Archive for August, 2007

Rain, gravel roads & lasagna! Oh yummy!

August 20, 2007

            Sunday, 19 August.  I woke up to the news that the area I drove through yesterday, was now underwater.  El. Reno received about six or 7 inches of rain.  The dirt roads, I took, must be muddy rivers today.  It was cloudy, with breaks, in Clinton and muggy.  I drove back to exit 84 and picked up my journey there.  Weatherford had been to alignments.  Back in 1930, they must’ve been very narrow two-lane roads, instead of the broad avenues they are now.  I stopped by the Stafford Museum, but it was closed until one o’clock.  Unfortunately, the jet fighter on display at the museum was not labeled And I couldn’t get inside to ask what it was. Bummer!    I enjoy driving on the old Portland cement 66.  The pocketa, pocketa as you go over the breaks in the pavement are very lulling. Along the road you can occasionally see dirt washed across the road from the rains last night.    Next was driving the several alignments in Clinton.  As the route 66 museum didn’t open until one I took the time to go to the Italian Villa for a lovely lunch.  At the museum I met some bikers from a number of countries.  The museum was almost too busy.  I spoke with Cindy, who is the assistant curator of the museum and learned that the sign we had donated back in June had not been put out in the exhibit.  They had just not had the time to put up to the sign, as well as several other exhibits which were waiting for a quieter period in say, November.  Darn!    I now headed out of Clinton, on a delightful stretch of original Portland cement.  I cruised along at 42 miles an hour on an empty stretch of highway.  It was so nice.    When I got to Foss, I eagerly passed up a fun drive.  I took the old postal route, which is US66 from 1926 to 1931, through fields on lovely gravel roads.  I then took State Route 44 through Foss, picking up the postal road on the south of Foss and continued on it until it finally hit pavement again, and exit 50.  Except for one spot, which had a little water, a dip in the road, the gravel road was very easy to drive on and reminded me of a couple gravel roads.  I had driven in Australian.    I went on a little further and touched on the alignments through Canute.   At this point I called it a day and headed back.  A short while back, both power points in my car went dead, and I drove on, without need of my GPS system.    To top off the day.  I went to the home of Jane and Dean Phares for an excellent lasagna dinner and marvelous conversation.    Tomorrow, I end up just across the border in Texas!

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Remembering the “Anvil of Ghod!

August 19, 2007

Heading to the Phoenix for Coppercon during the first week of September and looking at the temperatures currently in Phoenix,I was reminded of the 1978 world con.  It was Labor Day in Phoenix was having a heat wave.  The temperature, under cloudless skies, was approximately 110, if not higher.  To get to from my hotel to the convention center I, and everyone else, had to cross a square, approximately 100 to 200 feet on a side of concrete.  this square of concrete, radiating back in the heat of the Sun and fried us as we crossed it as quick as we could to get inside and out of the sun and away from the “Anvil of Ghod.”  —  I am hoping that when I get to Phoenix in about three weeks, the heat in the Southwest well have a eased somewhat.  Also has it as a smaller convention, it should be all in one hotel, and one should not have to go outside.  —  Having had good times at other Phoenix conventions, I am looking forward to this one.

Dirt roads & 1926 Portland Cement

August 19, 2007

            Saturday, 18 August.  What a day.  Another late start, then for some reason the power connector to my computer was not sending power.  This could be a real disaster.    With cloudy sky and the hint of rain.  I headed back to where I left off yesterday: Fort Reno.  The now agricultural research station was once the home of soldiers during the Indian wars, including the famed buffalo soldiers.    As the ground was still dry, though it would sprinkle from time to time, I took the pre-1933 alignment of route 66.  It is really hard to imagine cars driving down this dirt road which was the main road through the area.  A good rain, and one would find a quagmire, and not a road.    This seemed to be a journey back in both time and space.    are retraced my a status and headed east on 2-lane  66.  —  I should note, the 2-lane stretches were on the original Portland Cement. I traveled slowly down the road watching traffic on 44 whizzed by, but I was really enjoying myself.   back going west I made the detour through Bridgeport and followed the narrow streets, dirt roads to the point where pre-1933 66, should have come across the fields from the now long gone bridge. The row of telephone poles marching across the field seem to indicate that I had the right place.  I also found what looked to be a cemetery for truck trailers.    I stopped to take a photo of Lucille’s place.  It seems so small for such a large lady.  I then went and had a cheeseburger at Lucille’s roadhouse, which appears to be an homage to Lucille.    It was getting late; it was raining; and I just wanted to get back to the Room as I was a little dispirited.  I did cheer up, what I found the power cable, working for the nonce. Hence, I could post this.

Back in, back in Clinton, USA!

August 18, 2007

            Friday, 17, August.  The day began with a hassle.  Saturn of Tulsa did not contact the folk in OKC.  Again, no parts, so now I have to get it done, I hope, in Albuquerque.  I shall be there next Friday for the SF con.    I did get to drive thru a number of the alignments in OKC & get some neat photographs of some of the items noted in the EZ Guide.   On the way out of town, I drove over the Lake Overholser Bridge.  It is a marvelous structure.  However, one needs to be careful if you are going westbound.  The lane is narrowed by all the kudzu growing along the guard railing.    the grain elevators in Yukon are truly an impressive sight.    66 West travels through some flat farmland, and also grazing areas.    along the way, I found the sign, that is part of the next scavenger hunt question.  There are actually two answers to the question as there is a very faint organization listed, which has been painted over by a second.    even with the later bypass.  There are a number of right angle turns one following 66 through El Reno.  When one drives, the older alignment.  You add a bunch more right angle turns.  You are also driving down some narrow side streets.    at this point.  I called it a day and headed for Clinton.  I needed a roam food and a good nights sleep.

Braking for Oklahoma City.

August 18, 2007

          Thursday, 16 August.  Another is hot and humid day in Oklahoma, the temperature is supposed to go into the low 100’s. Yuck!    My first stop was the rock Café for breakfast and a good one it.  While there a group of about 8 Italian’s came in for coffee and to take pictures.  Oh goody, I could use my 7 sentences of Italian again.    Now down the road towards Oklahoma City.  My first stop was take a photo of Seaba Station.  Unfortunately, it was closed.    In Wellston, I tracked down the concrete totem pole.  As it seemed to be nothing more than a series of skulls impaled on a steel rod, I called it the skull pole.    in Luther I got some photos of the abandoned stretch of 66, on both sides of the river, and the old bridge abutment’s.  On the near side.  The abutment had been painted over for an advertisement.    Just before Arcadia I took so old alignment, which was ever so neat.  There are few homes on the road, but mainly you drive down a tree lined street.    as I have been warned.  I made sure my speed was below 45 miles an hour as I drove into Arcadia.  I parked behind the round barn and spent an enjoyable few minutes, taking photos and wandering through the gift shop.  I also climbed up into the second-floor, which gives strange sounding tones to your voice when you’re standing in the center of the room.  From there, I drove down 66, to Pop’s.  For once, the hype was worth it.  Both the building and the pop bottle were really neat.  My hamburger was quite good, and reasonably priced.    After filling me and my car.  I took a leisurely drive into Oklahoma City.  The drive down Lincoln Boulevard, towards the Capitol building was very pretty and well laid out.    I found my Super 8 in Moore without any problem.  However, their wireless connection is almost useless.  I don’t recommend this place, if wireless is important.    up way too early to take my car in tomorrow.  I’m hoping I won’t have to kill the entire day at the dealership.

Strew! I’m really in Stroud!

August 16, 2007

            Wednesday, 15 August.  After a quick call to both a super 8 in Oklahoma City and in my insurance agent to pay the premium on my laptop and other goodies, I headed down the road towards my eventual destination of Stroud.    Beyond Sapulpa, I noticed some old two-lane highway, which had been the Ozark Trail, but is now undrivable.    With very light traffic.  I was able to cruise down 66 through very pleasant countryside taking in the view.    In Kellyville I got a photo of the old cotton gin.    I next took the Tank Farm Loop.  This is a fun stretch to drive.  I drove the southern portion of this as well.    Just beyond this were a couple of stretches of old 66, which were more or less drivable.  The style section was very rough, and I can imagine drug deals being made here late at night.    In Bristow, I found the answer to the next scavenger hunt question and waved at the Penguin as I drove by.    After driving the Depew Loop I bought some petrol at the Phillips 66 station there.    Along this section of 66, I had some opportunities to abandon the current road and drive short stretches of old 66, including the Shoe Tree Loop.  I didn’t have any old shoes to add to the tree.    I drove through Stroud to where I picked up the 1926 to 1930 Ozark Trail portion of 66.  It was a dusty drive down gravel roads through fields of various green stuff.  This reminded me somewhat of driving in Oz.  I finally reached Stroud once again, and stopped at the Rock Café for lunch.  I had a very good sandwich.  Lots of water – it was over a 100 – and chatted with the folk in the café.  A young couple from Italy were biking 66, and I gave them a few suggestions.  One being that they stop at the Route 66 Museum in Clinton, where they can pick up an EZ Guide for the rest of their trip.  They were also amused to find the first vaguely Italian speaking person of their trip, me, at the café.  I should note that I have forgotten just about all the Italian I ever learned in the three years I lived in Italy.  However, they seemed to enjoy hearing Italian from an American.    from Stroud.  I took a leisurely drive through Davenport and took pictures of a old-fashioned gas station, which is still functioning & the 1930 Phillips 66 station in Chandler, before turning around at Warwick and heading for my motel.    I now got a bonus on the day.  Kodak downloaded some new software, and I was able to once again, upload photos [700] to my computer.  Hurrah!  I think as taken about 2000 photos so far, may be more.  Pixels are cheap!    tomorrow will bring me to Oklahoma City.

Coppercon

August 15, 2007

Looking forward to the con.  I’ll be doing a number of panels, the charity auction and judging the masquerade.  —  I’ve been to a number of cons in the Phoenix area in the past and have enjoyed them.  —  Unfortunately, I can’t expect the heat to abate by then.  —  It is supposed to be about 104 in Tulsa today.  —  Drop by Coppercon and say hi to The Wombat.

Normalcy is vastly overrated!

August 15, 2007

The vast majority of human beings dislike and even dread all notions with
which they are not familiar. Hence it comes about that at their first
appearance innovators have always been derided as fools and madmen. -Aldous
Huxley, novelist (1894-1963)

Taking in Tulsa!

August 15, 2007

            Monday, 13 August.  I got up way too early to take my car into the Saturn dealer.  After an hour I was informed that the hand break really was screwed up, but they did have the parts.  The dealer then set up an appointment for me and with the Oklahoma City dealership.    As I was free to get on the road by 10 o’clock, I headed up towards Claremore.    I first checked out some abandons sections of 66, including one that is now the main drive of a relatively new housing area.    After taking a picture of the twin bridges.  I drove fairly straight through to Claremore.  There I found the answer to another scavenger hunt question.    I then checked out the J. M. Davis Arms and Historical Museum.  The museum is a  Little bit overwhelming.  I would imagine a gun collector would go crazy there.  Something like 20,000 different guns.    I topped off the day with a visit to the Will Rogers Museum.  I only spent an hour to there, but to do this museum justice one needs to spend probably more like the entire day. I watched the short film made by Rogers in 1921 called Ropin’ fool.  And the man was ingenious and artist and magician with the way he could make the rope do tricks.
           Tuesday, 14 August.  Today was drive Tulsa day.  First, I drove into the city on Southwest Blvd. This was old 66.  At Ollie’s Station.  I had breakfast to the accompaniment of rather loud trains.  The trains were running around the restaurant overhead.  I had the feeling I was in a cheap hotel next to a train track.  I continued on into Tulsa, Crossing over the bridge that replaced the Cyrus Avery bridge and headed down 11th St.  There were some quite interesting buildings along this stretch of the road.  The 1929 warehouse market building was really neat.  As I continued on my way East on 11th 66 is a combination of industry and some strip malls and not a very pretty road.  However, it was interesting to drive along it.  The Franklin Academy announced it was on America’s Main Street and had murals on the wall surrounding the school.  A little further, I drove by is a Wonder Bread and a Hostess cupcake factory or bakery.  I bet Wonder Bread still build strong bones and eight ways.  I turned around and headed back down, the first 11th and then a Mingo to Imperial Place and headed west.  This earlier version of 66, was also four lanes, and also mainly light industry and strip malls, but not so many used car dealers.  After driving by, the blue dome, which is pretty garish, I continued on the old route and as I turned down second.  It turned into a rundown residential area.    As I headed across the bridge.  I stopped to get a picture of the abandoned, maybe, Cyrus Avery Bridge.  It would make a nice foot bridge and may be a place for people to exhibit are or other such things.    I continued Southwest and took the Skelly Drive alignment before reconnecting with the Southwest Blvd. and heading southwest.  It was a pleasant drive to lanes some woods.  A very quiet drive through the countryside.    In Sapulpa, I took a picture of the Coke bottle shot glass and lime sculpture.    Just west of the city, I turned onto the Ozark Trail.  This was later part of the 66 designation.  There is a marker about the road.  Just before you cross the one lane iron bridge.  The road is somewhat rough, but if you’re driving at 30 miles an hour.  It’s not too bad.  I found and took a picture of some original Portland cement highway and found the answer to yet another scavenger hunt question.    I decided at this time to call it a day and head home.    I did stop for dinner at Freddie’s steakhouse.  This is located not far down Oklahoma’s 66/66 out of Sapulpa.  The price was right in the fillet was good.  If you are in the area and want a steak or a barbecue, you can do far worse. 

Tiptoeing into Tulsa!

August 13, 2007

Sunday, 12 August. I headed down The Road & looked for the store in Narcissa, but I couldn’t find it. Being Sunday morning traffic was light, & I could tool down the road at 42 mph, only pulling over once in a while. The southern portion of the “ribbon road” was as neat as the northern end. What a trip to drive on it. I chugged into Afton and found “The Station.” Not only was Laurel Kane there, but so was Ron McCoy & Ron Jones in all his multicolored splendor. We nattered away for over an hour. While there a family from Norway dropped in. I loved the old Packards on display there. One was a V-12! The visit was delightful. More creeping down the road until Vinita where I enjoyed a very nice lunch at Clantons. The temp was in the low 100’s! Laurel gave me my driving orders, & I obeyed. I dropped by the Chelsea Motor Inn where I met Frank & Trudy Jugler & their per[?] bison. We sat in the shade & chatted. A loverly visit. I did the alignments in Foyil, finding the Bunion Derby Marker, but missed the Andy Payne Statue. Oh well, one can’t see everything. Found the answer to the next couple Scavenger Hunt questions. It was getting late, & I was getting tired so I just followed the main routing from there on to Tulsa. I shall return tomorrow or Tuesday. — Up at 0630 to get the car in EARLY! I’m hoping , it will be done by a reasonable hour.