Santa Fe, day 4 -- nov 26 (Sandia tram)
Third day breakfasting at Flying Star. I sent myself selected pictures from Josh's iPhone while he used my iPad to book a hotel for tonight in ABQ and check trains from SF. Instead of going back downtown -- evidentially Santa Fe doesn't plow, just waits for sun to come out --we decide to test the highway by driving down to Sandia peak near Albuquerque and taking tram ride.
Once we got out of Santa Fe onto 25, the state had plowed and the highway was clear sailing. Listening to Bob Dylan channel on Pandora and singing along, with winter landscape spread from horizon to horizon. First day of full bright sun. Snow limning everything turns landscape into graphic design, angles of arroyos polka dotted with juniper bushes.
Sandia peak rises east out of the plain surrounding Albuquerque. It's over 10,000 ft high at the summit and the nearly 3-mile long tramway is the longest in the country. Once you are on top you can see the whole Rio Grand Valley -- the web site says it's an "11,000 square-mile panoramic view"-- you can see all the way to the mountains behind Taos.
At the bottom there was only a dusting of snow on the ground, but as we rose higher and higher, we passed through a layer of snow clouds encrusting all the trees and shrubs, and when we arrived at the top, there was several feet of new powder.
The sky was crystal blue and you could see forever. It was so cold and pristine, deep quiet. The winds had been (and still were) strong enough to coat the trees and ridge lines. I stayed in the warm (and not slippery) observation deck while Josh went exploring and took a bunch of spectacular pictures. We stayed up there over an hour; it was literally breath-taking. Magical.
Came back to SF. Had lunch at Plaza Cafe. Walked down Don Gaspar to look at fetishes at Keshi ; then up Gallisteo to check out a tapestry Josh had seen in a window, which proved too be too expensive. Drove Josh to train station, then went to Walgreen's for cold medicine and collected groceries for the week from Whole Foods and Trader Jo's. Once I got home, a new trainee showed up to pick up my modem so they could get a new one...unfortunately in the process she disconnected the cable from the TV. Geraldine showed up and she and her husband fixed it. Starting watching Vicar of Digby on Netflix; uploaded a bunch of Josh's pictures. Watched some Rachel Maddow... Could feel a sore throat trying to scratch its way out.