Thursday, October 8, 2009

I've been back long enough to get all these pictures up. It's been a little hard to get in from a trip and then work eight 8-hour days in a row. I finally have a couple of days off, but we have door repairs, carpet cleaning, and realtor talks in the next few days. I just finished priming the new wood facing around the back door. Looking good.

I'm going to have to get creative to find a place to put everything away. Quilting, or any kind of sewing really, is messy, and showing a house just doesn't allow for messiness. So it looks like I'm going to have to knit or embroider or, more likely, spend all my time keeping the house spruced up.

But back to Texas.

Here's where Mike works. ACG. American Cotton Growers - an excellent place to work. It happens to be one of the four facilities in the USA still manufacturing indigo denim.

The people are the best part of working there, but I got a chance to walk through the whole plant, I think. It's been many years - Mike says 1971 - since I've been in one, and I forget how noisy they are. I really don't see how these machines work or how the people know how to do their jobs, but somehow it all comes together for some very nice denim.

The first place we stopped was the lab where I met Pat and Brenda and enjoyed talking to them. The weather change was a big topic, and I think they thought I would be put off by it, but I told them how much I liked a good storm, even if it didn't have much rain in it.

Mike shares an office with Lori, and she told me she figured somebody important was coming because he had been straightening up his area. I had no trouble knowing which was her area and which was his, judging from the familiar stacks and stacks - and stacks - of denim and spools of yarn. You can tell how much he likes these ladies, and it seems like the feeling is mutual. After another long trek through what seemed like miles of clattering machines, we found Maria.

Mike says she's the only once who will dance the salsa with him, but she wasn't taking him up on it that day. She kept him pretty well behaved. In the product development department, we found Betty, Kay, and Pat who also seemed to be glad to see me. Lots of hugs from everyone. I felt like I had always known them. Pictures were made but not with my camera, so I haven't seen those. In another area, Olaya and I didn't actually get introduced, but she knew who I was and came with more hugs. Such a sweet lady. Then I got to see Butch and Walter whom I had met from my previous trip. It was good to put faces to the names I hear and know what a good group of people he works with. I think they have just a little bit of fun there.

We left there and went by Betty's quilting shop. She doesn't sell cloth, but she has a fancy quilting machine and does pretty much all the local quilting. Here are some of the beautiful things things she's in the process of doing.

This was the most interesting to me. There is a whole book of patterns for miniature dresses, some vintage, some smocked, just a lot of detail, including embroidery. Whoever did this did a wonderful job. Very painstaking work. It'll be interesting to see how Betty decides to quilt it.

High school football is big in Littlefield, just like it is all over West Texas, and with Homecoming being that Friday night, there was a lot of excitement. Olaya's son Alex is on the team, and Lori coaches bunches of little cheerleaders. I love football and wish we could have gone to the game, but we were too tired and ended up stuffing our faces in Jalisco's, one of the more popular Tex-Mex restaurants there. We drove around a little bit afterwards, and I took a few pictures.
Littlefield is the home of Waylon Jennings and has a street named for him. His brother Waymore has this portrait painted on the side of his convenience store.

This is the main street. I don't remember the Last Picture Show, but Mike says it reminds him of that. I love the picnic tables downtown. Very 1960s.Littlefield is a sleepy little town of 6000 with only one traffic light. It is interesting that the elevation is 3,600 feet above sea level. This area is the true high plains of the USA.

The First Baptist Church.

We saw an oil well right behind the Dollar General Store. and the tallest windmill in the world lives in Littlefield.

As we had driven around the day before, Sheila the realtor had pointed out places Mike had not discovered after living there for 3 years. It's good to hear stories about the homes and see who lives where and things that happened years ago from a local. She also pointed out the highs and lows of dining, fast-food and otherwise, in Littlefield. We didn't get to eat at Cowpa's this time (beef barbecue and nice people), but I think it's an interesting place, especially the steer in the sky.

There were more things we did, like looking at houses and visiting Doris and Jaime and their pups and seeing their new place. I'm waiting on some pictures of them.

I'm looking forward to my next trip, and it certainly won't be 2 years. One day it may be to stay.

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