Christ in the Desert Monastery

Tony O'Brien, A Quiet Moment, Monastery of Christ in the Desert, 1996, available in various sizes, courtesty of Verve Gallery of Photography

Tony O’Brien, A Quiet Moment, Monastery of Christ in the Desert, 1996, available in various sizes, courtesty of Verve Gallery of Photography

“I yearn for happiness, I ask for help, I want mercy and my love says, “Look at me and hear me, because I am here just for that. I am the moon and the moonlight, too. I am your flower garden and the water, too. I have come all this way, eager for you, without shoes or shawl. I want you to laugh, dissolve all your worries. To love you, to nourish you. I will bring you roses. I, too, have been covered with thorns.”

—Rumi, 13th century mystic Persian poet

By the end of last year, I was so far away from myself that my body and my head were in separate rooms. With my thoughts racing around and around the same tree, I felt deeply depressed and, alienated from the whole human species, more than once I made a public fool of myself. Limping into 2015, I just wished I could escape. Not a vacation but a retreat. Continue reading

Plants that Nourish

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To those of us who call northern New Mexico home—and to those of us who keep traveling back—the trees, flowers and brush that dapple and scent our high-desert landscape are as much a part of the atmosphere that defines this place as the vivid golden light and the soft, looming mountains. This is a place whose botanical traditions are as unique and vibrant as its culinary ones. For over 400 years, the northern New Mexican curanderos, Hispanic folk healers, have harvested and made use of the healing properties of local flora—and the Puebloans have done so for far longer than that, from ancient times.  Continue reading

Café Bien

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Photo by Stephen Lang

“Don’t beat the heck out of that broccoli—you’re taking the vitamins out of it,” Chef Ernesto Duran says to one of his prep chefs while telling me about how much he loves locally grown vegetables and the opportunity to cook them simply. He pauses on the other end of the line to answer someone nearby, then says, “I gotta go—call you right back. Sorry!” And I remember where he is—a clinic waiting room. You see, he’s been feeling under the weather for a few days and finally decided to just have someone take a look. The irony of talking about nutrients and health in general is not lost on either of us—it is very much on his mind, both to allow him to do the work he loves and to nurture his customers at his downtown Albuquerque restaurant, Café Bien. Continue reading

Still Hungry? March 2015

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With the arrival of our annual health and wellness issue, we decided it was time to shelve the heavy holiday treats in exchange for ingredients that nourish the body and brain. We asked four local chefs known for their emphasis on healthy, wholesome food to share their favorite super ingredient with us. Along with tips on getting the most out of their super ingredient, they also gave us a recipe for you to try at home. We’re confident all will leave you feeling lighter, healthier and ready to embrace the greener days ahead. Continue reading

On Walking

Going for a walk is so beautifully uncomplicated. You do not need any special gear; you simply step out the door and do it. And the benefits are enormous. You get the blood flowing, work all those joints, strengthen those muscles and bones. Hold your chin up and feel the sun on your skin. Things slow down. Check out your world, sniff the breeze and say hello to passersby. These are real connections. The joints and muscles may at first respond with an ache, but you’ll feel good in both body and mind. When you get home, you’ll be full of fresh air. That’s a great feeling. Continue reading

Paths to Follow

Want to get your walk on in Santa Fe? Here are a couple pedestrian-friendly routes for a lovely high-desert stroll. Each route begins from the Plaza.
Route 1

Wander west down San Francisco Street. Take a left on Guadalupe Street and hop on the paved path along the river. After crossing St. Francis Drive, the River Trail begins and travels to Frenchy’s Field, where you can trudge through the sandy riverbed arroyo or turn back toward town.


Route 2

Walk east up Palace Avenue and turn left onto Cerro Gordo. The narrow road is steep, and eventually, it turns dusty. The gradual incline quickly takes you high enough above town to look down onto the river valley. On the left, the Cerro Gordo Park is a good place to pause on a bench, or wander down to the river to stroll along the lush, tree-covered path by the water. If you choose to continue up Cerro Gordo, you can pick up the Dale Ball Trail where the road veers sharply to right. If you choose to wander it, bring a lot of water and follow the well-marked trail signs. The views of town and the mountains are breathtaking.

Continue reading