Dinner Friday night:
I made a reservation at Macaroni Joe’s – a lovely restaurant that welcomes dogs on its outside patio.
It was a fine evening to sit out, and Max was on his best behavior (mostly). I ordered a glass of Pinot Grigio, Caesar Salad, and 5 oz. tenderloin with gorgonzola lime sauce.
Our server, Micah, was excellent – getting Max a bowl of water, and making sure on a regular basis that everything was OK.
The wine was superb, the Caesar magnificent, and the steak… sublime. Served with roasted Yukon Gold potoatoes, and green beans, it was cooked exactly as ordered, juicy and tender.
After all that, you’d think I wouldn’t have dessert, right? Wrong! This was the best meal I’ve had since Portland, Oregon, and I was having dessert!
Bourbon bread pudding, with pecan caramel sauce, and scoop of vanilla bean ice cream. URP… Yes, I ate too much, but it was worth it. After all, what did our mothers always teach us? Food= comfort, right?
And one day after crashing my car, I needed some comfort. Macaroni Joe’s filled the bill…
Saturday, March 19:
Max is feeling oh-so-much-better today! He’s full of mischievous energy – bringing me my shoes one at a time, jumping from bed to bed, and pretend biting my arm! Lucky for me, he has a nice marrow bone to chew on…
Here he is in his post-breakfast snooze:
Today dawned as predicted – foggy and cool – so we drove out to Palo Duro Canyon. The Impala is NOT Tumbleweed, and I don’t like sitting so low, with small side view mirrors, and all the plush bells and whistles.
I LIKE my good ole Tumbleweed. (Imagine that said by a four year old, with crossed arms, as she stamps her foot and you get the feeling.)
However, the Impala got us there in the same amount of time as Tumbleweed would have, and it was a comfortable ride. Max seems to like being loose in the back seat to look out the windows, or to lean forward and poke my right ear with his nose.
The drive out to Palo Duro was through some flat grazing lands, the outskirts of the town of Canyon, and more of the same flat grazing lands. Unrelenting grey skies seemed to almost touch the earth off along the horizon.
This windmill stands in sharp contrast to the wind farms we saw on the way west. Ubiquitous to the grazing lands of the west, it raises water to watering tanks for herds of cattle or horses.
Palo Duro Canyon is really stunning – sort of a miniature Grand Canyon in Texas. Imagine that you could drive into the Grand Canyon (and your vehicle was the size of one of those huge mining trucks so it would be in scale to a normal car driving in Palo Duro), and that is how it feels to drive down into Palo Duro. Obviously, it’s not anywhere near as deep as the Grand Canyon, nor as overall grand, but it is equally beautiful in its own way.
Being there on an overcast day has its benefits and drawbacks.
Benefit: it was about 55° F versus HOT.
Drawback: no blue sky to contrast with that gorgeous red rock landscape.
It was still impressive. We got out at the Lighthouse trail and walked for a little ways hoping to get a good photo of what is called the Lighthouse Formation, but it wasn’t possible unless we walked the full 4.4 mile roundtrip to the vista point. Since Max is still recovering from a severely wounded foot, I wasn’t going to subject him to that – especially given the thorny, spiny vegetation lining the trail!
On the way in we saw some mule deer feeding close to the road, so I was watching on the way out. I didn’t see the deer, but there were three Texas Longhorn cattle at the feed troughs by the entrance:
On the way back to Amarillo, we took a short detour to see the Cadillac Ranch. This classic western roadside attraction is best described by Wikipedia as follows:
“Cadillac Ranch is a public art installation and sculpture in Amarillo, Texas, U.S. It was created in 1974 by Chip Lord, Hudson Marquez, and Doug Michels, who were a part of the art group Ant Farm, and it consists of what were (when originally installed during 1974) either older running used or junk Cadillac automobiles, representing a number of evolutions of the car line (most notably the birth and death of the defining feature of early Cadillacs; the tail fin) from 1949 to 1963, half-buried nose-first in the ground, at an angle corresponding to that of the Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt. The piece is a statement about the paradoxical simultaneous American fascinations with both a ‘sense of place’ — and roadside attractions, such as The Ranch itself — and the mobility and freedom of the automobile.
‘Art is a legalized form of insanity, and I do it very well.’ – Stanley Marsh 3
Who would have thought that burying ten old Cadillacs in an Amarillo dirt farm in 1974 would make such an indelible mark on Texas roadside attraction maps? The product of helium millionaire Stanley Marsh 3’s eccentric mind, Cadillac Ranch was designed with a California-based artist collective called Ant Farm as an homage to the Golden Age of American Automobiles (1949-1963) and to the historic Route 66 which passes by Marshs’ palatious West Texas ranch.
With the distinctive fins of the cars prominently displayed, the cars are buried nose-down ‘at the same angle as The Great Pyramid of Giza’.”
To read more about its relocation and history, click here.
Max was almost a bigger attraction than the Cadillacs. A family stopped to play with him as we were walking in; some young Germans wanted to pet him and take photos; and I heard numerous comments about like “look at that fluffy dog,” “look! a poodle!” and many people asked about his age, etc.
The celebrity is back.
Unfortunately, I was appalled at the trashing of this site. The cars are now covered with graffiti, which people are still doing even today. We met people walking away from the cars with paint on their hands.
I have no problem with the graffiti – well, OK, I wish the cars were still in their original paint – but I think it’s a sad statement on the American people that when they are through spraying the last of their paint, they throw the empty cans on the ground.
There’s even a dumpster right outside the fence gate, so WHY? Let’s show a little respect here, folks…