Somehow an entire week has gone past since last weekend, and I’ve not had five seconds to sit down and write a post!
So we’d done six glorious days in Texas, and now it was onto the road trip part of the road trip… 🙂
Thursday 16th February 2012 – we left Texas for Oklahoma. This was the driving part I was most excited about as it involved leaving the interstate and driving Route 66. Well, part of it anyway! Here’s a random section of interstate with an advert for Ariat boots – this is one of the reasons I love this part of America!
It didn’t take as long as I’d thought to get over the border and into Oklahoma City (where we were joining R66). This made me realise exactly how lucky the girl we met on the plane is (she lives six months of the year near the Oklahoma border, as a photographer. She lives the other six months of the year in the UK, as a teacher. Ok, I wouldn’t want to teach, but what an awesome way to incorporate two countries you love into your life!)
Here’s the turning onto R66…
And me and Daisy Duck driving it…
We stopped at the Rock Cafe in Stroud, on Route 66, on Mum’s recommendation (from things she’d read – she’d not been on it before either). It was a gorgeous little 50s-style diner, and it turned out to have a wonderful story behind it. The owner, Dawn, bought it almost by accident and found happiness in a small town. Pixar then discovered her, and the Rock Cafe, and she is the inspiration for the character Sally Carrera in the Disney/Pixar film Cars (http://route66news.com/2006/06/09/a-route-66-guide-to-the-cars-movie/). Which is amazing. The cafe also burned down in May 2008 (Dawn’s chronicles of its rebuild here http://rockcafert66.wordpress.com/)
Here’s the cafe, outside and inside – someone considerately parked a Boxter outside it so it’s almost like Sally herself was there…
Fingers crossed the “read more” tag worked – first time I’ve used it!
I got me a Route 66 sign – Mum & Dad got a normal one, mine has Oklahoma on it too – so I can collect them from all the different states when I’ve eventually driven all of it 😉 It’s proudly on my wall at home now –
My impressions of R66? It’s a lovely road and you do feel like you’re driving a piece of history – it’s much less touristy than I’d expected, but is also much more run down in places than I’d expected (not having had a chance to do much in the way of research before I went) – this I guess is the impact of the interstate that runs parallel to it being built and being significantly faster, if much less interesting, to drive. I’d love to do it again, and more of it, and have more time to stop and look at some of the museums and things along the way.
We couldn’t stop because we had a date in Tulsa – with George Strait and Martina McBride! This will mean pretty much nothing to any of you who don’t like country music (although even you lot should have heard of George Strait, I reckon – but anyway, just in case, I have linked their Wikipedia profiles to their names) but for me and for Dad, and to a lesser extent for Mum, it was a REALLY BIG DEAL!
So we met lovely Bob and Liz, who have four daughters around my age (23-28) who I’d also love to meet someday! We went to dinner in downtown Tulsa, which is much more beautiful than I’d expected. They didn’t bat an eyelid when I asked for a pizza without cheese (!) and then we got in the car and spent a very long time waiting in traffic to get to the gig. I have no photos because, expecting them to have strict rules about cameras, I left my camera in our hotel.
The gig was amazing – a clip I found on Youtube is below 😀
So back to our hotel. Which is located on Route 66 (as it passes through Tulsa) and was also fantastic, it’s only recently reopened after an overhaul, where students at the local art university were given the task of designing the rooms. Its website is here – go and visit if you can! I knew I’d love it as we walked in – it had a display of vintage suitcases in the lobby 🙂 We had the Equestrian Suite, with horses and clocks everywhere!
And that concluded our stay in Tulsa. Next stop – Memphis!