Sunday morning, Amarillo. Sunny and cool. After breakfast, I went on dogfriendly.com to see what we might do today.
I found that there are several outdoor outfitters that allow leashed, well-mannered dogs in their stores, as well as an Historic Route 66 area downtown. With that address in hand, we loaded up the Impala, and I gave instructions to Jack the GPS guy.
He got us there with no problems, except it turned out to be the Amarillo Visitor Center! Which also turned out OK. I went inside and talked with Kay, the woman on duty at the desk.
She pulled out a visitor map and marked the location of Historic Route 66 shopping area, while saying, “Texas doesn’t do much for us. We’re sort of the forgotten stepchild – and I know that some stepchildren get treated all right…” Her point being that the Historic Route 66 district was pretty small and not well-promoted.
We had a really nice chat, and when she learned about our accident, and our trip, she started trying to find MORE things for us to do! She pointed me in the direction of a huge Sunday flea market, the Quarter Horse Museum, the Panhandle Plains History Museum in Canyon, and asked me to bring my puppy on in to see her.
Max was more than happy to oblige, and came in being his cutest puppy-ish self that he could possibly be. By the time we left, I felt like I was well-equipped for a day in Amarillo.
She also told me about these odd diamond-shaped street signs that are all around town. Seems that Stanley Marsh 3, the eccentric millionaire who installed Cadillac Ranch in the desert, puts these wacky signs up with crazy sayings on them. Remember the quote from yesterday’s post:
‘Art is a legalized form of insanity, and I do it very well.’ – Stanley Marsh 3
Here’s one of the signs, that I just happened to stumble upon when trying to find my way over to the flea market from Historic Route 66 – where everything was shuttered up tight on a Sunday morning.
I had forgotten what Kay said about Stanley Marsh and his signs, so when I saw this at a curve on a quiet residential street I didn’t get it. My first reaction was “What the hell is that all about?” Driving further along the block was another sign in someone’s front yard with another crazy quote, and light dawned! I went back around the block to snap a photo.
When we got to the flea market, it was every bit as huge as Kay said. Most of it is inside a big metal building, and “No Pets Allowed INSIDE” was posted on all the doors. Dang! Were we skunked again?
Of course, since Max is the celebrity wherever we go, he broke the ice with two women smoking cigarettes by their car, and I asked if there was an outdoor area where he could be with me.
“Why sure, hon. Go right on down there and through the gate. It’s all out back.” And so it was…
There was everything from Barbie dolls, cowboy boots, used saddles and tack, appliances, toys, to 3-day-old chicks, puppies, hens, a rooster, and baby goats for sale.
Someone even had set up a little pony ride with four pretty ponies hooked to a turnstile type of thing:
Max was frantic to get at the hens, the puppies, and the ponies so we had some wild struggles to keep him under control. I guess I need to work more with him on those kinds of distractions.
By the time we left the flea market, he was in need of water, and a rest in the back seat. I was ready for some lunch, but other than fast food places, nothing seemed to be open. I used my handy iPhone app to locate a couple of local hamburger places and after getting Jack to guide us there, both were closed. I even went to Macaroni Joe’s thinking I could have lunch instead of dinner, but they were closed too.
Meanwhile, our search had us backtracking all over Amarillo, so now I feel like I understand the “lay of the land” at least! We were heading back to our hotel (me, discouraged; Max napping) when I spotted Rosa’s Café and pulled off I-40 onto the frontage road to get to it.
I don’t know if it’s a chain place or not, but the food I ordered was excellent: a tamale with pico de gallo sauce, and guacamole salad tasted authentic, with just enough fire in the tamale to make me sit up and take notice!
I drank the last bottle of my Dolly Varden IPA from Metolius Brewing Co in Portland, Oregon with my lunch. All in all, a satisfying experience!
Oh yeah, we stopped at PetSmart this morning after picking up a latté to get the boy some treats and a new toy. What an experience that turned into! I bet a dozen different kids came up to pet Max, and he was so great: he SAT for each and every one – never jumping up on anyone.
He picked out a rope toy with some sort of tough silicone circular thing tied in the middle, and when we got back to the hotel he had a blast playing with it. Up on the bed, fling! Onto the floor. Grab! Up on the bed, jump to the other bed. Shake and chew on it. Offer it to me for tug.
And now? Here’s Max and the new toy: