When I think of Texas I have an image conjured up in my mind of oil fields, pollution and vast amounts of empty land. San Angelo was the opposite; it was artistic, focused on recycling and regeneration, and above all it was the epitome of Southern hospitality. Hands down it was the quirkiest place in Texas.
We tried staying in somewhere a little different here – we resigned from our usual Best Westerns to stay at the Inn at the Chicken Farm Art Center. It was an excellent choice indeed! The Inn has three different suites scattered around the property, each with different themes, we stayed in the Santa Fe room. The idea of the Art Center is that many artists come and live in the apartments on the farm, practicing and showcasing their art. It’s a wonderful idea and the artistic theme runs throughout the entire place meaning you are greeted with an original stopover for the night. For example our room was a reconstructed chicken coop.
The whole atmosphere of the place was very calm, and being that we stayed on a Sunday there was no one in the Chicken Farm but us. The innkeeper kindly kept a fully stocked fridge and freezer (with beer and ice cream) and their generosity and hospitality throughout our one night stay was second to none. Did I mention they even made us cinnamon buns for breakfast in the morning? My faith in humanity was restored with these kind-hearted people, and all this for only $105 room – an absolute bargain.
And not only did they provide all this at no extra cost, they also helped us to replan our route so that we could see more of the land and educated us with little nuggets of information. I didn’t know that San Angelo was the largest city in Texas not on an Interstate, and I also didn’t know that a six toed cat was called a Hemingway cat. The things you learn when you’re on the road, hey? Travelling really does broaden your knowledge.
Being that we visited San Angelo on a Sunday there was a case of lazy Spain. By that I mean nothing much was open and the little town was pretty much asleep apart from the Visitor Center, leading to the river walk.
The two men we met in the Visitor Center were the nicest people and conveyed genuine love and pride for their little corner of the world. They told us stories about the lady in blue and the San Angelo River, as well as telling us about the types of wood that made up their Visitor Center. It’s people like that that you never forget when travelling. Anyway, onwards we went to the River Walk where a collection of art called “Art In Uncommon Places” waited for us.
When it was time to leave we drove along the 67/377N which we can only describe as cemetery county. There seemed to be an abundance of cemeteries and not that many people… with one aptly named “Eureka Cemetery.” When I go can someone send me there please? It sounds like a blast.