epic delays, i know, sorry.
but…altitude sickness. yep. i had that. it wasn’t fun. it felt like a hangover minus the enjoyment of an alcoholic beverage the previous night. the only cure? no, not more cowbell; instead you must go to lower elevations. thankfully we were headed to amarillo, which is only about half as high up as previous cities.
let me just say that i am not a small-town gal. and quite a few of these places so far on the journey, minus las vegas, have been small towns. don’t wear the same clothes, have the same swagger, don’t talk right, clashing political views…so it’s been painfully obvious that we aren’t from the area. mostly in flagstaff and amarillo.
(i hand someone my drivers’ license)
“oh wow, california?!”
our hotel is on the I-40, literally, its address is whatever number I-40. home of “the big texan” restaurant and that massive steak eating challenge. 72 oz steak, shrimp cocktail, dinner roll, salad. eat it all? it’s free! we did not go there, i know you are all very disappointed. but fear not, children, we did manage to still eat steak. it’s the only reasonable thing to do when in texas. there were a few minutes of hesitation on dinner, as driving into texas we passed the mid-west cousin to “cow-schwitz”. for those unfamiliar— “cow-schwitz” is the nickname given to a cattle ranch on the I-5 in california that is commonly driven on the los angeles/san francisco route. There are a lot of cows, which give off a very uh, distinct smell.
“hm that’s strange, what is it?…oh, yuck that’s awful…OH GOD IT’S IN MY BRAIN!!!”
so we drove by a similar situation and meat was not looking too fabulous at that point. eventually, we came around to the idea again after realizing there really weren’t too many options besides steak, fast food, and more steak. we gave in. and it was delicious.
in the middle of the night we were woken up by a group of drunken buffoons in the hallway. this happened at 2am and then again at 4.45am, by the same people. there were warblings of being government employees, so i found it even more rude for them to be creating a ruckus than if they were commonfolk.
sleepy-eyed, we left the lone star state later that morning and were on the way to tulsa.
tried to stop for lunch in an oklahoma town called clinton. quickly realized it consisted of fast food, homes, gas stations and almost nothing else. went to the next town and ate quizno’s— which was an upgrade from our other option: dairy best.
as we got close to oklahoma city the distant skies started to look pretty ominous. this being tornado season, and us being in tornado alley, gave cause for concern. no sooner than i flip on the radio but do i hear the station completely devoting all its airtime to the oncoming storm. you hear things like “tornado shelter”, “baseball sized hail”, and “rotation”…all followed by timestamps when said weather is expected to reach your town.
i wanted to get a little closer to the action, but evan insisted to stay back and let it pass. fine. maybe i was slightly sucked up in the excitement of it all, can you blame me? after about 45 minutes of hanging out at a gas station it was safe to resume.
driving through the path of the storm we were finally able to see hail on the ground. Pretty nuts.