Catching Up

I’m always behind in my blogging.  I need to catch up.  We are back at Storrie Lake State Park in Las Vegas, after spending a week at Iska’s in Santa Fe again.  So, briefly, here are some shots of the past 3-4 weeks or so.

Here is one reason I haven’t blogged lately – my new toy.  An inkle loom I found in Santa Fe when we were at Iska’s the first time.  It makes bands: belts, straps, trim, etc.

Inkle Loom

Inkle Loom and book, with my first project warped, ready to start weaving.

Working on my first band

Weaving my first inkle band

I have made several bands and am getting better at it.  It’s a nice, small loom.  Easy to weave in my RV, or take outside and use it on the table in my shelter.  Just finished weaving a band with Rasta colors today.  Still need to finish the ends and get a couple of D-rings to make a belt.

Rasta color Belt

Rasta Belt

Anyway, we’ve been camping with the gals again lately:

Barbara and Katie

Barbara and Katie

Annie and Jake

Annie and Jake

We had a nice 4th of July cookout with John, our camphost and friend:

July 4th Cookout

July 4th Cookout

John took a picture of us gals one day when we were out walking the dogs and he was out taking pictures of some baby birds.

Me, Annie and Barbara with Riley, Jake and Katie

Me, Annie and Barbara with Riley, Jake and Katie

We were all parked together in a row. A nice neighborhood:

From left - Barbara, Me, John, and Annie

From left – Barbara, Me, John, and Annie

After 2 weeks at Storrie, Riley and I headed up to Heron Lake.  The plan was to bounce between Heron Lake and El Vado Lake for a month or two.  We had to pass through Santa Fe, so stopped for a week with Iska and Larry.  We caught another couple of bands at the Plaza – The Rifters and Ballroom Thieves.

The Rifters playing at the Santa Fe Bandstand

The Rifters playing at the Santa Fe Bandstand.

Santa Fe Plaza concertgoers

Folks enjoying the Santa Fe Plaza concert

Sunset at Iska's

Sunset at Iska’s

Plans changed when Barbara went up to Heron Lake and found out the Verizon tower up there was out, due to a storm.  She came back to Las Vegas, and Annie and I decided to do the same.  We ran into Ryan here, who Riley and I saw at Quartzsite and Yuma in Jan./Feb. last year.

New Age Nomad Ryan

New Age Nomad Ryan

Ryan has been out to Heron and El Vado (when the Verizon was working), and more recently, Coyote Creek State Park.  We picked his brain on how the Verizon is up there.  Sounds like it’s workable (plus the campground has wifi), so Riley and I will probably try Coyote Creek once our stay is up here at Storrie.

Nancy is here, and Renee, who we met here a couple of weeks ago.   Annie got back here just after Riley and I pulled in on Wednesday.  Then Roxanne drove up after getting her new cast in Las Cruces.  Annie and Roxi and I are sharing a site (it’s been great!), but plan to spread out when 2 electric sites open up tomorrow.  Barbara got back on Thursday.  She and Nancy are sharing the site next to us until Nancy heads out in a couple of days.  And we met Paula, but she left today.  We have all been hanging out and walking dogs. We had a happy hour the other day and grilled together yesterday.  Life is good.  🙂

New Mexico Sunset

New Mexico Sunset (with Roxanne and Annie)

All caught up.  Yay!

More from Santa Fe

After Hyde Memorial State Park we moved to Iska’s place, just outside Santa Fe. She and her boyfriend Larry have a lovely adobe home in the country there, with room for Riley and I to park for a few days.

Parked at Iska's place

Parked at Iska’s place

It was so nice there.  Iska has a big corral with a garden in half of it and also keeps bees in the other half.  I really enjoyed learning about what she was growing and why.  Plus, what it takes to be a beekeeper.

The garden

The garden  (Early morning, facing east, not a good exposure.  Oh, well…)

One of her friends, Kate, that tends the bees and garden with her was there, checking on everything.  She was an expert guest on the Albuquerque NPR station for a show about bees a couple of days earlier.  I was able to pull it up online and listen.  It’s interesting what a cooperative community a beehive is.

The Bee Side

The Bee Side

This gives the bees a handy water source.

This gives the bees a handy water source.  (Can you tell there is water here?  Kate had just filled it up with water, over the rocks.)  It’s a bee-bath!

Iska and I enjoy some of the same activities.  Like making salves and lotions.  We exchanged little pots of concoctions like kids just back from the candy store.  Also, she showed me how to make pesto with garlic scapes from her garden, and I picked mint leaves then dried them to make mint tea.  Always nice to learn new ideas and recipes.

It was a bit hot in Santa Fe (and in my RV), getting up to the low 90’s.  But, the house was always nice and cool.  Even without air conditioning.  The adobe construction keeps it at a very nice temp.  And the east facing porch was a great spot (with a bit of a breeze) to sit and read.  Especially when I was doing my laundry.  How great was that?  I got to do laundry in nice machines in a house, not at the laundromat.  Thanks Iska!  What a treat!

Santa Fe has lots of cool things going on in the summer, including a free concert series at the Plaza.  We went down to the Plaza to hear The Wheeler Brothers, an Austin band.  I hadn’t heard of them, but really enjoyed the music.

Wheeler Brothers at the Santa Fe Bandstand

Wheeler Brothers at the Santa Fe Bandstand

Me with Iska and Larry

Me with Iska and Larry at the Santa Fe Plaza

Crowd

Iska and Larry like to dance, and they had lots of opportunity with this band.

They have free concerts at the Bandstand almost every night throughout the summer.  Maybe we will catch another concert.  I’m heading back to Iska’s tomorrow, after leaving Storrie Lake State Park, where Riley and I have been for the last 2 weeks.  We have been here with Barbara and Annie.  They have been better bloggers than me, and have posted more regularly.  I will try to catch up here in the next few days.  I’m really looking forward to spending more time with Iska and Larry.  I had just the best time with them when we were there!

Santa Fe, NM again

So, we had 2 weeks at Storrie Lake, then 6 days away at Villanueva State Park, then back to Storrie Lake for 14 days.  I was thinking of a place to go next.  Maybe a little north to Coyote Creek State Park?  Maybe Hyde Memorial State Park in Santa Fe? I realized I needed to get my next scheduled service done on the scooter, so Santa Fe it is!  Centaur Scooters had closed in Feb. (the owners retired), but Mateo and Eddie had spun off the service shop just around the corner, so I made an appointment for June 10th.  We had to leave Storrie on 6/9, so just headed to Santa Fe and planned an overnight at the new Walmart near I-25.  First up when we got to town was a visit to Trader Joe’s to stock up on some goodies. The next morning we dropped off the scooter, then ran a few more errands.  By noon we were loaded back up and headed up the mountain on the way to Hyde Memorial.  The park sits at about 8,400 ft. elevation, so is nice and cool.

HydeHyde has about 8 RV sites with electric hookups lined up in a row right along the road.  But, I hoped to get site 19, on the main camping road, in the forest.  Chris and I stayed at #19 last June.  It was long and level.  We were able to fit both of our RV’s plus Chris’ truck in the site.  Luckily, it was available when we got there.

Site 19

Site-19It’s a very shady site, but I parked so I got sun by about 11:00 AM, then had sun through the afternoon on my solar panels.  Unfortunately, there were also bugs hitting my roof.  Some little inchworm thingies would lower themselves off the trees via thin strands, so I would either walk into them on the trails, or they would drop on my RV.  They were small enough to get in through the screens on my roof vents.  Fun times.  After a few days I moved to the RV/electric sites.  They don’t have any trees overhanging the sites.

Moved to site #38

Moved to site #38 in the RV row.

Anyway, I already knew there was no internet connection at Hyde.  But, I figured Riley and I could hike the Circle Trail up to the ridge-line where there was Verizon signal.  Or I could scoot into town and hang at a coffee shop.  Every other day we did the hike and every other day I went in to Santa Fe.  That worked out OK, although it’s always nicer to have connection whenever/wherever.

The Circle Trail is a lovely forest hike, although moderately strenuous.   The section from the campground to the ridge is about a mile and gains 1,000 feet elevation.  Riley and I both got better at it each time.

About to head up the trail

About to head up the trail.  Little Tesuque creek runs through the campground and there are lots of little mini-waterfalls.

There are 2 tables at the top of the ridge.

There are 2 picnic tables at the top of the ridge.  Plus you can see a LONG way from up there.

Heading back down

Heading back down

I rode in to Santa Fe on Saturday and got to take in the Farmer’s Market at the Railyard.  There was a good band playing at the entrance. Had to get a picture since they have an upright bass player (I used to play in high school).

Band1

Farmer's Market

They have some GOOD looking produce at this market.

They have some GOOD looking produce at this market.

And another band.  (There were 3 total.)

And another band. (There were 3 total.)

The RailRunner train connects to Albuquerque and runs right next to the Farmer's Market

The RailRunner train connects to Albuquerque and runs right next to the Farmer’s Market

On another day I rode the scooter in to town to run errands and get online.  I picked up a new pair of hiking shoes at REI, 2 sets of jersey sheets to use to cover the couches, and refilled a gallon jug of water.  Then I stopped at the post office to see if my package was in.  Cliff, the former owner of my RV, found some couch bolster pillows and had sent them to me in Santa Fe.  Can you believe I fit all this stuff on the the scooter?

Unloaded

Canvas backpack, shoes, water, box of couch pillows, 2 sets of sheets and my laptop bag with iPad on top.

Shoes and water in the top case at the back, box of pillows bungeed to the top case base, laptop bag on the floorboard (and hanging from a hook under the handlebars).  Canvas backpack is under the seat, I didn’t need to use it.  It scrunches up and lives there in case I need extra carrying ability.

Loaded

The scooter has been so handy.  It’s fantastic to be able to scoot wherever I need to go.  I only wish I could take Riley with me.  It would be nice to take him places to go hiking.  Maybe one day I will upgrade to towing a car.  Maybe some day.

We stayed 7 days at Hyde.  I thought I would move back to Storrie, but didn’t want to get back too soon.  Las Vegas, NM has a big celebration over several days for July 4th.  So, I wanted to get there closer to June 24th or so, so we could have our 14 days stretch past the 4th of July holiday.  I had a standing invitation to visit with my friend Iska who lives in the country on the outskirts of Santa Fe.  She is a longtime friend of Chris’s and I had met her a couple of times last year when he and I visited while in Santa Fe.  I called and we arranged to head to Iska’s on the 17th.  That’s next.  I will sign off with a hummingbird photo.

Lots of hummingbirds at Hyde

Lots of hummingbirds at Hyde

Scootin’ Around Santa Fe

Of course, I’m behind again.  Always behind on my blogging – sorry!  Anyway, Riley and I headed out from Abiquiu on Friday, Sept. 27th, to spend a few days in Santa Fe.  Our Lazy Daze friends were stopping there on the way to the Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta, and I was able to tag along.  Several of them are members of the Elks lodge, which has parking for RV’ers in their back lot.  I was allowed as their guest.  On Friday night we enjoyed the steak and lobster dinner the lodge puts on.  Then, on Saturday morning, we went out to eat at The Pantry.  Great spot for breakfast.  Next we hit the Santa Fe Farmer’s Market.  It’s huge, with lots of vendors, partly outside and partly inside a large building in the “Railyard” area of Santa Fe.

Unfortunately, there was another camper with a loud generator running well into the night.  So, my friends decided to head on to Albuquerque on Saturday when we got back from the market.  I had to stay, since my scooter service appointment was set for Tuesday, 10/1.  So, I just hung out at the Elks, hoping they wouldn’t kick me out since my friends had left.  They didn’t, and their site was great – on the edge of town where the commercial businesses end and it’s mostly residential.  So, it was quiet (I wasn’t next to the generator guy), but an easy scoot to run errands and do some sightseeing.

Nice quiet site at the elks

Nice quiet site at the edge of town at the Elks

Chris didn’t stay at the Elks.  He had gotten to town a few days earlier and set up at Hyde Memorial State Park.  He needed to sort through some stuff in storage and get set up for a hunting trip.  Part of the preparation was getting his other vehicle, a Trooper, set up as a hunting camper.  It was stored at his friend Iska’s, who lives well out of town and has lots of room.  We planned to ride out there on Saturday afternoon, then he would drive the Trooper and I would drive his truck back to his hunting buddy Jack’s place.  (He planned to leave his Lazy Daze and truck at Jack’s while they were away hunting for 10 days).   I had met Iska when Chris and I were in Santa Fe in June, so was looking forward to visiting with her and her boyfriend Larry again.  She has a huge garden that was going to seed and we got to pick all we wanted – tomatoes, blackberries, mint, kale, basil, and other stuff I can’t even remember.  It was a nice visit, and Larry mentioned a bookbinding exhibit going on at the capitol. I added that to my sightseeing plans on Monday.

Monday morning I scooted into the downtown area, stopping at Capitol Coffee, then to the New Mexico capitol building across the street.  Here is my new favorite thing, motorcycle/scooter parking right up front:

Scooter parking at the capitol

Scooter parking at the capitol

The capitol building is really beautiful and the exhibit was fantastic.  The books were more artistic than the more practical notebooks and journals that I make, but I got some new ideas and learned of one technique that I hadn’t even heard of before.

Bookbinding Exhibit

Bookbinding Exhibit

Books and boxes

Handmade books and slipcases

This was an accordion book laid flat that displayed Thoreau quotes which I really liked:

Thoreau Book

Thoreau Book

The  lady at the capitol visitor center said I should go upstairs and see the art in the Office of the Governor.  She was right, very interesting art of all kinds.

Governor's Office

Governor’s Office

This one took up almost a whole wall.  It's so lifelike in person.

This one is huge. It’s beautiful and so lifelike in person.

After the capitol I headed over to the plaza area, finding a parking spot in front of a coffee shop.  The barrista came running out gushing over my scooter.  I told her how I traveled in an RV with the scooter on the back, which she hoped to do someday, so we talked for a while.  Then I checked out the plaza area.

Museum adjacent to the plaza.  I love the architecture of Santa Fe.

Museum adjacent to the plaza. I love the architecture of Santa Fe.

Here is the plaza.  In the background is the Palace of the Governors, the oldest building in the US.  It’s where Native Americans sell handmade items on the sidewalk outside.

Plaza

The Plaza

Another view of the plaza

Another view of the plaza.  By the way, don’t call it a “square”, you will be corrected.  🙂

It was so great to be able to go wherever I wanted while in Santa Fe.  That was the point of getting the scooter – I wanted to have my own mobility.  Now I don’t have to rely on Chris or others to drive me around, and I don’t have to always take my rig when I need to go someplace or do some sightseeing.  Chris came by on Monday evening and helped me to get the scooter back on the carrier (I’m working on learning to do it myself), then we went out for dinner.  On Tuesday morning I drove over to Centaur Scooters and got my initial 200 mile service done.  All went well, they said the scooter looked good, and I was able to get on the road, arriving at Sandia Casino in Albuquerque before sunset.  The plan was to hang with my friends at Sandia, see the balloons from there, then try to visit with the Lazy Daze folks at Balloon Fiesta Park at some point.  I’ll try to write about that ASAP, as soon as I get through the 300 pictures I took and find a few good ones for a post.