Along the Natchez Trace

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

On the Road.... Day 3

We drove into the Central Time Zone yesterday.  I don't know about you, but even though time itself doesn't really make a whole lot of difference to me and Bill, we both have our internal clocks that tell us when to go to bed, when to get up and stuff like that.  So last night my mind just kept racing until after 10pm.  (Okay... this tells you that I usually go to bed around 9:30.... I never claimed I was a night owl).  

Staying in a Wal-Mart parking lot has its good points (close to the grocery, safe to walk around...) and a few bad points... (the parking lot "cleaners" start their machinery pretty darned early, 18 wheelers often run their diesel engines all hours... ) you get the picture.  One of my favorite times was when we woke up to all kinds of strange animal noises and found that a petting zoo had set up during the night...  but that's another story.

This morning we woke up to fog...
We didn't leave until 8:30, but even then visibility wasn't the best.
The sun burnt through the fog and the roads became clearer...
Not that the scenery was much to look at.
Let's face it, driving through some of these areas could put a person in a coma.
Bill does all the driving...  I manage the radio stations, bring out snacks now and then, and just because I'm me... I talk a lot.  Oh well...  Bill's used to me after all these years.

Texas has some unusual RoadSide Rests....
 Kind of plays on ones nerves when one realizes that the roadside rest is really a shelter...  from tornadoes.  Our friends Chris and Juan are waiting out a hurricane in Mexico as I write...  seeing this made me wonder how they are doing....

Much of I 40 is actually the old Route 66....  the "Mother Road"...
Some of the rest areas commemorate this historic highway.  
My brother and I rode with our cousin from Ohio to Arizona in 1957 and I KNOW we traveled much of this road.  I don't remember that much of it...  only that he had a convertible, and even though the top was up, this was in December and my brother and I froze our buns off in the back seat ....  the whole way!

Okay... finally through Texas...  On to...
Oh yes, I'd sooner be here than anywhere else today.
Bill & I have spent a lot of time in Oklahoma.  I've mentioned in the past that Bill does genealogy.  Well, his great-grandfather, John T Norton, participated in the Oklahoma Land Rush.  He obtained and homesteaded a section of land not too far from the Kansas/Oklahoma border.  That's where Bill's grandfather was born.  Bill actually belongs to the "Pioneers of Oklahoma" families association.  He qualifies for both that and as one of the first families of Kansas.  

Of course the Cherokee Nation is of this area.  Everyone's heard of Will Rogers, and most of us have heard of the Trail of Tears.

Along the highway now are those gaudy gift shops that sell overpriced souvenirs... probably made in China.  We stopped...
Not because I wanted to buy rattlesnake eggs or Indian artifacts, but because we have to stop and run the tow vehicle every 200 miles...  and it was time.

Well, we did walk inside...  and...  lo and behold!
A Smashed Penny Machine!
My big expenditure of the day...  $1.53 for 3 smashed pennies to add to my collection.  
I think I have 8 or 9 books of smashed pennies now, and really, it's a cheap souvenir, and one that I enjoy collecting.

On we drove....

Getting into Oklahoma City, you are reminded that one of the little outlying towns is the home of Country/Western singer, Garth Brooks.  
 Nope... didn't pull off.  No reason to....

Moving right along....
 We've done our sight-seeing of Oklahoma City in the past...  in fact, one of my childhood friends had just left the gov't building when it was bombed years ago.  

I saw this architectural bridge on the east side of the city... 
 Haven't googled it yet, but would like to know the significance of the design.

We kept on driving...  got about 20 miles east of Oklahoma City and stopped for the night at Shawnee, Oklahoma....  a Wal-Mart, of course.

And, if you really want to know, I've been doing some geocaching along the way...  don't want to forget how to use my GPS, you know....

Bill's in Wal-Mart as I write...  there's a Murphy gas station right next to us and he's filling up our Wal-Mart card so we can get 3c off a gallon when we fill up in the morning.

Hey... every cent counts, you know....

So Ends Day 3 -  290 miles today...  more tomorrow.

That's All For Today!


  1. The one and only time we stopped for an overnight at a Walmart, we didn't get there until after 11:00 p.m., and the stupid lot cleaner was already out before six. So, along with having a fitful sleep, it was all too short. I'm sure you have better luck.

  2. I'd say you had a very interesting day 3...great roads, campsites and historical accounts. I enjoyed it!

  3. Did you know that the Fire Lake Casino there has free hookups. Just get your player's card. We stayed there when we visited the area. If you find out anything about that bridge, I'd love to know. You sure cover a lot more ground than we do.

  4. Just posted on your last post ... but I'll reiterate ... if yer coming I40 through Little Rock... say hey! I'll put on deodorant and everything.

    I do hope to have a cup of coffee as you fly through! Why don't you stay at the NLR downtown RV Park and walk over to Clinton's Library ... very pretty ~ not the park ... it's a convenient to everything type park right on the river... the view is pretty.

  5. Interesting bridge, an angel? I drove the RV through parts of OK in late spring 2011 - very windy!

  6. We are probably the only RVers in the world that have not stayed at a Wal Mart...I don't think our pups could handle it!

    I enjoyed your ride today...that was a strange bridge....please share if you get info!

    Safe travels tomorrow!

  7. Well, if we were home (Midwest City) we could have waved to you today! We just think the bridge( think it is supposed to represent the state bird...scissortail flycatcher) is strange and a waste of money. It is pretty at night as it is lighted and changes colors, but we still think it looks like a construction crane that fell over...LOL! When I was very young we lived in Shawnee and I went to college there also. We have been in Yellowstone for the summer working...14 more days to go.

  8. That bridge looks like part of it fell over. . . (grin).

  9. From my online search, that bridge is called the Skydance Pedestrian Bridge.. Supposed to be a great work of art. I agree with the 'fallen over crane' aspect, though. Funny, I drove through there last April and don't remember seeing it. I'd been driving all night, solo, and was trying to navigate through morning rush hour traffic, though, so I'm amazed I remember OKC at all.

  10. We've not done the Wal Mart parking lot thing, but I suspect we will somewhere along the way! We have done a rest area and the big trucks ran their reefer engines all night--kept us from hearing all the truck traffic coming to a stop at the four way stop sign near our parking spot!

  11. I've never stayed at a Wal Mart overnight either, and don't plan to. I'm just not comfortable doing that.

    I like the abstract idea of that bridge depicting a scissor-tailed flycatcher.

  12. Thanks for taking us along on your trip yesterday.

    As for Walmart, we've yet to stay overnight at one. It would have to be some kind of dire emergency for us to ever consider that.

  13. Nice travelog. Now, that bridge would have to 'grow on me' to appreciate it. But, I noticed that many times the first glimpse of a new building, bridge, etc. takes a little getting used to. Would love to hear about it from you when you get info.

  14. Lots of fun here! I've never been to Oklahoma. But, I have distant cousins from Norman ... and they turned out alright!

  15. It's fun traveling along with you vicariously! Enjoyed this post immensely, esp. the "smashed pennies!"