06.24.08 Day 1
Our proper sendoff for any road trip has become breakfast at Ria's Bluebird in Grant Park, our favorite breakfast in Atlanta. Only 2 miles from home, already various allergies are clearing up, leading us to the conclusion that we must simply be allergic to not being on vacation.
Approaching Columbia, MO, we drove into some of the most menacing clouds we'd ever seen, and thought for moment we'd see a tornado first hand. I looked up just in time to see the last second of some ball lightning exploding in mid air. We had dinner at a bar in Columbia and retired to Katfish Katy's Campground, along the Missouri River. Their lower campground has been under water for a few weeks, but the upper one is fine, if a bit buggy. No matter, we're just here to sleep.
06.25.08 Day 2
About a mile from our campsite, between potato fields, stands the Missouri State Champion Burr Oak (pictured below). Last measured it is 84 feet tall, with a spread of 116 feet. Its trunk has a circumference of 272 inches at 54" above the ground, and it is about 350 years old. We breakfasted in its shadow, and began what will probably be the most boring day of driving on the trip, the long, straight interstate between Columbia and Denver. I maintain that playing though your ipod library alphabetically by song is usually more interesting than utilizing Shuffle.
We stopped at Grandma Hoerner's Foods, beside the interstate in Alma, Kansas, where they produce and package all natural salsas, jellies, juices, and other items for stores around the country including Trader Joe's and Harris Teeter. It was surprising that such a small operation could output enough product for big chains like these. We sampled and bought a lot of stuff.
At a fuel stop near Abilene, KS I photographed this hearse, painted like the General Lee, of Dukes of Hazzard fame. I was taking a picture of the side that said "Beads For Boobs -OR- Boobs For Beads" When the owner said "The other side's better. My goat ate up this side." so I moved around to get shots of the "FREE MAMOGRAMS" side. See our Flickr site for a photo of their buddy's trailer, painted with zebra stripes and labeled "BUSH WACKER" So far this drive isn't nearly as boring as we would've imagined.
We rolled into Boulder at sunset, with a beautiful view of Long's Peak. We met up with our friend Tracey, who moved here from Atlanta 2-1/2 years ago. We'll be staying with her for a couple of nights.