Sunday, September 27, 2015

Like the Tide

Today at Afton Station reminded me of my years living near water in which there were tides constantly flowing in and out.   At the Station, morning was low tide, very quiet, almost relaxing in the tranquility.  Then, around noon, the tide rushed in.  People arrived, sometimes many at one time, and the tranquility was broken.   But it was broken just the way we like it, with an influx of happy travelers and tourists.

They came from Portland OR, Denver IA, Santa Cruz CA, Bend OR, St. Louis MO, Muncie IN, Winchester VA, Hastings MN, Louisburg KS, Enid OK, Alva OK, Jay OK, Paris France, Austria, and Copenhagen Denmark.
Not a word of English was spoken or understood by any of these folks from France, giving Ron M. and me a chance to pretend we know more French than we really do.
His shirt tells the story.  This couple from Minnesota is celebrating his 66th birthday by traveling Route 66 in their '66 Mustang.  Here's the pretty car.
Two guys from Austria came on motorcycles, just one stop on their comprehensive tour of Route 66.
Some great news is that Robin is finally home from her month in California and plans to resume working the Station on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.  So, for a while at least, we will continue to be open 7 days a week.  The crowds keep coming, so why not?

Don't forget to check out the Super Moon tonight.  It should be quite a sight!  The moon has much to do with the tides.  Perhaps that's why our day at Afton Station was so tidal. . .

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Don't Let Anybody Tell You. . .

. . . that the tourist season on Route 66 is over for the year.   Not so!   The travelers just keep coming, and I can't help but be thrilled by the obvious growing popularity of our Mother Road.  Here at Afton Station, we had  yet another big day, with 61 (or thereabouts) visitors.  It was hard to make an exact count, but that's the best I could do.

Two groups came to visit.  The first, in the morning, was a group from Norway on motorcycles.
Like good Norwegians, they placed their transportation in a tidy line when they came in.
They examined the cars with great interest.  That's their leader Helge on the left with the orange shirt.
Later, a Gilligan tour of folks from New Zealand and Australia, led by our friend Croc Lyle from Amarillo, arrived.  Here's Croc and -- oh look! -- there's Ron M. in the background!
 Some lined up to buy merchandise.
Others took peeks into some of the neat vintage vehicles.
 There were those who arrived on their own as well.  These two women came from Sydney, Australia, bought a Gold Wing in Tennessee, and are driving it across Route 66.  From California, they will ship it back home to Australia.
A couple from Essex, England also visited, having heard about us in guide books.

Besides the above, our visitors came from Mountain Home AR, Nowata OK, Wichita KS, Chandler AZ, Rogers AR, Rolla MO, Jeffersonville OH, Chicago IL, Tulsa OK, Edmond OK, and Edinburgh TX.  

How about this from our wall? 

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Let's Make This Quick

I got home late and tired.  And I took very few photos today, so this seems like a good time to relax and just write a quick blog.  It was a fine day, with 26 visitors who came from Honolulu HI, Livonia MI, Lancaster KY, Afton OK, Ft. Wayne IN, Goodyear AZ, LaMars IA, Wichita KS, Mission Viejo CA, Linstrom MN, Oslo Norway, Springfield MO, and Sapulpa OK.
These folks from Arizona are taking their time and enjoying every bit of their Route 66 venture.
Two guys from Minnesota were drawn here by hearing about our own Tattoo Man's special '56 Chevy, and Tattoo came to greet them.  Please note the pink Route 66 caps in the foreground.  The guys assured me that they're not  for them but instead for the women in their lives.

And speaking of caps, we have a beautiful array of interesting Route 66 caps, some not available anywhere else.  We also received a huge shipment of t-shirts yesterday, so if you need a certain design or size, chances are you can find it here now. Betty Wheatley stopped in and we put her to work sorting and folding the new shirts.  Thank you, Betty!  Come and get 'em!

Rann Lee has been minding the store on the days that Ron M. and I can't be at the Station.  He's been doing a great job,  handling big crowds by himself some days.   Thank  you,  Rann.   Robin is on her way home from California, so I feel sure she'll be back on the job soon.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

From Far and Wide

This was one of those days at Afton Station when there were more foreign visitors than domestic visitors.  I'm always astounded by the numbers of folks from other countries who show such an interest in our dear Mother Road.  They are always so enthusiastic and inquisitive, which makes our days anything but boring.

Today, they came from Milan Italy, Copenhagen Denmark, Johannesburg South Africa, Normady France, Budapest Hungary, and a number of towns is New Zealand.   American visitors were from Warsaw Missouri, Galena Kansas, and Akron, Ohio.
 Gentlemen from Copenhagen
 A couple from Milan
 Happy travelers from South Africa

The New Zealanders came in a group via Harleys.  There were 13 in the group, and as it turns out, a few in the group were from Budapest.  We don't know how Hungarians got hooked up with a Kiwi tour, but I'll bet the story is interesting.

Our Route 66 friend Brenda St. Clair has been visiting in Kansas for a few days and drove over to see us today.  She was able to stay for an hour or two and we enjoyed exchanging stories about what has happened since our last meeting.  It's always nice to visit with Brenda.
Another great Route 66 weekend is complete.   Once again, it was a most satisfying couple of days.

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Eggplant, Rhubarb, and a Watermelon

On the way to Afton Station this morning, Ron M., Joe Meeks, and I stopped in Chelsea at a little farmers' market and I bought some eggplant.
Later, at the Station, Betty came in with one of her amazing, delicious rhubarb pies.
And then, even later, two guys came in from Arcadia, Kansas.  One was a farmer who said he had no money to put in our donation box but he wanted to give me a small watermelon.  I said YES!  I've been craving watermelon all summer. Yum!
There.  I have just explained the title of this post.  Now, on to the day's activities. . .

We had 29 visitors who came from Clinton IL, Broken Arrow OK, Dayton OH, Paris France, Arcadia KS, Milford CT, Joplin MO, Tampa FL, W. Bloomfield MI, Napoleon OH, Nixa MO, Amsterdam Netherlands, Astorias Spain, and Ashland, KY.   A very fine day!

We celebrated Betty's and Tattoo Man's birthdays, despite the fact that Tattoo never showed up.  We ate Betty's wonderful pie and, speaking for myself, I overate.  I just couldn't stop.  It was that good.
We enjoyed meeting this lady from Clinton, Illinois and her pups, Idgie and Gizmo.   Very sweet and well behaved pups indeed!
This gentleman from Joplin, Missouri is pedaling to Texas.  Quite an undertaking.  He was very enthusiastic about the ride and we wished  him well.  It was cooler today so he was pleased.  That 90+ weather broke after a little rain came through and we are all happy about that.
Our foreign visitors came from Amsterdam, Holland and. . .
. . . Paris, France, and. . .
. . . Astorias, Spain.
Some of our closer to home visitors came from W. Bloomfield, Michigan (posing with my watermelon) and. .
. . . Dayton, Ohio.

What a great day of great variety!  If only they could all be like this.   Route 66 continues to attract the nicest and most interesting folks.  We will be at the Station to greet more of you tomorrow!

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Napping at the Museum

Although we had some very nice guests this morning at Afton Station, the afternoon was a real snoozer.  In fact, I did take a short nap sitting right there at my desk -- how embarrassing!  At least no Route 66 travelers caught me in the act.  Ron M. was with me today, so he could have let me know if I was snoring too loud.  LOL

But meanwhile, back at morning. . .We had eleven visitors, and they came from Brussels Belgium, Arvada CO, Austin TX, Windsor MO, Ham Lake MN, Bloomington IL and Enid, OK.

This beautiful white 66 Mustang belongs to this couple from Ham Lake, Minnesota.  I think it's just about the perfect Route 66 cruiser, and they are certainly enjoying it.
 It is always nice to see sisters traveling together.  These sisters are from Austin, Texas (left) and Arvada , Colorado, but have come together to explore Route 66.
Our only foreign visitor today was this handsome chap from Brussels, Belgium.  Having spent several years in the U.S. previously, his English was practically impeccable, so we had a nice chat.
So, despite a day which could be described as "slow", there were enough super visitors to make it anything but boring.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Sunday Funday

Ron M. took this great photo of our friend from Speedway, IN, Pat Bremer, and his cute grandson Jameson.  They're collaborating on a proper autograph for our signature wall.

We drove back to the monument this morning on the way to Afton Station to admire our work from yesterday.  It looks so good.   In this pic, you can see the curb we unearthed, the junipers we planted around the stone, and the stenciled shield on the road.  We are very proud!

Our day at Afton Station was generally copacetic, with guests arriving in bunches all day and never so many folks at once that we couldn't deal with each and every one individually.  They came from Wichita KS, St, Paul KS, Evansville IN, Billings MO, Pawhuska OK, Granby MO, Palantine IL, Prague OK, Speedway IN, Amsterdam Netherlands, Northern England, and Belfast Northern Ireland.
It was great to see our friends, the Bremer family, from Speedway, IN.  I feel especially close to these folks since I was the one who introduced Pat and Jennifer, an introduction that led to marriage, Grandson Jameson, and a big 'ol travel trailer in which they are headed out on Route 66 -- destination Tucumcari, NM.
This happy couple is from Warwick, England.  They are truly enjoying their Route 66 trip.  It's been a while since I've observed such enthusiasm!
Four friends from Amsterdam, Netherlands gathered around the guest book for this photo.  They, too, are having a ball on their holiday.
This young couple is from Belfast, Northern Ireland.  
And here, beyond Ron M's elbow, is our first visitor of the day, a gentleman from Wichita, KS.  He stayed for a while and we had a good chat.  

Saturday, September 12, 2015

We Cleaned Up!

Clean Up Day at the Monument was a great success!   About a dozen hard-working folks from the Oklahoma Route 66 Association (plus me, feeling utterly useless in my wheelchair) managed to turn the area around the Sidewalk Highway monument into something of which to be proud.

The most important challenge was unearthing the long-buried curb along the 9-foot roadbed.  This is what makes the highway unique and interesting.   A lot of hard physical work went into removing years of sod, mud, and overgrowth from the curb.
Doug, Rick, and Patty digging
Blaine weed whacking.

The protective posts around the monument were repainted.
Marilyn and LaSandra painting the posts.

Four lovely juniper bushes were planted around the monument.
 Marly and Rick dig the holes.
Looking good!

A shield was painted on the pavement in front of the monument.
Brad painting the shield.

A directional sign was put up near the road to guide travelers to both the monument and the 9-foot highway itself.
Everyone had a job to do.
Here I am, "supervising".  Gee, it made me feel sad that I couldn't  be more helpful.  Even Tattoo Man came and lent a hand.  Ron M. was official photographer.  Rann held down the fort at the Station until noon, when Ron M. volunteered to take over for him.  So, thanks to those two, Afton Station was open all day.
Our very first visitors at the newly refurbished monument site were these two Route 66 travelers from Indiana.  They made us all feel good by being appreciative of our work.  They were headed home after making the full Mother Road trek to Santa Monica.  

Meanwhile, back at Afton Station, the guys greeted 20 visitors who came from Minneapolis MN, Waynestown IN, Osawatomie KS, Parma OH, Westport ME, Owensboro KY, Denver CO, Fife Scotland, and Prescott AZ.  

I feel very contented after a day like to day.  Much was accomplished, including a nice barbecue lunch with all the workers at the great little Nowhere On Route 66 Barbecue down the road.   There will be more photos here and there, I'm sure, since there was lots of clicking all day. But that's all from me for now.