We left this morning shortly after 10:00 to drive the 11 miles to Old Town Plaza.
Old Town was established in 1706 when Spain’s laws required putting a plaza at the center of any villa. Old Town is centered around the plaza comprised of 10 blocks of historic adobe buildings. We parked at the central plaza and stopped in at San Felipi de Neri Church, the oldest building in the city built in 1793.
The settlers built their homes, shops, and government offices around the church. Many of those buildings have been converted into restaurants, art galleries, and shops. The church was open for visitors, so we respectfully went inside.
The main altar and side altars were beautiful.
After spending some quiet time there, we began walking around the plaza and checking out the shops.
The plaza area was pretty quiet for a Tuesday.
We checked out the Heart of Old Town with lots of interesting shops.
Inside one of the courtyards was this beautiful array of plants.
The center of the plaza has this attractive gazebo set up to provide a stage area for whatever activities were going on.
Casa de Armijo, which was occupied by the Armijo family for many generations had a group of Southwestern artisans selling their handmade jewelry and other things along the side of the building. There weren’t many artisans there today, but I’m sure on weekends its a much busier place. The last time we were here, the side of the building was lined with artisans selling their wares.
We have been to Albuquerque before, but enjoy coming back to Old Town again and again.
We left there and took the short drive to Tinsley Beach Park where we could get a glimpse of the Rio Grande River in this area. Seeing the Rio Grande River on this trip in many different locations gave us quite a varied view of the river.
Upon leaving the park, we saw some man-made ponds. One pond was set aside for feeding the Canadian geese and ducks.
One was set aside for fishing for children 12 and under. The third pond was a beach and allowed more fishing. It was a nice park with lots of walking trails and a bike path along the river. From there, we drove a couple of miles to the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center.
Inside was the Pueblo Indian Kitchen which is where we were having lunch.
It was a busy place today, so we checked in, but had to wait 15 minutes. While we waited, we checked out the gift shop.
There were so many beautiful things to look at. Time went by quickly and we were seated. We ordered what we came for—Pueblo Indian Tacos.
They were different than the ones we had earlier on this trip, but delicious just the same. We inquired about the difference between the red and green chili sauces. They said the green was hotter than the red, but the red was still HOT! We enjoyed our meal and I brought some of my taco home for later. We filled up with gas at the Indian gas station, Four Winds, which was on the premises for $4.71/gal. and headed back to the campground for time outside with Auggie and happy hour.
It was 94 degrees with perfectly clear, blue skies, but in the shade it was comfortable with only 9% humidity and a breeze. I had my leftover taco for dinner and Bob wasn’t hungry since he ate his whole taco for lunch. Auggie and I took our walk and spent some time in the dog park. There were 3 big dogs in one section of the park, so Auggie and I took the smaller section of dog park and the dogs didn’t pay attention to each other even through the fence. We got back to watch a little TV and wait for the sun to set. The setting sun made the hills glow.
After the sunset at 8:21, we went to watch TV outside as we waited for the Strawberry Supermoon to rise at 9:11. Because of the Sandia Mountains, we couldn’t see the moon until about 9:30. We walked up to the parking lot of the campground where we could get an unobstructed view. It was so bright and large! In June, the moon happens to be at its closest distance to Earth in its orbit making it a Supermoon. A Supermoon appears 17% bigger and 30% brighter than the faintest moon of the year when it is the furthest from the Earth. Supermoons are relatively rare happening only 3-4 times a year. They call it a Strawberry Supermoon because the name comes from the Native Americans and refers to when the moon appeared during the strawberry harvest season. It was an awesome sight and my camera could really zoom in close to see all the surface features! There will be another Supermoon on July 13 and August 11. Check it out!