Monday, March 29, 2010

New Mexico - Land of Enchantment

new mexico

new mexico

Hi! Welcome to New Mexico. This week, I'm featured on Blogtrotting, and I want to share a little piece of my world with everyone else.

New Mexico is located in the beautiful desert Southwest of the United States. You may think I'm explaining this for the benefit of other people around the world, but most New Mexicans have probably experienced that it's fellow Americans who are the ones that don't know we are a state. We've all been greeted by a friendly East Coaster with "Enjoy your visit to the United States!" or "Wow, you speak really good English."

Chimayo,New Mexico
Chimayo, N.M.
Photo courtesy Seth Goodman

I'm glad you're reading this, because if you depend on the movie industry for your information about N.M., you probably think we're a bunch of inbred, cannibalistic misfits waiting to dine on your brain. I assure you this is not the case. "The Hills Have Eyes" and "The Hitcher" are works of fiction. Promise! You can find some of my earlier posts on the topic "Everything I needed to know about New Mexico I learned from the movies" here and here.

**We really don't look like that. We like green chile, not human flesh. Scroll down a bit**

New Mexico

Incidentally, we do have a booming but fledgling movie industry here. With state incentives, filmmakers have been flocking to New Mexico and studios like Albuquerque Studios are sprouting. The popular, Emmy-winning TV show "Breaking Bad" is filmed and set in Albuquerque. More information on the industry can be found here.

Sandias,New Mexico
Sandia foothills, Albuquerque
Photo courtesy Elaine Russell

N.M. is a huge state (121,000+ square miles) with a small population of about 2 million people, statewide. A large percentage of those people are situated in the Albuquerque metro area.

My all-time favorite place to go in the whole world is Carlsbad Caverns. And lucky me! It's located right here in my home state. Located near Carlsbad, N.M., in the southern part of the state, it's a breathtaking tour of cave formations that make me feel lost in another world.

Carlsbad Caverns,New Mexico
Carlsbad Caverns
Photo courtesy Seth Goodman

New Mexico is a cultural melting pot, if you'll excuse the cliche. Indian and Spanish cultures blend with Caucasians to create a multicultural environment. It's a minority-majority state. Of course, there are other races and ethnic groups, but in smaller proportions.

Bandelier National Monument is an amazing relic located in northern N.M. You can see the ancient Indian ruins and climb ladders into the cliff dwellings used long ago.
Bandelier,New Mexico
Bandelier, N.M.
Photo courtesy Seth Goodman

The Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta is a tourist favorite. Beautiful hot air balloons fill the sky each fall, drawing people from all over the world. I'm no early bird, so I usually miss the balloons. If you don't mind the wee, cold hours, you may just fall in love. I took this picture from my house last fall when I came across a few lingering in the sky.


People are pretty outdoorsy 'round here. Skiing, hiking, rock climbing, whitewater rafting, bicycling, etc. are quite popular. Lord knows there are plenty of beautiful, open spaces to enjoy here.

Angel Fire,New Mexico
Angel Fire, N.M.
Photo courtesy Lauren Fagan

Up in the northern part of the state, you may be familiar with Los Alamos, home of the national laboratory where the atomic bomb was developed. Not too far from there is Santa Fe, a small city well-known for its big art scene. Galleries and museums practically outnumber the people. Artist Georgia O'Keeffe made her home in the Ghost Ranch area. Santa Fe is celebrating 400 years and Albuquerque is 300 years old, so while N.M. is a young state, we have a deep and rich history and some of the oldest cities in the country.

If you come here, you will probably be faced with the question "red or green?" New Mexicans love their cuisine, and we have food all our own. New Mexican food is really big on the chile - not chili -- which comes in red or green varieties. Green chile is not the same as jalapenos, and we have a hard time understanding why we can't seem to get it outside of state lines. We put it in and on everything -- eggs, soup, jelly, bread -- you name it. Some people say the answer to wanting both red and green is "Christmas," but honestly, I've lived here for 32 of my 36 years, and I have never heard someone say that. I think that it's a touristy answer, and not a locals thing.

green chile

One last thing: It's windy here in the spring, and tumbleweeds abound. Don't let yourself become a victim.


If you'd like to feature your hometown or state on BlogTrotting, click the link above.


Anonymous said...

It makes me miss home.

Heather said...

Looks gorgeous! How lucky you are to live in such a culturally diverse area, with so much to do! Those caverns look amazing. We've done Mammoth Caves in Kentucky...I would love to visit Carlsbad with my kids.

Great tour!

(We have green chiles in Ohio. Use them all the time in my white chicken chili recipe...)

CaraBee said...

Great tour, Robyn! I've been to Albuquerque, but just for a short visit on my way to Phoenix. What I saw was really beautiful. And I'm pretty sure I didn't catch sight of even one flesh-eating maniac. :)

I definitely hope to get back out there for a visit someday!

Thanks for being a part of BlogTrotting!

brainella said...

I've never been to NM, but I'm hoping to make it in September. We are planning on driving to Canyon De Chelly from Phoenix and since it's very nearby, I'd love to jump over to Gallup.

So gorgeous.

Dividing My Time said...

Stunning photos, Robyn, you make me want to head West! I love the name of your site...Additional Jesus also to me sounds like recipes.

Sharlene said...

I have driven through New Mexico on I10 but never actually visited. It looks so nice and I have high hope to try to hit it up this year. I dream of a weekend in Taos especially.Thank you for the tour!

mom,interrupted said...

It looks like a beautiful place to live. Enjoyed the tour!

BTW- I loved the story about how your blog got its new name (I think I woke everyone up laughing though) Look forward to reading more.

Anonymous said...

So beautiful!! I'd love to visit New Mexico sometime (and the good news is, I already knew i didn't need a passport to get there!)

Poor guy in the tumbleweeds, I hope you rescued him after you took his picture ;-) said...

thank you so much for including my photo in your post!
That was awesome. ... and I'm sorry I didn't see it until now...


hoettmer said...

Great place for traveling in New Mexico.

Arndell said...

Great place for traveling in New Mexico.

hecter said...

Great places! So beautiful!