Day Eleven...

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North America » United States » Texas » Amarillo
July 1st 2015
Published: July 2nd 2015
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…must mean we’re in Texas. Today was another 360+ mile day. Because the temperatures aren’t what they’ve been the past several days, we decided to save a few bucks and dry camp in a Wal-Mart parking lot in Amarillo. This is only the second time we’ve not stayed in an RV park. I think our original plan was to do the opposite of what we’re doing.

There wasn’t much to see out either of our windows today. We crossed the Rio Grande. It’s very red; at least this section was, and not very grande. Drove past where the Albuquerque Isotopes minor league baseball team plays. The freeway color scheme through Albuquerque is reddish brown and dark green. Much nicer to look at than the gray at home. Mike saw a truck (like ours) towing a fifth wheel which was pulling a boat behind it. I didn’t know that was even legal. New Mexico had A LOT of DWI signs warning people to not drink and drive and others with a phone number to call to report drunk drivers. We also saw A LOT of crosses on the sides of the roads, some were quite elaborate. Kind of sad when you think about it.

Oh, I have to warn anyone out there traveling on I-40 through New Mexico near Santa Rosa. DO NOT STOP AT THE FLYING C RANCH FOR GAS. We must have waited at least 15 minutes to pull up to the pump with diesel. Not because there was a long line of cars waiting. No. Because the Flying C Ranch I swear is a destination gas station. As you approach the exit you’ll see probably 10 or 12 billboards advertising all the reasons you need to stop and shop there. They have ice cream, souvenirs of all sorts, cheap soft drinks, there’s even a Dairy Queen on one end of it. People would pull up to the pump, get their gas and go in and shop! The gas island right in front provides the only shade during the day so people used it as a parking lot. It was very frustrating for those of us just wanting to fill up. I watched people coming out the doors with more than one bag of stuff. One family even came out with a box of fireworks! Okay, enough complaining about rude people.

What else did we see? A small group of Longhorns (too small to call them a herd) and a smaller version of Cadillac Ranch. This one only had maybe 6 or 8 cars, but there were cars lined up on both sides of the road and lots of people milling about looking at it.

The rest areas on I-40 in New Mexico were much better than the one yesterday. They still had individual picnic areas, but they were much nicer and had bathrooms. On the truck/RV side you just parked along either side of the lane and walked to one of the picnic shelters, but on the car side you’d park in front of whatever shelter you wanted to use. Pretty interesting. Not the parking lots we’re used to with the community picnic tables. In Texas they’re not called Rest Areas. They call them Picnic Areas or Parking Areas. I’m guessing one has tables and the other doesn’t. I know, what a weird thing to talk about in a blog. And even more weird for the only pictures in the post for the day to be of the Rest Area. I'll try to do better tomorrow.

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