Monday, January 18, 2016

Leaving the Historic Route

Last night with Rt 66 - at historic Tucumcari,"Gateway to New Mexico and U.S. Route 66 West,"

Entering New Mexico
No time that night to visit any of the tourist attractions promoted on its web page, just enough time and energy to get connected to the internet and plan the last full day's journey. We wanted to side track up to Santa Fe to see the stairs constructed by St. Joseph and to reach the home of cousins, Jan and Joe Gilles, in Albuquerque at a reasonable time. I was excited about that because Jan is the first of my distant cousins that I met online and the one who gave me a great boost when I first put my nose into the family genealogy. She had copies of many Gilles records and between the two of us we got them sorted out into which ones fit our family and which did not. But that's for another post.

The view ahead
Roadside view
The scenery along the way was glorious. I ventured taking pictures with my recently acquired cell phone -- no, not a smart one!  It did take good pictures! God bless the camera!

Loretto Chapel, Santa Fe, New Mexico
The first adventure on that last full day was our side trip to Santa Fe, New Mexico to see the Loretto Chapel which has the stairs believed to be built by the carpenter, St.Joseph. This miraculous spiral staircase stands in a small chapel in what was once a girl's school established in 1853 by the Sisters of Loretto. Finding our way to the chapel and a place to park was a bit of an adventure in its own right, but find it we did and have the picture below to prove it.
Sr. Catherine and Sr. Mary Karen'
at the foot of the staircase.

When we found the chapel, we also found the Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis (pictures). It's history, architecture and significance are captured well in Wikipedia. No Franciscan would be able to resist taking a peek at that as well. I have no picture to prove we were there due to sunlight glare and consequent inability to see exactly what view I was getting. The "pray" part of the "point and pray" method for taking pictures in the sun did not work!

I do however have a picture of "St. Francis Preaching to the Birds" in the Cathedral garden.  The quotation on the plaque begins with  “My brother and sister birds, you should praise your Creator and always love him."  

Fitting words, I believe, for all of us to take to heart. Sr. Mary Karen and I certainly had many, many things to praise our Creator for as we left this lovely garden and headed for Albuquerque!

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