Thursday was a slow down day for us. We slept in and then stayed around the 5th wheel for most of the day. We had both been wanting to see a couple of the new movies out and took advantage of the matinee prices at the local movie theater. We chose to see "One for the Money" with Cathrine Heigle playing a bounty hunter. The movie was enjoyable but why do they spoil most of the movie showing all the good one liners and funny scenes as "teasers" during the advertising.
Friday morning we woke up to cloudy skies and sprinkles, guess we wont be venturing out much today either :-(. I decided that today would be a good day to fill the tanks on the Freightliner. I figured since the weather was gloomy I might as well be gloomy too and spending several hundred dollars on diesel fuel was a good way to wipe a smile off ones face :-(.
I had not fueled up since Florida back in October and we had driven right at 1500 miles since. This was going to hurt! We had loaded up our Wal Mart fuel card so we could get the 3 cents off per gallon a couple of days ago. I fired up the truck and we hopped in and drove to the other side of Del Rio to the Murphy gas station at Wal Mart. On the way Rudee said she smells something burning, like wires. I think women are more in tune to smells than men because Rudee can smell a fart in a hurricane! It took me awhile but I soon found the source of the smell. The freightliner has a small computer monitor that is used by the trucking companies to monitor the mileage, rpms, miles per trip etc. You can set it for different states so you can keep track of mileage in the state you are in for tax purposes, anyway the computer has shown the words "no communication" for the last couple of years on the screen. Today it was blank and when I touched the box it was really warm so I unplugged it and this seemed to cure the hot smell. Guess maybe it shorted out inside the computer thingy.
Fueling up took a little while since we needed almost 200 gallons and of course once one saddle tank is full I had to turn the truck around to fill the tank on the other side. All that coupled with the fact they only had one pump that offered diesel caused me to get some dirty looks from the pick up truck drivers! Our total bill was just a few pennies over $700 and we got right at 8 miles per gallon. Ouch, told you it was going to hurt but knowing we wont have to fill it up again until next fall after our work camping back in Indiana helps ease the pain a little :-)
Once we got over the sticker shock of the fuel we decided to stop for lunch at Buffalo Wings and Rings. I got my chicken wing fix while Rudee had some chips and salsa. We came out of the restaurant and the clouds had parted and the sun was shining. One thing we wanted to do before leaving here was to see the ancient Indian rock art at Seminole Canyon State Historic Park about 35 miles up the road from Del Rio. The only way to see the art was by ranger guided tours down into the canyon which are done twice a day and it looked like this afternoon would be our best option since the weather is supposed to turn cold and rainy late in the week end. We took the truck home and grabbed our hiking sticks and headed back out in the Dakota.
We arrived at the visitors center 45 minutes before the 3pm afternoon tour and had the chance to check out the displays on early life in the canyon. The entrance to the park is $3 each and then another $5 each for the tour. We were the only ones signed up when we got there but by the 3pm start time 6 other couples had signed up and we were all ready to go, well almost, we had to wait for one guy who had ran out to his car to make himself a sandwich, geez! Guess there is always one in every crowd! :-)
Once our gourmet joined us we headed down the stairs with our guide Tanya. She would stop occasionally and explain some of the various plants and how the ancient Indians would use them in their everyday lives. The going was slow as the steps became steeper and steeper until we finally got into the bottom of the canyon. Here is a photo looking back up the steps.
We walked through the canyon floor back towards the visitors center high above us.
We arrived at the Fate Bell Shelter named after a former ranch owner of this property and the location of the Indian art.
No one knows for sure what all the art means or depicts Some say it has religious meanings and other drawings appear to display the everyday life of the Indians. The drawings are determined to be 4,000 years old, amazing they can survive that long!
The Indians used the shelter for their home and Tanya explained the area looked much different back then with abundant wildlife and green plants and trees before the climate changed to the more desert type we know today.
The tour lasted for about 1 1/2 hours and we had to return the same way we came. Back up all those stairs! The last several months the most stairs we had climbed was the 4 steps into the 5th wheel! I thought I was in better shape since I was in and out the door many times a day tending to the gate, well I was wrong! By the time we got back to the top I was winded and my legs were burning :-)! On the way out of the canyon we spotted some purple flowers blooming on a shrub that smelled just like grape koolaid! Gave us both spring fever! We both enjoyed the tour even though we were tired. Back at the 5th wheel Rudee had some left over baked chicken heating up in the crock pot for dinner. I added some homemade barbecue sauce while Rudee made us each a salad to top off the meal.
The weather is supposed to turn for the worse late Saturday and the high temperature for Sunday is only 45 degrees! Brrrrr! Sounds like a good day to stay inside and make a big pot of vegetable soup! I'll keep you posted.