I dreamed about this place, as strange as that may seem. I visited it once before, years ago, and not long after had a dream in which I woke up in a strange bed in this long-since-decayed town and asked the girl next to me, "How did I get here?" She gave me a reassuring smile and answered, "You've always been here." Odd, I know. Erick is one of a thousand little stops along the old Route 66, ghost towns that years of rust and neglect by the outside world have transformed into inexplicably lovely still lifes. These places died on the vine, a vine which was strangled by a much larger and more powerful growth designed to make travel easier for the masses: the interstate. But they remain -- living museums of a bygone era and generation. And they are absolutely worth taking the time to stop and see.
My evening in a nutshell: Dinner and a room at the Big Texan Steak Ranch, where kitsch is Texas-sized. A monster steak and a couple of beers. Surprisingly good conversation with some other folks who were passing through. At around 6AM I heard the words, "It was nice to have met you," and a little laugh, followed by my motel room door opening and closing. It's been a long time. I don't think anyone will begrudge me a night of good, semi-clean fun. Ready to hit the road again. I'll be in Albuquerque later today having dinner with an old friend. Oh, and it's 24 degrees outside right now.
Stopped in Amarillo, TX for the night at 6:48PM CT. Total number of miles traveled: 1,721. Number of bite marks on my neck: One (but it's a doozy).
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