The Land of Enchantment is absolutely an appropriate nickname for Santa Fe, New Mexico: sprawling mountains every way you turn, huge, beautiful, colorful skies, and clear, crisp air that takes your breath away (quite literally, actually, the high altitude makes it really hard to breath and you unfortunately feel like a floundering asthmatic). I had a brief stint in Santa Fe last summer (there's another post about it somewhere around here...) and fell in love, so living there for a whole summer was absolutely incredible. Granted, I spent a majority of my time working in the costume department at the Santa Fe Opera -- another story in itself as I practically lived there, but I can easily make the claim that it's the most beautiful place I've ever worked (check out their website here). This didn't stop me though! With the built up adrenaline and creative operatic juices flowing I managed to get out and see what else Santa Fe and the surrounding area has to offer... let me tell you, I still can't get enough. The food is great, the art is plenty, and the people are at that perfectly eccentric level of bizarre. So enjoy - and you probably should be looking at this with a margarita in your hand.
Processional into St. Francis Cathedral Basilica
yes, we had a 90's roller skating party...
...at a Roswell/ Alien themed skate rink.
Miss Rodeo de Santa Fe
my view from the opera every day at sunset
the cantina... essentially, our cafeteria complete with swimming pool
wigs & makeup
the lovely Rachel Hall in one of my costumes for Britten's The Turn of the Screw
the Fab 15 (photo by Joanna Koefoed)
Lake Abiquiu - it was kind of like being on Mars, being at a lake in the middle of the desert!
the back deck of the opera
One Friday I go to a flea market in the middle of the desert and stumble upon this gorgeous shack that had been decorated head to toe with the most random objects in the most beautifully calculated way. I start taking pictures and this man walks up to me and asks if I want a card to go along with my pictures… so I follow him in and it’s Kelly, the artist who built and decorated the shack. When I step inside the smell of fresh oil paint nostalgically stings my nose and the ground starts to crunch under my feet (i look down to see that it’s completely covered with cardboard puzzle pieces). When I ask, he tells me it took him “five hundred million years” to make, and I tell him I want to make one too. Kelly tells me that I better get started now then since it took him so long, then he asks me if I want a present. I hesitate, then say yes. He walks over to a table and opens up a book, signs the back of it with sharpie, smears it, then hands it to me. It was filled with prints of his art, his poetry, his stories, and photographs taken by his friends. No catch, just kindness… I’m pretty sure it was the best present I ever got.