Ok, the article does go on to actually celebrate a few local spots, and while I don't necessarily think of the Panhandle as one of the world's most exciting travel locales, it certainly holds a special place in my heart. Especially when the details section of the Washington Post directs you to fly into Oklahoma City to get to the Panhandle. Oh, heavens, Amarillo at least has an airport. It's even an international airport.
Some of my Panhandle, and specifically, Amarillo, favorites, just in case you ever feel the need to explore that flat, arid land. And yes, there will be a lot of food involved. Specifically...Tex-Mex. There's a lot of other delicious food, of course, so I'll wax nostalgic on those in connection with something else.
- Tex-Mex rules. Go to Tacos Garcia and order the Tampico plate. And then go to Rosa's for anything (and at least one tortilla) and Leal's for the green chile queso and Abuelo's and The Plaza and I wish Paradise Too was still around. The waitresses knew my family there. Best nachos and Spanish rice EVER, and Mom and Dad would always spring for the Andes mints at the end of the meal. I loved that place. Oh my gosh, Taco Villa!!
- Stanley Marsh 3 signs. Not III, 3. Yes, he's that kind of guy. A eccentric rich guy who gets a kick out of getting people to put up crazy signs like these all over town:
- The Tri-State Fair. I didn't realize what a good show they actually put on until I stopped in at some really unforgettable fairs in Abilene and Lubbock (we're keeping the comparison in the smallish zone, kids - of course the Texas State Fair is awesome) and developed a greater appreciation for the fried ice cream from Amarillo's finest vendors operating out of trailers.
- People are generally nice here. That finger lifted off the steering wheel is a greeting, not the finger. The land of ya'll and howdy. Something to be said for that.
- Semi-seasons. It totally snows in Texas.
There's more, but that'll do for now, ya'll. Except for one last sunset. And a few power lines stretching across that vast, silent expanse of land.