30 August 2008

Vacation, Part IV

You've forgotten that I even went to Boulder, haven't you? The existence of a certain bun in a certain oven has had me simultaneously busy and unable to get anything done. But here I am, ready to tell all about the ride home.

This unidentified rodent was spotted at a rest stop in... Kansas? Probably Kansas. I moved closer and it jumped into a hole in the ground. Is it mole? Any yard rodent aficionados out there?

Possibly at the same rest stop -- "Sneath Enterprises". I don't know about you, but this is a not a company I'm inclined to trust.
("It reminds me of salad dressing, but for some reason I don't want to eat it.")

Yes, that's Steve next to Steve on a Subway/Get Smart window cling.

This is the Taco John's. They are a fast food tex-mex establishment out of Wyoming. They promise "A Whole Lot of Mexican". I'm not sure what that was a whole lot of, but I'm hoping it wasn't Mexican. Okay, it wasn't that bad. It was pretty much exactly like Taco Mayo. BUT -- the churros. Oh, the churros. Tasty, tasty churros. I heart churros. (Ten bonus points if you can name the reference.)

This is a Spangles. We saw signs for this fine establishment on the way to Colorado, so on the way back, we decided to stop in for dinner. We figured, hey, it's either a decent restaurant or a gentleman's club (and then decided that if it was a gentleman's club, we wouldn't be eating there).

It's a pretty decent little place. A chain, I'm pretty sure. They've got burgers and shakes and french fries in cups. Yum. Steve approves.

This is a photo from inside what is probably one of four state-sponsored rest stops in Oklahoma. For some unknown reason, the state decided to spend ALL of its rest stop budget on one really nice one at each border. Ri-diculous.

This is the rest stop's dog park. Yep, that's right. Two different fenced in areas (one for small dogs, one for large), each with a sheltered bench and doggy-sized water fountains. Oh, and a really, really long list of rules. Come on, Oklahoma! What's wrong with you??

"Hey, baby -- wanna get outta here?"

01 August 2008

Vacation, Part III

Boulder, Day 3: "The Late Start", or "Thrift Stores are Alike Everywhere"

Yes, we got a late start on Day 3, because we were awake till 4am the night before, post-Batman. But Day 3 was still glorious, as you will soon see.

First things first -- lunch at Paradise Bakery. There used to be a Paradise in Promenade Mall in Tulsa, but it closed before I moved. Eating their club croissant and chocolate chip cookie made me feel 14 again (in a good way).

And here we have what must be the tastiest soda in the whole world. Izze. Mmmm... And completely guilt-free (every now and then): it's just fruit juices and fizzy water. "Soooo good!"

Then we went to two thrift stores, which I don't have photos of (too busy shopping). We found several fabulous items, including a book I'd been looking for, an unfinished scrap hippie quilt, a four-CD set of the music of Woodstock, and Norman's perfect jacket, which he had been wanting for more than a year. You'll have to wait for Day 4 to see the photo of it, though. So, all in all, a good run. Also, thrift stores in Boulder seem to have an excess of 1.) Sporting gear, 2.) books on health and diet, and 3.) great music.

Then we decided to hit up the Mountain Sun Pub and Brewery for an afternoon snack (and by "snack" I mean potatoes, grease, and beer). Fun place. It was full of people and hoppin'. The beer was okay (I'm not a big fan anyway), but the fries were very tasty.

Steve had to get in on the action. (We left the menu there.)

And then, walking along, what should we happen to see but an ARGYLE BIKE! Seriously, could Boulder get any cooler?

Street breakdancers. These are in addition to the street jugglers, street harpists, street bagpipers, street bongo players, street pianists, and street opera singers. Oh, and the street crazy old drugged out hippie men on bikes affectionately called "Grandpa" by the local unwashed young people.

The view from our bench where we waited for a table at Pasta Jay's.

This was the scene that made us stop to see what was going on. Turns out the yellow chain is the outline of the United States.

And this is the Zipcode Man. He was asking for members of the crowd to tell him their zipcodes. He would then direct them to stand in their state on the map.

Then, once he had about 15 people on the map, he would go back through and tell each person their zipcode and what town they live in (and perhaps a local eatery). He even told the guy from NYC what street he lived on. There was a guy from Alva. I didn't even know where Alva was (Northern OK). So, Zipcode Man = very impressive.

Only one part left! Day 4, coming soon.