We stayed at the Payson Motel 6 last night. All was satisfactory – clean room with new bathroom. We had the biggest grass area yet for dog walking. We had a delicious breakfast at Denny’s. They were serving free pancakes all day for Veterans. Once we were full of food, we headed to Dimi to get a second coffee and do some website work.
Pine Travels and the long Dirt Road
We were expecting Earl to call at any time to report his arrival. We were told we’d get a call 24 hours in advance…which would have been Monday. We were a little antsy to make plans and get on with our trip so we decided to give him a call. No answer during the first attempt. Thus, we grabbed Jacque and decided to visit Pine.
Pine is a tiny, unincorporated town 15 minutes north of Payson. It has the feel of a small mountain town whereas Payson feels more like a spread-out western/rodeo town. Pine somehow feels more…fun…or united.
You can’t describe a town until you’ve tried its food, so we headed in the direction of That Brewery. We had heard good things about it from the Dimi barista and were excited to try their food. Unfortunately, upon pulling into their driveway, we found that they were closed all day on Mondays and Tuesdays. Bummer…
We found a good ol’, patriotic cafe called HB’s Place. We were immediately greeted by a patriotic sign and shortly after, by a room filled with red, white and blue decorations. We were in the mood for something light so we inquired about the soup of the day. Apparently, sometimes they don’t make a soup. However, they were happy to substitute a bowl of chili. Both Brian and I ordered the soup and salad and found it to be good and filling.
We drove down a 20 mile dirt road to explore a few plots of land that were available. The area was beautiful. Pines forever and excellent views around every corner. At one point, Brian spotted a javelina, a type of wild pig-creature. We quickly pulled over and started recording it – shortly after the rest of its pack (herd?) appeared. They were quite cute!
The rest of our drive in Pine was really nice. You can’t beat the scenery.
At some point, we called in again to check on Earl. This time he answered and updated us that he was a day late. While delivering a car in Amarillo, NM, he was held up because the car’s owner was not yet in town. It seems strange that the carrier decides to hold up his whole delivery based on one customer, but maybe he has no choice.
In any case, we’re in Payon for another day. We plan to check out Strawberry tomorrow, which is an unincorporated town near Pine.
Other notes from the day
Before booking another room at the Motel 6, we went out seeking stew/soup. Several restaurants were closed, either because it is a non-high-season weekday or because it is Veteran’s Day. Upon Jacque’s recommendation, we decided to try out Journigan House.
They had a spicy gumbo that was delicious and reasonably priced. For dessert, Jacque ordered a slice of cheesecake, brought up from the nearest cheesecake factory in Phoenix.
During our drive around Pine, we left our car of stuff in Payson and took Jacque’s car. We didn’t think we’d be gone too long so we didn’t worry about moving the car out of the sun. Bad move – the car roasted the toiletries. Brian’s deoderant became weirdly soft, and when he tried to put it on the whole top detached in his armpit.
First task tomorrow morning – go buy new deodorant!