A to Z Theme 2016

For my 2016 A to Z theme I used a meme that I ran across on the blog of Bridget Straub who first saw it on the blog of Paula Acton. This meme is a natural for me to use on my memoir blog. It's an A to Z concept and it's about me. No research and nothing complicated. I'm given twenty six questions or topics to discuss that are about me.

In April I kept my posts short and uncomplicated. In the midst of it all you might learn a few things about me that you didn't previously know.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Heading To Houston

Las Cruces, New Mexico
Las Cruces, New Mexico (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

        I've lost track of the number of times my wife and I have made the long drive from Los Angeles to Houston.   Since our daughter moved to Houston several years ago we've made the run many times.  We've got it down to a schedule for the most part.

       On the day that this blog article posts we will be undertaking the first leg of our journey.  We'll shoot for a departure of between 5 to 6 AM.   After grabbing a to go breakfast from McDonald's (it's across the street from where we live), we'll hit the road.   The destination for the first day will be Las Cruces, NM.  This is almost precisely the halfway point between L.A. and Houston and makes for a fairly comfortable twelve hour day including a stop for lunch and a few gas stops.

        The western portion of I-10 traverses hundreds of miles of mostly desert.   From Palm Springs to the Arizona border we'll be crossing the empty expanse of the Mojave Desert.  Not much here other than empty space.  Not bad to look at, but not a place you'd want to break down in the middle of a hot summer day.  We'll try to make it to Arizona before 11 AM.

          Lunch will be on the southeast side of Phoenix.  It was after several trips that we discovered that Chandler Blvd. was a good place to find restaurants.  We've now honed our usual choices between a couple of barbecue restaurants--Rudy's and Can't Stop Smokin'.  We alternate between these two most of the time.  Since there are no really good barbecue restaurants near where we live, eating at these is a treat for us.

           After a satisfying lunch break we hit the road again.  Passing through Tucson is not my favorite part of this trip, but once on the other side of that city we know we've got lots more open road ahead with maybe one more gas stop.  We'll pass though towns like Benson and Wilcox.   There's one mountain stretch that passes through a wild array of rock formations.   Or how about the tourist trap gas station/Dairy Queen that for miles advertises "The Thing?"   We've never stopped for that one, but I've been tempted.   My wife says, "Keep going" and I know she's right.

          Shortly past the eastern Arizona border we pass the odd little ghost town of Stein's.  It looks like an interesting place to visit in it's scenic setting, but I never want to take the time.  Someday I'll pull off to see what's there, but not today.   We've got a couple more hours and if we're on schedule it's now about 5 PM. No rush hour to worry about out here, but dinner and our motel room are beckoning us.

          The Springhill Suites has become like home to us we've stayed here so many times.  Before we get our room we'll stop first to have a light dinner at Applebee's.   My wife will probably have a frozen margarita while I'll cool off and relax with a tall schooner of draft beer.  

          In the room I'll grab my laptop to check on emails and this blog to see if I got any comments.  So if you read this post be sure to comment so I see it.   Once I'm wound down after a long day's drive, it's hopefully a good night's sleep before another early start and another twelve hour day to our Houston destination.

          Road trips are fun.  I've got a lot of road time to put in over the next few weeks.   Maybe I should think about selling our house and living on the road in an RV.   Might not be too bad of a life.

           Have you considered giving up the settled life for a life on the road?   Do you enjoy traveling through the desert?     Do you have a special place like a lodging or restaurant that you visit every time you pass through a certain town?


  1. I would love to hit the road and travel in an RV and take lots of pictures and do side trips. Too bad we're way too poor to do anything. You have fun on your trip!!

  2. Great trip information, Lee. And, I love barbeque if you mean southern BBQ. That's what we want to know - travel tidbits. That last paragraph tells me you may have the makings of a 'road warrior'. Perhaps you missed the excitement (if not the driving)of a new place coming up just down the road.
    Please drive carefully and have a lot of fun!

    As for the Thing, hasn't that been around for decades? Or at least the signs. I dislike the billboards. They clutter the landscape. We have them in Canada too. In France, no billboards in the old city.

  3. I stopped at that DQ once for gas, and talked to a guy who'd just spent the couple of bucks to see "The Thing."

    He said it was allegedly some kind of mummified body, but it was under glass and the light was poor and he recommended I not waste the money (which I wasn't going to do anyway).

    But having made the drive from Phoenix to Houston (and back) once, I'm all set for the rest of my life. After El Paso, it's a looooong drive!

    Safe travels, my friend!

  4. >>... So if you read this post be sure to comment so I see it.


    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

  5. JoJo -- Travel does get expensive!

    DG-- I seem to recall seeing the billboards for "The Thing?" when I was a kid. I do like billboards when they give me travel information like hotels or restaurants. I've grown rather tolerant of them in general.

    Larry-- There is some information about "The Thing?" on the internet. I didn't think it cost $2, but I doubt whether I'd be pulling off the road there anyway.

    StMc-- Hi!


  6. I think it might be fun to pick up and go traveling in an RV. I certainly enjoyed reading Melissa's posts (http://writeryogini.blogspot.com/) when her and her husband took a year to go off and travel. Not sure I'd be up to doing the RV life for a year, but maybe 3-6 months might be something I could handle. Cost would definitely be something to consider.

    I hope your travels go well and that you have a wonderful visit with your daughter.

  7. Hope you are enjoying your trip. My sister-in-law and her late husband to a trip cross country in an RV and saw some amazing things. I wouldn't mind doing it for a while, as long as I didn't have to drive the thing.

  8. Lee-

    That $2 figure was back in 1997...adjust it for Bushflation and Obamanomics..

  9. Me and Jeff have agreed once he retires we're going to sell our home, buy a little bungalow and a camper van - then watch out road, here we come!
    Suzanne @ Suzannes-Tribe

  10. Hi Lee ... road trips can be fun, but stopping off and seeing the odd sight to satisfy curiosity could make a good tale to tell ..

    Love the photo of NM .. hope all's gone well and you're in Houston .. cheers Hilary


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