Sunday, June 21, 2009
The Good, the Bad, the Ugly
In no particular order, but I have to say, of all the many old mining towns we've visited, Leadville is the sorriest.
The town has an incredible history, and still a lot of fine old buildings on the main street, but you can tell there's never been any zoning in the town and it just looks uncared for. Their water system is still affected by a Superfund cleanup attempt. The entry to the town is miles of debris and dumps and trailer parks, and the land is barren because it was over logged long ago and nothing grew back.
There are tourists in the tourist part of town, but there aren't many tourists and there aren't many restaurants either. Around dinner time we saw the same sorry group of folks crisscrossing our path, looking lost and hungry, wondering where they should eat dinner.
The favored spot had only one thing on the menu, beef filet, and some of the hungry ladies we talked to thought this was just the thing, because you told them exactly how many inches of filet you wanted and that's what they'd serve you. The image of the cook in the back room with ruler and giant slab of beef turned me off.
The sign in the window of the Chinese restaurant was peculiar- was it trying to be cute? Restaurant is hard to spell, so hmm...
Or there was the Italian restaurant and gifts-- the gifts part rang the wrong bell for me.
We ended up having our dinner delivered to us at the famous Silver Dollar Saloon-- slab of ribs and salad, though no utensils came with it which made it tricky at first.
This art gallery seemed completely out of place. The owner beckoned us inside, including Molly.
The artwork was really nice. I noticed that two different artists whose work I liked a lot both were favoring extremely asymmetrical compositions- one was doing pastels of horses in black and white where the horse was only partial and in a corner of the image, and the other acrylics that made me think of Albert Pynkham Ryder but again with the odd compositions where everything is happening way off on one side or the other. I didn't think it was right to take a straight on shot of the pictures, but maybe I should have.
I believe the second artist's name was Frank Sampson. His paintings are on the right.
(to be continued maybe)