A Mixed Bag, and That ISN’T Cocaine!

(Note: I wrote this on Tuesday evening. Hopefully by the time it publishes on Wednesday I’ll be well rested and powder free.)

The sleep fairy was a fickle critter last night. Studly Doright was out of town, and I stayed up past my bedtime packing for my own trip to Texas. My thoughts were racing and every little noise made me jump. One would’ve thought I was on a drug-fueled high, except that I don’t do anything stronger than caffeine these days, and that only sparingly.

Maybe I got in three hours of rest between the hours of two and five before I gave up the fight and decided to shower and get on the road. Since my night vision really stinks I waited until sunrise before saying goodbye to the cats and turning out the lights at Doright Manor.

For the first couple of hours I made good time, then weariness began setting in. I made frequent stops, and I’m fairly sure I have now officially patronized every rest area between Tallahassee, Florida, and Lafayette, Louisiana, where I stopped for the night at a Drury Inn. Look at this cool sculpture that adorns the wall of a welcome center in Mississippi:

At a gas station in Mississippi I purchased a product I’ve heard about my whole life, but had never tried–BC Powder. I’d wanted Bayer aspirin, because the hypochondriac in me decided I might be having a heart attack. I get weird when I’m tired. The clerk suggested BC instead, and I bought it and a bottle of water to wash it down.

Having never used BC Powder, I was unprepared for it to be just that, a powder. Go figure, right? As soon as I was back in the car I opened the package and white stuff went everywhere. It was on my shirt, my pants, the car seat. After cleaning up the mess, I gingerly opened a second packet and with some measure of control managed to shake it onto my tongue where I could then send it into my system with the water.

Now, only after I’d washed it down did I notice that caffeine is a key ingredient in BC Powder. Great. I’ll likely be awake most of tonight, as well. Oh, and when I had a chance to look in the mirror in my hotel room I realized I had BC Powder on my face. No wonder the hotel desk clerk kept giving me odd looks. I promise, it’s not cocaine!

Peace, people.

Oddities and Noteworthy Sights Along the Way

Now that I’ve returned safely home to Doright Manor after my trip to San Marcos, Texas, I’ve had a bit of time to look back at some of the cool stuff I found along the way.

For instance this drive through daiquiri store in Louisiana, just across Texas border. Isn’t it illegal to drink and drive?

And how about the Wooly Mamoth (sic) head mounted on the wall of a barbecue place in Katy, Texas? I’m fairly sure the disclaimer “REPLICA” wasn’t necessary, but it made my daughter and me giggle. The misspelling of mammoth was a bonus.

Notice the sign on I-10 just west of Mobile, AL. I almost cried because I thought it read “ROAD WORK NEXT 568 MILES.” Thank goodness the decimal point between the 5 and the 6 was just difficult to see.

Technically, the Alamo isn’t an oddity, but it’s worth a mention.

On my way to San Antonio, I spent the night in a Holiday Inn in Gulfport, Mississippi. I’d stayed there before and had fond memories of the place. The staff is friendly and the rooms comfy. This time I snapped a photo of the nifty artwork in my room. I love retro pieces and thought this was a nice change from the artwork one usually finds in hotels.

A red door on a shop in Wimberley, Texas. I like red doors. Once I heard that if you want your house to sell quickly, paint your door red. Works for me.

San Antonio has some nifty stuff to see besides the Alamo.

I feel so fortunate to be able to travel and share my adventures with you all. Hopefully I still have a couple of decades ahead to enjoy adventures like this one. It’ll break my heart when I can no longer take my car on long trips.

Peace, people.

The Artful Dodger

Yesterday I drove across Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana, on my way to see my son and his family in Dallas. More than once I encountered torrential thunderstorms that reduced visibility to less than a handspan.

My knuckles are still bone white from holding the steering wheel in a death grip. At least most of my fellow travelers kept their speed in check; although, occasionally a hotshot would come barreling willy nilly through the downpour as if the roads were dry and the sun shining fiercely. I'd have flipped them the bird if I hadn't feared taking my hand off the wheel.

In addition to dodging the aforementioned would-be NASCAR drivers, I also had to avoid an odd variety of other objects, including, but not limited to the following:

1) a blue and orange striped beach chair
2) one canvas bag approximately three feet long.
3) an infant car seat (no baby, thank goodness!)
4) a tennis shoe

But the best thing I had to dodge was a large alligator. He was dead, thank goodness, but still gave me a fright as I saw him just in the nick of time. Apparently some other driver wasn't as fortunate as I'd been.

Hopefully today, as I head north and west away from the coast, the weather won't be as crazy, the drivers less aggressive, and the gators safely in their proper habitats. I'm tired of being the artful dodger.

Peace, people!

Studly’s Big Birthday Adventure, Part 1

Saturday was Studly Doright’s 59th birthday. Having feasted to the overflow mark on Thanksgiving he wanted no special birthday foods and said he’d play a round of golf to celebrate the big day. I sang “Happy Birthday” as he headed to the golf course while he grinned. I have that effect on people.

When he arrived home after golf, though, he told me to pack an overnight bag. He’d bought some motorcycle parts online and we needed to pick them up. In Metairie, Louisiana, outside of New Orleans! I didn’t quibble and ten minutes later we were on the road. 

New Orleans is a five and a half hour drive from Doright Manor, and we made it to the seller’s home around 5:30 p.m. Studly was delighted with his bargain, so while he and the seller stood swapping motorcycle tales (a.k.a. “kicking tires and telling lies”) I booked us a hotel room in Metairie. 

After a nice light dinner at PF Chang’s we checked into our hotel and cheered on the Florida State Seminoles from the comfort of our bed. 

A birthday toast at PF Chang’s.

Knowing the New Orleans Saints were playing at home at noon on Sunday we planned to get up early and be well away from the area before game time. Studly had me find us a breakfast spot using Siri, and with only one little mixup we were soon seated at a table at Willa Jean, a top brunch spot in the central business district in downtown New Orleans.

I had beignets on my mind, but unfortunately they weren’t on the menu. But, oh my goodness! What a menu! Studly, who is a breakfast traditionalist, had biscuits and sausage gravy and proclaimed his meal to be perfect. I enjoyed grilled cornbread with a syrupy butter and a side of bacon. We both believe it was the best restaurant meal we’ve had in years. Check out their website: http://www.willajean.com


After we left Willa Jean, finding the interstate was a cinch. I snapped this photo of Louis Armstrong just standing on a corner:


Ok, so Satchmo was only there in statue form, but the city was waking up around him in preparation for the game.


Once on the interstate I took a few random shots. Whatever did I do before I had an iPhone?


I’ll finish up my piece tomorrow with photos of our visit to the USS Alabama. For a low-key birthday, we had a pretty grand time. Thanks for reading! 

Peace, people!