Saturday, 13 February 2010

Alpine Adventures (Texas Style)

The day started with a fantastic Organic breakfast at Eve’s Garden – complete with fresh fruit, perfectly ripe avocado, freshly squeezed and blended juices, homemade orange zest biscuits (we call them scones), special honey, eggs and various other goodies, including some rice and beans to assist with the jet propulsion… Breakfast was a luxuriously leisurely affair, with a long and interesting chat with the owners, Kate & Clyde, and one of their friends, Mark.

Mark owns a crystal mine just South of Carlsbad, TX. The crystals are believed to have healing properties: they can clear away negative energy from a person’s aura and re-align the chakra (energy) centres of the body. We both had a turn sitting on a large slab of the crystal. We’re not sure we can describe exactly what we felt, but we both did feel a kind of positive energy or calm. Just what we needed before sitting ourselves on our small slabs of leather for the day! All that was left to do was take a few snaps of the gorgeous cats that greeted us every time we stepped outside our room, and we were back on the road.

And what a road it was today. Well, actually it was the same road (we’ve been on Hwy 90 now for around 250 miles), but the scenery was even more spectacular than yesterday. We also believe that it is a “magic” road. Somehow, we managed to climb from Marathon at 4,055 ft to Alpine at 4,475 ft without it really seeming like we were going uphill. Perhaps our perspective is all skewed after the last few days…still, we’re not complaining…or it was the sample of crystalline stashed in our panniers (thanks Mark)?

Tonight, we are in Alpine, TX, a historic town with many of its original features intact, including the hotel that we are staying in, The Holland Hotel, which has been around since 1912, closed down in 1969 and was re-opened again last November. We planned a rest day here because it has the only bike shop in the area, and the hotel is rather nice! Steed has been making a dreadful noise on and off for the last week or so (since the last bike shop) but, like someone with a cough who finds him/herself with a doctor’s appointment and is asked to “cough”, the noise miraculously disappeared just as we were pulling into Alpine….hmmmm. It’s a good job really as, on arrival on this fine Saturday at around 2.30pm, we found that the bike shop shuts at 1pm on Saturday and does not open again until Tuesday morning! Although we would love to have the excuse to stay until Tuesday morning, we can’t really justify it.

The other thing that we have noticed is that we have been following the railroad all along Hwy 90, and that the Amtrak station is just across from the hotel. Having heard the trains from our hotels and motels over the last few days, we are starting to feel a bit like the scene from My Cousin Vinny when the train passes by honking its horn at full blast around 5am … we’re keeping our fingers crossed for our rest day tomorrow…

Us x

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