Wednesday, June 6, 2018
Tuesday night, after fueling the van and generator, I camped in the truck parking lot at the Acoma Pueblo truck stop, hoping to re-visit Laguna Pueblo this morning before actually starting today's adventure. When I reached the turnoff, however, I found that the overlook that Dave and I had stopped at on our last trip through this area was closed for maintenance and repairs. So gathering more pictures and information for another writing project was not possible at this time ... maybe on my return trip.
I didn't get as far as I had planned on today's leg of the trip; the weather wouldn't allow it. The day started out sunny and bright, but by the time I had reached Tucumcari, the clouds had gathered, thick and dark ... almost as dark as just after sunset. Clouds were OK, they kept the van's engine cool, but the atmosphere nearly melancholy.
As I approached Amarillo, TX, I had been through one major downpour and the sky looked as if it were priming for another round. As it was nearly 4:00 pm local time I started looking for a place to spend the night. As I left Amarillo, another deluge began which took nearly all my visibility. Lasting about 20 minutes, it quit just as quickly as it had begun. And I thanked God profusely for the clearing skies.
Just then I came around a huge curve in the road. Off the left shoulder was an eighteen wheeler laying on its side. It looked as if it had been gently picked up and laid there... except for all of the emergency vehicles that were rapidly joining the scene. For the rest of the time I was on the road this day, I prayed for the driver of that truck and any passengers he may have had with him. I also thanked God for my safety since I had been on my journey. Our God is SOOOO good!
About 20 minutes after passing this truck wreck the sky was looking thick and gloomy once more. That's when I saw the sign for a 'picnic area' a mile up the road. It seems that the roadside rest areas that are common in California and Nevada aren't in other states. But throughout Texas and Oklahoma, they have Picnic Areas. These are roadside pull-offs that provided picnic tables and trash cans. No restrooms or drinking fountains.
At this particular picnic area several trucks that had pulled off and were settling in for the night. I parked the van and got out to speak to one of the drivers that was setting up orange cones around his rig.
"Sir, do you think anyone will mind if I park here overnight?" I asked.
"No, Ma'am," He replied. " that is just what we plan to do, too."
Saying thank you to him, I set about preparing to start the generator and settle in for the night.
Having tucked us in for the evening, I will leave you here in the picnic area east of Amarillo, TX until tomorrow.