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Wednesday, January 25, 2012

So How Do You Say Scrum, Ruck and Maul in Navajo?

It's been a long time since I have been able to add an entry to my blog. We are almost on the verge of the Six Nations, we know the Quarter-finalists for the Heineken Cup...and I am working in New Mexico on the Navajo Reservation in Shiprock, New Mexico-very close to the Four Corners. It was quite a road trip to get here: Wilmington, Delaware-Cleveland-Chicago-MInneapolis(Where I spent 8 days being able to see my kids, friends and grandson) to Kansas City-Dallas(where I saw my sister) to Santa Rosa to Farmington. (a 30 minute drive to Shiprock)

Along the way, my wife and I stopped in Amarillo, Texas. I had heard for years about an Amarillo institution called The Big Texan. They offer a 72 ounce steak(about 2.2kg) that is free-provided you finish the steak, baked potato and cole slaw in an hour-and keep it down. I was not so anxious to make myself sick while driving long distance. I settled for the mere 20 ounce was a meal fit for a prop.
The other thing that was an unexpected treat was that they also had some very good locally made beers. The Pecan Porter was a revelation. You could taste the pecans, but it was a really good beer.  Not a lot in the Texas Panhandle, but Amarillo was worth the stop.

When You drive into the New Mexico, the prairie gives way to scrub, then desert, then a mixture of mountains and Mesas...
The name sake of Shiprock is a rock formation that looks like a ship from the distance. It is a holy place to the local Navajo people. It is a striking site, regardless if it's sunny or if there is a storm blowing in from the west.
The one downer here in the 4 Corners region is that there is no rugby club. If I want to find a rugby bar or catch some live rugby, I am going to have to drive 3 hours to Albuquerque. One thing for sure: This part of the Southwest cannot be more different than the thousands of lakes and pine trees of my native Minnesota, but hey, at least it's not as bitter cold. Now if I can just find a place to watch some rugby...

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