August 25, 2013

Las Cruces Salsa Fest

"Go to the Salsa Fest" they said.
"It will be fun" they said.

Our friends Bill and Clair, the ones with the six dogs, several cats, countless chickens and one rooster, always say don't go to these kinds of things. That includes the Salsa Fest, Enchilada Fest, Taco Challenge, and many, many others. "Too crowded" or "Too hot" or "Too something or other." Well today, I did not take their advice and went to the Salsa Fest to take some pictures. Yes, it was too crowded. Yes it was too hot. But I did get some good photos.

We arrived after brunch at about 12:30 and drove around a bit to find a close parking spot. When we exited the car, the smells of spicy food and Mariachi music assaulted us. And what a great assault it was.

We stayed for an hour or so, got good pictures and the Mrs. tasted some good salsas. We drank water, listened to music and watched dancers. Saw the tiniest baby we have ever seen and got back into the the air conditioned car and drove to our air conditioned house after an hour.

So as they say on the intertubes, pictures or it didn't happen. What follows are a few pictures!

Mariachi band

Mr Balloon Man

More Mariachi


Cool Sax...

The sign of a really good salsa? Wearing it so everyone knows you like it. 

Mandatory husband comments:
1. You can take the girl out of the northeast to the southwest but you can't take the salsa out of the clothes...
2. I can dress her up but I can't take her out...


August 7, 2013

What I did on my summer vacation

Part 1: The Wedding...

We knew that there was going to be a wedding, in Colorado, this summer, about 18 months ago. When we first checked and saw it was an 800 mile drive, we decided then and there that we would take our time, do some sightseeing and enjoy visiting a couple of states.

As the date slowly approached, we refined our thoughts to include a couple of National Parks - Arches and Grand Canyon. This was our agenda for quite awhile until about a month or two before the wedding when we began to realize how far a trip the Grand Canyon was from the wedding town of Estes Park, CO and how long a return trip it would be from there. This was complicated by the fact that we were going to send our dogs to a "Pet Spa" that was more costly then I had hoped for and we didn't want to leave them for all that long for the first time ever.

We spent a great deal of time studying the maps of the area and decided on a grand circle tour from Estes Park  toward home, visiting 2 other National Parks in the process, Rocky Mountain and Mesa Verde. Today I will talk about the wedding weekend.

I have known Bill for almost 40 years. He gave me my first job out of college, encouraged me (demanded really if you know Bill) that I go back to school for a MSW and then helped me get my first job in Massachusetts and hired me essentially for my second job there that I stayed with for 30 years. He has two sons, who I watched grow up, playing little league and hearing all about the traumas of adolescence, college and their growing up. It had been close to 15 years since I had seen either of them but that would change as one, Fred, was getting married.

The wedding weekend took place on in a lodge on the Lake Estes, a very beautiful location. We were invited to the rehearsal dinner where we caught up with friends and new acquaintances, and then spent the rest of the evening at the lounge discussing life. Saturday was a bit threatening with clouds and we spent part of the day looking at the town and the mountains during a bit of a drive. A passing shower had people concerned about an outdoor wedding but the clouds opened up, sun shined and the wedding went off without a hitch. The reception featured non stop dancing that left participants and bystanders dizzy for sure.

Overall it was a wonderful weekend of celebrating, catching up and enjoying the mountains and lake. Sunday morning would bring us to the Big Climb!

Storm approaching from the west

Threatening skies

"and the bastard dog becomes legal..." maid of honor