Trip Start Feb 24, 2009
Trip End Ongoing

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Where I stayed

Flag of United States  , Texas
Monday, March 23, 2009

I drove down from El Paso, and instead of taking I-10 east across vast West Texas, I took a more southern route, through Marfa, a little town that I had heard of, but wasn't sure what to expect from.

Not too far outside of town, on the most deserted stretch of road one can imagine, I got a flat tire.  Actually, the tire stayed pressurized, but the outer rubber shell tore off and the car shook madly and swerved around a bit as I came to a stop.  I had a spare, and everything was fine.  I bought a new spare from a little tire shop as I pulled into Marfa.

I explored a little, and then stepped into the Hotel Paisano, which was absolutely beautifully restored.  They let me look at a few rooms, and even though I hadn't been driving very long, I decided to stay the night.  I'm glad I did.

Marfa is known for its burgeoning art scene, and there were quite a few cool young people walking around.  It was a Monday, which is probably the worst day to be a tourist, as all of the galleries and shops are closed.  It didn't matter.  I enjoyed myself by walking around and hanging out at "the" local coffee shop.  I discovered that there would be a live band playing later that night.  I first hung out at the hotel's patio and bar, which turns out is "the" bar/nightlife in town.  Marfa has a population of about 800 residents, which gives you an idea of what's there.  It felt significantly smaller than Julian.

I went to the live show, which was held at the local bookstore, because there's not really another good place to host shows.  (Until a new place opens, which is soon, I found out).  The band, "Spectral Cities", was very cool, and I ended up meeting just about everyone there, all 15 or so.  It was great to be in a little intimate atmosphere with a good band coming back from South By Southwest.  One of the guys I met was an artist, who has worked on several band covers and other projects that are totally up my alley.  We hit it off right away, and he ended up hosting an after-party at his house.  It was fun to talk music with the band and a couple of total music geeks who lived there.

Walking back to the hotel from the party, the night sky was completely dark; no light pollution to be seen in any direction.  The Milky Way was a bright stripe, and I saw a few planets.  The desert air was warm, but breezy.  Beautiful.
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