Day 8: June 21, 2007
Express to Clinton
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Unavailable I certainly let some pictures get away on Wednesday. First, it was Fred Zander in McLean. Then it was the twin Saturn's in Glenrio. Those were fleeting opportunities that I was just too sluggish to recognize. At the Blue Swallow, I let another, much less fleeting opportunity, get away. So, I have to tell of the honeymooners without even one picture.

A young couple were staying in a room near mine. The day was almost done when I spoke with them and learned they were also Ohioans. They were from Cleveland and had been married there on Friday. Within hours of the wedding, they were on a plane to Chicago for a one night stay. In the morning, they headed to Santa Monica on a Mother Road honeymoon. They're leaving the Road for a bit to attend the Telluride Bluegrass Festival in Colorado but will pick it up right where they left it. David is a photographer and Kim is a teacher who has summers free to travel. This isn't their first time on Sixty-Six; Both of them enjoy and appreciate the Road. A 2500 mile long honeymoon with a musical interlude sounds like a great way to start a marriage.

Blue Swallow, Tucumcari, NM Blue Swallow, Tucumcari, NM Blue Swallow, Tucumcari, NM Blue Swallow, Tucumcari, NM I really enjoyed my first stay at the Blue Swallow even though the neon hasn't fully recovered from hail damage in March. The garages and the swallows that decorate them still work and neon repairs are planned. A fun and comfortable stay.

Amarillo, TX Amarillo, TX Amarillo, TX Amarillo, TX Amarillo, TX The Cadillac Ranch was one of two stops I intentionally saved for the return drive. The recent rains had left some mud here and there but today the sun was shining and the place was busy. I got out my 98 cent spray paint and scrawled my name across a door. No graffiti artist's fame for me. I did manage to get a picture of just the cars even though there are people behind them. The crowd had thinned and, when I left, only three painters remained. They had arrived carrying a bag filled with many different colors of paint and prepared to do some serious decorating. I donated my "hardly used" green to their mix and exited as a new wave of visitors headed for the Caddys.

Donley County, TX Donley County, TX Donley County, TX Donley County, TX Donley County, TX The other planned stop was at the Donley County Rest Area on I-40. Route 66 is the theme here including inside the men's restroom. (Where some caution is advised when photographing.) Several screens are available in the lobby area where short videos can be selected for viewing. A rather nice job of making some expressway travelers aware of the historic road nearby. The view across the road's not too bad, either.

Texola, TX Texola, TX Sayre, OK Sayre, OK Then there were a couple of things I just missed heading west. One is the circa 1910 jail in Texola. A stone sits beside the door with no explanation. Below "SENIORS 38", fifteen names are listed. The last two are identified as "SUPT." & "SPON.". Presumedly, the other thirteen are the 1938 graduating class of some school. Lois Wigley, what's become of ya, darlin'?

The other missed stop was the tunnel in Sayre. Built by the WPA in 1936, it allowed pedestrians to get across a busy US-66.

Clinton, OK Clinton, OK Clinton, OK I managed to get into the VIP reception as the guest of a VIP which was supposed to get me free beer but got me a choice of Coors or Coors Light, instead. Outside the museum proper, folks gathered at Bob Waldmire's bus and at the restored Valentine Diner. Note that, while the diner in Glenrio, that I photographed yesterday, looks like a Valentine, it was actually built on site of cement blocks and intentionally made to resemble a Valentine. This diner is a factory built Valentine that spent some time as the Porter House Cafe in Shamrock, Texas.

I took advantage of someone else's staging to get the last picture. The fellow on the left is Greg Laxton; The guy who started the Route 66 Yahoo Group in 1999. Believe it or not, this is Greg's first time on the Road since then. The group gathers for a breakfast at each national festival and tomorrow Greg will attend for the first time. More than 80 of the group's 1200+ members are expected to be there. That's Australian Kathryn Sloan next to Greg then Mike & Sharon Ward. The Ward's do much of the heavy lifting for the e-group and Mike will MC tomorrow's breakfast. Bonnie & George Game of the Canadian Route 66 Association round out the picture.

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