The 6-week journey will be across the “southern transcontinental route”, covering southern sections of California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and northern Florida. Arrival at the finish line in St. Augustine, FL is projected for April 10, 2010.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

church, Fort Davis, pizza, and Marfa lights

Hi everyone,
We have had a busy day, but a relaxing one as well.  The weather was perfect, even hot.  After breakfast Paul decided to leave because of some bad weather coming in.  (Turns out that he did not get back to Denver, but stopped in Lubbock, TX to wait for better flying weather.)  Dave and I went to church and Mike and Paula took two bikes and rode up and down the streets of Alpine.  
Dave and I attended the United Methodist Church of Alpine.  It is an old building with lots of character--balcony, lots of wood and little rooms, wide staircases with wooden spindles and railings, and a great basement and kitchen.  The people were super friendly, welcoming us and inviting us to have dinner with them after the service.  Seems every second Sunday they bring large amounts of food to have a congregational meal.  We met the pastor Jane Vaughn before the service and she introduced us from the pulpit.  After the meal she showed slides of her trip to Israel with their bishop.  We stayed and saw some very familiar places.  She gave a very informed running commentary with the pictures.  

When we got back to the RV we all decided to drive up to Fort Davis, a town the guys would have biked through had they stayed on the bike route.  We visited a broom maker, a rock shop, a souvenir shop, and the old fort itself.  The town setting is very spectacular, set amidst towering rock formations.  The town and fort are named for Jefferson Davis, of Confederate fame, although when the town was named he was the minister of war under Pres. Lincoln.  Much of the original structure is gone but they have done a wonderful job of restoration of some of the buildings, including a small museum, gift shop and auditorium for showing a short film telling the story of the fort.

We came back to Alpine to get some pizza.  There was some activity at the local college  today and restaurants were full or running out of food.  We ended up at a tiny pizza place (for those of you in West Chicago, it was like Luigi's at 59 and Roosevelt).  We managed to be the last customers of the day and had a great time with the waiter and manager.  The waiter had seen Dave and Mike riding into town yesterday.  by the way, the pizza was fabulous!!

Then we drove the 18 miles to see the Marfa lights, a local phenomena of unexplained dancing lights on the mountains across the desert from the town of Marfa (of Prada fame!).  There were about 50 people at the observation point, some with elaborate camera equipment, just gazing across the expanse of the desert.  We thought we saw something, but it wasn't very definitive.  However, the night sky was breathtaking.  Haven't seen that many stars since canoeing in the Boundary Waters of Minnesota and Canada.  

We are ready for bed.  I must tell you that there will be an unscheduled stop at the repair garage before we take off tomorrow.  Sounds as though a wheel bearing may be loose on the front of the motorhome.  It is about 80 miles to the next stop so we are hoping it will be an easy fix!!!!  We were able to get the hearing aid batteries today but will need to gas up before getting away from much civilization for a couple of days.  Sanderson is our goal tomorrow night.  A newspaper reporter is planning to meet us  and do an article.  We'll see.  The two other reporters from Fort Davis and Alpine never called us back.



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