Traveling

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Welcome to Raleigh part deux one day late! It’s been a busy week. Anyhoo, we spied many a cool mural during our stay, and the BRIGGS is a loving nod to Great Grandpa Howard’s namesake. Sweet!

all broken up

Deco delight located near a fab store of the same name. They got A LOT of my money. I got A LOT of good stuff.

Transfer Co. – another cool food hall!

also my fave Beastie Boys album…

The Station had the best pork belly banh-mi EVER and a the cutest beer (tasty, too!) that reminded us of our sweet Juniper. Just in case you were wondering, she stayed home for our travels, which was a little scary for her, despite being safe at our house in the great care of our friend Bebe. I have never had such a welcome home! She barked and jumped and spun in delight (and relief, prolly) upon my arrival.

Two Roosters – roasted strawberry and honey was my flavor choice – YOWZA!

William Peace University – originally a Women’s College

North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper (possibly distantly related to the hubster!) lives here. That roof!

Pike’s Peak floats among the clouds…

Off to Raleigh (Walter the namesake pictured above), North Carolina for a little work and R & R of the pleasantly green and humid variety. I have never been so gobsmacked by a tree canopy in my life, dear peeps, even after sixteen years in the Pacific Wonderland of Oregon. That is saying something, y’all!

Not having traveled much in the South, I was thoroughly delighted by the place. I have never seen such diversity (black, white, Muslim, Asian, Indian, Latinx, LGBTQ!) and was SUPER grateful not to witness any overt bigotry or racism. I’ve been sickened by more Confederate Flags in the West than in Raleigh, and in case you’re wondering, we didn’t see a one. Progress! Raleigh seems to have made great strides, with many a sign boasting “Y’all means ALL!” and other forms of welcome. It made my heart happy!

Another reason to be happy – our super conveniently located digs, walking everywhere in this post and logging more than twenty miles over the course of our stay!

Morgan Street Food Hall – a mad collection of  bomb-diggity food truck-style vendors – indoors and out of the weather. The Food Court of my mall strolling youth taken to great heights.. Yup.

Great art, too!

O M G – the Hot fried chicken and mac bowl at Iyla’s Southern Kitchen was ALL the things with perfect pickle slices on top. Not pictured: the hubster’s shrimp and grits – the best we’ve ever tasted!

Bittersweet – we tried the Paris Fizz and Strong island and were not disappointed!

Short bed. Warm night.

Porch coffee

The finest aspect, by far, had to be the humid green, positively redolent of jasmine, magnolia, and rose. How lovely to have spring rain without the cold, too, as I had grown so accustomed to in Portland, frequently lamenting the need for a turtle neck well into June!

We also learned about the tomato and vinegar BBQ divide, and while the meat was perfectly cooked at Clyde Cooper’s (and piled sky-high!), the super tang of vinegar had us falling firmly in the tomato camp.

Saw some pretty talented artists’ work at artspace. Bought a lovely piece, too!

More Friday…

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In Albuquerque now, enjoying a  most fabulous lunch at Pueblo Harvest inside the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center. Greg enjoyed a stellar pre-contact meal of bison, asparagus and yucca mash with walnut milk gravy. My salad was very tasty (red chile in the dressing!) but not as cool in concept or execution.

The center lies on what was once the Albuquerque Indian School, where native children were forcibly taken from their families to learn white ways. In the beginning, it was an appalling practice, where children were forced to cut their hair, speak only English, and forget native ways. Only later were the schools adopted by Native people, as institutions where children could learn and thrive and celebrate their heritage.

Taos Pueblo, 1890s –  Smithsonian

Pojoaque Pueblo, circa 1899

photographed by Adam C. Vroman

Do you know the book Are You My Mother? It tells the story of a baby bird whose egg hatches while it’s mother is away. It leaves the nest to search for her, asking the question of every animal it encounters along the way. I feel like that bird as I dive down the rabbit hole of my native ancestry. My Grandma Tillie told my dad Comanche, but as I research, I am learning my relatives were born all over Northern New Mexico (and a few in Mexico, too), and may have also hailed from Pueblos like Pojoaque and Taos. The wonder…

For our anniversary, we dined at Campo at Los Poblanos, a beautiful historic ranch and organic farm on the western edge of Albuquerque (If you’re not traveling with a dog, you can stay there – lucky you!). While every bite and sip was pretty darn fabulous, our favorite dish was the Blue Corn fritters! Elevated carnival fare, with quince jam mixed with other magic for dipping. Eeek!

A nice saunter along the Rio Grande (looking a little poco), where cottonwoods past their prime have taken on new life as magnificent sculptures. As we walked, I was especially struck by the fact that this was my first trip to Albuquerque since my Grandpa died. As we drove the streets of his neighborhood and stopped in front of the house where he was raised and my Nana and Bampoo died (looking utterly foreign to its beginnings), I missed him terribly and had so many questions he could no longer answer. Did you play along the river when you were a boy? Where was Bamboo’s office? Did Nana ever work outside the home? Where? Did you walk to high school? Where did you and Grandma live as newlyweds, New York Avenue? And on and on…

the beauty of Old Town

Juniper learns a pig isn’t always a pig.

Muy delicioso BBQ (the Experience) at Matanza

Homeward bound, and reveling in our great luck, to be together for these twenty-eight years, to love and be loved, and know the great privilege of travel. Here’s to US!

 

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A journey to New Mexico in celebration of twenty-eight years since our first date. Our first stop was Charlie’s Spic and Span in Las Vegas, of course, for a stuffed sopapilla (carne adovada for me and chorizo for the hubster) and an apple fritter as big as my head. Oh gosh, do I love that place!

The Montezuma Castle, built in 1899 and originally a luxury hotel serving the Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe Railroad. It is now a private boarding school (Armand Hammer United World College) and only available for viewing on specific tour dates. We were a day early, rats!!

my best love

travel by train…

Virgin Guadalupe

work in progress

Traveler’s Cafe – get your coffee on!

The Range Restaurant inside the Plaza Hotel. The best  prickly pear cactus margarita in the land, kindly and attentive service (thank you, George), and really good food. The portions are huge, so do your best to save room for dessert!

Here we are!

Greg tries to get Juniper to greet me on the street. The windows!!

How about that headboard? Though we’ve eaten at the restaurant and enjoyed the gift shop on several occasions, this was our first stay at the Plaza Hotel. It did not disappoint!

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Blazing Trail II

Good morning from a slow unspooling of morning in Avon. We rose with the sun and sauntered along the Eagle, reveling in the rich light. How lucky I am, truly – to have such fine companions, to be able of body, light in spirit, and have the infinite glory of the beloved West at my fingertips. Life is GOOD.

It’s amusing and curious, too.

And grand, absolutely grand!

Glenwood Springs and eastward through the canyon. A million layers of life and death, terrifying and exquisite in its beauty. The definition of sublime.

How about that view? Hello, Eagle!

Early fall splendor from Minturn to Gilman to Red Cliff and Leadville for some mighty tasty pizza at High Mountain Pies – worth the wait and then some!

A fine weekend behind us…

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