Sunday, October 19, 2008

Max & Diane's Adventure - Day 3

Fran and I were talking tonight and decided that this should have been titled "Two Geeks on the Road." Oh well ...

7:30 am. Yes, I heard the motorcycle parked next to our Jeep fire up and leave. No, I'm not waking up.

8:45 am. We're moving. Slowly but surely. Even after the late night, we're up a bit earlier. Yea!

9:20 am. On the road. Where's Route 66? You have to get off the freeway (I-40). I can see the freeway less than 2 miles south of us, but we are on an old bumpy road and my hand can't make contact with the page very well. Route 66 pretty much parallels I-40.

The first thing we saw as we drove out of El Reno was a Historical Marker. We had to stop. And this was it: (Civil War)

9:38 am. My husband is a freak! We are driving on a road that was built in 1932. He says to me, "Oh ... people would have driven to California on this road during the dust bowl!" Fine. I'm cool with the historical memories. But, he couldn't stop himself. "Field of FSA. Out of the shadows come FSA photographers - Dorothea Lange, Arthur Rothstein ..." Yes, this is the man I live with.

9:50 am. Drove out of our way (kinda) to traverse a bridge with 38 spans. When the bridge was built there was no equipment that could lift a span large enough, so they made do with the size they could lift and this bridge required 38 of them!

9:56 am. Really rough road. A large cow was wandering in the ditch and decided that it wanted to cross the road in front of us. For a moment, none of us were sure who would be stopping. Finally, the cow stopped. We went on.

10:20 am. One of many ways to send your wife into a tailspin: ignore her when she says, "Get gas here." Fumes in the gas tank make her very nervous.

11:35 am. I guess we are the heathens in a holy state. Everything is closed. The only restaurants that remain open are chain fast food. The National Route 66 Museum is even closed. Too bad, so sad. The entire museum complex is as much kitsch as anything else on the road. Oh ... WalMart is open.

Max tried to get in ... he failed.

Poor Leica came hopping back to the car from a quick run in the grass. What's wrong? I immediately figured she had pulled something from the way she was holding her back leg. I picked her up, put her in the front seat and saw a burr on her foot. Nasty. I took it out. She still wouldn't relax. Oh, sheesh! Another one right in the pad. When I pulled that one out, she got mad at me for hurting her and is sulking in the back seat.

12:10 pm. Rest area just east of Erick, OK. Max says it must be from the pleiostene era. Scary, creepy, old. The women's handicap stall hd a shower curtain instead of a door! Not using that one!

Max is feeling less adventurous today. Thank goodness. More freeway - less trying to find a nonexistent road. I'm totally fine with this.

12:20 pm. Texas. Well, this is another state I've never been to before. Whee! Hmmm ... "Proud home of President George Bush." Sometimes you forget that people like that are really from some place.

12:45 pm. Shamrock, Texas. We tried to eat at the U-Drop Inn, but I'm guessing that Texas is just as holy as Oklahoma. Not open. Max got a great picture of the old Conoco station with the U-Drop Inn restaurant. All spruced up - looking good. This is better than many of the other sites along Route 66 ... much deterioration. We ended up eating at Mitchell's Family Dining. Wonderful food - scary people. Mostly because I was quite out of place. I'm from the midwest ... not Texas. My face isn't lined, we don't wear cowboy boots and I'm not dressed like a dolled-up ... well ... I'm just not.

Absolutely wonderful food though. Baked steak, homemade (real) mashed potatoes, real homemade french fries - the steak came out with fried onions and mushrooms on top. Enough to keep us going for the day. But, with Max not eating carbs ... it was embarrassing to leave potatoes and fries on our plates - especially with the hearty appetites of the people in that place!

We are taking Leonard's "Scooby Doo" with us on the trip - Max thought it would be funny to take a picture of him bellying up to the plate - this is one of Leonard's favorite meals. But, I figured that we might get shot or at least a good talkin' to - the picture wasn't going to happen.

2:00 pm. McLean, Texas. One of the saddest things I've seen. Lots of boarded up buildings and deserted sites. This Phillips 66 is deserted, but has been beautifully painted. It was wonderful!

2:37 pm. Leaning Tower of Texas. This picture doesn't do the "LEAN" justice. It was built to lean - simply to draw people off of Route 66 and into town. Awesome.

2:42 pm. We're driving by (the picture is taken out the front window) the 'largest cross in the western hemisphere.' And a gift shop is being built around this. Good for them!

3:15 pm. Amarillo, TX. Huh. A friend from my high school (lo, those many years ago) was trying to reach me today to get me to stop. Since I can only send, but not receive, I missed that message. But, this was an entertaining stop for us. The stupid Garmin ... no, I take that back ... it was the Google placemarkers that were stupid took us into the heart of a bad area of Amarillo to see Cadillac Ranch. Max got annoyed and announced that we were just leaving. Ok ... whatever. On the way out, we stopped for pictures at The Big Texan Steakhouse. Too bad we had already eaten ... this could have been fun (to watch Max attempt). It's a staple of Route 66 now. I loved the hotel right next to it. Each room (outside) was painted a different color. Just awesome!

4:08 pm. I wasn't going to let the Cadillac Ranch get away from us. Since I can get Wikipedia on my Kindle, I looked it up quickly and found the actual coordinates. Punched those into the Garmin and we were off again. This place is just great. Just off the road, people are encouraged to spray paint the cars. Here are 5 of the 10 that were planted.

It is freakin 85 degrees in Texas. October 19!!!! Are you kidding me with this? I'm never living here. I'd be a mean woman ... all the time.

4:45 pm. Midpoint on Route 66. Adrian, Texas. Had to mark that!

5:06 pm. Nearly out of Texas. All of a sudden the landscape changes radically. Mesas are simply amazing! And the brush is so funky. I'm loving this!

Time Change - now I have no idea what time it is. We are in New Mexico and have come in to Tucumcari. Max has been talking about this motel (Blue Swallow Motel) forever! There are 15 units and each has a garage. However, our Jeep isn't going to fit. This was built in the 40s or 50s when cars were much smaller.

This is the sweetest motel. Almost like a bed and breakfast (except no breakfast). I can't believe it! It's just wonderful! This is why I like staying in these strip motels. I lay my head down on the bed and I knew that the quilt (look! it's really a quilt!) was clean - I could smell the dryer sheet. Though this is a really old hotel, they have done a lot of work in restoring and cleaning it up. I'm happy that we got a chance to experience this.

Poor Leica got ANOTHER burr in the pad of her paw outside the hotel. I feel like I should tie leather pads to her feet! She's a city dog that lives inside! This kind of pain is a bit startling.

Max and I had a great dinner in Tucumcari and then drove around the city a bit. Back to the hotel and we're relaxing. I should be asleep. Tomorrow is going to be a busy day. We're headed to Santa Fe for shopping and then we'll be in Holbrook, AZ tomorrow night at the Wigwam Motel. I can hardly wait!

1 comment:

Cayla said...

sounds fantastic! glad to hear you're having a good trip so far. keep the updates coming, this is fun to read!