Friday, June 15, 2007

Road Trip: Day 2

Another 750 miles or so today, and while the weather was wet this morning, we didn't hit any of the thunderstorms I had feared. Tonight we're in St. Louis, Missouri---crossing northern Texas, Oklahoma, and Missouri. Some photos:





At the Comfort Inn & Suites in west Amarillo, there's an old Model A (maybe?) that's great for posing for photos in.



But one question: Just how short were the folks who drove these things 100 years ago? It took me like two minutes just to climb in, and five to get back out!



Somewhere east of Amarillo, the Western Hemisphere's largest cross looms. A billboard advertises it as a "spiritual experience" to visit. From I-40, at 82 mph, in low clouds and off-and-on rain, I'm afraid it's just not much of an experience at all.



On the other hand, I was more impacted by this leaning water tower in a small town a bit farther east. Sure, the angle of the photo's a bit off, but this thing leans more than the Tower of Pisa.



Here's a random north Texas photo in one of the few places along this stretch of the interstate where we could see blue sky. It was pretty green here, and greener the farther east we drove, which may not seem like much to you folks from green places, but for those of us from southern Arizona, where it was 105 degrees today and brown is generally the color du jour, it gets to be a bit unnerving. I had to purposefully narrow my vision and focus on the pavement to make sure I hadn't slipped into a verde stupor.



Two observations on Oklahoma, where this photo was taken just before reaching Missouri (I think): 1) It's rollier than I expected, and 2) Tulsa's a bigger town than I expected. Otherwise, here as well as Texas and much of Missouri, the roadside wildflowers were awesome! We didn't stop to take any photos, but I wish we had the time, because there were really some amazing stands of all kinds and colors of flowers, most of which are foreign to me.



Finally, a shot looking down I-44, to the east, as we get nearer St. Louis. I realized that Missouri, especially around Springfield, has a real split personality. On one hand, I've never seen so many adult bookstore, strip club, and related billboards. On the other, I've never seen so many Jesus, Christian, God, and Bible billboards, plus Christian colleges. But which came first, the adult toy shop or the white-lettered Biblical quote on the black billboard?


Tomorrow: the Gateway Arch and into Jeffersonville, Indiana, a northern suburb of Louisville, to stay with my brother and his family before one last day's drive into Washington, D.C.
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