Previous month:
February 2005
Next month:
April 2005

Roadtrip live blog Night 2

I am blogging from the Best Western Hotel in Clarendon, Texas. We have had a great day.


We checked out of our hotel in Canyon and headed for the Palo Duro Canyon state park. Admission is $3 per person. We paid at the entrance and got a park map. There is a very good loop road with a number of campsites. The campsites ranged from primitive tent only jobs to Equestrian Campsites, to RV hook ups. The topography was interesting.


A winding canyon with interesting red rocks and cliffs. We were interested to see that there was a whole lot more moisture than what we are used to. Green junipers, and birds singing in the trees.


It reminded me a little of Utah Canyon lands area. I think what makes this park so special is how different it is from the surrounding land that is ironing board flat! Suddenly the land gets broken up into winding flat bottomed canyons with flat topped buttes.

On our way out we spotted 2 long horned texan cattle grazing by the road. Cool.


Then we went South to Tulia, and on to Silverton where we gassed up. Before Silverton we picnicked on tuna salad and hard boiled eggs at Lake McKenzie


and Kevin found me the largest tumbleweed I had ever seen!


Our next destination? Caprock State Park. Entrance fee was $2 per person. BUT if you have visited a state park that day you are not charged twice. Bonus. I liked Caprock better than Palo Duro. Fewer people, a little wilder. We scouted out 2 tented campites for future visits.


After Caprock we headed for Turkey, Texas. Then North to cross the Red River
(Praire Dog Fork of the Red River). Kevin wanted to see whether we could see any swallow's nests. But it was too early in the season.

We ended up driving through pretty farming country - freshly ploughed red soil, get naked green fields and herds of grazing cattle.


We passed broken abandoned farmsteads, gigantic gleaming farm machinery and flocks of black birds. These farms are so huge yet there are no people to be seen. Even the small agricultural towns we drove through seemed mysteriously abandoned.


Where could all the people have gone? The farms looked well cared for, and well tended.

This is the reward of mechanized farming. Large scale farming tracts which require minimal labor. Miles and miles of cultivated land, and no people.

We ate our dinner of heated chicken and noodle soup with Sally's secret spices, and rice added looking over the Greenbelt Reservoir. The sunset turned the sky pink and red, and we ate watching the fisherman bringing their boats back from a day's fishing.


We heard Red Winged Black birds calling in the reeds.

We decided to either head for the Best Western at Clarendon, or to head for a motel in Amarillo. WE couldn't face the confusion in a larger city, so here we are- very comfortable in a brand new motel.

Tomorrow? We plan to head slowly north, homeward. We may stop by the Prairie Chicken place in Campo to check out the roads, and may be try for a little fishing in Colorado.

I've had a good weekend. It is nice to head out, destination unknown, and experience a little bit of life somewhere different.

Roadtrip live blog continues...

Our Motel room was comfortable, and we slept like logs.

I have the Weather Channel playing in the back ground. I watched 2 very funny Superbowl quality adverts: the first was for a Bail Bondsman company. Unintentionally very funny. The second was advertising a hardware store (I think) and it showed men scurrying around erecting a fence around the presenter and his hunting dog who had to have her honor protected. It climaxes with the completed fence, and hundreds of male dogs clamoring to get in. It even has a determined Jack Russell like dog launching itself at the fence. Too funny. And very clever!

Now we gather all our things, while tuning in to the Weather Channel. Looks like some exciting weather in Florida. I experienced my first tornado in Florida, near Jacksonville - it was not pleasant. Poor visibility. Really crappy. (I love using technological terms!)

I am not sure when we are next going to find a connection to post again. Since this is Easter weekend most places will be closed. But we plan to head out to the Palo Duro Canyon State Park. And then who knows?

Roadtrip Live Blogging


Our proposed trip to SE Colorado to witness the mating ritual spectacle of the Lesser Prairie chicken has gone somewhat awry. We left Denver at about 11:30 am after a delicious Pho Ga at our favorite Vietnamese Soup place - Pho Duy in Aurora. I felt really sleepy after having an enormous bowl of this stunning soup. I did some driving, but I am ashamed to admit I got too sleepy to drive, so Kevin took over. We drove down to Campo which is the little town just outside where the Lek is to be found. We had made good time. We could see evidence of last night's snow storm. Nothing could deter us!

Kevin had gotten directions to the Lek from the web. So off we went. The road started off paved and then turned into dirt. Not a problem- we turned Arnie into the 4X4 dynamo and off we went. More like, off we slid. There was no escaping it. The snow from last night's storm had started to melt and turn the road a nice big soggy and sticky mess. We drove for a little bit, and then the road got really nasty. So we decided to turn back. We did not feel like getting stuck in the middle of nowhere over a holiday weekend, and have to trek for miles to try and find someone to pull us out.

We were disappointed. This meant we could not report back on the romantic activities of the Lesser Prairie Chicken (LPC). So where would we go?

We stopped in Campo to reconsider, to check our maps and to decide on the fly- where to next? Remember we had been talking about and planning for the LPC Romantic Interlude for some time now. Now, we had to get our minds around this one small fact: it was not going to happen.

No problem.

"Let's go to Texas!" Kevin suggested.

And that's what we did. I am now live blogging in the Holiday Inn Express Hotel in Canyon, a small town just South of Amarillo, Texas. The weather is wet and soggy. The rain and snow has followed us South from Campo.

Our plan? Well, we take it as we find it. While we are in Canyon we thought we'd visit the Palo Duro Canyon State Park. They have an Easter service there tomorrow morning. After that who knows? We'll go where the feeling takes us. That's what a road trip is all about- it's not the destination it's the journey that's the fun part. As for the LPC? Well there is always next breeding season.

Check out info here about Canyon, Texas. For info about the Palo Duro Canyon State Park go here. And here.

Terry Schiavo Case- 15 years is enough.

I don't have much to add to the blogosphere storm of opinion. Michael Totten sums it up eloquently enough for me.

He is unimpressed with the political grandstanding and opportunism that this very private and tragic matter has created. He says:

"Here’s how the White House or Congress can score some genuine points with me: do something about people who are taken off life-support because their families ran out of money. (See Mark Kleiman for some details about that gruesome business.) Now there’s a real national problem. And doing something about it requires a lot more than grandstanding. Where's the "right to life" crowd on that?"

Read the whole article here.

Regarding Mark Kleiman's post see Matthew Yglesias post. Also see John Cole's post here.

I found a sane (at last!) Christian position here. Here's a quote from this excellent article:

"I don’t view death as the end of the journey of a human soul.  I view it as a transition.  The God I believe in would not waste the total life experiences of a man or woman made in his image on a total and complete death; a dead end, if you will, with nothing to follow.  I cannot believe that it is God’s plan that the life experiences of a man; wisdom gained, lessons learned and love experienced, should, upon death, disappear as if they never were.   I believe that there’s something to follow the life we know on this earth; and I believe that most of the people fighting to keep the body of Terri Schiavo alive feel the same way."

Easter Weekend Plans & Prairie Chicken Dances

For many this weekend is going to be a time of chocolate and sugar overload, of Easter Egg hunts (never been very good at those... even as an adult) and a good excuse for overeating again.

Kevin and I have been planning for some time a trip to witness the Lesser Prairie Chicken's mating ritual. Wray has tours on private land to watch the Greater Prairie Chicken. For details of the Wray Tours go here. But we have decided to boldly venture forth to south eastern Colorado to try and track down the Lesser variety in the hopes of catching them in their display.

Weather will not stop our quest. (It is cold and soggy - due to a storm system that has breezed through bringing with it snow, and who would believe it?- Rain.) We hope that neither snow nor rain will stop the Male Lesser Pairie Chicken's dance. Not even the rising suicidally expensive gas prices will stop us!

We leave tomorrow morning first thing. I'll blog a full report of activities on our return. Will the Chickens Dance? (A Nation Wonders...)

For more info about the Prairie Chicken mating display go here. And here

Roomba Help!

Kevin has started a blog about Roomba's and all their little quirks. Check it out at

He is currently working on this site. Roomba's are wonderful machines, but they do have some quirks and behavioural issues. Kevin will provide lots of tips, and who knows, even some Roomba therapy.

Blog browsing and other things

I have decided, starting Monday I will only eat when I am hungry and will stop eating when I am full. Diets always start on Monday.

Right now I am doing what I love: blog browsing. I start off with Cooksister just to see what is cooking. Then it is Andrew Sullivan, Instapundit and Michael Totten.

From Instapundit I find Carnival of the Receipes #31. Ahh glorious food!

I then visit my favorite historian Victor Hanson

and then... and then...

Carnival of the Vanities #130

I missed it. Yet another blog event that I missed! I have good intentions. Buried somewhere in my archives is my one and only entry in the simply fabulous Is My Blog Burning #7 Event, and I have missed out on the #130 Carnival of the Vanities. Other blog events (albeit food blog events) I have watched from a distance. For example the fab Cooksister! keeps up with the blog events.

Bird's Eye View hosted. He begins with a wry invitation to the Blogosphere Boys Club. Great. I could have tipped the balance.

Check out the Watcher of Weasels. He has a new post out for voting. I think I need more Mountain Dew to follow the rules ;-) But check out these links: Alpha Patriot has some incredible photographs of the Lebanese protest. Right Wing Nuthouse talks about the idiotic attempt by the FEC to control the blogosphere. TFS Magnum ponders the future of Newspapers. Maybe instead of newspapers being people's first source of information they will be used instead for something else entirely - like protecting clean carpets from wet spring mud!

I got a little side tracked. (But I think that's what the Carnival is all about.) I found The Christian Anarchist blogging about whether Jesus could be a Democrat or a Republican. (There are blog entries for both sides of the argument.) And he concludes in a series of blog posts that Christ was in fact apolitical.

This makes for really interesting reading. Wait I found this post about the culling of Elephants in South Africa. I left a comment on Interested-Participant's blog. This policy of culling elephants in South Africa has been around for years. I did a paper and presentation on this issue (at the time (2003/4) South Africa wanted the CITES restrictions removed as it had collected a large stock pile of Elephant products, mostly ivory that it wanted to sell. CITES has given South AFrica consent to sell its ivory in one off sales in the past.

Sigh. Next time perhaps.

Thanks to the kind words from Solomon in the Comments section on the post below.

Next weeks Carnival of the Vanities is hosted at Code Blue Blog. Deadline March 22nd, 6pm EST.

Carnival of the Vanities...

While cruising around Instapundit I came across a blog event I have previously ignored: The Carnival of the Vanities #129 hosted by Solomonia. This blog event is a means for bloggers to link their pride pieces to a host site and gain more exposure. Here's the explanation.

It makes for some interesting reading.

March 16th's host is Bird's Eye View

I think this is a wonderful idea. I wish I could participate, except what to write? What is going to be good enough? What do I have to say that I feel needs to be read?

So many decisions, so little time...