Route 66: Cadillac Ranch {Texas}

We left Albuquerque, New Mexico and headed back to Texas.  We had one more stop on Route 66 before heading home.

On the road, we passed this crazy looking truck.

We pulled up beside it and learned that they are bee relocation specialists.  Wow what a cool looking truck but I don't think I'd want a job in that line of work.

We had noticed the boxes of cargo earlier and saw a few things fall out of them from time to time.  Now that we realized this was a bee relocation specialist we figured out that this were actually hives of live bees and we must have been watching a few of the sneakier ones making their escape.  

Finally we crossed the Texas State Line!  Woo hoo!

We stopped for gas at a Phillips 66.  Did you know that the Phillips 66 logo shield is based on the old Route 66 signs?  It is also neat to read about the stories for how Phillips Petroleum became Phillips 66.  The two most common stories is that they had their first refinery near Route 66 in Oklahoma and actually tested their gas on Route 66.  But the other story is that during testing procedures, a car with Phillips gas hit a new speed record of 66 miles per hour.

Our very last stop on our amazing vacation was the iconic Route 66 stop at Cadillac Ranch in Amarillo, Texas.  But before we made it there, we had to find spray paint.  The gas station we stopped at usually carried it because tourists are always asking for it.  They were out of it that day so we headed to Home Depot.  So many color selections for our works-of-art-to-be!

Cadillac Ranch is an unusual art display that was created in 1974.  It consists of 10 Cadillacs half-buried in the ground and people stop by daily to spray paint the cars.  It is perfectly legal and even expected.  But only on those cars.  There is a sign at the property stating that painting anything else outside of the fenced area is illegal.

This is what you see from the road.  No big sign to draw people to it.  You would even pass it by if you didn't know where to look for it.  Yet, there had to have been 10 families there in the short time we were there.

The Cadillacs were originally buried in a corn field farther in town but was moved out to this field in the 1990s.  Both plots of land are owned by Stanley Marsh.

My kids were quick to each climb on top of a car and start painting!  What a crazy thing to do!

Nicholas painted a Star Trek Bird of Prey ship.

I caught Stuart painting "S + K" on a car!

Isn't he a sweetie?  I think I'll keep him.

I was fascinated by the hundreds of layers on paint on these cars!

It was especially neat to see where the paint had rolled down and dried as it was dripping off.  It made lots of weird little spikes of paint.

I left a little message of God's love for the world.

The kids just kept painting and painting until they ran out of paint.

Nicholas painted a skull on the underside of a Cadillac.

Unfortunately when we ran out of spray paint, we could just look around on the ground and find a few half empty cans lying around. The kids were happy to have more paint but I was sad to see all of the litter of cans and caps all over the ground.

As we headed back to the car, I asked the kids to pick up a can off the ground to put in the dumpster by the street.  They were both happy to help and they each brought an armload of cans to the dumpster.  They are so awesome!

The sun was going down and it was getting late.  We needed to get back home on this night so they kids could get to their hockey practice in the morning.  Unfortunately that meant we didn't have time to stop at the Cadillac Ranch gift shop but I got a picture of it as we drove by.

This was an amazing trip and we will share these memories forever.  In the past week, we visited four National Parks!  We explored Carlsbad Caverns, hunted creepy creatures in the Sonoran Desert, saw a real Saguaro cactus in the Saguaro National Park, talked with a cool gem and mineral guy who had met Nicholas' favorite celebrity - Coyote Peterson, visited ancient cave dwellings, hiked in the Grand Canyon (one of my bucket list items!), saw a hole left by a real meteor from space, traveled on historic Route 66 (another bucket list item for me!), saw real petrified wood, met famous guitar makers, and made art with spray paint.  What an adventure!

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