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Open Roads Forum  >  Truck Campers

 > Faulkner's Grave or bust, part 3

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dpgerson

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Posted: 01/28/10 11:08am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

My last post was from the valley in the New Mexico bootheel near the captivating Peloncillo mountains. I stayed in the area a week. The last night there I was in the mother of all wind/ sand storms. My camper was rocking just like a boat on a turbulent ocean. I went outside in the middle of the night to put the jacks down for stabilization. This helped a little bit. In the morning I found that my furnace wouldn’t light, presumably from wet sand clogging something out.

This was pretty worrisome because it was getting pretty cold at night with no promise of relief. I stopped at the Animas Mercantile to buy a special screw driver bit to take off the furnace cover, but I tried the furnace one last time and it finally worked ( and has worked since). I guess the wind from going down the road must have blown out whatever it was that was clogged.

So I made my way up towards Las Cruces, NM and stopped there for groceries. Spent the night there at Walmart and left the next morning headed for the Bottomless Lakes State Park near Rosell.

On the way I stopped at the spectacular White Sands National Monument. Surreal would be the right adjective for this place:

[image]

[image]

This is one of the few National Parks or Monuments where the Park Service lets dogs get on the trails. We took full advantage.

Here’s a shot that shows some really vivid shades of blue in the sky. Don’t know if it was the contrast of the white that did it, but these blues really took my breath away. Look at the different shades from kind of a milky blue to full on deep blue:

[image]


There’s an 8 mile drive into the interior of the site. The further you drive in the more you feel like you’ve landed on another planet.Here’s a link to a video that shows how haunting this landscape really is.


on the moon

I hung around the visitor’s center waiting for a job interview by phone for a contract in Minneapolis. I thought it went well. Turned out later I came in second but there was only one position. I’ve been experiencing some uncomfortably cold weather lately, so maybe I was fortunate not to get it.

I left Las Cruces and headed for Roswell, NM, hotbed of UFO activity and conspiracy theories and the Bottomless Lakes State Park where I stayed. As I arrived these clouds greeted me. Maybe there was a UFO hiding behind one of them:

[image]

This is really a pretty park, the first one established in New Mexico and built by the CCC and still standing. They still use the original buildings built of stone. Unfortunately I forgot to take pics of them. But here’s one of a dinner I had while there:

[image]

After a couple of days there, I headed to the Texas Panhandle and the Palo Duro Canyon State Park near Amarillo. I soon knew I was in Texas when I was greeted with this view of a virtual ocean of cows. The picture doesn’t really do justice to how many there were:

[image]


I arrived at the spectacular Palo Duro later that day. It’s called the Grand Canyon of Texas and it is beautiful. Any Larry McMurtry fans will recognize the setting as the one where the young Texas Rangers Woodrow Call and Gus McRae, the main characters of the superb novel and later miniseries Lonesome Dove, first met one of the top four most pure evil men in my literary wanderings, Blue Duck. The place is really a character in it’s own right in the novel Comanche Moon where we also meet the powerful chief, Buffalo Hump. If you haven’t read McMurty, you’re in for a treat if you do.

Here are some shots of the place:

[image]


[image]


[image]

We hiked up the river trail that goes near the river with the cool name the Prairie Dog Town fork of the Red River.:

[image]

Look at the different layers of exposed history on this little bluff. The reds and browns and this strange layer of something almost greenish that I’ve never seen before:

[image]

Obligatory cute puppy curled up with my shoes in the camper shot:

[image]

After a few days there, we set out to cross Texas on the way to Louisiana and my destination, northern Mississippi. I didn’t want to spend too much time in Texas because since I’d been through it several times before. However since I was near Archer City, Larry McMurtry’s home town, I had to stop. He owns an incredible “bookstore” there. It’s actually in 4 different stores and contains over 400, 000 volumes. Quite incredible both for the size and because it’s in a small town. Here’s store number one:

[image]

The pics inside showing the vast, seemingly endless shelves of books came out a little blurry, I think because of the lights, but you get the idea:

[image]

The lady working there explained that they don’t carry any of McMurtry’s work, an extensive body, because too many people want him to sign them. He’s quite a famous man, and he actually works in the store sometimes I was told. I didn’t see him though and was disappointed because I’d planned to buy his memoir there.

So after another couple of days of driving across Texas and Louisiana I arrive where I currently sit, in the Harrah’s Rv Park in Tunica, MS. I came here for one of the World Series of Poker Circuit events. I’m also hunkered down awaiting a forecast bad storm that will produce freezing rain. Once that passes I’ll be heading over to Oxford to see Faulkner’s grave, possibly the endpoint of my journey. Stay tuned.


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sleepy

Oak Ridge,Tennessee

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Posted: 01/28/10 01:19pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Several years ago I did a search of Amazon.com for a book, The Best American Short Stories 1966. ISBN 0962898406

I was looking for a story written by one of my friends, Walter S. Terry... "The Bottomless Well" (Walt is also known as the father-in-law of author Homer Hickam.)

William Faulkner also had a story in the book... "Mr Acarius" © 1965. It was first published in The Saturday Evening Post.

I still enjoy all twenty of the authors included in "my" book.

Thanks for posting

Sleepy

* This post was edited 01/28/10 01:35pm by sleepy *


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capeangler

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Posted: 01/28/10 04:14pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have really enjoyed following you along this journey and your pictures are spectacular ,,, thanks for sharing ,, kinda bummed out when you said that you may be at the end of your adventure .



Thanks again


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capeangler
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silverdunes

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Posted: 01/28/10 04:37pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Beautiful shot of your puppies in White Sands! They are so gorgeous! I like your pic of arrival at Bottomless Lakes State Park...the clouds speak for themselves! thanks for posting.


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Tiger4x4RV

Inland Empire, Southern California

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Posted: 01/28/10 07:09pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You're going to stay in Oxford? OR will we get to enjoy photos and adventures of your trip back to home?

dpgerson

Pacifica, CA.

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Posted: 01/30/10 09:53am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Tiger4x4RV wrote:

You're going to stay in Oxford? OR will we get to enjoy photos and adventures of your trip back to home?


Haven't got to Oxford yet. Stranded in Tunica due to this big ice storm in the mid south. But when I do head for home, I'll probably just drive as much as I can until I get there. This nasty weather has made me homesick!

GoinThisAway

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Posted: 02/01/10 06:39pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Wow! That WAS a very blue sky at White Sands. And I'll have to remember to go by that book store in Archer City sometime. I love to read! Thanks for letting us ride along on your trip and hope you have a safe trip hom e[emoticon]


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c.traveler2

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Posted: 02/02/10 12:56pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Very nice trip your having, isn't White Sands a great place. It can be hot out there and yet the gypsum is cool to handle.


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