Saturday, March 22, 2008

The trip so far Part 3

My husband goes to Tyler so frequently for his job he knows where most things are without looking at the map. We had a coupon for a Super 8 Motel and figured that we would probably spend the week there. But right next to the Super 8 Motel was a place called Stratford House Inn, which we like, so we decided that it wouldn't hurt to ask how much it would cost to stay there instead.

We were in luck. The weekly rate was two hundred and fifty dollars, so that would not only fit into the budget of what the company will pay for a motel room but also it would also cover the two extra days that the company wasn't going to pay for.

You have probably never heard of Stratford House Inn. So far as I know the little chain does not exist outside of Texas. But I have been lucky enough to stay here a few times. The free breakfast is only cold cereal and occasionally a danish or a banana, but the rooms all have whirlpool tubs.

A whirlpool tub at no extra charge. Life is good. And it's even better with some aromatherapy stuff.

Before settling in for the night we go out to get frozen custard at Andy's and then buy some frozen dinners and sodas to take back to the room. After we eat we try out the tub. If we leave the bathroom door open and turn the TV just a little bit we can even watch TV while in the tub. Cool. But we probably won't do that much because it's hard to hear the TV while the whirlpool is on.

The next day go to the rose garden. If you're not from Texas, you probably don't know that Tyler is known for it's roses. Unfortunately it looks like the rose bushes all just had their major pruning for the year and there really weren't any roses to look at. But while we were there we picked up a map of historic homes and then we went for a drive. At the end of the month there will be tours of some of the houses, but we'll miss that. And we'll miss the guided tour of the cemetery, but we went to look at it and take pictures anyway.

Next, we went to Rudy's BBQ for lunch. After all the people who have come to my blog looking for Rudy's nutritional info and such, I thought while I was there I would ask for one of those little charts. They didn't seem to have one. I thought that it was the law now that everyone make that information available to anyone who asks for it. No luck. Maybe I'll email them later.

So we got some sandwiches and some creamed corn and enough extra meat for the husband to take sandwiches to work all week. And he also had some of the green chili stew. He's been wanting this stew all year, but I guess the different locations have different recipes, cause he didn't like this at all.

After lunch we went back to the motel room to put the meat in the fridge, and then we headed north to visit Tiger Creek wildlife refuge for exotic cats. This place is not a pretty zoo. They hope to make it into a pretty place one day, but for now they only have the one nice looking enclosure, and the animals have to take turns with it. The rest of the time they spend in regular cages that are about the size of my bedroom, or maybe some are a bit smaller. Most of the animals are tigers. Some were taken from other zoos and animal parks, a couple came from Michael Jackson's Neverland, some bobcats were rescued from a construction site, and several used to be pets from places that changed the laws so that their owners couldn't keep them anymore.

It costs ten dollars to get in. If you are bringing kids, look for coupons at tourist info places and you may be able to get a couple of them in free. And, if they have a public restroom I didn't see it, so you might want to go before you get there. The tour didn't take too long, and I think we were there less than an hour. And they have a gift shop with the usual stuff.

Tuesday we didn't do much, because my husband usually has extra work to do on the first day of a new assignment. Wednesday we were going to go to the zoo, but it seemed cold and damp. Not for long. It turned into a beautiful day. But by then we'd already decided to just do a bit of shopping and not do much else. We found a reasonably priced seafood restaurant around the corner from the motel. And there's a Mazzio's Pizza in town, which we don't have at home anymore.

We were doing fun things and mostly having a good time, but I still felt anxious. My skin hurts. I can't seem to relax much. I've taken to leaving sleeping pills out so I can take them when I wake up at three in the morning.

Thursday we went to the zoo. This used to be the best little free zoo, but now they charge $8.50 each to get in. Again, we had coupons from the tourist info place, and one of us got in free. This is the first time I've been since they started charging to get in, and I can't see that they've added much to the place. What really was special about this place was the African plain that looked like all of the animals were all together. Some of the exhibit has changed. I think that maybe there were some accidents. But it still looks pretty good, and it still looks like the lions are out with the rest of the animals, even though there really is a place that keeps the lions from getting out. There used to be a similar thing where the wild dogs and cheetahs were behind a glass right next to the deer. The deer would go right up to the glass and stick their tongues out at the cheetah. The last time I went, there was cracked glass between the dogs and the deer. That part of the exhibit was changed, and I didn't see any dogs this time.

I heard something on the news about flash floods near Dallas. If it rained a lot near my house, water might have gotten inside. I have a pump, but sometimes the hose gets tangled up and it doesn't work properly. Since no one was home to check on it, there may be a big mess to deal with when I get home. I've decided that I don't want to know and I'm not going to call and ask about it. If there's a problem I can't do anything about it til Sunday anyway. I'll find out soon enough.

I've spent a lot of time trying to knit. I wanted to do a couple of baby blankets and a scarf. Apparently, baby blankets require more yarn than I had imagined. I'll have to do them some other time. The scarf is taking longer than I thought, and now that it's finished (except for the fringe) I'm not sure that I like it. First, I misplaced the tool that I needed to do the ribbing. I went to Hobby Lobby to try and buy a new one, which they didn't have, so I bought some other gadget that I may never use and a crochet needle. I used the crochet needle for a bit, and then I found the other tool. And then I went a bit overboard with the ribbing. I'm not sure that I like it now. Anyway, it took most of three days on the machine, and a normal scarf takes about three or four hours on the machine, so I haven't got time to make another one. I'll just put fringe on this one and hope for the best.

Friday we were supposed to go to the mall, but my husband said he was tired and didn't much feel like doing that. He couldn't decide where he wanted to eat, so he said that we should just get in the car and go for a drive around the loop. We took a wrong turn someplace and ended up downtown. He didn't see anything interesting and we ended up back at the seafood restaurant near the motel.

My friend is still alive and has been moved to a hospice. From the earlier emails I thought they were expecting him to die on Tuesday or Wednesday. He seems to be asleep most of the time, but they have managed to bring in his dog to visit him. Maybe I will see him tomorrow. If not, that's okay.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Speaking about Stratford House Inn, its not a chain but there are many other Motels build excatly same as stratford house Inn. Once they all used to be Stratford house inn when they were all built in early 80"s. However, later some joined with chain likes travelodge, Days inn etc and many other changed the name from stratford House Inn to other names. I don't know why they changed - may be change of ownership?. YOu can just google stratford house inn in google image and you will find many motel just like stratford house. I know one in temple,Tx; Carthage, MO (; Branson,MO; Enid, OK, Edmond, OK, Wichita,KS, Oklahoma city,OK (, Broken Arrow,OK; two in Tulsa, OK; and in many other cities etc etc. They all are 40 units motel.