Day 4: Santa Fe
I took a quick trip up to Santa Fe to check out their old town after work. It’s a quick drive from Albuquerque, especially given the 75 MPH speed limit the whole way. I got into Santa Fe around 5, and it’s got a really beautiful old town. It almost feels like a Disney theme park or something. It’s so cohesive it’s almost a bit ‘off’ if that makes sense. I had a nice calzone at a local restaurant and went out to shoot. The light was pretty good at this time of day, but for some reason, EVERYTHING was closed. We’re talking 5:30 PM here. San Miguel Mission? Closed. The Loretto Chapel with it’s awesome staircase that is my idea of a perfect architectural photographic subject? Closed. Cathedral? Closed. The claimed oldest house in the United States (built 1646)? Closed. (though I got a good shot of the outside, seen to the left). The Plaza? Underwhelming.
Honestly, from a photographic standpoint I was supremely disappointed. Had I been able to go inside the Loretto Chapel or San Miguel, I might have felt differently, but I left pretty bummed. I did get some passable photos out of the trip, but nothing spectacular. It’s really a shame that everything in New Mexico seems to close in the mid afternoon. All the cool Pueblo sites close between 3:30 and 4:30. Even Petroglyph National Monument closes at 5. It’s really bizarre, frankly. It’s more restrictive to shoot here than in Europe it seems.
Anyway, as a place to visit it seemed really nice. Great atmosphere, lots of local craftsmen, shops and restaurants. Well, enjoy the photos.