Let Food Be Your Map!


Boston Public Library, Flickr Creative Commons

When I was a kid, I used to love the road trips my family would take. There was something about hitting the road and seeing all the new things, breathing new air, experiencing the world with new eyes that just got me right down there deep in my soul. Maybe that’s why I’m so attracted to the RV lifestyle. It didn’t dawn on me until the other day that I have a mental road map of Texas that could be based on meals alone. Some of those little towns we went through I can’t remember anything about…other than where we had lunch: Tex Miller’s in Cameron, Nu-Griddle in Plainview, or the old Taylor’s Cafe in Ft Stockton are just a few I can still remember. Don’t remember much about the towns or the visit, but I remember the lunch!

There’s just something special about those old-style small town cafe’s. If you want to know how the high school football team is doing, or who is sponsoring the FFA Club, or when the rodeo is coming to town, these little greasy spoons are the place to go. And you need to hit them up while they’re still here people! Small town America is getting more and more homogenized as the fast food chains continue their WalMarting the road food industry. Would you rather have breakfast at McDonald’s or at a place called The Hitchin’ Post or The Busy Bee?

These places are special, they are unique to the community, and they are a wonderful place to eat, so when you have the opportunity…wouldn’t you rather eat at a place you’ll remember? Even if it’s something as simple as the cashier being friendly polite or the waitress being sassy? Some of these gems are in peril because the declining fortunes of the towns where they’re located, some are in peril because oil, industry, or agriculture in that area is suffering. But some are in peril because the chains are closing in and franchises are popping up and down the highway. Rather than eat the same thing on the road as you can get at home, why not try Cueva de Leon in Ft Davis? It’s a beautiful drive, and an awesome meal.

Come say Howdy!