Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Coast to Coast: Day 14: Grants, NM - Amarillo, TX. Wednesday, May 21, 2014

     Maybe it was because I overslept, or I ate too much. Maybe the road was finally getting to me. Whatever it was, this day felt like the worst day of the trip. I had about 10 hours of sleep, the most of any day so far (not counting the 5 hour nap I took the previous day). I also had the most to eat this day. I stopped at two McDonalds and also ate more bags of beef jerky than I can count. My biggest problem seemed to be that there simply weren’t enough hours in the day.

     Time was a luxury that I never had enough of. I thought at the beginning of my trip that I would have more downtime than I would know what to do with. That was why I brought my laptop. Now, if I wasn't on the road or sleeping, which usually took up the entire day, I could be doing laundry, showering, cleaning my bike, helmet, or water bottles, updating my journal, or a host of other things to prepare myself for the next day.

     On my way to Texas, I stopped at a gas station. That is, what was left of it.

Guess I’m not getting gas 

     Abandoned gas stations were common in the more western states of the U.S.A, but I had never seen one eaten by an inferno. I was really hoping to fill up on Gatorade because I was completely out, but the next gas station in an actual town nearby worked the same.

     Traffic in Albuquerque actually wasn’t too bad. I really didn’t know I was passing through the city until I was ascending the mountain just east of the city. The steep climb up the mountain didn’t last too long either, and it quickly flattened out. As expected, the higher altitude chilled the air, and I stopped at the same visitor’s center where I met the man from Wisconsin who travelled South America. I really wished I hadn’t lost his business card. I filled up my tank and continued through New Mexico.

     The desert in eastern New Mexico was warmer on the return than it was when I first crossed it. The first time I went through it, the temperature was fifty five degrees. Now it was a pleasant eighty degrees. I was still feeling inexplicably tired and down, though. I thought Amarillo was a really small town. Coming from the east on back roads, I only saw a small section of it. Coming from the west on the Interstate Highway, I could see the entire city. It really was a city, not a town. Medium sized office complexes, tons of restaurants and things to do; I missed it all the last time I was here. By the time I reached camp though, I was so tired from the ride that all I could do was go to sleep. It was rather windy, so I took another cabin.

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