I didn’t end up going as far as I’d expected this weekend. My first thought, upon realizing my weekend schedule was wide open, was to head for Tucumcari … but I didn’t really feel like driving that far after work on Friday, and I kind of wanted to be back in town to spend Sunday with Ron, since he was going to be off … so instead of going seven hours west, I cruised east for an hour or so and spent Friday and Saturday night at the Chelsea Motor Inn, located on the far eastern edge of Chelsea, a small Route 66 town between Claremore and Vinita.

The Chelsea Motor Inn isn’t historic. It isn’t fancy. It isn’t big. It doesn’t have a pool, or a lounge, or a souvenir shop, or a restaurant, or rooms shaped like tepees, or a big, gorgeous neon sign, or a spectacular view of mountains and mesas, or any other flashy stuff.

What the Chelsea Motor Inn has is peace and quiet — and lots of it. It’s clean. It’s comfortable. It’s cheap. It’s cute. The owners’ house, which is located right next door, is a big, gorgeous old farmhouse that will probably become a B&B at some point in the future. The two main attractions are the sign — a wooden shield that says “Chelsea Motor Inn,” mounted atop a replica of an oil derrick — and Chelsea, a 2-year-old American bison who lives in the back forty behind the motel and loves to give her owner big, slurpy kisses on the arm with her enormous tongue while he scratches her head.

My room had a comfortable wing chair upholstered in Route 66 fabric and an equally comfortable bed with big, fluffy pillows. There were real towels in the bathroom (the kind you find in your own bathroom — not those tiny scraps of terrycloth that pass for towels at most motels), along with a coffeemaker and two bottles of spring water, and the owner was great about making sure I had plenty of ice and whatever else I needed to be comfortable.

There’s a pretty good diner in Chelsea, but I wasn’t particularly in the mood to eat there Friday, so I just picked up some groceries — fruit, granola bars, peanut butter, nuts, and bread — and took them back to my room, where I holed up with a copy of Mary Baker Eddy’s Prose Works for the rest of my visit.

I read. I slept. I read some more. I slept some more. By the time I got home this morning, I’d read 500 pages and slept somewhere around 22 hours. I didn’t get on the phone, turn on the TV, or touch a computer from Friday night until this morning. I just sat and read and napped and ate simple food and recharged my mental, physical, and spiritual batteries.

I came home this morning, went to church, headed to the 5 and Diner for lunch with Ron, joined him for a short Sunday drive, and then came back home and took another nap.

I got up this evening and made myself a light dinner: tahini salad, made with a couple of tomatoes and cucumbers that I brought in from the garden. Can’t remember whether I’ve posted the recipe before, but here it is, in case you’re interested:

Tahini salad

About 1/2 c. tahini
About 1/2 c. lemon juice
About 1/2 c. water
Two large cucumbers, diced
Two large tomatoes, diced

Mix the first three ingredients with a fork until you have a smooth dressing (easiest if you add the liquid just a little at a time, and adjust the lemon juice and water to taste). Pour over the cucumbers and tomatoes. I like to sprinkle mine with sea salt. Good stuff, and very easy.

Hope you had a good weekend.