Thursday, August 12, 2010

Navy Reunion - Branson, MO - Day 1


Starting Mileage: 36933 at Lavonia, GA
Ending Mileage: 37151 at Kimball, TN
Miles Driven: 218
Gas Price: $2.59

Here's the car during the packing stage. Dave has managed to get the back end of the car into the garage for the first time since we moved in. If anyone can pack 10 pounds of dirt into a 5 pound bag, Dave can. I have no idea where he has put everything that was in the center of the garage, but he's a whiz at warehousing. The night before we left, he even backed the car in far enough to close the garage door.

We awoke at 7 AM this morning and, although sleepy, knew we had to get crackin'. I think getting pets ready to travel that have never done so previously is worse than hauling little kids. At least, for the most part, you can explain to kids what's up.

Here's the cat crate in the car with room for Kalli in front of the crate. Kalli is harnessed into a unit that attaches to a cable to keep her from flying around should we have to brake quickly. She has her "bed" pad in the car and seems nice and cozy.

Dave has been having that awful back pain again, so he was moving slowly, but forward and mostly upright. He just gritted his teeth, downed the Advil, and carried onward.

We were finally on the road at 10:45 AM after a quick stop at the bank.

We traveled north on Hwy 17 out of Lavonia and planned to go through Cleveland and take the back roads over the mountains and to hook up with I-75 around Cleveland, TN.

On those back roads there were a lot of motorcyclists. Several went whipping past us practically laying their bikes on the pavement sideways going extremely fast on those curves.

As you might expect, shortly after several passed us, we found one had crashed over the side of the road. One of his buddies had stopped to help. He was not hurt (I inquired) but there were fragments of what used to be his bike.

We arrived in Blairsville around 1 PM. No special reason to include this picture of the courthouse, other than it's just pretty.

Because of the extreme heat, we can't leave the pets unattended in the car. So, stopping for munchies becomes more like a musical chairs of tasks. First, Dave and I vie for who has to make a pit stop the more urgent. One leaves the car for relief. Then, the other takes his/her turn. Next, Kalli (dog) goes for a walk with me to get her relief. Graykitty just meows in her soft-sided screened-in crate. She has a small litter box inside the crate, should she choose to use it. After everyone is much relieved, we go through the drive-through for our meal. Our final task is to find a shady place, if possible, to eat so that we can get out of the car and stretch some more. Now, doesn't this sound like a whole lot of fussin'?

Here's Graykitty in her crate.

On our way out of Blairsville to find a shady spot, I got my navigation wires crossed and we traveled a few streets in "de ja vu" mode. We did find a really nice marina on Nottelly Lake just a couple of miles up the "correct" road. Here we are parked in the shade.

We tried to get Garykitty to enjoy a stroll on her leash, but she freaked out. So back in her crate she went. Kalli was hitched to her 30-ft leash, so she enjoyed strolling for a bit, but she soon wanted back in the car as well.

Quite a few miles we drove along the Ocoee River. The scenery was exceptional. For those Olympic buffs, this is the area of the river where the kayak competitions were held. We will definitely stop in this area on our return trip and get some good pictures. We were on the wrong side of the road to be able to pull over and stop. I did get one good picture of the rafters (and there must be 50 outfitters along this stretch of the road).

Here's a picture of one of the pick-up buses heading back with rafts on top. Notice the dump truck in the picture as well. We didn't see any road repairs, but there were scores of dump trucks traveling this road. The moved much faster than any of the cars. Guess they are used to it??

We arrived in Kimball, TN, around 4 PM Central Time. We stayed at the Super 8. It was much nicer than I had anticipated. We requested a room on the rear side of the hotel as suggested in Trip Advisor. Glad we did as there was only a sliver of a piece of grass for Kalli to do her business and then there was a massive wall of rock straight up about 4 stories. Also, when we arrived, they were resurfacing the street. Tar smell. Yuk. We had no odor on the back side of the hotel.

The hotel didn't have indoor corridors, so it was fairly easy to unload what we needed in the room for the night. Poor Dave. By the time we arrived, his back was killing him. We had thought it was muscle, but not sure now. It doesn't feel like a tight muscle to me. So, guess that means a trip to the doctor when we return. Bah Humbug. I guess he'll be mainlining Advil during the trip. I'll be glad when we are settled for a week so he won't have to carry things in and out and drive.

When we arrived in Kimball, it was pouring down rain. After it let up a bit, I headed out for Mexican take-out. It was pretty good, but we were both so tired, we weren't much interested in how good it was or wasn't.

After our bellies were full and we had our showers, it was fall into bed and get to dreamy land as soon as possible. Tomorrow is a longer days' drive.

Thanks for checking in. Grace & peace to all.

No comments:

Post a Comment