Sunday, December 22nd, Santa Fe
An interesting day. We combined the sacred and the secular.
The morning was greeted with fresh snow, about two inches here in Santa Fe. Albuquerque, 60 miles south and about 1800 feet less in elevation, had no snow and much warmer temperatures.
Our morning drive to church was slow and slippery. But when we left Jude’s house at noon for our afternoon adventure, the roads were either wet or already dry. Our destination was once again downtown Santa Fe, but this time to watch (which became participation) Las Posadas. This is a Spanish based play that recreates the plight of Joseph and Mary as they seek shelter in Bethlehem. It can be religious or secular based.
Today’s version was religious. It started inside the Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi. The procession has at its head altar boys, two members of the Knights of Columbus, a teen portraying Joseph, a teen portraying Mary, two priests, and then a bunch of people (maybe 75 to 100) including us.
We processed down Santa Fe streets to the First Presbyterian Church of Santa Fe. At this church a ritual chant is exchanged between the outside group and people inside the church. The basic message (in brief) is: let us in, we need shelter; go away you are trouble makers; no, let us in, we are Joseph and Mary who is the Mother of the Divine Word; oh, so that is who you are, come on in.
Inside the church, welcomes are exchanged, hymns sung, and prayers said. The procession then leaves for the Episcopal Church of The Holy Faith where the process is repeated. At the last church, refreshments are served and gifts exchanged between the churches.
After this, we headed over to the New Mexico Museum of Art. The museum was free this afternoon. We explored the special exhibit on prints and drawings from Spain including a number of works by Francisco de Goya.
Finally we headed out to Madrid, a small town on the Turquoise Trail (not far from Cerillos Hills State Park). The town is known for its eclectic collection of shops, most featuring local artists. We toured around, Chris bumping into interesting people as usual. No purchases were made. We had dinner at the Mine Shaft Tavern.
The Tavern was a trip in itself. A musician was combining country western, Christmas and other songs. The clientele was a motley group (including dogs), providing entertainment as interesting as the musician. The bartender was limping from a pulled muscle and poured drinks without measurement-reminded me of my Dad at the bar many years ago. All in all, an entertaining way to end the evening.
Ed and Chris December 22 10 pm