Sunday, April 17, 2016

Texas, Round 2

Destination: Amarillo
The Big Texan Steak House
The most well known restaurant in Amarillo is the The Big Texan, where you can sit on a stage and eat a 72 oz steak for free as long as you finish it, along with the added salad, a baked potato, and 3 fried shrimp. If there was ever a restaurant that encouraged unbridled gluttony I would have to vote the Big Texan hands down, not only because the portions are the size of Texas itself, but also the fact that everything in there is homemade and tastes so good you can't stop eating. No funky franchise flavored cardboard here folks. Real potato salad, cowboy beans, dressings, bbq sauce and much, much more made from scratch. We have all heard a mother, grandmother, or aunt say "save room for desert" many times in our lives. My advise to you is to go for the desert because it is all good. They even make their own fudge, cookies, and brownies. For the first half of the week I contemplated having my fifteen minutes of fame Cool Hand Luke style up there on that stage below the giant Longhorn Skull with glowing eyes, but I am not sure what I feared more, the discomfort of what it would do to my digestive track, or the anger of Hana when we had to pay 72 dollars for a steak I couldn't finish. That's the gamble, a dollar an ounce. Somewhere around 55,000 have attempted this feat, and only in the ballpark of 9,000 have been successful. Nonetheless, I say by all means do not overlook this place because it looks like a tourist trap. The bbq sauce was so good, I left wishing I could get a big tub of it so I could put it on everything, including ice cream. 

Palo Duro Canyon State Park
As for the outdoors we discovered the Palo Duro Canyon, which takes second place in size to the Grand Canyon. We had a good hike around the park through the trails, and fortunately did not see any snakes, although we did hear one in the brush. It was great to get out into some beautiful scenery after spending most of the week camped next to a busy highway. Maya was a trooper and stuck out the six mile hike we went on, and she got a well deserved bath in the river after. Today she was so worn out she just slept. She has been seeming like she doesn't want to walk too much most days lately. We even took turns to pick her up and carry her on one walk. As she is getting up there in age we are contemplating getting her a dog stroller so she doesn't have to be left out on long walks.

  Overall folks here in Amarillo have been pretty nice. I would say it is worth a few days here if you like to take your time with activities, and need a town to do some shopping in. 

  Since we are six months into the journey I will have a post coming soon summarizing some things we have learned along the way about living and traveling in an rv, what we like and don't like as far as where we have camped, along with some of what we have learned about ourselves. I have to say to any rv people contemplating doing this, not to over think it and just go for it, but don't have overly high expectations. Life isn't a bowl of cherries every day no matter what you are doing or where you are going in this mortal life, so I am not going to say everyday is "living the dream" to quote the overused phrase. It is just living life, but seeing a lot of beautiful places and making a few friends you would not have made otherwise along the way. Hana and I both agree that we don't want to go back to conventional life anytime soon. Speaking for Frankie and Maya, I would say they don't want to anytime soon either.


The Jack Sisemore Traveland RV Museum. An awesome museum we visited, full of vintage RVs and campers that were restored by the Traveland crew. The camper I'm standing in front of was purchased from an 85 year old lady at a gas station, and took 2 years to completely strip and renovate. The process is documented in a photo album, all of which I found very interesting!
Happy Max RV, featured in the movie "RV" with Robin Williams. Beautiful!
I keep checking and re-checking the weather forecast in Taos, hoping it will change. It looks like we're in for several freezing or below freezing nights next week. (How is it colder in New Mexico than Michigan btw!?!) We are also heading into another time zone, which means I'll be waking up bright and early at 5am for work on Eastern time :'( . Yay!