Trip Start Apr 24, 2012
5Trip End Apr 30, 2012
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We arrived just in time for lunch/happy hour!! Enjoyed a few tasty dishes and a couple cocktails before hitting the fabulous shopping malls in the surrounding area. After a few hours of seeing the sights, we headed to our hotel near SeaTac airport. We chose the Hilton due to it's close proximity to the airport as our flight to Fresno was leaving just after 6:00 am.
WED.APRIL 25th/2012: 6:55 am
I was kinda surprised to see this tiny plane on the tarmac( turbo prop/52 seater!) It actually turned out to be a pretty decent flight to Fresno, at just a little over 2 hours. This is where the story gets interesting....................
WED.APRIL 25th/ 10:29 am, FRESNO, CALIFORNIA
Imagine our surprise when we exited the Fresno airport only to discover we were the only 2 people in the city ( or so it seemed) Normally when one lands at an airport you kinda expect to see a few people milling about, or perhaps a taxi cab, bus, shuttle.........you know what I mean... There was NOBODY!! As far as the eye could see. It was very eerie, like a ghost town, and this was at about 11:00 am on a Tues morning.....WTF ???
Where did everyone go ????
Never having been to Fresno, neither Marla or myself knew where we were going. All we had to go on was our hotel address in Clovis, California. We had a rudimentary map, so we decided to head out on our own (like how far could it be,,,,,,right?)
Did I also mention it was a sweltering 82 degrees....AND I was wearing rubber (yes rubber) cowboy boots! I was quite confident that we would come across a taxi at some point along the way, however that never did happen. Somehow we both grossly miscalulated the actual distance from point A to point B !! (funny, on the map Clovis was realllllly close) Anyway my sister kept urging me on, telling me to quit my whinning and sniveling (blistered feet, sweating profusly) Oh and also walking through a reportedly "sketchy" part of town!! The roads there are very flat and city blocks are a mile long!! Despite my frequent outbursts, we pushed on "just a few more blocks" insisted my older(and by her own admission,wiser sister) "we're almost there!! clearly this was NOT the case, and after almost perishing from heat frustration.......we arrived at the Best Western
Naturally after that ordeal there was a screw-up with our reservation upon check in, and it took another half hour or so until we finally made it to our room..........We immediately started making friends with the locals when we told them our travelling "tales of horror" on the road to Clovis. We were directed across the street to the 500 Club, the # 1 local watering hole in town.
The 500 Club was perhaps the most popular bar in Clovis. It only took a few minutes after we arrived before we were bellied up to the bar and schmoozing with the locals. The little gal tending bar was named Brittany, and her mom was sitting with us along with a couple of her friends.One of the craziest people we met had to be Keith, a self employed plumbing expert & certified "ladies man" he pulled out all the stops.....trying desperately to score with Marla......(tee hee) he even went as far as to buy her a chocolate bar, hmmmmm "want some candy little girl"......needless to say she shut him down in a hurry, it did NOT seem to deter him and he continued throughout the evening, even promising to come to the rodeo with her the next day! Here is a picture of the usual suspects...........
From left to right: Marla,Dee,Mo,Keith, & Brittany's mom
After about 10 minutes we met a dozen really great people, told them our story........and the legend began to snowball! By midnight we had met quite a cast of characters, and people already knew who we were!! (thought that was kinda odd) Apparently by sundown word was spreading around town about the two wacky Canadians who walked all the way from Fresno to Clovis to see our beloved American Idol, David Cook! (l can live with that)
Spent the rest of the day toodling around town, checking out many quaint little shops, friendly watering holes, and one realllllly great Mexican restaurant called Salsa (best quesedillas ever!)
Tomorrow is the 98th annual Clovis Rodeo.It is ranked as the third largest rodeo in the U.S. and professional cowboys come from all over North America to compete.Lucky for Marla and I that J.J.Harrison (professional rodeo clown & MC) was staying at our hotel . Little did we know how instrumental he was in scoring us backstage passes for the pre-concert meet and greet! All my sister cared about was hearing the soundcheck – but everytime we asked someone when this would happen they’d just say “Huh, oh you mean “Slack” – heck it’s going on right now ladies!”
Apparently “slack” and soundcheck mean the same thing to rodeo folk! – “Slack” being rodeo lingo for qualifying rounds to make it into the bull riding finals that night…. (Sigh)…. Not exactly what us non-cowgirls had in mind!!! “
Big Tony had a tailgate party going on in the Best Western parking lot!! He was here for the rodeo.He had the tunes cranked and the beer chillin!!