Friday, March 29, 2019

Beautiful Travel Day, Overnight Snaffu, Blog Catching Up

I first must apologize to everyone for the catchup posts. I’m sure all you need to read is the last one to know where and how we are. On Wednesday, Mar. 27th it was 6:30 when I opened my peepers for the first time. Bill was just getting up so when I noticed it was light out, I got up too. I declined a tea, instead headed out the door for my walk. It was only 38F but we seem to have left the winds back in Texas so it felt wonderful. The sky was clear blue.

It was easy to see a beautiful day was headed our way
this was on my morning walk
 I took my big Canon with the zoom lens in case I got lucky again and spotted any deer but it was not to be. I turned back after a mile and caught the sun rising off in the east, through the forest. This is a beautiful place. Any place is beautiful where we can leave our back blind open in the Suite after the sun has set and all we see is woodsy parkland. Oh, and then in the morning, we have another great view of the sun peeking at us.

And this was the view from our back window while here
We finished our coffee and tea and Bill had his toast. I reheated my leftover omelette and cleaned that up. It would be a few nights without power so not feasible to keep it in the fridge any longer than that. It was delicious, almost as much as it was the first time! We cleaned up dishes, washed and then closed things up. The last thing I did was to leave one of my painted rocks on the picnic table before I left. Not hidden but still left behind.

Sweet Home Alabama
(wouldn't you think they'd have a prettier eye catching sign?)
We were all pulling out at a few minutes before 8. Rob began in the leader position but because our gps’s were different than our printed instructions, he asked us to take over. It was a bit of a gamble on how was the best way to leave Tupelo but they all took us to US-78E and soon enough we were on track. The drive was uneventful and then at 9 we crossed the state line into Sweet Home Alabama. I do believe I could come up with a more appropriate sign.

It was a beautiful driving day and very little early traffic
I noticed these bird houses up on the hill
How cute!
Around 9:30 we took Exit 30 and stopped at a travel station for a piddle break and to make a coffee for Rob and us. It is easy for us to do with the Keurig and only have to open one slide. Rob and Pat can offer the use of their bathroom as they don’t have to open a slide to get to it. Bonus on both accounts. We share equally what we can. Once we approached Birmingham, we began watching for the turn off to I-20E but missed the earlier Detour sign.

Hamilton already? Oh, no, this is Hamilton, Alabama not Ontario
The traffic was heavy enough around that time and with such short notice and being in a middle lane, it just wasn’t going to happen. We needed to rely on our gps to get us around all the One-Way streets and construction going on. This meant following it downtown, zigging and zagging onto I-65N and then finally I-20E. That was not fun but our truck gps got us through very easily. Phew! Once through/around the city we stopped at a Race Way for fuel top ups.

Downtown Birmingham, like it or not, here we come

turn left, turn right, turn left
We were very watchful along with our gps
These are so much nicer than Love’s or Flying J’s, the price is usually .20¢ cheaper per gallon. We gave Black Beauty her drink at $2.79/gal and pulled down the street to the Walmart parking lot where we could stop and eat our sandwiches. We were back on I-20E at 11:45. The temperature has risen to 64F and the sky is still a gorgeous blue with white fluffy accents here and there. Bill said the word “Spring” at one point and looking all around us, it is easy to see the season’s GREEN.

We drove through Lincoln and Talladega which had a huge sign indicating that Talladega was the home of the Motocross Raceway as well as their Museum. I know someone back home who’s son may enjoy that if he hasn’t already competed there. Rhonda, that blurb was for you. We left Alabama after a couple of ‘nice rv!’ and ‘welcome to Al-a-b-ama’ s around 2 pm and crossed into the sunny state of Georgia.

See, now that is an appropriate welcome sign
Just Peachy!

These 4 pictures are for you roller coaster buffs

this park was huge!

I don't like the things but I was fascinated

So much 'terror' to me
A few miles in was their Information Centre so we pulled in for a pit stop before reaching Atlanta. I picked up a couple of maps. The boys decided to skip the 285 Bypass around the big city, instead saving some 40 miles and driving straight through. It is the middle of the afternoon, mid-week and for the most part of the drive on I-20E we whizzed through Atlanta quite easily. There was a slow down with traffic congestion for the last 20 miles but going west it was even more of a mess.

We were glad to be heading east rather than west
We plugged through and even though we lost sight of Rob and Pat a few times, eventually they would catch up. At least we had contact either by CB radio or text. When we got to our destination of a Walmart, the assistant manager denied our request to stay for the night. All it said when we searched was “Notify Manager” and that usually means just tell them we’re in the lot. Well, this put a bit of a kerfluffle in the trip.

I do believe these are Wisteria trees
So pretty!
We lost our hour when we crossed into the state, now on EST same as at home, so that put us later in the day than normal. At 4, we were driving to Norcross to find a Cracker Barrel. This time, I phoned and the Manager gave us approval to stay. 

Searching for the Cracker Barrel, this was a later arrival
so we kind of got caught in the rush hour congestion
Getting there was another issue as we had to go back the way we’d come for 4 miles, catch the 285 bypass, get on I-85N to find it. It makes you shake your head when things go awry and you have to double back. No matter, we arrived just before 5 and after feeding Clemson, we went inside for a well-deserved meal.

There it is!!
Cracker Barrel never lets us down. Our meal was delicious and I asked to see the Manager after we’d finished. We just wanted to extend our thanks for their hospitality in allowing us to stay in their small lot. We aren’t just small trailers and he welcomed us. After our meal, no dishes (yay!) Bill and Rob had to re-examine our route for tomorrow. We want to be up and out of here early so we don’t get blocked in.

As you can see the Manager's "lots of room for you"
was a different interpretation than ours
However, to his credit, this was on the phone and he had no idea how big we were
Rob and Pat were across the back of the lot
This was a long driving day again but a nice drive on the interstate. The road was good without any serious bumps. The sun is still out and it is 7 pm. What a great night!

this was such a delicious meal - much better than it looks
That was 2 nights ago - Good night

Thank you for popping in. Sooner or later, these posts will get published.


  1. That was notify Manager so he can tell you NO!!! Cracker Barrel has better food anyway.

  2. So may wonderful places to explore through (love Sweet Home Alabama the song) and Alabama the state as well as Georgia. The friendly people and interesting places.g Glad you had good travel day and enjoyed a tasty meal. More safe travels making your way home.

  3. Okay, I am caught up with your catch up's so far. Your drive on the Natchez Trace beautiful with the tall trees it looked like you were riding through a tunnel of green. Nice that you got a chance to visit Tupelo. (I am a little Cute selfie of you and Pat. Sounds like you have had some good travel days which is always good. All the pictures say spring wonderfully. Continued safe travels.

  4. Love that you're catching up so quickly! Loved the Natchez and then you're blog about Tupelo. I loved that place and I'm not even that big of an Elvis fan, but it was something to see a definite rags to riches story. And how he loved his mama!! :) Your iHOP yesterday looked yummy and Cracker Barrel also. ! I so agree with the boring Alabama sign..they could learn a thing or two from Georgia :) It's funny I don't like heights at all, but have always loved roller's been awhile so maybe have to see if that's changed :0

    1. I've enjoyed this return trip as much as the one down.
      I've never been a roller coaster gal.

  5. Lot's of snow waiting for you up here now!

  6. An excellent idea to drive through Atlanta and not take the bypass. It's far busier than the main roads most times.
    Alabama has some great places to see and it's too bad you didn't stop to see any of them. They have some very nice rest areas as well.
    Georgia is also a wonderful state to spend time, so much history and southern culture. If you go this way again through the top of Georgia near Atlanta you want to think about going through Rome, Georgia. It's a nice drive and gets you many places to stop. I've gone that way a few times and it's quite leisurely. Continued safe travels.

  7. Thanks Deb. When we are on a time schedule going home, enjoying some of the sights get missed. We have to be near Toledo on April 5th. Another time we will have to remember Rome.