I’m longitudinally challenged. Today was our 9th day at the new site near Smiley. It was the first time I’d left the rig since we got here. There’s a reason for that. Several, actually, but the main one is that I’m void of all sense of direction. Neither maps, nor hand-written directions, nor GPS (no signal available) seem to guarantee I’m facing in the right way.
35°45′38.81″N 119°33′41.52″W / 35.7607806°N 119.5615333°W / 35.7607806; -119.5615333. These are the longitude and latitude markers for Hitchcock’s famous Cary Grant being chased by a crop-dusting plane scene in North by Northwest. In the movie, this supposedly took place in northern Indiana but it was actually shot on Highway 155 near Wasco, CA. The shots of the cliffs high above the ocean that were supposed to be in Long Island were really shot on the California coast. This was partially for “national security”‘ reasons and mostly because there are no cliffs high above the ocean in Long Island. Just goes to show, you aren’t always where you think you are. I’m often not where I think I am.
My agenda for a trip to town today was the usual: laundry mat, car wash, library, and a brief stop at the grocery store for coffee and creamer. Should have been easy. It’s 4 miles of dirt road and 3 miles of blacktop to Nixon. Smiley doesn’t have a laundry mat, a car wash, a library or a Super S.
Nixon is a town of a just over 2000. The laundry mat is next to the car wash. The two stall, $1 car wash is apparently the central gathering place for teens in town. The Super S is right on Main. I was gone for 4 hours. I could have hit the River Walk and a Mall in San Antonio and been back in less time.
I drove 31 miles. 8 miles to get there and 23 to get home. I got to see a lot of the county-side. And gosh, it all looks pretty much alike. Cactus, cows, lots and lots of open ranch land, and dust, no need for a crop-duster.
I left here around 2:00 and made it home in time for a few hand of Whist before Heidi needed to go to bed (7:00). Our guys rotated out last night and today. That means we have our second group of 7-ers. While I was getting familiar with the area, Heidi had the Camry boys (we only have 1 car on the site) spell F L O O R for her. After 2 months, we know all the guys, so Heidi thought she’d find out what each one does. Andrew and James tried telling her several times before resorting to spelling. They’re floor workers. They’re also very southern. Turns out floor is spelled the same way in Texas as it is back home. I guess tomorrow, I’ll stay here and talk to the guys and Heidi will go to town and get groceries. Probably will work out better for all of us.