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Road Hog

This is the place to tell about all the cool places your Eagle takes you. Hopefully there will be lots of great pictures that will help us all plan future trips.
Road Hog
Mon May 31, 2010 9:21 am


Road Hog

Made a road trip over the weekend, put in something like 700 miles. Hit the two lanes and did a little of the Interstate. Weather was picture perfect and traffic was lite. Sign of the times, bad economy, the average American has less disposable income, which correlates to no traffic on the road. In my case, an added bonus, solitary high-speed trucking on the backroads.

Six on the floor, the other one out the door, hammer-down ... Hammer down. Just what the doctor ordered. (This I often find is the modern day cure all for “Oklahoma Stress management or Late Spring Cabin Fever.”)

But alas ... Things change, no matter how hard I resist.

Finding a diversion for me is no easy thing these days. I no longer have a small mining town in the foothills of the Sierra’s like I used to visit in the summertime as a small lad of maybe ten or twelve. Not many secret places left for me. So I substitute a warm summer’s day and a lonesome two-lane to soothe my battered mind.

A drive in the country, an occasional stop at an Antique Store for an old sign to decorate the bus shop, or the random bent up oil can. A leisurely stroll down a main street in a small town I have never been to before. Today as an old man, I relish the feeling of finding a small town that was for many years, more or less forgotten. Old wooden buildings, some with false store fronts hidden here and there, presumably forgotten by time, the lettering on the sides fading in the sun.

As I no longer have the limitless time period of youth and discovery, I settle for what life deals up. This weekend we found some small Texas towns that were off the beaten path. Comfortable turn of the century houses with wide porches and tall trees at the stoop, scattered over the hills as do the little ramshackle places, or so one would believe by their appearance.

They dot the old forgotten crannies and crevices of the hillsides. Streets wander here and there turning back on themselves, having long since been converted to one way. The grander of an old majestic courthouse smack-dab in the middle of town. The abandoned hamburger joint that didn’t quite make it or measure up.

There is the traditional little white church with steeple and tiny graveyard of our nobles who came before us at the top of the hill over looking the town. The stately big house of the affluent of both time periods still stand straight and tall. They watch time curl about their foundations while the unsubstantial come and go upon the flanks of the hills.

The warmth of the summer sun and the heat fills the day. Wheat farmers are still in their fields cutting long after dusk. Summer begins in earnest in June, it’s not bad until July when it really gets hot. In July and August in Oklahoma and Texas, it gets incredibly warm.

So hot, I once saw a dog chasing a cat ... And both of them were walking!

June is a time of new growth and harvest. Gardens grow through your shoes if you don’t keep moving or so they say. The grass dries to a pale yellow and rustles in the dry hot wind. Stickers cling to your sox and pants legs when you walk and the drone of flies becomes permanent. Stoic cattle stand under trees in the fields, soaking up every inch of the available shade, old dogs won’t come out from under the porch and water coolers and A/C’s hum on top of every house.

Tar melts on the street and little kids wind it up on sticks then make hand prints and their initials before it cools. The ground is littered with Popsicle sticks around the school’s and big shade trees. Kids sometimes are hard to find during the heat of the day, most of them are with the dogs under the porches or down at the local swimming hole.

In my youth I always yearned for a “highway with no traffic, a place to explore, nothing to bother me but the miles.” Now it seems, I have discovered just such a spot in time, quite by accident. A tank of fuel, 716 miles in the Hill Country of West Texas.

Pulling up to the front gate Sunday afternoon, 12 P.M. straight up, beating the “I gotta get home crowd” by almost a full day almost feels circumspect. Like I said, “It is good to be out on the road, to have this time to enjoy, all the great things our country has to offer, even in hard times such as these.” I am a fortunate pilgrim indeed.

Hope you had a good weekend, most importantly, I hope you thought of, or better yet, thanked a Vet.

Your service.
Your sacrifice.
We thank you.

See you in the fast lane.

BCO
BoxcarOkie
 
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Joined: Thu May 21, 2009 7:42 pm


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