Thursday, June 21, ’12
H-91 Sulphur Springs L H 68 L 53 RAIN H H 70 L 60 RAIN M H 79 L 62 RAIN
L-72 C H 96 L 76
Bear update: The Bear says Pirates Are Springing Up All Over The Place. TR says, “I don’t know which Pirate to go after first.” Moose say, “You’re a Pirate yourself, Bear!” Lou says we will have a Pirate War Party. We will serve Pirate War Foods.
We woke up to sun. Will it last? It lasted, and the temperature in Sulphur Springs climbed to 91.
Tucson 105/76 Texarkana 95/72 Brooklyn 96/77
We woke up at 7:30AM. We got dressed and got CP in the lobby. We ate Danish as usual, but this place had small cheese omelettes and ham slices, which the dog and cat gobbled up. We loaded the car. I filled the dog’s water dish using the water fountain, so he had ice water for a change. We checked out of room 112 at 10:25AM and started to follow I-20 around Fort Worth. We stopped at exit 429b at Benbrook. There was a Circle K. Then we stopped for lunch in Arlington at exit 449b. We parked in front of crepe myrtle bushes! You think you’re making progress since we’ve gotten past Fort Worth and we’re already into Arlington. But wait until we get to Dallas. We’ve never gotten around it before without a traffic jam. Then we stopped at exit 449b in Arlington for lunch at McDonalds. The third pit stop was once we got onto the ring road around Dallas, 635N. We stopped at exit 1B, McDonalds, and got more strawberry lemonade. Now we head for the lake, or reservoir. In the 1990’s we never once got past it without a traffic jam. It’s less than 9 miles away. We crossed the Ray Hubbard Bridge for the very first time without incident for the first time ever. But then as soon as we crossed the bridge we run into a delay. Three lanes were going into one. We made the fourth pit stop right after that at a Love’s at exit 70. I bought postcards. We stopped a final time at a McDonalds in Greenville to get ice cream and a smores pie for Kenny. After that it was a straight shot to the final destination for today, Sulphur Springs at exit 125. We checked into room 125. We unpacked and went to dinner at Chilis across the highway. We did 2 for $20.00 two times, with one entree being the takeout ribs for the dog.
Now it’s after lunch and we’re already running into Dallas spaghetti and what looks like the beginning of a traffic jam. Maybe it’s gotten worse in the past 14 years since I last drove through here — not better. Now we’re in Duncanville. Spaghetti abounds. So do lots of lanes of traffic. We’re facing it all armed with our large strawberry lemonades from McDonalds. And now the sign says we’re actually entering Dallas for real. It’s one of my memories from the 1990’s that we can’t go through Dallas without getting stopped by traffic. We seem to do so, but get stopped right after the lake. But still I think it got built up in my memory. Since then we’ve dealt with Los Angeles traffic which is far worse than Dallas’s. It also goes on much longer.
What happened to the big sky? I remember that the big sky ends somewhere around Dallas/Forth Worth. But what turns a big sky into a not so big one? For one thing there are the big, white, puffy clouds overhead. They are now becoming omnipresent. But this can’t be the whole story. After all, the monsoon is beginning in Tucson. There should be more and more clouds there, too. But somehow the clouds in Tucson are more sharply defined against the backdrop of the sky, and the sky is more blue, dark blue. Is it elevation? Lack of general humidity? For here the sky is more washed out. The clouds never quite disappear from the sky. Whereas in Tucson after a rainstorm it turns all blue again.
Also the trees are getting taller and taller as we enter Arlington, the city between Fort Worth and Dallas. Soon the highways will be lined with them. When you look up they will start to limit your view and determine just how far you can see. Of course in Tucson there were no trees, just cactuses.
Another factor, I think, are the mountains. In Tucson and the Southwest and West in General you have lots of flat plains with mountain ranges in the distance. In the Southwest you have sky islands. In the eastern part of Texas you have hills with nothing like a mountains with lots of rocks on it and not lots of trees to serve as a contrast with the sky.
Instead what do we have? Begonias and crepe myrtle, which we just parked in front of at McDonalds at exit 449b in Arlington.
The Dog/Cat Report:
The dog now has a Chinese dragon that we bought last night at Petsmart. It’s about as exotic as the dog finds the scenery. At every rest stop he has grass. He and the cat were spellbound yesterday afternoon watching a maintenance man at the motel cut the grass with a lawn mower. That’s not something the pets see in Tucson. There’s also a smell associated with cutting grass that they find curious.
Practically every morning now the cat gets into his soft-sided carrying case to be taken out to the car. He sleeps in it most of the time at night, too. He prefers it to his bed that we brought from the house. He thinks of that as something he uses only in Tucson. He likes all the insects. This morning I discovered a whole pack of them parading through the bathroom at the La Quinta. We’re back in the South.
Every day I do my blog and post it on Facebook. I also post my journal entry for the day that includes my trip narration, the Bear update, the blog, and the dog and cat report as well as more on www.captiveattheberghof.org, my website page. In addition I post the daily expenses on my website. After that I update the motel information on my desk calendar along with the mileage that we drove that day. Then I’m free to indulge myself on Kindle. Oh yes, and I do have to look at the email and enter everything I spent on my debit card on the appropriate bank register.
When we checked in we found a small magnolia tree in the parking lot! There are also American boxwood, begonias, southern pines, southern magnolias, and crepe mrytle.
Still no contract . . .