Pilgrims and Puppies: Ohkay Owingeh and Chimayo

Yesterday, I decided to venture out to the old San Juan pueblo (the end of El Camino Real) and now called the Ohkay Owingeh pueblo. The is the pueblo from which Pope came.

The pueblo itself sits on the Rio Grande, and I captured a very beautiful sunset with a little bird’s nest in the reeds.


I could hear the little bird chirping nearby, but I left it alone. I found some interesting rocks along the river, and the next morning enjoyed a wonderful dog run.



San Juan pueblo has a beautifully reconstructed replica of the shrine in Lourdes – and is a site of pilgrimage. The shrine itself was conceived by Father Camillo Seux of Lyons, France, completed and consecrated in 1890.


I took a picture of “our Lady of Lourdes” and if you look carefully, you will note a white dog in the background – waiting for a pilgrim.


Later in the day, I moved up to Chimayo – an old Spanish town that is another old site of pilgrimage with holy ground.


Here, I attended mass in the old sanctuary, took some photos, and later discovered that my flash card reader had been returned to the truck. I pushed my luck with the dogs trying to capture a picture of them in front of St. Francis, a very difficult blessing!

St. Francis, apparently had other ideas, and Scottie skipped out of his collar, and gave the very friendly horse some exercise by running back and forth along the fence. In utter exasperation, I managed to corral him and get him into the truck. As I did, I met a man who looked like an Indian Quaker complete with overalls and a beard (now there’s a stretch for anyone’s imagination). He told me that someone had dumped a female pregnant dog out there 1 month ago and that she had had puppies 3 days ago. She looks like Scottie. He doesn’t know how many puppies there are or where exactly the pups are (she is hiding them), but they will be waiting for pilgrims to look after in about 6 weeks…

I made it all the way up to Truchas– one of the most beautiful towns in New Mexico – climbing a 35% grade with a little loss of compression, and then decided to turn around. I was out of gas. I guess that I will try to fix the gasket on my truck myself a little closer to the end of the month. The Navaho said it was a 30 min. job, Exxon says 3 and ½ hours. It doesn’t look trivial, and since I rely on the truck for mobility, I will wait until the end of the month to try the job.


Happy to have pictures again!

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