The winding blacktop country road that led to the petroglyph trailhead follows an ancient route. It began as a footpath between thriving Native American villages strung along the Santa Fe River. Images carved into the rock cliffs watched over the villages and their visitors.
In the 16th century, the road became a branch of a colonial wagon road, El Camino Real De Tierra Adentro, the "Royal Road of the Interior". This road was the earliest Euro-American trade route in the United States. It tied Spain's colonial capital at Mexico City to its northern frontier in distant New Mexico. El Camino Real was part of Spain's global network of roads and maritime routes. El Rancho de las Galandrinas, two miles south of here, was the last paraje - a campground or resting place - that travelers used before they reached the colonial capital of Santa Fe, 15 miles upriver.
Under a slight drizzle, we followed the footpath and clambered over slick rocks to the ridge. Right or left? A scramble to the right yielded no petroglyphs, so we reversed course and found the ones in the mosaic below. If the weather had been more favorable, I suspect we would have explored more thoroughly.
On the return to the car, I noticed some wilted leaves among the brush. On further inspection, I concluded it was some sort of squash. I know that squash is one of the "Three Sisters" (squash, maize (corn) and beans), the foundation of Ancestral Pueblo people's diet, but is this plant growing naturally, or something that was planted this year? I saw several plants in the vicinity, but nothing to solve the mystery.
We all relished the benefits of hydrotherapy in the thermal pools, and #1 Daughter and I also took advantage of the spa for massages. Utter relaxation.
Imagine my surprise when, a few moments later, he asked me to take pictures. No questions asked, I took his phone and began to line up the shot when he got down on one knee. What!?!?! It was all I could do to keep my hands from shaking and my eyes from crying as I snapped away, doing my best to capture this meaningful, significant event.
Later, over dinner, The Boyfriend would recall the minutes leading up to his proposal. His heart was about to pop out of his chest, while #1 Son and I leisurely read the historical information. And I was shooting a picture of a bush, of all things, while he was trying to get me, the better photographer, to focus on what was about to happen. Oh my! And this is how wonderful family stories, ones that get handed down and told repeatedly, are made!
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What a lovely end to a wonderful adventure! (I had the best time catching up -- we absolutely fell in love with New Mexico when we RVed there on one of our early RV trips -- it is a magical place. Loved the memories your posts brought as well as the new special ones your beautiful family enjoyed together!ReplyDelete
...my how time happen changed, we were engaged 55 years ago and it was quite simple!ReplyDelete
lol, that´s a great story. I wish the young couple a happy future.ReplyDelete
A great ending to a good trip.
Congratulations to #1 daughter and Boyfriend--soon to be son-in-law! How exciting to be a part of the proposal, Angie, and have these beautiful sunset photos of the event! Much love and happiness as they plan their wedding. Now New Mexico will always be a very special place for your family!ReplyDelete
That is a good spot to propose.ReplyDelete
What a wonderful family moment for sure. You'll never forget this. Well planned out boyfriend since everyone was clueless. LOL! Congratulations to all!ReplyDelete
You get to see so many interesting places and things and how cool to be a part of that couples special moment.ReplyDelete
Great update on the trip! Love the Moto, do not stray from the quest! The best is the engagement...whoohoo! Love you all.ReplyDelete
Fantastic petroglyphs and finding the squash plants there is such a good find. An absolutely beautiful place for such a wonderful surprise. Wishing them a very happy future! All of you do look so happy and certainly very surprised.ReplyDelete
That's so neat you got to see petroglyphs, I've never visited New Mexico but it looks amazing!ReplyDelete
A sweet and fun proposal. Don't recall going to or reading about Cross of the Martyrs when I was there with my boys some years ago. Definitely need to make a trip back there one day.ReplyDelete
Congrats to daughter # 1 and her boyfriend. It was a beautiful place for the engagement and photos. Great report on your trip, the spa sounds wonderful. I would like to see the petroglyphs.
Have a great new week!
Thank you, Angie, for sharing such a heartfelt moment of truth. I think I know you can’t stop smiling. Nice travelling in such historical places, uniquely and distinctively American. The spa resort must have been a heaven.ReplyDelete
A beautiful location and a great place for a significant life moment, Angie. Congratulations on your daughter's engagement. May the couple have a happy life together.ReplyDelete
PS: Thank you for hosting!ReplyDelete
Petroglyph nirvana! Rain or shine.ReplyDelete
What a happy happy story! How perfect that you were all together to enjoy the special moment! WOW! I'm wishing them the very best! Sweet hugs to you all!ReplyDelete
A happy future to the young ones.ReplyDelete
Happy Mosaic Monday.
Oh, Angie 💞 congratulation. I read again and again... Once about the historical background of your journey and twice of your lovely news. What a overwhelming Story of your daughter and her boyfriend with his Marriage proposal. I had tears in my eyes.ReplyDelete
Thank you for let us be part of this scene.
Oh dear Angie,ReplyDelete
this is really a wonderful family story! How nice, an engagement in the middle of nature :-D I think that fits your family very well! I have a few tears in my eyes now ...
Your trip to the petroglyphs was wonderful too, even if the weather wasn't perfect. I am enthusiastic about such signs from our ancestors. When we were in Namibia a few years ago, we visited the rock engravings of Twyfelfontein - I wrote about it in this post:
It was interesting and wonderful (like the entire Namibia vacation) and I was so excited to have some kind of contact with people who lived 2000 or even 6000 years ago. I am sure it was the same for you in New Mexico!
Best wishes from Austria to your whole family,
That is so amazing that you were able to take the photo of the actual engagement. What a fabulous memory!ReplyDelete
Such a happy story and wonderful photographs.ReplyDelete
I'm smiling :)
All the best Jan
Oh what a wonderful moment to be witness to! So very special. And I love the joyous photo of you all, even though boyfriend is looking down. Enjoy the months ahead as wedding plans are made. Stay safe and thank you for sharing with us.ReplyDelete
Wonderful story! Congratulations!ReplyDelete
What a fun story to tell over the years! Love the photo. Congratulations to #1 daughter and her fiance.ReplyDelete
Oh wow, what a story. What a setting to propose!! Amazing. That will be something that you guys will be talking about forever.ReplyDelete
What a great spot to propose!ReplyDelete
Congrats to your daughter and her boyfriend!
Pretty places. What a fun way to witness the proposal!ReplyDelete
Well we all like a story with a happy ending don't we? I'll bet you are already planning for the wedding if I know you ladies.ReplyDelete
I'm thinking that squash plant could well have been an ancestor of the originals, after all they would just keep self seeding?
Lovely your daughter, let's a wedding day Angie.ReplyDelete
Congrats! What a beautiful place for a Proposal! I am very happy for your family.It looks like it was a wonderful trip. We had snow yesterday down here in the south.Most of it melted,But it was lovely while it lasted.Have a wonderful thanksgiving!KitReplyDelete
What a beautiful time and place for a proposal Angie, congratulations to all!! Looks like an amazing place to visit.ReplyDelete
Wow, what a special and treasured moment to be part of, Priceless! Congratulations to all!!!ReplyDelete