A most productive day indeed. We started out by meeting Rudy and Bonnie a J&J Café. fuego looked around the place and said, “This is a lot better than I thought from the pictures.” We discussed how we were going to make the shots work, how we were going to build the counter, and so forth. We had a viable location and the director had blessed it. *Whew!* We could get going on the serious set preparation.
Still, the other site under consideration, Wild Horse Mesa Bar, was just plain better on the outside. Sitting alone along a stretch of 2-lane, there’s just nothing else like it. We discussed ways to perhaps cheat the WHMB Exterior onto J&J, but the places are simply too different. It was still morning, and WHMB doesn’t open until two. fuego and I ran around town, getting his phone set up and other essentials and peering through the window of a defunct diner whose furniture we may be using. The stuff was nice, if a little too shiny and new. It didn’t really match J&J’s that well, though.
In the early afternoon we met back up with the others and we headed out into the desert to choose which stretch of highway worked for which shot. It’s beautiful out there; our little flick is going to be gorgeous. After a few photo stops we were at White Horse Mesa Bar. It was open and busy – not with patrons but with painters. Genie, the owner, is sprucing the place up (and adding more Christmas lights).
fuego looked around a bit, found a great shot through the front door, across the parking lot, past a faded sign for the bar, and on to the red mesas beyond. I been aware of the shot, but I had not communicated the potential to fuego effectively. Sometimes you just have to be there. Pending a conversation with the Art Director, we selected White Horse Mesa Bar as our location. If Bonnie said OK, we could get going on the serious set preparation.
That evening it was back to Los Alamos for fuego and me, to recover the Hotelsmobile and see the folks. And heck, as long as we were up on the hill for the evening, we took the opportunity to stay out with Jojo (my beer slave) and Spencer until the wee hours of the morning. We enjoyed the distinctive ambience of Canyon Bar and Grill. We even got to see a bar fight! Woohoo!