Monday, August 23, 2010

Navy Reunion - Branson, MO - Day 12

Starting mileage: 38067
Ending mileage: 38372
Miles driven: 305
Gas price: $2.58

This morning we could have had the motel waffles fare for breakfast. But, believe it or not, I'm waffled out. So, I decided we needed a different breakfast. After loading everyone and everything back in the car, we were on our way for a quick stop at McDs and a fill-up of gas.

The drive today was through more new territory for us. Our route takes us out of Missouri into Illinois (a tiny spit on the lower end of the state) into Kentucky and on to Tennessee. The first three states I mentioned all converge at Cairo, IL.

We crossed the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers. Around the area of those rivers, the roads are built on the top of land dikes. It was a weird feeling to be high on the road with both sides dropping dramatically. Mostly the land on the side of the dike that was not on the same side as the river was planted farm land.

Here's a picture of the bridge crossing the Ohio River.

Ohio River view.

Crossing the Ohio River with the bridge that crosses the Mississippi River in the background.

Bridge crossing the Mississippi River.

We had decided to stop in Paducha, KY, to go to the riverside area. The town sounded so interesting in the AAA description. However, in my mind, I had pictured it more like a seaside town. Not so. It was very much a converted seaport/warehouse/cargo area. Along the edge of the river, they had constructed cement walls that were covered with beautiful murals. Here's a picture of one portion of the wall. It's hard to make out the murals as I was taking the photo toward the sun. The area was still undergoing construction. (Sorry about the lower edge of the picture being our windshield wipers.)

Just a block or two inland from the river wall was the old warehouse district. It has been converted into a great shopping area. The streets were brick and you could still drive on them.

We stopped at this bakery that I had read about in the AAA site. It was really nice and had a great deli in the back area. However, it was too early for sandwiches (and as I've said, we're sandwiched out). So, I purchased a few tasty morsels of baked goods for our nibbling.

Dave and I would love to return to this area to window shop. Some of the little shops looked really interesting. There was a large city parking area near the shops that we could park the RV in. So, it's a definite maybe for another trip.

From the riverside area of Paducah, we took some back roads to get to I-24 to head toward Nashville and on to our overnight stop at Kimball, TN (where we stayed on our first night going to Branson). Of course, interstate travel doesn't present much of anything interesting to share with you.

We arrived at the Super 8 motel in Kimball, TN, about 6 PM. We had asked for the same room that we had previously stayed in. When I opened the door to the room, Kalli about went nuts sniffing the bedspreads. I guess she could still smell her scent on them. She had not reacted that way at any of the other motels we had stayed at. So, I know it was her scent that she was checking out.

Today's drive was a bit too long for Dave. The last hour I know he was in a lot of pain. But, we made it and he collapsed as soon as he got all of our belongings into the room.

Near the motel, there is a small shopping area. So, I headed over there to get us some take-out Chinese food. I had expected it to be a regular restaurant, but it was a buffet. They had a huge selection of food. You get a medium sized take-out box and pay by the pound. I got 3 boxes and the total cost was $17. Quite a bargain for two people--of course, I got too much food, but what we ate was very good.

Peace and grace to all. Tomorrow's entry will be the final one for this Branson trip. Thanks for taking the journey with us.


  1. Hello:

    My name is Gordon Hopkins. I recently came across your blog entry from September 4, 2008 about Keith Jacobus on your blog, "Dave & Pam's USA Treks."

    My Uncle, Benjamin Hopkins, also served on the U.S.S. Marblehead. If you saw the movie "The Story of Dr. Wassell," my uncle was the sailor "Hoppy," played by Dennis O'Keefe, who was killed. In reality, he survived, was captured by the Japanese, and spent the rest of the war in a prison camp.

    I am writing a book about my Uncle and the U.S.S. Marblehead and am anxious to correspond with anyone with information about those events.

    I apoligize for contacting you this way but I couldn't find an email for you. My email is ghopkins1138 (at)


    1. I sent you an email this morning. Sorry it has taken me so very long to find your message.