Wandering Ways II

luis

Yes! People have dropped me a couple of notes about the wandering. I guess they relate all the way back to the WANDERING TIME post a few notches below this one. A note to tne anonymous poster on the last entry: you wrote about that tree with tinsel in Louisiana--I know that tree! I've seen it!

How about the dead airplane pasture in Tucson? Ghostly bombers and jet fighters and burned out helicopters. How about the creepy abandoned and gutted motel/gas station complex in TX on the east side of the Pecos River bridge? Scaaaary. Buffalo Bill's grave on top of Lookout Mtn? Garden of the Gods? The guy outside of Zion Nat Park who has buffalo and elk in his back yard?

My radio bud Jay Marvin and I are partial to Baker, CA. We like the Bunboy and the World's Largest Thermometer. I also can't help deep love for The Mad Greek's diner, where I used to have egg nog milkshakes when I still ate sugar.

The Urrea clan also likes to visit the Jolly Green Giant statue off I-90. Megan said: "That's the green bean guy." Not excitedly. At his feet, plywood Smurfs and college students twisting themselves to look like they're having a Smurk orgy for phtographers.

Cadillac Ranch goes without saying.

How about the place in the CA redwoods where the giant statue of Paul Bunyan talks to people? Have you seen that place? Where the statue will say, "Hello, lady with the red purse! Hey you! Come over here!"

Or that spot--it's near Beaver, Utah,isn't it?--where the cemetery has a sign behind it that says: TAXIDERMY.

The road from Tijuana to Ensenada has two perfect roadside gems on the right side. One is a rock painted by some holy fool to look like a big green frog. And the other is far down, at the foot of the deadly sea cliffs--a rusting freighter broken on the rocks, and the waves rushing through it like something out of a 19th century pirate story.

Surely the best roadside freakout is in Oakley Kansas. The prairie dog village. You see it as if it were an episode of The Twilight Zone. "6,000 Pound Prairie Dog!" its sign promises. "Five-Legged Steer!" And the lot has cars in it, so you pull in, only to realize that the cars are derelicts, put there to look like lots o' tourists are in the joint. A LURE! Cue the spooky music. But you go in anyway! There's a cage full of rattlesnakes, and the guy sitting there whacks it with a stick so they'll start to rattle. There are dried animal droppings with wiggly eyes glued to them called Turd Birds." And you can buy them.

The man is quite nice. He tells your kids a joke. He says, "You know what cows do on Saturday night?" And they say, No what? And he says, "They go to the moo-vies." And Eric spends all his summer cash to buy a chopped off rattler's head floating in a jar of alcohol.

That's what I'm talking about!

Tell me more of yours, weird travelers.
See you in the 13th Nebraska Stuckey's, heading west.
XOX, L

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Anonymous (not verified)

You have become my own favorite book club. I'm re-reading "Wandering Time," I finally ordered "Devil's Highway" and I'm going to re-read "The Stand." I put off reading "Devil's Highway" because I thought it would be too intense. But, it's time. And, news of the threat of bird flu makes "The Stand" timely again!
I'm loving your blog.
Prudence

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Book club members have been some of my most enthusiastic and careful readers. I’m thrilled to share my work with you, answer your questions and tell you some of the stories behind the stories. This is our spot, just for us. Here, we can chat:  If I’m nearby, I’ll come and visit your club. Otherwise, we can Skype, talk over the phone or email. Sometimes, I’ll send surprises or hold contests.

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