Four in the afternoon and here I am, still deep in the heart of Texas. (Please don't do that clapping thing!) I left Houston a little after 9 this morning, so that means I've been--or should have been--traveling 7 hours, but I've covered only a little over 200 miles. Nonetheless, I'm just thankful to be on the road again.
Unfortunately, somewhere between Houston & San Antonio, Whip It! has acquired a huge, ugly crack in her (until today) pristine windshield. It's not an inexpensive windshield, either. An omen?
Eleven miles east of Sonora, a sickeningly familiar sound: Whip It! begins to sputter again. Fortunately, we make it to a gas/convenience mart in Sonora, TX. But Whip It! won't start again. I worked on her for an hour or so, to no avail. I need a new clamp bolt--the old one has snapped in two. Right across the street is an auto shop. But it's closed--as is almost everything in Sonora. It's about 6 p.m. I'll have to spend the night in Sonora--where I'd planned to spend the night on the way to Houston, coincidentally. Also coincidental: Sonora -- Snnnnorrrrra. (Catch that, PBGT?)
Not much going on here. I'm used to getting stared at with this car, but this is ridiculous. Some strung-out deaf mute pulls up and communicates that he wants me to find pot for him. Sorry, pal. Got bigger problems.
Did a lot of walking around. For a tiny town, Sonora sure has a lot of garages and auto parts stores. (All closed now, of course.) Every third building advertises "Hail Damage Repair." Besides repairing hail damage, Sonora's leading pastime seems to be yelling out of car windows at pedestrians. I'm a couple miles from the hotel, but it turns out to be a very nice one. I've developed blisters on my feet. I keep seeing Marlboro Miles, but I think it would be too depressing to pick them up, given their meaning on the Oracle trip. Traveling like I have been today almost makes it seem that biking home would be easier.
I don't know what's the deal with movies & Whip It! breaking down. The movie that was playing on HBO when I got to the hotel was Alive!. When Whip It! broke down in Needles last year, the movie was Deliverance.