This weekend I got to go to the Taos Pow Wow! The Pow Wow was held on the Taos Pueblo, with a grassy area for dancing surrounded by towering mountains. There were tribal members from across the United States and Canada that traveled to participate in the celebration. It truly was a celebration, with elaborate costumes, beautiful dances, people selling handcrafted goods, and food vendors – which is why I got to go. This was my first time surveying temporary food vendors. Although there are definitely different challenges with temporary food vendors versus permanent vendors, the food safety concepts we focused on were the same – employee hygiene, cooking and holding temperatures, and cross contamination issues. I was able to take the lead on the surveys and talk to the vendors to understand their processes, take temperatures, look around their stands, and make recommendations while my supervisor looked on and helped me when I had questions. The Pow Wow was a great learning opportunity, and after all the work was done I had the chance to walk around looking at booths and watch the dances, which were truly spectacular. Since my parents were down in New Mexico visiting me for the weekend, I also got to walk around the city of Taos, drive out to see the Rio Grande Gorge, and visit the Puye Cliffs with them. New Mexico is such a beautiful state, with so much to see and do!
Unfortunately, I didn’t buy a photo permit at the Pow Wow, but I did take some non-work related pictures of the Rio Grand Gorge and Puye Cliffs.
Today was a little less exciting but I got some good feedback on what I’ve been working on. Chelsey (my fellow EH intern) and I have been developing educational materials on asthma for the community and a survey to gage how people understand the burden of asthma in the pueblos. Hopefully before the summer ends (only a month left!) we’ll get to administer the surveys and test out the effectiveness of our educational materials.