By Lynn Moncus
Although Paul McCartney and Nancy Shevell stopped along Route 66 in Tucumcari on August 7, 2008, the occasion is still very fresh in the memory of Ruth Daniels, owner of Things on 66 Blvd. Recently, she shared her story with me and allowed me to read the story by Luke Dennehy in the September 13, 2008 edition of the Australian newspaper, The Herald Sun.
As some of you will recall, the Beatie and his friend were spotted in Del’s and were even captured on the security camera. Well, Ruth had sent them to Del’s for a good meal on Route 66, which they were touring to celebrate McCartney’s 66th birthday.
Ruth wrote her own story immediately so she wouldn’t forget the details and said the two people came into the store to look around. She greeted them as she always greets her guests and went on about her business. McCartney asked her a question, causing her to look at him more carefully
“I looked at him and thought, ‘I know him.’ I asked him if people ever told him he looked like Paul McCartney. He said, ‘Yes, all the time.’ I asked if there were a reason for that. He said, ‘Yes, that’s Who I am.’ Miss Shevell said, ‘That’s our secret for today.’ I said, ‘Okay.”‘
Ruth explained that they stayed for a while longer, took a few pictures, bought several items, and then asked where they could find a good place for a meal. She recommended Del’s, and they went there for another stop in Tucumcari. They had already stopped at the Blue Swallow and met the Kinders.
A few days later a reporter from Australia stopped to visit with Ruth and to explain that he was following the Beatle along Route 66 and wanted to interview Ruth. She told her story, which he reported for his paper. He promised to send her a copy but failed to do so-, however, a chiropractor, who read the article, “A Beatle gets his kicks on Route 66,” sent it to her later in the year.
Ruth has gone about her business on Route 66 very quietly through the years and has met many interesting people. Her Southwestern warmth just automatically puts customers at ease and lets them know they can tell their stories to a good listener or can ask questions about our history. At this point, she should consider collecting many of those encounters and placing them in book form. She could help preserve even-more of our history and could provide many interesting stories for us to read. Thank you for sharing this story, Ruth!