Wednesday, 5 September 2012

Day 4: Shreveport, LA - Amarillo, TX

Q: Is this the way to Amarillo?
A. Yes.  Yes, it is.

There is not much to report today.  Texas started a few miles west of Shreveport and went on all day.  I'm told that there are scenic bits of Texas, but it's a big place and the part round here is dull.  Grassland, scrubby trees and the occasional bit of arable land and that's yer lot.  Apart from Dallas, of course.  I have seen at least three of the things commonly associated with Texas, namely beef on the hoof, oil wells and Dallas, which is huge and has an insanely complicated road system which appears to be only half finished.  Emily was making a good fist of guiding me through the whole sort of general mish-mash until she told me to keep left when it should have been right.  One twenty mile circle later we found US-287 which goes all the way to Amarillo and beyond into Oklahoma and Colorado.  It too is beset with roadworks, which led to a short chat with the local sheriff.

He let me off with a warning.

Did I say I hoped the increase in altitude would make things cooler?  Well, Amarillo is 1100 metres above sea level, compared with the 60-odd of Shreveport, and the temperatures were the same.  It's drier up here though, so forty+ degrees is more tolerable than it was in the swamps near the coast.  It's trying desperately hard to rain here; there's lightning in the distance and the ttempearture as dropped to only 32 degrees.  Come on, weather!

Other observations today: I still have not found a "gas" pump which has not asked me for a "ZIP Code"  when attempting to refuel the motorcar.  Near exit 540 on the Texas stretch of I-20 (appropriately this is the exit for the town of Van) there is upon the hard shoulder a Chrysler minivan entirely bereft of wheels.  This made me think immediately of Scousers, terrible person that I am.

A Texas, yesterday. Condensation on the lens again...
Proof that I have been in Texas

New states visited today: Texas.

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