We started the long day of driving at 5.30 am and had our breakfast of bananas and nuts in the parking lot of Kroger Grocery Store.. What style! We stopped in the city of Little Rock, Arkansas and visited the Central High School there which was the focal point of american history where african-american students first attended school with white students. It made me realize that despite living in America for quite some years now, there is a lot that i don’t know and don’t appreciate about this country.
Not used to being this early on the road, we crashed in the afternoon and had to take a power nap in the car under the tree shade in a Walmart parking lot. We then drove through the windy and beautiful roads of the Ouachita National forest and made our way to Oklahoma. Arkansas in a day.. success!
I had not realized that Ollie was a laundromat-virgin and it was time for our first laundry! We checked into a motel in a small town called Henryetta and found a laundromat. Ollie entered and was like a rabbit caught in headlights so he left it all to me. While putting on our laundry, I told him quandaries of the laundry from my university days – never having enough quarters, getting locked out of the laundry, and even fear of losing all your clothes. We had a very romantic dinner while watching out for our clothes and taking in fresh laundry smell!
Breakfast in a parking lot, lunch and nap in a parking lot and dinner in a laundromat. This is what traveling on a budget was all about and we were loving it. Day 1 with just the two of us complete. Success all around!
The next day we treated ourselves to some starbucks coffee (yes, even thats a treat these days!) and stopped in Oklahoma to see the 1995 terrorist attack memorial. There was a calm serene shallow pool of water and 168 empty chairs in 9 rows, representing every life that was lost on each floor. This was the first major terrorist attack on U.S. soil and it was obvious how much of an impact it had and still has on people there. The memorial fence on one side of the grounds still stands, with people adding medals, photos and flowers on a very regular basis.
With a tornado looming behind us, we high tailed it out of the city. Unfortunately that tornado hit the city pretty badly that night doing a heap of damage. Passing through lush forrest, farms dotted with cows and horses grazing knowing what was up ahead of us, we entered the Texas panhandle (I actually had to google what panhandle meant, my geography needed brushing up) to view a totally different landscape. 360 degrees of land and windmill farms with absolutely no sign of elevated landed. All flat! My favorite thing about the Texas panhandle is that it’s easy to get in and out of Texas in one day!
On to Amarillo and the famous Route 66 we go.. won’t someone show me the way? Boom!