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Wednesday, April 17, 2013

More murals from Tucumcari, NM

So far it is a cloudy cool day here in Tucumcari. But at least we aren’t supposed to get the really bad weather – but it is going below freezing for the next two nights. Brrrrrrr.
We have company here now.  A few years ago in Mexico we met a couple from Canada who own an RV park in Nova Scotia. Since then we’ve kept in contact but haven’t been able to catch up with each other in our travels. Well they are on their way east from Las Vegas and stopped here to visit with us yesterday. After checking the weather they decided to spend the night here too. So great to be able to visit with them again.
But first things first. The mural in the RV park that I posted a picture of the other day. A reader noticed that the center of it looked a little “off.” So I went back to check it out. The center section is a separate piece of ¾” wood that stands out from the two sides. That is why it appears different in the photo.
The added on piece is to the right - the shadow of the 3/4" shows plainly. 
Took this picture last night of the Blue Swallow Motel – at one time this whole section of Route 66 was lined with motels with great neon signs. As late as the 1990s this was a very vibrant busy town. 
The Blue Swallow Motel during the day. Neat old car parked out front.
100% refrigerated air. 
Today is kind of cloudy but tried to get some nice pictures of a few more of the murals. These are part of the Blue Swallow Motel – front James Dean leaning against a car.
And on the side. Clark Gable and Marilyn Monroe together and Lauren Bacall looking out a door.
There are 35 murals in this town, some big some just a figure on the side of a building. By searching for Tucumcari on my blogs for the last few years you'll probably be able to see most of them.
And the mural of the train. 
Double clicking on the photos will enlarge them. 
The building behind it used to contain an art gallery owned by the painter of the mural. It is now closed and empty. Too bad so much of the town is closed and empty. More about that later.
Another couple murals this one on the side of an old gas station.
This one on the side of a motel. It’s kind of interesting because the wall isn’t smooth. It is off set blocks
.Something to do with nothing. We were riding around earlier today and spotted this trailer. Cheerful looking.
And we found this Historical Marker. Some info about early Tucumcari. 
Last night while eating dinner in Del's we asked one of the servers about the town. Specifically what was keeping it going. How do people make a living here now? His answer was kind of discouraging. He told us the town is slowly dying. Tourism has slowed way down. The railroad has moved to another area and the ranchers are slowly selling off and out because of the drought. The town has gone from about 20,000 inhabitants in the 1990s to around 7000 now. For a while a group was trying to establish an artists colony here to attract people. That didn't take off. But he said the college here is one of the foremost on wind power technology and that brings in and keeps some of the younger people here. 
So sad in driving around we see so many empty houses and businesses. Sure hope something happens to turn it around or at least stabilize the economy.  
Oh! The sun just popped out - goody. And no wind yet. Maybe we'll get out and about for more pictures later. 

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