Monday, May 1, 2017

2017 CROSS-COUNTRY ROAD TRIP - APRIL 18TH, PART 2


My last post was across the road from the botanical garden where all those wonderful statues were.  When we left the hotel that morning it was on the cool side, but by the time we walked to the botanical garden it was getting rather hot. 



Their website is here.

We bought our tickets and were met by a lady called Sue at the entrance to the garden.  A very nice lady, she told us all about the place and we mentioned we had been here four years earlier, when it had only recently opened.  Back then we fell in love with it and vowed to return, so here we were about to see what had been added since the last time.  Sue told us that the best month to visit would be in July when everything was blooming, as you can see here in part, on the wall of the visitor center....



and also here.



We assured her we were going to enjoy no matter what was in bloom.



The cacti, of course, were thriving.  It is after all the desert and truth be told, what I love to see in this environment.


 There were a few blossom trees and flowers on show.


  They were lovely, most definitely....



but here again it was the cacti I looked forward to seeing.  


There is a small section of the garden surrounded by a colorful stone wall.  We sat on one of the two benches and studied the plants.  A pair of finches kept flying into a larger cactus, and when we took a peek, I could barely make out a baby(?)finch sitting on a nest.  It was in the cactus in the photo above.


Papa was standing guard nearby.


As we were thinking about moving, a gentleman walked up to us and started chatting. His name was Ken and his wife, Susan, had greeted us at the entrance.  He told us about the garden and answered all our questions with friendly patience.


Ken told us he had lived here for the last 10 years and was from Yuma. I asked him about the weather as we could see that there was still snow on two of the mountain peaks.  The garden is surrounded by the most incredible scenery.  He said he remembered it getting down to -20°F several years ago, although over the last few years the temperature is warmer, and it only gets down to zero. 


He told us not to forget to check out the other side of the red bridge as that area had been added since we were here. I remember it well, the bridge, but there had been nothing beyond.  We enjoyed the new section very much. The Red bridge itself had an interesting story, but you can check its whole history at this link.  


It used to be located near Las Vegas, New Mexico, maybe 40 to 50 miles from here. The road was subsequently changed by the highway department, and the bridge was just left in the chaos on a farmer's property. When the word got out that they were going to put a botanical garden here, the farmer donated the bridge and the garden moved it to where it is now. The bridge was the first thing put in before any of the plants.


Ken also told us that the little cactus garden we were sitting in was watered the first year but ever since, for the last four years, they have never had to water it again.  Mother Nature takes care of it. 




Across the bridge was a very interesting area.  A large area was geared up for children. Being a very visual person I loved the mosaic.

 


These are all taken on the other side of the red bridge.





For those who haven't seen an outdoor oven like this, it is called a Horno.  I forgot to take the information near the one we found at the garden, the heat from the sun had addled my brain!  But you can read about them here.  


If you don't want to follow the link, here is what I found at another site online.  

"Hornos are traditional pueblo, beehive shaped, adobe ovens.  Used mostly for baking and roasting, other cooking can take place at the opening while the horno is being fired.  A fire is built inside allowing the thick adobe chamber to absorb heat.  After two or three hours, coals are removed to a nearby brazier for other use, or to reheat the oven as needed.  Whatever is to be baked or roasted, is placed in the oven and the smoke hole and doorway sealed.  A horno can maintain a usable, though slowly dropping, temperature for several hours."


There was a wall behind the mosaic where children were allowed to use chalk to create their own masterpieces.


Scattered around there were interesting markers, like this one.  Hopefully you will be able to read it if you click on the picture to enlarge.


Also this one....


And one more.


It was wonderful exploring a place we knew from four years' ago.  


They had added a number of sculptures.




I loved this fence.  The style was used in many gardens in the area.


We had a momentary visitor before he hopped away.  Gregg was quick to spot him and to take this photo.  In fact, Gregg has taken a lot of the photos throughout this blog.



Another hour went by, we had checked out the other side of the bridge and were now only feet away from our car. 


I heard a voice and turned around.  Ken and Sue hailed us and were driving home. They waved and Ken said that he hoped we had enjoyed returning to the garden. We answered in the affirmative.


By this time we were extra hot and thirsty.  I had forgotten my hat and we had forgotten our water flask. They were still in the hotel room.   Gregg had seen a place not too far from our hotel that advertised Root Beer Floats. They are not my cup of tea but he hasn't had one in a long time and had a hankering.  He suggested I have a strawberry milk shake.  I don't have to blink twice but should have.  I don't do dairy and it's always so long between shakes I forget.  We thoroughly enjoyed our treats.  However.....

I had such a shock when we got back to the car. I had left my iPad on the bonnet, near the wipers. I don't even remember doing that. We had been gone for half an hour.  The thought of losing it gave me a horrible feeling but the fact it hadn't been taken, with so many people coming and going, made me very happy.  Thank you honest people of Santa Fe.

When we left that morning it was about 50 degrees fahrenheit.  It was now in the low 70s, but that heat seemed much hotter to both of us and it was nice getting back to our hotel, to our room for a break and where it was nicely air-conditioned.

It is 7.40 pm and we have just returned to our room after going downstairs for a cocktail. We each had a Margarita, and they gave us chips, with salsa and guacamole, but again we weren't that hungry.  After about an hour we went back upstairs to our room and another early bedtime.



40 comments:

  1. I love Botanical Gardens, and this one has added so much since four years ago. LOVE the children's part, and the beautiful mosaics. Buy I think my favorite is the beautiful picture of the two of you!! Thank goodness for the wonderful farmer! Everyone is so nice there....and honest!

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    1. Thank you Ginny, you always write the sweetest comments. They are lovely people out here. I have been really taken with their friendliness, and yes honesty.

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  2. What a lovely gardens. I adored the flowering tree. How amazing that your ipad was still on the car! Thankfully honesty abounded!!!

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    1. Thank you Marie :) It was a wonderful feeling.

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  3. Santa Fe is a beautiful city. I like the cactus gardens. You are seeing a lot of interesting sights on your trip.

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  4. I love Botanical Gardens, Denise, and I love this photo of you and Gregg! Everything is so lovely in your photos. I also love the mosaics!

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    1. Thank you Linda, so happy you enjoyed them : ) and I do appreciate your sweet comments.

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  5. I adore Botanical Gardens and am so grateful to visit this one with you. Hooray for honest people (and blissful early nights).

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  6. You look very nice in your dress. Nice photos of the cacti, too.

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  7. Lovely garden and mosaic designs are very beautiful.

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  8. a truly amazing place, I love every single photo you shared, I think I am in love with that first flowering cactus with tiny red blooms.

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    1. Thanks Sandra, it was a fun place. I shall be sharing other photos of cactus another time.

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  9. You are going to have Sensory Overload, by the time this trip is over!!!!!!!!!!! Which is wonderful!!!

    Love to see you wearing a simple dress. I myself, have loved cotton dresses, and find them quite as comfy, as pants. And they look prettier, too. :-)

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    1. I think I passed the sensory overload a while back LC :). Thank you for the compliment on my dress. I agree with what you say. I am always on the lookout for a comfy dress, especially the kind you can just slip on.

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  10. You make us want to visit! Nice to see you both looking so well

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  11. Beautiful shots! Well worth the visit!

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  12. there's so much to take in from this garden. I like the oven. the purple finch family seem to have found a safe home. :)
    love the photo of you and hubby!
    hugs,
    Marie

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  13. Enjoying your rambles my friend. You're having a great trip.😊

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  14. Beautiful flowers, beautiful cacti and beautiful places, but the most beautiful, are the smiles of happiness on your faces.
    Well-haven to share with us.

    Manuel

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    1. I thank you for your very sweet comment Manuel, so kind :)

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  15. Looks like you guys have had an amazing time! I love seeing what you saw.

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  16. Hi Denise and what a wonderful place to visit, so many things of interest and a bridge with a great history. I think after this trip you will sleep for a month. All the best, John

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    1. Hi John, I am sure I will :) All the best, Denise

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  17. You are certainly having a most amazing trip.
    The photographs and stories you provide on your posts are so wonderful to read.
    Thank you.

    My favourite today is the mosaic, loved it!

    All the best Jan

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    1. Thank you Jan, so glad you are enjoying the journey :) All the best to you too, Denise

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  18. Love following your trip.....the heat can still tire me out when we're touring and I should be used to it by now. You guys do great! Glad people were honest...another reason to love Santa Fe.

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    1. Thank you, I don't think I will ever get used to any type of heat Sallie, that's just how I roll, lol!

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  19. More beautiful scenes and especially nice to see you both as in the previous posts. So glad all is going well on this trip and nice your iPad was exactly where you left it. I know the feeling as once I left my Kindle in the apt gym and someone thankfully turned it in to the management office :-)

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    1. Thank you my friend, it is a horrible feeling isn't it? Glad your Kindle was turned in.

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  20. Oh my gosh! What a gorgeous place, Denise. Your photos are truly spectacular.

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