Oh Good Grief-Something I Enjoy Even Less than Framing Artwork

WelcomeInRedOverDoor, originally uploaded by carolsLittleWorld.

Just yesterday, I might have stumbled upon something I like even *less* than framing artwork. (Ahem, for those of you who do not know me, cutting mat board and framing artwork ranks right up there with “walking into the ocean” or “skydiving without a parachute” on the list of things I’d rather not be doing.) So, what is this horrible thing and why was I doing it? You might ask, and, I’d be here to tell you.

Making travel arrangements.

Oh good grief!

It all started innocently enough. I thought I’d just “point and click a bit” to check on the prices because, as you know, my trip to Santa Fe is coming up (that’s this place!) and like I need a hotel and stuff. So, off to the web I went.

Oh what a glorious mistake that was!

I was attacked by travel websites. I was bombarded with “This is the #2 ranked hotel in Santa Fe!” web banner thingies (to use a technical term on you there.) You know that little travel gnome? Yeah, well, now so do I and he’s not so friendly once you poke him with a stick, let me tell you. It was a nightmare.

I finally manged to book the flight (after doing hand-to-hand combat with several, ahem “user friendly” airline websites) when I decided it might be a good idea to book my hotel room for my stay in Santa Fe.

Now, let me explain something to you. I know Santa Fe a bit. I’ve been there before-relatively recently too. I’ve been a couple of times and I know the deal there. The hotels, well, they are not cheap. Pretty, yes. Convenient, yes, but not cheap. Santa Fe is pretty much a tourist trap, a land where their favorite occupation is “gouging tourists for large sums of money” (hey, it beats “bank embezzlement” or “highway robbery” any day, right? It’s even less felonious!) I know some of the hotels there-I’ve stayed at a few of them already. Heck, I’ve even gotten drunk in some of the “secret dark corners” of these places. So, me booking a room for a night should be easy, right? Piece of cake? Eh, if only-I wish!

I tried to book the El Rey Inn. I checked on some of the websites and it looked like they had rooms, or maybe not. (Somebody needs to tell that stupid $%^& little gnome that “rooms might be available! Click now!” buttons should actually like, oh, I don’t know, lead to a *real* web page!) After that led to websites from nowhere, I wound up ditching the Internets all together and using some archaic form of communication: the telephone. (Now, for you kids out there-it’s this large brick like device that has a rotary dialing “knob-like” front that you stick your index finger into and….well, never mind that. Think of it as “an iPhone in an old age home” and your just about there.) I called and spoke to a nice lady who told me that they had, “just booked their last room for all of July!” She said this is a nice chipper, cheery voice. I wanted to kill her. Honestly, I had visions of stabbing her in her sleep.

So then I went back to the web and started attacking the gnome again. I Travelocitied, I TripAdvisored, I out-gnomed the gnome. I poked him in places that, well, let’s just say I’m sure he didn’t want to be poked and leave it at that, ok?

After all this, what did I end up with? You might be curious, and I’d be (almost) happy to tell you. Shhh. Don’t tell Mythopolis, but I seem to have secured a relatively cheap-ism room (well, it’s low cost anyway) in a joint called “La Fonda.”

What’s La Fonda like? You might be wondering, and, again, I am but a humble servant here to help.

The rooms there usually go for about $350 a night. The place is right on the plaza, in the heart of Santa Fe. It’s fabulous. It’s the place to see and be seen. It’s all of “old Santa Fe” and more. It’s like an adobe version of the Ritz Carlton. It has a spa, antique furniture, famous artwork, and a world-class restaurant. To mis-quote that famous philosopher, Groucho Marx, I honestly don’t know how I managed to secure a room there because I don’t want to sleep in a five star hotel that would let the likes of me in. Normally, if a hotel of this caliber knew I was coming, why, they’d warn the bell hops, kill the concierge, and turn the lights out as soon as they saw me walk up the drive. I don’t know how I managed to get a reservation, let alone even have it pop up on my “check for hotels under $250 a night in Santa Fe” listings. Wow. Did I get lucky.

Of course, I still want to stay at the El Rey Inn. Someday. Every time I go to Santa Fe, I try to stay there and every time, it seems like just before I make my reservation, they wind up all booked. So now I want to know, who are these people that wait for me to book a room at the El Rey Inn and grab it, snatch it from my clutches minutes before I get mine. I want to know who they are so I can hunt them down and kill them. But not, of course, not before I stay at La Fonda. (Seriously, I hope they die in a hotel fire. But, you know, not one at the El Rey Inn because that, well that would be just bad.)

I’d have to say it “almost” feels good to be all booked for my trip. I say “almost” because, well, the process of booking my trip has served to remind me how much I *hate* to book travel plans. I really hate all of this stuff-I hate making reservations, reserving cars, figuring out the “seat finder” thing for airlines (why, oh why, should I know the inner workings of a McDonnell Douglas MD83?) It’s just so *painful* in more ways than I would care to admit. (Would somebody please explain the different between “economy” “compact” and “small” because, like I sure as heck can’t figure it out.) But, you know, at the end of the day, I’ll be staying at La Fonda which, in case you could not figure out, is Mythopolis’ favorite hotel in Santa Fe.

Gosh, after all of this, I sure hope there’s a mint on that pillow.

Until next time…


  1. mythopolis
    June 10, 2010 / 1:36 pm

    Yeh, I do like LaFonda…but actually, the cheapest way to do Santa Fe is to find an all night Waffle House and sleep sitting up while pretending to read a book. Of course it sucks to wake up and find yourself face down in a plate of cold pancakes!

  2. Janice / Dancing with Sunflowers
    June 10, 2010 / 1:40 pm

    Hi Carol,
    What an adventure! And you haven't even left home yet! I do hope Santa Fe itself is less trouble and more of just great things happening. I would LOVE to go to Santa Fe. And I LOVE your photo too. If you didn't take it on one of your previous trips there, then it looks as if you should have!

  3. Carol
    June 11, 2010 / 3:04 pm

    @Mythopolis, an all night Waffle House. Hmmm. Never thought of that, thanks! (And, yes, I'll look out for the cold pancakes!)

    @Postcards, I'm sure Santa Fe will be great, the workshops there are always fun. I hope you make it out there someday, it is a wonderful place to shoot. And, thanks on the photo too, yes, it's from my last trip out that way-this is somewhere along (or near) Canyon Road (the street with all of the galleries on it.)

    After a while, you almost get sick of photographing adobe. It's everywhere. Then, you come back home and find you have gigs and gigs of spent CF consisting of nothing but adobe shacks. It's almost hard to avoid it out that way.

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