Jane Ellen

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A Visit to Santa Fe

I ran away to Santa Fe last Friday evening.

It was Fiesta weekend, a now 299-year-old (and counting) celebration, and the first chance I've had to take the train north since last winter. As I stood on the platform, the sky darkened, and it began to sprinkle. Then, as raindrops began to fall with more determination, those of us waiting struggled into jackets and hoodies, silently cursing the train which sat on the track perhaps half a mile away and couldn’t be bothered to pull up a couple of minutes early.

Finally on board, I settled back and soon was whizzing past the city limits on my way to The City Different, and before long it seemed as if I could actually sense autumn in the air. Seasons change sharply in Burque, if at all, and we often joke about the single day of autumn that slipped in between interminable weeks of summer before winter arrived.

With each passing mile I felt more relaxed, closer to autumn, and closer to one of my favourite escapes. Depending upon your trusted source, Santa Fe rests either 7000 or 7500 ft above sea level, quite a bit above the mile-high city where I live. It's a significantly smaller city with a modern cosmopolitan atmosphere, but at the same time, some parts have a quaint old-European feel, to where it's hard to remember you're in the United States.

A friend picked me up at the station and treated me to dinner at one of our favourite restaurants, Tortilla Flats. By the time we returned to her house, unloaded my overnight bag, and paid significant attention to the trio of feline residents, it began bucketing rain. Winds blew, temps dropped, and by early Saturday morning it was clear there would be no Fiesta experience for me.

But when you are in a warm cosy house, filled with friendship, loving cats, hot coffee, cold beverages, and abundant food in the fridge – it's hard to go wrong. We whiled away the hours talking, watching films, and discussing music, as well as chatting about this strange and wonderful thing we call life.

All too soon it was Sunday morning and time to return to reality, which is never really a bad thing. It simply means that somewhere in the near or distant future I’ll get another chance to escape to a similar, or perhaps very different, destination. Honestly, I can't wait; it must be the gipsy in my soul.

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