Posts Tagged ‘kansas’


Ever since working in San Diego two years ago, I’ve been on the lookout for good Mexican restaurants serving soups.  In Kansas, I never found any.  In Mesa, so far haven’t found any.  Here in northern California, found two of them today.  Had lunch in Modesto — had posole.  Had dinner in Turlock — had albondigas.  I feel like I’m in heaven, but I’m at the hotel doing laundry.


motel-postcard.jpg.1024x0Left Mesa, Arizona this morning.  Have to go back to Kansas for work training and to move out of my apartment.  Long drive.  Got to Tucumcari, New Mexico just after sunset so I called it a night — that’s about the half-way point anyway.  While eating dinner at one of the local truck stops, I searched the web for motels.  Last week, my aunt and I stayed at the Motel 6 but I was looking for something different tonight — and I found it!  I’m staying at the Historic Route 66 Motel, a holdout from the days of the mother road.  Some of the items in the room remind me of those days, like the turquoise sink:

66 sink.JPG

And the turquoise chair:

66 chair.JPG

Springtime 2015

I guess I’ve been in a funk or something, but I’ve had little desire this year to write about what I’ve been up to.  Like in years past, I’m losing the details of my life for lack of keeping a journal.  With one exception — I have Facebook, so even if I’m not writing much, Facebook is recording the places where I’ve eaten, short snippets about my activities and the photos I’ve been taking when I’m out and about.  Today I’ve been doing a little maintenance on this blog, taking passwords from most of my entries, so I decided I should write something….

First of all — for the first time this year, I’m working in town instead of traveling.  Most of the year I’ve been moving around the southern part of the country, in Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Florida.  But I have been to Utah, Colorado, Wyoming, DC, New York and Vermont.

At the end of February, I was working in Las Vegas, so at the end of my trip, decided to take a vacation and stay there.  Five days later I was driving to Arizona for another workweek.

Last month I took another vacation, driving from my home to Washington State and back.  LONG trip, but enjoyable.  There are a couple of things from that trip worth writing about.

I cut my hair and shaved when the weather turned warm, as you can see in the picture.  My hair is getting long again, but I’m still clean-shaven.  Thinking about getting one more haircut before fall, when I’ll start going all Grizzly Adams again.

The power switch on my GPS unit stopped working, so I bought another.  Can’t neglect one of my most-important tools for improving my life!

Finally got around to replacing my car’s windshield, which had been cracked by a rock, only to get hit by another rock on my most recent vacation.  Need to get that taken care of before the chip turns into another big crack.  Anyone who’s seen my car might have noticed I keep little bumper stickers/decals on my rear passenger wing windows to help me find my car in a crowded lot.  My “Life Is Good” stickers became faded, so I replaced them with the Futurama Hypno-Toad and a souvenir sticker from the Ben & Jerry’s factory.

Finally went out to dinner with someone for the first time since being divorced.  Had fun!

Visited with family and friends in Colorado and Washington during vacation.  Had fun!

Sightseeing stops this spring have included Boulder Dam, Picacho Peak, President Eisenhower’s Library, Fort Hays, Cripple Creek, Devil’s Slide, Snake River Canyon, Little Bighorn, Deadwood, Wall Drug, Lake Champlain and the Ben & Jerry’s factory.  Had fun!

Well, I came home from my trip to New Mexico, to find my neighbor across the hall had moved from his apartment.  One day, the landlady was standing in the doorway (she was using the apartment as a temporary office) and we started talking about the apartment.  I came in and took a look, thought about it for a day and decided I would take it on the first of June.  Then I went back to work for another rotation.  However, I stayed in the area instead of traveling somewhere else, so I had to live and straighten up my apartment every day, since she wanted to start showing it to folks.  That was hard, because I tend to live in clutter.

So, I spent the week driving around eastern Kansas and the Kansas City area, performing preventive maintenance and repairs.  Sorry, no pictures to show — when I’m working local, I tend to forget about taking pictures because I see these sights everyday.

Then the hardest part came about moving into the new apartment.  My weekend started and the landlady gave me the new keys, but I had to wait two days before moving in, but couldn’t start tearing things apart in the old place because it was still being shown.  I hated waiting!  I kept busy watching movies.  Went to the drive in on Friday night and to a double-feature matinée on Saturday.

Finally, midnight Saturday night arrived.  I was able to move into the new place!  I spent a couple of hours carrying things from the old to the new, but because of the hour I had to be quiet.  I went to bed, but was awake bright and early to start moving the big stuff.  By the end of the day, I had almost everything across the hall and had started arranging it in the new place (among the clutter).  The next day, I finished moving the remaining three big items, met with the cable guy and the Nielsen techs (I’d been a Nielsen TV ratings household for a year, but because I’d decided to move, they were picking up their monitoring equipment) and a guy who was resurfacing the bathtub in the new apartment, and started cleaning the old place.  The next day, I spent 8 hours cleaning the old apartment (though I’d been neat and tidy, I still needed to clean everything on the check-out list just to be sure) and did some more arranging in the new place.  On the next day, I went back to work to prepare for the trip I’m on now, finished the move-out inspection (the landlady commented I was the cleanest male tenant she’s seen — I had several thoughts about that, from several takes), and assembled my daughter’s new bed.

There’s still clutter in the new place, but yesterday I had to leave it for another week because I was flying.  I’m working in Alabama, starting this afternoon.

KS Chanute Tioga Lobby (1)

Tioga Hotel lobby, in Chanute

So I was here again, at the Tioga Hotel in downtown Chanute.  The last two times, I’d been there during my last week as a field technician (long story about how this is my third time as a field technician).  For a change, this wouldn’t be my last rotation.  It was two rotations ago.

I was supposed to start working my way down to Anadarko, Oklahoma for a scheduled equipment upgrade.  I did maintenance in Chanute, then in Parsons.  While in Parsons, I noticed my rental car was badly leaking oil and ended up driving back home to return the car and swap it for another.  As it turned out, there was maintenance work to be done around here, so I got to spend the weekend sleeping in my apartment.

Cosmic Castle, in Parsons

Cosmic Castle, in Parsons

On Monday morning, I started driving toward Anadarko.  I spent three days working there.  Ate at a really good barbecue place called Jack’s, which featured a dozen meats on the menu (or so the manager said) — I ate about a half-dozen.  There at Anadarko, was the American Indian Hall of Fame, which featured busts of famous Indians in American history.  While in the visitor center, I noticed two busts inside on a table instead of outside on pedestals, like the others.  The story, the guide told me, was those busts were blown off their pedestals by a tornado that passed through, last year.  The second tornado to hit the hall of fame in the last three years.  I was amazed!  Tornadoes hit the same spot twice in three years?

America Indian Hall of Fame

America Indian Hall of Fame

I started my next rotation in Fargo, North Dakota.  A cold place, right?  Well they were having a warm spell while I was there, above freezing until the day I left.  I was there for another upgrade. and maintenance at another site.  What was so remarkable about my stay in Fargo, is I had to stay at a different hotel every night, because none was available two nights in a row.

The Fargo Dome and one of my hotels, in front of it

The Fargo Dome and one of my hotels, in front of it

On Monday I flew down to Phoenix, so I could fix a down site there.  I had a tight connection in Dallas.  When I got to Phoenix, my checked bags hadn’t.  I ended up going to the job site without my tools or a new change of clothes.  But, luckily, I was able to use a small set of tools we give each customer to keep with our equipment.  My bags finally arrived on Tuesday afternoon.

View from Route 66

View from Route 66

I spent Wednesday driving to Peach Springs for another upgrade.  Got to drive on Route 66 (now I’ve driven on Route 66 in every state it passed through).  Ate at a place called Road Kill Cafe, and the next day on my return drive ate at an old diner called the Galaxy Drive Inn.

My rental car while in Arizona

My rental car while in Arizona

Then, the next rotation, I flew to Las Vegas.  I ended up spending the entire week there.  I was able to visit with some friends who’d just moved there.  I ate at a few good restaurants.

My rental car in Nevada

My rental car in Nevada

And, I had an unexpected day off that Sunday, so I visited Hoover Dam and Boulder City.

Hoover Dam

Hoover Dam

I wonder what awesome places I’ll be seeing this week?