In Santa Fe
The main attraction of Taos is the Pueblo, a native village inhabited for 1500 years. But it closes every year in February and March. The native American at the entrance of the village told us the men of the village are meeting in the kiva for 45 days to teach the young ones to become men. We had a long conversation with him about the balance for them between keeping privacy and sharing their culture with the world. It’s also a balance on our side, learning about another culture without intruding. It’s actually quite amazing that they keep their village open for tourists most of the year, but they’re clever, he told us tourists only see 2% of what the lifestyle is. They protect it and show only what can be beneficial to them -selling their art.
The Pueblo being closed we drive down to Santa Fe, stopping in some of the oldest places in the country. The Santuario de Chimayo is a famous pelegrinage place, dirt in the church is believed to heal people. A wall of the church is covered in cruches of those believers being healed thanks to it (no photos were allowed inside).
The last stop of the day, Santa Fe, is the second oldest city in the US and the highest state capital (7000ft). The architecture is of strong Spanish influence, I felt like I was in another country. A lot of houses have chili hanged to dry next to the front door. Here the dishes are spicy!