Saturday, August 9, 2008

When Teardrops Arrive

We'll get to the teardrops, but first an Adler up-date.

Chuck wrote a couple of days ago about our drive in the country. What he didn’t mention that this was preceded by a morning of errands in Galax – Lowe’s, Wal-Mart, and a visit to the Front Porch Gallery where we talked with artist/singer Willard Gayheart and his son-in-law Scott Freeman. When the errands were finished, it was time for lunch. Where do we go? Back to the County Line Café? Try to find the West Galax Diner? Or try a Mexican restaurant that had been highly recommended? We opted for Mexican and off to Tlaquepaque Mexican Restaurant we went.

My way of judging a Mexican restaurant is by the quality of their Chili Rellenos. I’ve had some very good ones (Sadie’s in Albuquerque and Rey Azteca in Warminster, PA). But more often than not, I’ve had some really bad ones, and when Chili Rellenos are bad they can be deadly! Chili Rellenos are poblano or Anaheim chilies that have been roasted to remove the outer skin, deseeded, stuffed with a cheese – most often Monterey Jack or cotija – dipped in a foamy egg batter, and deep fried. It’s the egg coating that’s usually the problem. I prefer a light coat of batter and have had some where the coating is at least a half an inch thick. Yuck!

Chuck ordered the beef enchilada and burrito plate (lower row, right) with a side of refried beans. I chose the Chili Rellenos and Taco plate (upper row, left) with a side order of a beef enchilada. Frankly, the taco was nothing special. The enchilada was very good, although Chuck wasn’t overly fond of the faint taste of cinnamon in the meat. The Chili Rellenos was excellent. The chili wasn’t so hot to be incendiary but hot enough to require frequent swallows of iced tea. I was glad that I hadn’t ordered the three Chili Rellenos plate, that might have been too much of a good thing. And the batter was light and thin – just to my liking.

We finished lunch with a sopapilla. Now the sopapillas we find in the east aren’t the puffy and yeasty type of the southwest. Here, you get a flour tortilla that has been fried, dusted with cinnamon, and drizzled with honey.

How authentic was the food? Since I have never eaten in Mexico, I don’t have an answer. But we both enjoyed our food enough to agree that Tlaquepaque would be a frequent stop if we lived in this area and deserved a rating of 4.5 out of 5 Addies.

Chuck mentioned that our stop in Floyd later that afternoon included a stop at the Floyd Country Store for iced tea and coffee. When I saw that homemade blackberry cobbler was on the menu, I heard it calling my name, and we shared a piece topped with a scoop of vanilla iced cream. The berries were locally grown and the berry filling for the cobbler contained almost no sugar. This meant that the cobbler was very tart which was offset perfectly by the sweetness of the ice cream. A truly fine late afternoon snack.
Today was a day of preparation for moving day tomorrow. So, I thought I would just take a walk around the campground to look at a group of "tear drop" trailers owned by members of the Tear Jerkers Club. Tear drop is the name given these efficient, light, tear-drop shaped trailers that can be towed by almost any vehicle--even some motorcycles. The shapes vary slightly, but the measurements are: body length, 10'; body width, 5'; and body height, 5'6".

As you can see in the photo above, these tear drops are as long as motorhomes are wide (the gravel space is a little wider than the width of the motorhomes). The photo below shows the interior of the trailer which is all sleeping area. Living areas and dining areas are under the awnings that are set up around the trailers in this traveling village of tear drop owners.

The kitchen areas are basic, but efficient. The kitchens in these two photos reveal the challenge facing the cooks.

These look like fun, easy, inexpensive ways to travel, but for any length of time on the road, it might be a bit difficult.

On to Blountville, TN tomorrow.

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