The first order of business this evening is a hearty congratulations to our friends in Tucumcari. Richard Talley of the Motel Safari, and his wife, and the Mueller’s (Kevin and Nancy) of the Blue Swallow Motel have received recognition for their hard work and dedication to preserving the essence of the Route 66 experience with issuance of a major award by TripAdvisor.Plans are not set in stone but as the deadline for the next book is March 1, and as there is a need for some current photos of the Route 66 corridor in the metropolis of the Los Angeles basin for this project, we are looking at a whirlwind weekend trip in early February. This could be an interesting way to start a new year as we may also have a book signing in Burbank in April. For more than twenty years I never ventured beyond Hysteria (Hesperia) near Victorville. An interview with Jay Leno (videos at the bottom of this blog) provided the incentive to take a deep breath and plunge down the far side of the Cajon Pass into the belly of the beast. Since then we have joined the high speed demolition derby that is the freeway system in southern California on numerous occasions. Each time was most enjoyable, once we made it to our destination. Still, given my choice I would rather spend a weekend in Ludlow, in August, than spend an hour in the LA area. What do you expect from a fellow who started feeling as though Kingman was getting to crowded after they installed the third stoplight?The first proofs for the prints we will sell and display at the gallery in the Brunswick Hotel this spring arrived yesterday. If I do say so, they are impressive. I will sign them and send them back in the morning, and order the frames and matting. This new chapter in our grand adventure is quite exciting as it will also give us a place to meet with tour groups regardless of weather. This afternoon I spoke with Sam of the El Trovatore Motel. This fellow knows how to dream big and he has plans for this historic motel that are sure to make it a destination for Route 66 enthusiasts. All of this has me chomping at the bit for spring and summer. This is going to be an amazing year for anyone fortunate enough to be traveling the legendary double six. One final note. Don’t forget, Friday evening the second trivia question or photograph of a mystery location in the first series of five will be posted on the Ultimate Route 66 Contest page (see tab above). Let the fun begin!