More news and notes from my road trip out west. For more photos and pithy observations, follow me on Twitter (@kclockhart) and Instagram (kate_lockhart). Please excuse the dirt on my sensor, I noticed it too late this evening to fix.
Day 2 is in the books, and it was a tough day of driving.
It was another 4 state day, spending time in Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas and finally landing here in Tucumcari, New Mexico. The driving was tough only because it was SO monotonous. I took more pictures today than yesterday (not necessarily better, just more), which substantially slowed me down. I kept pulling over to the shoulder to grab a picture of this or that, and stopping in small towns to grab a shot or two. And while those stops are “breaks” from driving – they aren’t mental breaks at all. And with all the stopping (just here and there mind you, no major diversions) what should have been a 9 hour drive became an 11 hour drive. Needless to say, I’m pooped. I’m happy to be slowing things down starting tomorrow.
After a quick breakfast at Starbucks, I hit the road just as the sun was beginning to rise. The beginning of the trip found me back on I-35S, but once I made it to Wichita I hopped on US-54 and continued through some of the flattest most desolate places I’ve seen in the US.
I saw this sign on the side of US-54 in Pratt, KS and had to grab a picture. While I was taking some shots in the parking lot, a man came up to me and said, “This place used to be the best. It just hasn’t been the same since Don passed.”
Here are a few shots of Kansas…
Just past the border of Oklahoma, I reached a place called “Texhoma.” Texhoma was this weird no man’s land between the Texas and Oklahoma borders, and contained several businesses including a large area for livestock auctions.
When I pulled over to take a picture of this giant cowboy statue I noticed there was a FedEx truck on the side of the road too. “Crappy place to break down,” I thought. Then I noticed the FedEx guy standing outside the truck with something in his hands. Turns out it was a camera – he was moved, just as I was, to take a photo of this Texas-sized oddity.
Conlen, TX was one of many abandoned (or seemingly abandoned) towns I passed on my drive. It was amazing to me just how many small businesses I saw that had long since closed their doors.