Woman in a Taco Bar, New Mexico

Copyright  Alice Starmore

I planned to find a suitable vantage point to commune with a Taos sunset where perhaps – like the saintly Miriam in Sons and Lovers – I would feel my soul expanding into prayer. But my tummy was feeling secular so I went to Taco Bell instead. The window was filled with a hand-drawn sign offering tacos and tostadas for 59 cents; it was well-executed in red, yellow and blue and the sunset flooded through it to paint the whole interior, customers and all. It splashed onto walls, seats and tables, hair, clothes and Coke cans, and created an effect so tactile and exciting that I got carried away with my camera until I realised people might object and demand that I be thrown out. The tacos were better than fast-food had any right to be, and when I complimented the staff they told me the tortillas were made right there in Taos.

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