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My wife, Gwynne, and I try to follow Route 66 even when the GPS mapping software reroutes us back to the highway; most of the time it will reroute once we're actually on the road, so we thought it was strange that Google Maps kept insisting we turn around and go back; and it was right because a dozen miles in the middle of nowhere an impassable concrete barrier had been set up with no explanation why. We wondered why there was no warning sign at the start of that section, but when we got back to the highway, Gwynne pointed out that there was one but “Closed” had been blackened out and “Back Open” spray-painted instead. I would guess Red Man was having some fun at White Man's expense.
Crossing into Arizona, right on the border is Yellowhorse Trading Post where I bought some fossils and a large piece of petrified wood. I wanted an even bigger piece but my wife, Gwynne, was giving me the look while I was hefting it. I can’t explain it but even though we passed numerous colorful giant concrete dinosaurs on the way, the largest petrified log in the world, and the famous Wigwam motel with its giant concrete teepees for rooms, there’s something about the corner in Winslow, Arizona that is magical. There were bronze statues of Glen Fry and Don Henley with a line of tourists waiting to get their picture taken. I bought a wallet embossed on the front with “Corner of Winslow, Arizona” and a shot glass.
However, the best part of the day, fulfilling my imagination that I’ve had since childhood; a place I've always wanted to visit because of its connection to the mysteries of space, is the giant Meteor Crater in the middle of nowhere, Arizona; almost a mile wide and 570 feet deep. The Barringer family who own it had the foresight to preserve the site though they made their money from tourism rather than a fortune in meteoric iron they thought was there. In fact, they did a lot to advance the science of meteors. Of course, I went nuts in the gift shop: I bought a piece of meteorite that I’ll put it next to my newly acquired petrified wood.
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