Step on It!

Friday, January 13, 2012 Road Junkies 0 Comments

To Big Bend and Back, Day 9 

TEXARKANA, Texas— After yesterday's cold shoulder and with today being Friday the 13th, you'd think we'd be on a fast track to get out of Texarkana this morning, but you'd be wrong.  We still had time for one more good dose of insult, so we decided to try for just three more letterboxes.  The first we found quickly and we moved on to the public library, where the second letterbox was hidden.

An outreach shelter and another service center for the homeless were situated across the street from the library.  About a dozen of their clients were milling around the library parking lot, a few going in and out of the library.

We sat in the car studying the clue for a few minutes, trying to decipher which of four sets of steps the planter was referencing.  Finally when we decided to get out of the car, a homeless couple suddenly appeared at Ken's door.  When he got out, the woman told him they were trying to get to Walmart to get something to eat.  At the time, we didn't realize the shelter was just across the street, and Ken asked if there weren't organizations in town that could provide assistance.  "They're out of money," the woman replied.  When Ken suggested that they go into the library and ask for help in finding some local resources, the woman's demeanor transformed from pitiable to peevish and she stalked away with her partner following.

About this time, I got out of the car having had no interaction with the couple at all.  We looked around the library grounds and realized it was far too busy to search inside a bush for a letterbox with any degree of stealth, so we decided to leave.  As I crossed paths with the couple, the woman looked at me and mumbled something about "people that won't even give you a ride."  A ride?  They never asked for a ride.

A few minutes later, we were about a block away and I had my window down taking a photo of an odd-looking building, not realizing that the same couple was on the sidewalk at the opposite end of that building.  When she saw me, the woman yelled, "F^¢#ing prostitute!"

Such a fitting end to our visit to this odd city.  Interestingly, of the dozen or so cars that came and went in the library parking lot while we were there, not one other person was approached by any of the loiterers.  Our out-of-state plates?

The proverbial brick had fallen.  We finally realized it was time to get the heck out of Texarkana.  "Step on it!" I yelled, as Ken headed toward the interstate.

DAILY STATS:
  • Started in Texarkana, TX; ended in Denison, TX
  • Weather:  Sunny, 28° to 57°
  • Miles driven: 224          (Trip total:  1,540)
  • States: 2 (TX, AR)          (Trip total:  5)
  • Letterboxes found:  7         (Trip total:  37)
  • Number of times we want to return to Texarkana:  0 
Fond Texarkana Memories
Hotel Grim:  You check in but you may not check out.
Texarkana Post Office
One of dozens of abandoned buildings in downtown Texarkana