Here’s a Blog post I bet you thought you’d never see: A Travel Story from a Travel Blogger that is not full of words like “magical” or “best trip ever” or “Instagram Heaven.” But, this is a real story! And y’all know I like to keep it real!
The storm that tore through Dallas on June 9, 2019 made the National News. Winds reached up to 80 miles an hour, and blasted through the DFW area in a short 30 minute time-span. One death, sadly, due to a crane that fell over into an apartment complex. Many others injured. Tremendous property damage. Giant Live Oak trees toppled over like match-sticks. And we don’t have a lot of trees to spare in Dallas, y’all.
Where was I? Blissfully having a leisurely brunch in Santa Fe, New Mexico. More about that in this Blog post.
Travel Story Chapter 1: Cancelled Flights
OK, so I’m not naming the airline…because they truly can’t control the weather, y’all. And I am SURE they brace for DEFCON Level 1 whenever flights get cancelled, because the traveling public is kind of at their wits end with how hard it is to navigate plane flights these days. I digress. Our original 5:00 flight was cancelled early in the day due to the horrible weather in Dallas. We were put on a 7:00 flight. Which delayed until 7:40. Then delayed to 9:40. Then boarded at 12:30 am. Then sat at the gate for 30 minutes getting more fuel. Then backed up onto the runway. Then sat for 30 minutes. Then cancelled at 1:30 am because one of the Crew had “timed out.” Pick up bags, find a hotel, and crawl into bed at 2:30 am. Kind of a travel nightmare no matter how you slice it, right?
But…..this travel story has a silver lining. Because a whole lot of awesome happened along the way.
When our original 5:00 flight got cancelled, and we were put on the 7:00 flight, we certainly enjoyed extra time in Santa Fe. Fortunately we were notified around lunch-time, so we were able to enjoy a few bonus hours in Santa Fe! But, eventually, we wanted to go ahead and get on down to Albuquerque, just to be on the safe side. While en route, we texted cousin and friend Amy Walton who lived in Albuquerque for many years, and she directed us to two fantastic stops.
Albuquerque Attractions: Route 66 Motels
I am 100% inspired to put-together a full Route 66 road-trip, but this tiny slice of American History was very satisfying! Four fantastic original neon motel signs were worth seeing, all on their own.
But the bonus was scouting out the totally refurbished El Vado Motel. Retail shops, restaurants, and also a functioning Motel! When the sun goes down, this place looks like a TON of fun!!!!
Albuquerque Attractions: Los Poblanos Ranch
Again, thanks to Amy Walton, we felt like we hit the jackpot! Los Poblanos Ranch, a 1930’s Dairy Farm, has been completely restored and refurbished. Now there’s 25 acres of lavender, organic vegetables and herbs, a store, an Inn, and the most fabulous, amazing, best-meal-in-a-long-time restaurant.
Farm-to-table goodness, with a staff that was beyond attentive and friendly. I’m gonna need to go back and experience the Inn. Maybe just sit and smell the lavender for a weekend. Are you with me???
Travel Story Silver Lining: The Boys in the Band
My Travel Story does not end there. There’s more silver linings here folks! OK. So dial in this feeling with me: You’ve had an awesome weekend. You are tired, but in a good way. You are ready to get home. Your flight gets delayed. More opportunities for unanticipated fun experiences (see story above), but you are getting really ready to get on home. Rental car turned in. TSA cleared. Made it to the gate, bag of M&M’s in hand and a bottle of water. And then the bad news bomb hits….the flight is delayed until midnight. Arggggg. People are losing their minds. Babies are crying. There’s yelling. Some cussing. It’s not pretty. How are you going to pass the time?
Four fellow travelers made an awesome decision. The first dude opened up his case, and began to play….his accordion! I’m not kidding. At first I thought it was piped in music. Nope. Live accordion music. Not bad. Kind of nice, actually. Second song, a dude with a guitar joined in. I chuckled. Gotta love musicians! Third song….a dude with a saxophone joined in. Then a guy with a violin. Literally, none of them knew each other or were traveling together. They just found a way to pass the time, that made the next three hours actually VERY enjoyable. They got applause…like loud and enthusiastic applause…after each song. I kept thinking to myself, people can really be awesome sometimes. And, you hardly ever see the awesome side of people at the airport.
But, on a day when everything went wrong, the impromptu airport band, some Route 66 motel signs, and an amazing meal made for a travel tale with a very silver lining!