Birds that turn on & turn off
Favorite thing: One of my most favorite things are the birds one finds in different areas of the world. I actually have 2 insane cockatiels at home. Among my favorites are the Lorakeets aka "Lorries" in Australia and the Australian Bell Bird which sings in the early dawn hours with a haunting clear like bell tone. Here in Santa Fe I found another set of birds with an unusual skill...they all sing hundreds of them and they can all go silent like you are flipping a switch at the drop (literally) of a hat.
We stayed in the Duran House across from the main part of the Las Palomas Inn. This was where we found the magical turn on and off "birdage."
The bird song turns off and on. No kidding. At first I thought the birds had to be on a tape because how can so many birds go silent at once? You cannot even see these little ones they blend so well into the landscape (scrub brush and trees) but they know when danger lurks or a predator is near as they shut up all at once. It is astonishing. I told my husband and he did not believe me until he heard it for himself. Quite a cacophony of sound. I jokingly said, "Birds off" and they all shut up..we got a good laugh out of that!
I have done some "googling" since my return home and there are two birds that live in the scrub and chaparral but no one seems to know who or what this bird is. One possibility is the Chaparral Bird or a "Common Yellow Throat" If you know the genus, phylum etc of the birds let me know. And by the way, I am just kidding about the genus and phylum, a name for the type of bird is just fine. CheersZ!
Fondest memory: My favorite memory will be how blue the skies are in winter and how golden the light shines and that crazy bird song.
- Family Travel
Favorite thing: There is a main visitor center just across from the State Capitol building, and in the rear. It is next to Sam Miguel Mission church on Old Santa Fe TRail St. The other center is at the railroad station on the west side along Guadalupe St. It is closed on Sundays, though.
There is a lot of local and regional literature at the centers to guide you, plus the staff were helpful
- Arts and Culture
smoox's General Tip
Fondest memory: Kachinas are a typical feature of the southwest. They are really dolls for children, made by their Indian parents to teach them about their gods. Nowadays, Kachinas are pieces of art which may sell at outrageos prices, but you can also get one for $ 30.
smoox's General Tip
Fondest memory: The plaza has a very special atmosphere, and everybody is drawn towards it. It was here that the famous Santa Fe Trail ended. The Santa Fe Trail was a trading route between the USA and the then Spanish territory. Around, there are cafés, snack bars and arts and craft shops.
Not an Adobe Disneyland
Favorite thing: Remember that this is a REAL city where REAL people live. We're not props in a theme park. We love our city and we're pleased to share it with you; but please respect it, and us, in turn.
Fondest memory: The sunshine, the clear air, the vistas -- I live in a modest suburb, but from my balcony I can see half a dozen mountain ranges, and look north until the horizon drops away. It's sunny most of the time, even in winter. (The last time I visited my family in the San Francisco area, it rained incessantly for 2 weeks, and I couldn't wait to get home!)
check out the historical Spitz...
Favorite thing: check out the historical Spitz Clock on the northwest corner of the plaza. The Spitz clock was used to advertise the Spitz Jewelry Store. Its predecessor was run over by an early motorcar in 1915. The clock is second hand and was bought in Kansas City in 1916. The VW Beetle in the picture was not the car that knocked over the previous clock!
10eke's General Tip
Fondest memory: San Miguel Mission.
Did you ever see a 'sorry, we are closed' sign on a church? Here it is! It really looked out of place.
The mission is located 3 blks s. of the Plaza on the Old Santa Fe Trail, it is one of the country's oldest churches. It was built in the early 17th century. A Spanish church bell of 1356 is on display, it is a 'second-hand' church bell that was used Spain and Mexico before it was moved to Santa Fe by oxcart in the 1800s.
Get out and about, visit at...
Favorite thing: Get out and about, visit at least one Native American community, if only to buy art or artifacts from them directly (and know your money is supporting their business, not some middleman)- and to see the shocking contrast of how they have been forced to live in comparison with most of us well-off tourists. You can't leave Santa Fe without immersing yourself in the history of the place, however briefly. It's sobering and poignant.
Fondest memory: Fabulous scenery, adobe architecture (yes, even the fake stuff is lovely to look at!), bunches of chillis hanging outside houses, that big blue sky.
Walk or drive around the...
Favorite thing: Walk or drive around the residential areas to look at the houses. Personally, the houses intrique me, and they are beautiful, but I could not help thinking that it must be very bizarre to live in a town where all the houses are the same color and style. How much rust-colored adobe can one look at? How about a white adobe here and there? Or a yellow one? Actually, I see the point--a bunch of adobe style houses in a mixture of colors might look a little tacky. I vote for some wooden or brick houses to break up the monotony.
See my Travelogue for some photos taken around the neighborhood.
'On march 30, 1609, the...
Favorite thing: 'On march 30, 1609, the Viceroy of New Spain appointed Don Pedro de Peralta Governor and Captain General of New Mexico, instructing him to proceed to New Mexico.....accompanied by twelve soldiers and priest'.
Even though Santa Fe is the...
Favorite thing: Even though Santa Fe is the capitol of NM, the third largest city in the state with a population of 60.000 and has been around longer than all but one other city in America it is still relativy unknown to many U.S. travelers.
View the art! Not only is...
Favorite thing: View the art! Not only is there ample street art as shown here...but there are more galleries than you can count...with price tags as large!
Fondest memory: My mother and daughter also have this photo on there pages...we are still arguing over who actually took these photos!
Another gorgeous work of art...
Favorite thing: Another gorgeous work of art just standing in front of a gallery on the streets of old 'Sante Fe'..and this was just one of so many... amagine actually purchasing a piece like this and taking it home.
The Lorretto Chaple to see the...
Favorite thing: The Lorretto Chaple to see the 'Miracle Staircase' and listen to the story of it's creation. It is a freestanding spiral staircase with no means of support other than its spiral structure. Listen to the
recording with speculation about the young carpenter who mysteriously arrived to build it.
Favorite thing: This is an awesome headdress, handmade, with real feathers, fur, leather, and the detailing (the blue stripe) is made entirely of beads!! Don't forget to be polite and ask for permission before snapping a photo..