West Texas, metal art and no yoga

It was bound to happen. Especially with the way that I hate doing yoga in the morning and the way that I procrastinate and the pesky way that all the hours in the day are limited and I can’t seem to do everything: I missed yoga this morning. SUCH a bummer. I was actually in my car and driving but knew that I wasn’t going to make it. And even worse, I knew that it would be so close that I’d likely be pulling into the parking lot just as class began.

Sucks.

The more so because it’s beginning of a several day hiatus from yoga as I’ll stay in places where it’s not available. But clearly I have a lot going on so occasionally something has to go. And I got to spend an extra hour this morning hanging out with Cynthia and figuring out the rest of my week, which was quite valuable. The next time I get all sweaty and stretchy I’ll be in Tucson, about 6 days from now.

So instead of Bikram, I had the next best B word:

With Scott and Jeremy, the brothers Branks. We did the Original Market Diner in Dallas and though my waitress was bereft of a beehive and didn’t call me “honey,” it was still a great diner experience. It was also the only thing I ate all day. I think I had a bit of a food hangover after Samar, if such a thing is possible, and it contributed to me getting up late and missing yoga. Bikram probably would have helped…

After breakfast I hit the road, leaving Dallas in the early afternoon without much on my mind or my agenda except getting to Amarillo by nightfall, which sounds like a country song. Getting out of Dallas was a horror show. Narrow 2 lane detour highways created with miles of orange traffic cones, giant trucks that fill up my rearview mirror, a complete lack of ability to tell where I am, how I got there or how to get out and no exits might be my idea of hell. Driving without navigating will get me lost. Driving while navigating might get me killed. No winning. Just losing. Welcome to Dallas.

I finally busted out of that mess, traffic dropped off and I took 287 West up through Wichita Falls. There was a lot of this:

And this:

Interspersed with some of this:

So when this showed up, I had to turn around a take a picture:

Mannequins dressed in bikinis in the back of a Cadillac parked in the driveway of the only house in 20 miles on Highway 287. No rhyme. No reason. Just girls with their hair blowing in the wind getting a little air and checking out the sights.

I bet several truckers think it’s the real thing until they pass it up. So… that’s curious.

And then more miles of this:

And this:

Which was all cool in a Friday Night Lights sort of way. Given that I’ve been driving in Texas for a day and a half and I’m still not out, I can see why Texans think they’re a separate continent. It’s an island of grass and cows and more grass and a few trees and long empty roads stretching into the horizon. Mesmerizing.

I turned up 83 so I could travel the last bits by Route 66 and at the junction of 83 and 66, I found this and had to stop:

This is George Garza’s house and he’s (obviously) a metal artist who recycles old machinery, paints it and positions it artfully in little gardens.

He has a Georgia O’Keefe thing for skulls:

And he said this piece was his first one (a corn grinder that he made into a totem):

He has a glorious decorated shop behind his house:

And his house is right on the highway so he’s decorated his fences in a way that’s very inviting for strangers:

I caught him just as he was leaving and while he was really polite, answered my questions and invited me to spend all the time I wanted walking around and taking pictures, he was half in and half out of his truck and needed to be somewhere so I didn’t keep him.

I got to Amarillo after 2 hours of driving straight west into the setting sun on long flat Route 66 where things seem to pop up all of a sudden like a mirage. Very odd, that.

I’m here for the night and I’ll drive through the panhandle tomorrow and then up into New Mexico where I’ll spend the night in a special place.

More about that tomorrow.

See you then.

2 thoughts on “West Texas, metal art and no yoga

    • i’m in love with the open road, as you know. BUT, the open road in TX seems to go forever and there’s not much to see on it. It needs a couple Mark Clines to come in a create some interesting road side attractions :)

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