.
This is the church with the famous spiral staircase.

We did not go inside this church.
It was too busy for good pictures.
This gothic style church is now attached
through a side room to the hallways of the Inn and Spa at Loretto.
The sisters of Loretto were the first in Santa Fe to educate girls.
Their dormitory/residence used to neighbor the church.
Santa Fe is known as "The City Different"
but the full name for the city really is
"Our City of Holy Faith".
Today, I got to see just a few historic sites and churches
that make Santa Fe a spiritual center
as well as an art and tourist destination.


  1. What a beautiful church! 1600s???? We didn't know anything in America was that old! You're a really good guide. Now we want to come see all that for ourselves.

  2. You see, the problem in "America" is that this part of the country was Spain back then, so there may be nothing in the politically defined "America" that old. Also, of course buildings get destroyed (especially during revolts, and when said buildings are made of adobe) and it is more the church as a concept than the entire structure as you see it that is that old. This is right next door to the oldest house in New Mexico, though. Something new to look up!