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Trip Report Weekend Getaway in Santa Fe

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While I was out of town a couple of months ago with my son, Mr. Pickle planned a romantic getaway in Santa Fe during the President's Day weekend. I guess that old adage, "Absence makes the heart grow fonder," is really true. :-)

Before we left, we made some fairly loose plans for what we wanted to do while we were there. We live near Santa Fe, so we've been there a number of times, and we wanted to do more than just walk around the Plaza and window shop.

We drove up Saturday morning and headed to Shidoni Foundry and Galleries in Tesuque. www.shidoni.com DebitNM and other Fodorites have mentioned Shidoni, but we had never been there. They have two large outdoor sculpture galleries, along with an indoor gallery, but the highlight of our time there was watching the bronze pour. Molten metal, massive molds, red-hot bronze spurting - what's not to like? It was fascinating, and we plan to take our son up to watch. If you're in the area on a Saturday, check to see if they are pouring.

Glass blower Charles Miner's studio and shop is next door to Shidoni. We spent a few minutes watching him and his assistants work their magic.

We headed back into town and drove to the Railyard area. I had a Groupon for The Station coffeehouse, which is in the same complex where the September Fodorite GTG was held. Their coffee is good, and we enjoyed sitting a bit while having lunch.

Mr. Pickle found a good deal ($70/night) at the Pueblo Bonito B & B. It's near the Capitol and within easy walking distance of downtown and the Railyard. Unfortunately, the wind picked up, so we didn't do quite as much walking as we had planned, but it's a very convenient location - a 250-year-old adobe hacienda. http://www.pueblobonitoinn.com/index.html

We stayed in the Nambe room, which has a queen bed (with a pretty wobbly bed frame), a kiva fireplace, a full bath, and a kitchenette. Our room was very comfortable, but the bathroom is pretty tiny. I don't travel with tons of toiletries, which is good because there isn't much room for them. Coffee and tea are supplied in the kitchenette, but there were no utensils or anything to cook with. This was OK, since we didn't plan to do any cooking, but it would be a problem otherwise.

Pueblo Bonito serves margaritas, wine, tea, coffee and snacks in the afternoon, and we enjoyed sitting by the fire chatting with one of the employees and another couple.

We discussed a number of dining options, and ended up making reservations at Andiamo! www.andiamoonline.com I've heard good things about Andiamo! for years, but we had never eaten there. It was fabulous! Mr. Pickle had their baby greens salad and a pasta dish with spicy grilled shrimp, and I enjoyed their roasted beet salad, crispy duck legs, and a nice glass of Montepulciano that was on special. It was busy, but not overly noisy, and we had a lovely meal. Thanks to DebitNM for suggesting this restaurant!

After dinner, we headed up to the Hilton, where an Irish guitarist was playing in their lounge. He was on break, so we walked down to the San Francisco Street Bar and Grill to hear Savor play what they called "Cuban street music." A glass of hefeweizen went nicely with the music and dancing. They tossed a couple of oldies into their Cuban mix. I never realized before how well "La Bamba" segues into "Twist and Shout." :-))

We had a nice continental breakfast the next morning, checked out, and found a spot near the Plaza to park (free parking on Sundays, hurray!). I'd downloaded some self-guided walking tours from Santa Fe's website and from www.frommers.com, so we did a combination of the city's New Deal art walking tour and the Frommer's tour of historic homes around downtown, fortifying ourselves midway through with a stop at the French Pastry Shop by La Fonda.

Neither of us had visited the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, so we made it our next stop. I've never been a big fan of her art, but the films explaining how the landscape influenced her painting were interesting, and we enjoyed our visit. Half price admission for New Mexico residents didn't hurt, either.

Before we left for home, we had lunch at the Cowgirl BBQ - really good brisket for me, tasty jambalaya for Mr. Pickle.

It had been a few years since we'd had a weekend for just us, and we're already discussing when we can do it again. It was relaxing, refreshing, romantic...wonderful!

Lee Ann

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