Call it a lost weekend for old guys - my brother and I decided to get together half-way between our homes in Denver and McAllen. For no other reason than the name, Muleshoe, Texas, fit the bill. Besides, the Mules won the Texas high school football Class 2A championship in 2008. How many people can say they were tourists in Muleshoe?
(Be sure to click on each photo to see a larger version.)
Muleshoe is easy to find - it is near Earth, Texas, and Bovina, Texas. The nearest town to get a beer is Clovis, New Mexico. Muleshoe boasts a population of 4,500, a school system that wins accolades and in general, seems to be doing okay. It has its share of empty buildings, but there are few homes for sale and many businesses seem to be thriving. We decided to stay at the Valley Motel. I have no idea why it is called the Valley as there are no mountains within 250 miles. Muleshoe sits on the Caprock, an area known as the flattest area on the North American continent. But the room was clean, the shower had hot water and the price was right.
The flatness, coupled with sitting atop the Ogallala Aquifer makes Muleshoe prime agricultural territory. Cotton, cattle, wheat, corn and other grains - even peas and beans are grown in the area. The signature landscape objects are the big irrigation systems. Pumping water up from the aquifer, the giant sprinklers then pivot, spreading water in huge circles.
Like most of its neighbor towns, Muleshoe sports grain elevators - the skyscrapers of the prairie. Located alongside the railroad tracks and near the highways, these giant structures store the bread and cereal you wll find on your table months after harvest.
The end of the day found us at The Dinner Bell, where the staff serves up good solid food - nuthin’ fancy, just good stuff meant for hard working people. While I don’t fit the “hard working” description, I ate like I worked hard.
I'll have some more to say about Muleshoe, but tomorrow I drive home and it may be a few days before I post again.
(Christina - you can put your hand down now.)