Sunday, February 11, 2007

Day 3 - Amarillo to Holbrook, AZ

Today, I got my first real taste of Route 66. First stop was the "Cadillac Ranch" in Amarillo where some eccentric millionaire rancher decided to plant a dozen Cadillacs in his pasture. The cars have all been stripped to the bone and spray painted continuously now, and urban sprawl is coming perilously close to taking this field over soon. But for today at least, the sun shined on the Cadillacs and all was good!

The next major Route 66 town was Tucumcari, NM. I had wanted to see it at night because so many of the old motels still have their original neon, but maybe I'll be luckier on the return trip. Here are two of the more-famous attractions--- the Blue Swallow motel, and Teepee Curios, as well as an old truck camper I found parked in town.

Next stop was Albuquerque. I decided to drive the Route 66 street through town (Central Avenue). There were plenty of vintage Route 66 buildings, but also quite a few bums and crackheads wandering the sidewalks, so no good chance for any photo ops there. Not quite the charming city I had once remembered.

On the outskirts of town, I stopped for gas and saw a rancher's big open-top trailer next to me absolutely jammed with sheep who were "bahh-ing" and staring at me with their big sad eyes looking so inhumanely uncomfortable that I wanted to either kick the jackass rancher, become a vegetarian, or both. An hour later, as I was driving in a cold and blustery snowstorm over the continental divide, that rancher passed me going 70 mph hauling all those now bitterly wet, cold and half-dead sheep. Can people really be that cruel to animals? I guess they can.

Down the other side of the divide, was Gallup, NM all lit up in vintage Route 66 neon. Here's one of the signs that my buddy Jeanne & her husband Rex should like!

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