We flew into Albuquerque and rented a car to drive up to Santa Fe. We drove up the Turquoise Trail so we could stop at TinkerTown. I have heard of TinkerTown from several folks that have gone and I have looked at pictures on the internet...but to go there in person was magical. It's a small place if you look close but the way you walk through all the wonderful displays you would never know. All I can say is if you ever find yourself in New Mexico north of Albuquerque and you like folk environments check out TinkerTown.
Then we headed up to Taos and spent one night. I liked Taos but it really is a small artist community with a huge emphasis on shopping. We set out for Raton after a night in Taos, driving the Enchanted Circle. I really loved the drive and wish we would have spent a night on one of the cute small towns along the way but we really wanted to get to Raton on a Saturday as we heard that the city closes down on Sundays. Our stop in Eagle Nest was a little disappointing as we stopped for a beer and thought we would get a slice of pizza at the small shop across the street that promoted Fresh Hot Pizza. Only to find out that when we ordered they had to turn on the pizza oven..?!...so we wondered the 3 block area for 20 minutes only to get a melted 10" cheese thing...not sure what happened to the pepperoni.
Raton was a bust, very depressing town, hot, not very appealing with several closed up businesses. So we had a beer and headed north to Trinidad Colorado. Oh yea...we got carted in the local beer joint...I have bras older than the young lady the carded me.
Trindad was OK, cute little town. We had Italian food at a small joint that cooks each plate individually, that is to say we waited for about 45 minutes to get dinner. Saw a cool looking art van and in general liked the vibe of the small town.
Getting up Sunday morning we headed out east to Kansas. Our destination was Liberal Kansas, the home of Dorthy Gale from Wizard of Oz. We drove through some of the flattest areas that I have ever seen. Lots of corn, lots of grain silos and trains moving agriculture across America. Once we got to the Home of Dorthy Gale we found the crushed penny machine was out of order...?!!! We wondered through the museum and looked at interesting history of Liberal then headed south for BBQ in Texas. We drove straight through Oklahoma..about 40 miles but I really didn't want to stop in the state. My husband had heard that there was good BBQ in Delhart Texas so that was our destination. Only all the BBQ places were closed on Sunday. We did stop at a tavern that was quite interesting. The bartender was a low talker and talked to us for quite some time but neither of us were able to really understand what she was saying. She did give us a piece of Apple Pie that had Hatch Chilies in the pie. It was quite good. Since Delhart Texas was a bust too we left and headed back west to Tucumcari New Mexico on Route 66.
The town has one route through with several old neon signs from the days of car travel across Route 66. We stayed in Motel Safari, a very cute little motel that has been nicely remodeled to match the late 50's designs.
From there we headed sort of north to Las Vegas New Mexico...a town that was supported by the railroad in the 1800's. Several older building are being remodeled and the whole town seems to be having a growth sprout of younger folks and hip stores. Several small boutiques and handmade items by local crafts folks. Still seems affordable and might just be the next place to move. After a couple of days it was back up to Santa Fe for one more night before we flew home. We really liked the Turquoise Trail on our way up to Santa Fe we decided to explore it on the way back down since we had all day to travel about 100 miles. We found a cute little town called Madrid and spend most of the afternoon in the town looking at various shops and sights. It's mostly a town to walk up and down the road looking at rugs, jewelry & clothing. Since we were not packing any else home it was all eye candy for us.