Archive for April, 2017

NM Tucumcari.png

Woke up to this scene in Tucumcari, New Mexico this morning.  The temperature was already in the 40’s and last night’s snow had begun melting.  We drove across New Mexico to Arizona, stopping in Laguna to see some sights.

NM Laguna 1

Scenic Porta-Potty View


Not long after this stop, I drove into an orange barrel zone on the interstate and realizing I hadn’t seen a speed limit change to a lower speed, asked my aunt if she’d seen a speed zone (she said no) and I said it seemed strange the speed limit would be the same as it was before the barrels — but the cars in front of me hadn’t seemed to slow down.  I’d been driving a little while, when I noticed a police care with flashing lights coming up from behind.  I pulled over, thinking he wanted to get by, but then he pulled off and I realized he was after me.  Turns out the speed limit had indeed changed in the construction zone and for some reason my aunt and I had both missed the new speed limit sign.  I received a ticket for driving the old speed limit, which was 20mph above the new.  There was no talking my way out of that.

We continued on to Gallup, New Mexico, where I’d planned to take my aunt to a restaurant I liked the last time I was in town.  But the restaurant was closed.  We ended up at a restaurant in a historic hotel, having Mexican food.  Pretty tasty!

Off again!  We decided to visit Petrified Forest National Park before reaching Holbrook, Arizona for the night.  We drove through the park, visiting the Painted Desert, an historic pueblo where there were petroglyphs, and several areas with petrified wood.

AZ Painted Desert 7

Petroglyphs on a Rock



Not the way I imagined how my vacation/house hunting trip to Arizona would begin.  Rained all day, from Kansas City to Amarillo, Texas.  In Amarillo, started snowing and snowed harder and harder until we (my aunt and I) finally reached Tucumcari, New Mexico for the night.  Made a long day on the road even longer.

johnny's bbq

I took my aunt to another barbecue place in town.  One of the menu items read:

Burnt End Combo:  Beef, Pork and Ribs

She and I both looked at the menu and said, “what kind of burnt end is ribs?”  I thought all burnt ends were made from rib meat, but maybe this was some new kind I’d never heard of.  We asked the waitress what they were, and she looked stunned.  “The kind with bones?” she replied.  We ordered the burnt end combo, expecting a new culinary experience.

Well, lo and behold!  The rib burnt ends were — ribs.  I guess if the menu had said “Burnt end combo:  beef and pork, with ribs” the waitress wouldn’t have looked like she thought she was talking with idiots.


OK — for all the speculation, the world didn’t come to an end because of Donald Trump on April 26th.  We’re still here, so the weird radio broadcast in New Jersey must have been referring to NEXT April 26th.  Yeah, that’s the ticket….


My aunt has come to visit, and I asked her what she’d like to eat for dinner.  She said barbecue.  So naturally, I took her to RJ’s, my neighborhood’s barbecue place.  She really liked the beef burnt ends (I couldn’t convince her to try the yummy jalapeno sausage).  The folks at the restaurant were very friendly as usual.  When the owner found out she was visiting from Iowa, he gave her a bottle of barbecue sauce.  She was so impressed, my aunt wants to go back, SOON.

We went to the grocery store afterward, and I asked what she would like for dinner tomorrow night.  She said she’s on vacation, so she wants to eat out.  Then, she said she doesn’t cook — she eats out all the time.  Funny, that’s the way it’s been for me too.  I wonder where we should go?