Big, proud, and quirky…Texas, we’re talking about y’all

There aren’t many states that construct grills in their own image, at least none that I’ve encountered yet, other than Texas.

It might be hard to have a Texas shaped lunch or dinner, but fear not.  Breakfast has y’all covered.

Given that I was traveling with a “native born Texan”, (and yes, there ARE bumper stickers that say just that, or at least there were back in the days when we lived there, ) I feel I can safely poke a little fun.
We hadn’t had enough of Route 66 yet, so we caught a few more of its notable sights. I don’t think this one made it into any guide books, but I happened to like it. Besides, Italians make a big deal about THEIR tower, so why shouldn’t WE do likewise.  I give you the Leaning Water Tower of Route 66.

Groom, Texas has the biggest cross in the USA, visible for miles around. Greg once again was put to work as my point of reference. His 6’3″ body is the dark smudge at the base in the photo.
Here’s a close up of the sculpture of the Last Supper. Not sure why there are only six apostles. Did the sculptor burn out? Run out of money, take artistic license? No explanation was given.

Our very favorite Texas experience was at the Cadillac Ranch, located just outside of Amarillo. Here’s the view from the road.

As you can see,it is in the middle of nowhere.

Greg was the first to realize that this was participatory art, and quickly went to work.

The finished work:

I also left my mark…hey, mom is a lot easier than Shelley, that’s for sure, especially when the wind is blowing spray paint droplets back at ya.

Next stop, Albuquerque.

Gettin’ our kicks on Route 66

Route 66, one of the first highways in the USA, extended from Chicago to Los Angeles. Knicknamed the “mother road”, Route 66 dates back to 1926; it has since fallen into disrepair, after being replaced by interstate highways. Parts of Route 66 run parallel to route 40, providing the opportunity for a sentimental journey back to the early days of automobile travel. Oklahoma visitor’s center had a very helpful publication that described points of interest along the road, coded to a pull out map. We had everything that we needed for this next leg of our journey so we set off to experience more Americana.

First stop was Red Rock Canyon State Park, where we met Charles, who offered to take our picture.

He was a very sweet soul, but I’m thinking photography is not his forte.

Well, at least those photos give you a glimpse of the red rocks for which the Canyon was named.

Next stop was Weatherford, Oklahoma, where we were able to get up close and personal with a 122 foot wind turbine blade. Wind power is understandably very big in this area.  We could FEEL the wind pushing the car as we drove this stretch of the highway.

As usual, I asked Greg to get into the photo to provide a point of reference for size.

One photo just couldn’t capture  that enormous monster, so here’s another.

We would soon be eating the very best bison burger ever.  Okay, so in the Northeast, you go to a tank to choose the lobster you want. I wonder if this place works the same way?  Could that be why this big guy is refusing to make eye contact?

If he’s not here when we leave, I’ll have my answer.

Unlike Robert’s, The Cherokee Trading Post was wonderful, very clean with delicious, reeasonably priced food.

Talk about luck…the Oklahoma Rout 66 Museum reopened just days before we got there.

It’s a small museum, but very well done, with rooms arranged by decade. Pressing a button on each room’s wall started recordings of music popular for that time period. Admission was a mere $4 per adult, for about an hour’s worth of entertainment.


Some numbers to put things into perspective.

The last room was devoted to the late 60’s. I have friends that owned a vehicle like this one. (you know who you are…no need to mention names.)

The museum is located across the street from this motel, whose claim to fame is that Elvis stayed there multiple times. Being a superstar in the 50’s and 60’s sure isn’t what it is like today, that’s for certain!

Could the state of Oklahoma have more than ONE Route 66 Museum? It could, and did. To avoid showing favoritism, we felt compelled to stop. This one had a great little village, with yet another perspective of days before microwaves, cell phones, Internet and cable TV.

My mother used to tell my sisters and me that it hurts to be beautiful. I’m eternally grateful that this home permanent contraption was way before my time.

But this refrigerator wasn’t. I actually remember having a refrigerator like this! How did my mother feed all of us kids? No wonder Campbell Soup was um, um good!