Brew unto Others…Coffee with a Cause
Texas to Colorado – Tuesday, October 15
I ended up in Amarillo last night, and I had one mile left to walk in Texas, so I drove over to the National Quarter Horse Museum and walked Tula around the international headquarters building and the museum building, then I couldn’t resist going into the museum since I’ve had quarter horses for so long. I enjoyed the visit although it seemed to focus more on quarter horse racing than some of the other activities quarter horses are well suited for. There was also an art show in one of the rooms, and I really enjoyed looking at all the original paintings and sculptures. After the museum I drove over to the livestock auction building – once a week Amarillo is the site of one of the biggest livestock auctions in the country. I didn’t see much there except for a lot of cattle hauling trucks. Amarillo is a railroad hub too, so there were lots of trains going through town.
Then I continued to head north, and halfway between Amarillo and the Texas/Oklahoma border, Tula and I made one final stop in Dumas for a walk around the city park, and then my week in Texas was complete. I had walked all 56 miles, and made all 7 donations – the Santa Rosa food pantry in Pecos; a donation for a military care package in Pecos, the Alamo, Project HOPE, Caritas Community Kitchen, Kids in the Kitchen, and GRUB.
I finished the drive to the TX/OK border and then I only had to drive about 40 miles through the skinny panhandle of Oklahoma before I crossed into the southeast corner of Colorado. This part of the state was all treeless grassland with numerous windmills. The first little town I came to was Springfield and Tula and I got out for a couple miles of walking. There were interesting metal sculptures throughout town, depicting different kinds of people who had lived there (Native Americans, cowboys, miners, pioneer women etc.) As I continued driving north toward Lamar, the landscape was still pretty flat all the way to the horizon with the exception of one butte with twin peaks, which really stood out in all the flatness. I passed a sign that said something about Twin Butte Rec Area, and I decided to go check it out. Basically it was a dirt road leading to the butte, and there was no traffic, so Tula and I got out to walk around part of the base of it. The butte was a remnant of some long ago volcanic activity. I seemed to be the only person around for miles and miles, and with the wind blowing, I felt like I was truly in the middle of nowhere – but in a very pretty way! We turned around and headed back toward the car, and at one point Tula lagged behind so I turned around to see what caught her attention on the road, and saw that she had overturned the biggest spider I think I’ve ever seen. I yanked her away because I was worried it might be a tarantula or something, and I didn’t want her to get bit. I flipped it back over with the toe of my shoe (spiders don’t scare me like snakes do) and it was huge and black and fuzzy with some odd markings. I took some pictures (one of which is below in case anyone doesn’t like spider pictures!) with the intent of trying to identify it.
We drove the rest of the way into Lamar, and it was dark so I decided to stop. There were lots of streetlights in town, so Tula and I walked another mile and a half up and down Main Street. We happened to pass a coffee shop with a name that caught my attention – Brew unto Others…Coffee with a Cause. I looked in the window and there were still some people there, so once Tula and I finished our walk, I went back to the coffee shop and went inside to find out what their cause was. The place was bigger than I expected – the storefront wasn’t all that big, but the building was deep, and it looked very inviting to sit down with a hot drink and a book or a computer, which several people had done. I talked to the young man who was working there, and he told me the coffee shop had only opened up about 3 months ago, and was run by a board of directors made up of people from several local churches. All the proceeds from the coffee shop, as well as all their tips, go to support local food pantries. They had designated October to be canned food month, and there was a box for people to leave food donations. It was too late to get to a grocery store and back tonight, so I told the young man that I’d be back with a donation in the morning!