Graupel (not a Texas town)

We found a scenic vista view spot in central…well, base of the panhandle of Texas. Afterward, we drove and drove on plateau flattishness.

We didn’t intend to visit the stockyards in Clovis, New Mexico, but all of a sudden we were there. Fortunately, there were no sales today, and no hustle bustle, and no bawling and 💩

I took this shot out the side window toward the north, after we had left the flat flat flat and were approaching the pass that would take us through to Albuquerque in the Río Grande valley.

This is the snow we could see ahead of us…although this is further along where it was densest. Temps were above freezing, so no worries; the pavement was too warm to become icy.

Stepping out of a Tex-Mex (more or less) family restaurant after we ate, we could see the Sandia Crest (just north of the gap the interstate that we arrived on came through), with snow on the ground and snow clouds above.

The weather reports this evening featured many discussions of locations receiving graupel (we caught some graupel on the windshield at times). Tomorrow should be…interesting.


Apologies for the delayed post; I was wiped last night…. Our route yesterday was consistently west from Hot Springs toward Lawton/Fort Sill. We traveled on Interstate, US highways, State higways, and even county roads. There was only one short gravel stretch, with signs saying watch for flooded road; we were lucky as the ditch water was about five feet below the road surface. This is the land of flash flooding.

However, we did avoid the cops in Mena!

This part of the world has many lakes that are reservoirs. For this one, I’m guessing they left the trees telling folks it’d make great fish habitat. Some kind of habitat, anyway.

Disrespect for signs.

We stopped briefly in this small community, so I could stretch my legs. The houses on either side of this street had the barking-est dogs; however, it took almost five minutes for someone to come out and ask what I was doing. This was the view out of the hamlet; I decided not to walk closer to this agricultural implement.

We diverged a bit north to visit the quirky community of Medicine Park. The quirky here is a busy resort/ex-hippy-style place, I assume for a change of pace for those who get off-base from Fort Sill, or away from the fields. We got terrific burgers (this is beef country, after all), and spotted this decoration in a planter.

We crossed the river on this fine bridge leaving Medicine Park. It predates hippy-style.

PDQ we entered wild lands, and saw…tadah! A real wild thing. Two actually, lone males several miles apart. We’re still looking for antelope.

The open plains offer a whole different sunset experience. This dramatic graduation lasted for perhaps an hour. Such a contrast to my experience of the sky in the eastern woodlands.

Out, about, in green

Only leprechaun I saw at tonight’s party; I’m going with too jet lagged to show up on actual St. Patty’s day.


Of course, the big adjustment today was the old-style clocks that don’t talk to the Big Giant Head (if I have it right 😀). For me, that’s two: the range and the microwave. Both our vehicles also have one clock apiece that requires manual resetting, but that’s for another day.

White daffies, white tulips

“Green, white accents.” That’s what I’d entitle this lovely front garden. The distant chairs look like blobs here; in person, they looked like they had the potential to be mildly comfortable. Pour me a martini!


For a time, I kept track of this lot. The last time I posted a photo of it, if I remember correctly, workers were finishing the two floors below the (former) ground surface, which appeared to both be parking levels. Now, the apartments far above are being finished, and I’m sure the builders are more than ready to have inhabitants move in, and to start working down their debt load. Or perhaps I’m projecting.

The title refers to the increased pressure on nearby roads and sidewalks and businesses by the new residents of this multistory building, which used to be a one-story artist studio and apartment structure. Sooooo many more residents to come….

Nature’s art

This is the most arty pollen-rimmed ex-puddle I saw today.

Rather like marbled endpaper.

Change over time

Today. No precip, and no skyscraper tops.

In contrast: this was yesterday. The long view….

And, back to Monday, here’s another clue as to the bench removal from another bench in the same park. This suggests that the wooden slats are failing (rotten), and that’s why benches were removed. However, why not take this bench, too? Was the truck full? Were they out of replacement slots? The mystery continues.

City business or business in the city?

This is today’s biggest tale of intrigue (in my limited, personal experience). I spotted two guys at the edge of a city park with battery-powered drills removing the whatever to allow a bench to pull free from bolts embedded in concrete footings. Further along, I spotted this guy wheeling a different bench away. None of the guys wore any logos or uniforms of city employees. What was the deal? I dunno. Too many homeless using the benches? Too many nannies with tired feet resting with strollers of sleeping tots? Too many dogs urinating on the legs of the benches?

My moment

Every once in a while, my dear friend KW offers little one-act plays, based on an experience du jour, on her daily blog. I thought I’d give it a try.

Setting: I’m walking west in a residential area, down a slight slope, toward a complex junction, with many stop signs to keep things safe. And no sidewalks.

The action: Coming toward me is a white Land Rover. I watch the driver slow a bit, and roll through two stop signs perhaps six car-lengths apart, then continue motoring toward me.

I decide to move to the center of the road, and wave my arms. I was ready to jump out of the way if the driver kept coming at me. But, he did slow and roll down the right window to ask…

Can I help you?

I just watched you blow through two stop signs!

I know. I live in this neighborhood. I’m in a hurry.

And: Hey…I live here, too! At least he stopped, took a reasonable tone of voice, acknowledged his behavior, and didn’t get angry. And still: he ran two stop signs. Yes, no other traffic, but but but.

And a Pretty while you negotiate the crowds and exit down the aisle. 🤣

Also, that isn’t the vehicle in the play, if you haven’t figured it out.