Subject: Re: : Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta
Gretchen, I must agree with Deb about the Hotel Santa Fe. We stayed there last winter and enjoyed it so much we're returning next month for a couple of days of skiing in the local mountains. The restaurant in Ranchos de Chimayo (on the high road between Santa Fe and Taos) has the finest Southwestern Cuisine I have ever had the pleasure to sample. The green chile is hearty and perfectly picante; the sopapillas light and crisp. This restaurant ranks in my personal top 5 for the whole country. You can bet we'll be making the drive up from Santa Fe just for dinner. In Taos there is a quirky pension called the Laughing Horse Inn. This alternative-style adobe inn (a shrine to Jerry Garcia occupies a niche in one of the hallways) has a history going back to the early part of the last century (you know, the 20th). All the literary/art types that frequented Taos then, passed through this place (D.H. Lawrence, Willa Cather, Georgia O'Keefe, etc.). If you want to get a sense of what this area is like read The Milagro Beanfield War by John Nichols. Also, you can rent the movie of the same name. Produced and directed by Robert Redford it was filmed near Las Truchas which is on the high road between Santa Fe and Taos.

I think you'll find the state motto Land of Enchantment to be accurate.

John Rule San Diego, CA