Salida, Great Sand Dunes, Walsenburg, The Drive In, Murphy’s, Marigold

Last week we set out to go up to Salida and then on to Great Sand Dunes National Park. It was a really pretty day so we drove with the top down most of the way.

After a quick stop in Salida we got back on the road. But there was trouble. A frozen water pump, broken fan and broken belt. Many dollars later we were back in Salida at the only import garage in town.

We did eventually make it to the sand dunes. It was windy and freezing but still quite pretty. It was almost sunset so we got a few good pictures:

We saw lots of wildlife.

And rural ruin.

On the way back we went thru what we thought was a quaint little town called Walsenburg. We’d been thru it before on our way to and from Santa Fe but hadn’t ever stopped.
Everything was closed because it was late but it looked cute- lots of little antiques stores and old signs.

So we decided to go back down there yesterday to check it out. First things first, we stopped at a bar (Paco’s) for Jack Daniels. My new thing is to drink Jack on the rocks. It’s only 68 calories, takes forever to drink cuz it’s kinda hardcore, and gives you a short yet pretty good buzz.

DM took this really nice picture of the bartender (Paco himself?)

After drinks we were hungry so we went to the one and only open restaurant in town- The Iron Horse Steakhouse (also an antique store- the others we thougth were antique stores were really just …NOT).
DM enjoyed his dinner but mine was…not so good. I’ll write a detailed post about it one of these days at www.oinkety.com.
That seasoning all over everything? FULL of MSG, as you might imagine. Neither of us slept well AT ALL last night. Luckily I only ate about 3 bites of mine so I wasn’t as bad off as I could have been.

We had thought about spending the night down there somewhere but there was really nothing there worth staying over for and since it was only 70 miles from home we just came back. We were exhausted and I fell asleep at about 11 and DM was up and down all night. I also slept fitfully and until about noon today! Sheesh.
In order to salvage some of our weekend culinary adventure, we decided to hit up a drive in in town today. It’s appropriately called The Drive In.

Now we’re talkin’. The cheeseburger was really good. Not the best in Colorado Springs- that goes to Tony’s Bar. But pretty darn good. The fries were good but would have been better if we ordered them extra crispy like I like.

Then off to a new dive bar around the corner from the drive in. Well, it’s not new. But it’s new to us. I think it’s called Murphy’s Tavern or something. Surprisingly there were several peopl ein there even tho it was only about 3:00. Seriously Jack on the rocks is good. You get a little buzz for about 20 minutes then you’re normal again. I guess that’s why people used to drink it like this in the middle of the day in the old days (or at least in the old books and movies- get the dame just liquored up enough to loosen her lips and get the info you need to solve the case, then she sobers up and throws you out)

Then onward to Marigold– a place I’d heard about before but forgot about till hearing about it again the other day. Decaf latte. Pretty good, coulda been hotter.

Tiramisu and cheesecake, too. Yum. I was pretty full from the burger and the Jack so I didn’t finish mine.