Welcome back. Zigzagging across the state of Oklahoma this past week I had the good fortune to travel on a highway that many of us in this fast paced, growing world may have forgotten but friends I’m here to tell you that Route 66 is alive and well. While in Miami, OK , the birthplace of Route 66, doing a live radio interview with KGLC/KVIS Radio station manager Michael Woodruff about the new audiotape version of Footprints in the Dew, I learned that this historic road runs right through the center of town. When it was built back in the late 1920s it covered two thousand four hundred miles from start to finish and Miami held the record for having the longest stretch of road running through a town. Maybe it was just me but this radio station where Michael and I were talking sits right on Route 66 and looking out onto the highway from a big picture window I could just imagine what it might have looked like back in the early 1930s when Route 66 was the main road through Oklahoma, it was all pretty cool.
Advertised as the gateway to Oklahoma, Miami also had the Coleman Theater which I’ve mentioned before and like Route 66 the theater is very much alive and well. In fact tomorrow night the legendary violinist Shoji Tabuchi is bringing his holiday show The Wonder of Christmas to the Coleman. As many of you may know Tabuchi is a long standing favorite in Branson, MO where he has his own theater. During the holidays there are many other shows going on at the Coleman and if you’ve ever wanted to check out this beautiful theater this would be a good time.
With that said and only thirteen days until Christmas I will continue with the holiday story I started in last week’s column called “The Dead Man Switch.” If you missed Part I visit the E/E’s website or pick up a copy of last week’s paper at their office.
Led by the doorman to a large office tastefully decorated with what appeared be fine western art, I saw the man who had summoned me. When he rose from his desk to shake my hand I could see that he was dressed in jeans, a tee shirt and old tennis shoes. A man maybe in his mid-seventies, he surprised me not only with his appearance but also with his physical condition. When I shook his hand he had a firm grip and it was easy to tell he had done some manual labor at some point in his life. But there was something else. He looked familiar. I’d seen this guy before.
After a very brief conversation, a secretary introduced only as “Diana” brought me some water and asked if I needed anything else as the man excused himself and disappeared into another room. Diana on the other hand was very talkative and told me she had worked her way up in the company, starting as a hostess in one of their restaurants, then moving on to become a manager and then a personal assistant. She seemed to already know it when I told her it was the same path I had taken to get there. It was easy to see that she was devoted to this man I had only just met and it was then that she gave me my first clue as to why this obviously wealthy man had summoned me when she said he was one of a set of triplets. During our conversation another man walked into the room entering from another door. Although his facial features were exactly like the other guy’s, this man was all decked out in a fancy suit and tie. There hadn’t been time for the first man to change into the clothes this new guy had on which included a diamond watch, gold necklaces and fancy shoes so I figured he had to be another of the triplets and with a weak handshake I knew he was.
Next week with six days to Christmas, the third brother appears in the “Dead Man Switch.”
Till then, I’ll see ya down the road……………..