‘taos is art’ it says everywhere. indeed, the taos society of artists was formed in 1915 and artists have been flocking here ever since. had a scrumptious lunch and the best flourless cake ever from chokola. walked the plaza, bought some art, and then a short drive to the church of san francisco de asis dating back to the 18th century, an adobe structure painted by georgia o’keeffe and photographed by ansel adams.
on our way to taos, on the high road, all of a sudden we found ourselves in the midst of a pine forest. now called carson national park, this is the home of the taos pueblo people.
the blue lake was always an important cultural and religious site for them and they fought to have it restored to their guardianship, finally succeeding in 1970. i was surprised to learn that the area has elk, black bears, coyotes and cougars, among other big game animals.
today we drove from santa fe to taos, taking the high scenic road thru the sangre de cristo mountains. first stop, historic chimayó, a hamlet known for its chile, weaving and miracles. visited the santuario de chimayó, famous for its healing magic ?
our little place in santa fe, a city that’s all earth-colored adobes. much more traffic than easygoing albuquerque. first thing we did was order food from jambo cafe. my husband got jerk chicken with rice & beans and fried plantains. i got a moroccan lamb stew cooked w chickpeas, raisins, apricots, and sweet potatoes, topped with a delicious ginger dried fruit chutney. amazing.
today coffee and pastries from zendo coffee in albuquerque and then off to tijeras and the turquoise trail which goes thru the rugged sandia mountains. stopped over in madrid to visit artists’ studios and bought a small piece of art. it feels like a different world.
grabbed some salad and pizza from @farinapizzeria_ and had dinner at west bluff park. it overlooks the famous rio grande and downtown albuquerque, with the manzano mountains in the distance. stunning views.
walked around old town albuquerque this afternoon. we saw the san felipe de neri church and i visited lots of small art galleries and gift shops. there was an entire store dedicated to ‘breaking bad.’ found this bear claw ring at the silver artichoke. the woman who helped me told me her sister, betty hawthorne, who lives on a navajo reservation designed the ring. with a sleeping beauty turquoise and mediterranean coral, the ring protects one. love it.
discovered the work of mexican artist lola alvarez bravo. loved how she captured scenes from rural indigenous mexican life, such as ‘burial at yalalag’ and ‘shark hunters’ in acapulco. her photographic portraits of frida kahlo are also full of nuance and delicate detail. she was one of the few mexican artists who experimented with photomontage (‘the dream of the drowned’) at the time. she was born in lagos de moreno in 1907.
our casita in the morning. a beautiful sign outside that i just discovered today. long line at @burquebakehouse, just a minute’s walk away, where we got coffee, their famous double-baked almond croissants and cruffins – croissants shaped like muffins filled with boston cream and topped with chocolate. sat under our tree, listening to local birdsongs, and had breakfast. decadence.
when i first saw tahar rahim in jacques audiard’s ‘a prophet,’ i knew we had struck gold. an actor of immense power and intensity. i thought he would be all over hollywood in no time, but he wasn’t. incomprehensible. glad things are changing. he was in ‘the mauritanian,’ a role for which he’s garnered praise. but he’s even more masterful (and completely in his element) in ‘the serpent’ (netflix). a disturbing character, performed deliciously. rahim is the son of algerian immigrants from oran, who settled in the eastern part of france. with all the islamophobic, racist grotesquerie going on in france, it does the heart good to see him come into his own as one of the most charismatic actors in the world.
got my second dose of the pfizer vaccine at jones beach today. not a bad place to get shots:) huge parking lots, large makeshift tents, the national guard guiding traffic and making everything go smoothly, nurses giving people shots inside their cars (u never step out of ur vehicle), people looking out for u while u wait 15 min to make sure u don’t have a reaction, and then u drive away. they have the capacity to vaccinate 5000 people per day. and then there’s the atlantic ocean. grateful.