Road Trip – Day 5: Santa Fe NM

Today is a rest day and a good time to catch up – with my sketchbook, laundry and rest.  We left home in Jacksonville, FL, on Monday and drove 10 hours to Jackson Mississippi. Florida is so green, I didn’t realize until yesterday how much I appreciate it. We stopped in Tallahassee and drove by my childhood home – I think they were finally tearing out the bomb shelter that had been built next door in the 50s. We traveled through Alabama and into Mississippi, and I just sketched in the car. Tomorrow I’ll add paint.

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Tuesday we crossed Louisiana and into the huge state of Texas. The wildflowers along the sides of the road were beautiful, and we fell in love with What-a-Burger – $6 for 2 hamburgers and 2 drinks! We’re all about being economical on this trip! The best deal of the trip so far was tonight when we spotted a local donut shop and went up to the window to buy 2. Two. She was closing so she gave us a big bag of assorted chocolate filled cremes for just $1.50!! I didn’t eat them all. Just sayin’.


Wednesday. Still in Texas nearly all day. We started with Texas shaped waffles at our Best Western and saw nothing all day but oil wells, cactus and windmills. And, sadly, flags at half-staff for Barbara Bush. Plans were to go to Carlsbad Caverns tomorrow morning, but we found out from some people at supper that the elevators were out of order, and there was no way to get down except for walking down 750′. And of course, back up. Think of a 75-story building with no elevator. So…on to Santa Fe where we are now.


The drive was bleak, desolate, flat and brown. Abandoned buildings and junk yards. But we passed through Roswell, the UFO Capital of the World – does anyone remember them? and many businesses had little green aliens out front.


Today we had planned to go to Taos, but high winds and rain were predicted. Went to Georgia O’Keeffe Museum – got in on a great tour. I learned that she never painted when she traveled but always when she got home. Hummm……  I also learned most of her paintings were never signed as she said “it would be like writing on my face.” The museum had the only one she signed, a very early one.


I enjoyed seeing some of sketches too – not that much different from the ones I tried to do in my pocket at Abiquiu…. and that’s another story.


Wandered around downtown around the Plaza and stopped for a prickly pear (cactus) lemonade. Delicious, very sweet. Visited the Loretto Chapel and saw the miraculous staircase. I’ve been exhausted today just walking around. I didn’t understand until I realized we were at 7,200′ elevation.

OK, it really is Day 6. I didn’t get this finished yesterday. We left Santa Fe this morning and drove to and through the Petrified Forest. My favorite part of the 28-mile drive through was the Painted Desert, just stunning, and Gary loved all the huge petrified wood logs just lying around.



Bye for now. We’re having a wonderful time – and glad we made this trip before we got any older!

13 thoughts on “Road Trip – Day 5: Santa Fe NM

  1. Thanks for emailing. What a lovely trip. Enjoy, keep sketching, keep posting! Be safe on the road. Hope to reconnect when you return. Love the sketches and the stories.

    We are in the middle of moving, Finally. I’m partially renovating the new house as we prepare to move out of this home … Busy but good.

    Happy Travels,



  2. Thank you for sending you travelogue and sketches! I always enjoy what you do 😀. Too bad that Carlsbad wasn’t doable but you are seeing some other beautiful sights! Happy trails!

    Sent from my iPhone


  3. Thank you for sharing your beautifully written adventures and of course your delightful sketches. My art history students are studying Georgia’s flower paintings and making magnified, tight compositions. Looking forward to your next updates and sketches.

    • Thanks, Meche. Do you have enough stuff for the “Day of the Dead”? It’s all over out here and I think of you when I see it. I’d love to come do a “guest artist” O’Keeffe lesson with your students some day.

  4. Mary, what a delightful picture and word account of your adventure! Now I can start my day with a smile in my heart.
    Vicki newsome

  5. Glad you’re having a great trip and doing lots of sketching and sharing. I still remember my trip to that area in 1965! Miss you but having fun but it’s still cold here. Keep up the posts!!

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