Monday, March 25, 2019

The Tour Between The States - My Own Petersburg

Atlanta was a fading glimmering sentinel of soon to be Super Bowl boredom as we headed out of the ATL and back on the road heading northwest. This was pretty much road time, but I did like the fact that as we drove on we touched in both North and South Carolina so we only missed Tennessee and Arkansas of the old Confederacy.  Oh, well.  All those new states west of Texas got off to fast start because, first there was no destruction from any wars (except wiping out Indian tribes)  at least had a bunch of movies made there, and western stories, and there is only one - stranger comes to town, handsome, strong, wearing old jeans and a work shirt.  He stops at the local bar to cool down, sees a pretty lady distributing food to customers, and she holds a some what weary look upon her face she returns to the kitchen.  Bartender tells HERO that the girl is concerned about (relative/friend/property) and their imminent of any or all of what's in the parentheses.  Enter BadGuy with various cronies, all  of whom have useless gun skills.  Girl comes, sees BadGuy, and before any ruckus, or minimal ruckus begins, HERO confronts BadGuy, the usual threats are made, BadGuy leaves, somewhat sore from falls and accidents that he had just happened, courtesy of our man HERO! More Threats! Cronies leave, also with new sores and boo-boos. Girl tells HERO the Terrible Thing that has befallen her/business/family caused by BadGuy.  HERO finds a spot in what always seems to be a National Park for a perfect place to ambush or be ambushed by anyone, and of course he does,but eventually he kills all the nasty people,with a long wordy final showdown with BadGuy making the same explanation about everything but he's the villian and the story ends with HERO's arm around pretty lady.  She now has to spend the rest of his days knowing he had killed anywhere 8 to 12 people the night before.  But they never do.

I'm not sure why I just sketched out a western thing, but if anyone wants to be the next Louis L'amour or Bob Johnstone/Will Johnstone, I hope there's something there for you.  Or get Riders of the Purple Sage (the book, not the records from the 70's country/rock band - well, they are good anyway - Panama Red!).  You can order from  The author of "Riders of the Purple Sage" is Zane Grey.

We climbed slowly on the more mountainous roads but lots of green and horses and old mansions and historical markers that Doug zipped by before I could read anything was it.  As I've said before, I have no pills remaining and Primary Progressive MS with a side of bipolar.  Guess which wins?

You're right, but let's all watch my decline and fall anyway.

I became even slower than I had been, comprehension low, even though my reading material was light weight for me, I was hanging on to the book and trying to understand what Holmes and Watson were doing in a lower level rock formation at the Reichenbach Falls. But my head would dip, then my hands
 would let go of the book, so it would tumble either onto the bus floor, or any empty spot between our
seats, which was so jammed full of bags and what not that anything that came close to the lower area was sucked into the black hole of The Bus (used as extra fuel if there hasn't been a Love's stop). So would try the iPod to listen to stories and it just made the snoozefest even bigger. Then spasm! Sometimes, if I'm really unlucky, i'd spasm my left arm just as Jackie is reaching for her drink.  Who will win? Not me. If my head spasms to the right, knock myself into the bus window with a loud thud.  If I spasm left, watch out, Jackie! Her iPod, book, any treat she is having will pop over to the seat across from us which I hope is not being used at the time. Sometimes no, sometimes yes.

When the seat was occupied, we apologized to the rider immediately. "Don't worry," he or she would say, "we all do it."  By the time we got home, the response was a heavy sigh.

We rode a meandering trail up in to the beginnings of the Shenandoah Mountains, more history there to take in. Our tour guide regaled us with how nice and new accomodations would be, just finished, brand new, majestic views. We were also informed that the hotel did not have a dining area yet, but a bunch of old people are sure to find something at the new Cracker Barrel just across the street.

There was just one problem, small, but there. They had no rooms. Sorry, filled up.  As we had run into now and then on the trip, it being the middle of May, and in college towns, they have these called graduations.  Families arrive, go see their kids be given a piece of paper that's says the kid is as smart, and after pictures, go out to dinner, and then go to the hotel.

No motel. No food. Spasms in my arms and head.  The passengers said the guide was taking wayyyyyy to long, and when she called Doug the bus driver to go into the lobby with her.  Trouble is brewing.  And my arms were folded in front of my chest to hold back my smoldering anger.

The bus drove up a slate type mountain, and the Guide said we we're lucky to get the rooms at all.  It was a three floor motel, not well constructed, and and to me it looked as if the motel had been just been dropped there by a black government helicopter.  Welcome to Guantanamo, I mumbled, receiving a thump on my arm from Jackie.  When the guide came back, she had the room IDs We all gathered around her to find some kind shelter from the storm (thanks for that, Mr. Dylan).

We received our keys, and  then the Guide said "You're on the third floor."

Before me was motel room, not twenty feet away, that had the disabled notice on it (the person in wheel chair) and I asked if we could stay there.  "No, that's taken.  Third floor." and she pointed towards the stairs, a rusting mess of both metal and concrete. 20 steps, twice. Bring your luggage with you.  I could already hear the ka-thunk, ka-thunk of the luggage being pulled by elderly tired people. Well, I'd had it!  Enough!  Loss of drugs, too much walking, I hurt, and after a short while, and some makeover, from Jackie's  I ran back to the Guide looking just like Spencer Tracy:

"I want that Room!

Some fellow passenger said to his wife:  "Hey, look at him!  That's Spencer Tracy,  from Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.  We saw it at Troy Movie palace."

The wife just said "No, we saw the Federic March one at Proctor's. I'm going to Burger King and getting nuggets.  You want nuggets? Come on."

After letting off the steam to the Yankee Trials guide and driver, the guide worked out a switch with another couple, and we could get the first floor.  We dropped our luggage (or most of it - naturally mine was lost by the kind ineptitude of the staff).

Since there was only one other building in SlateWorld, and the teeming rain made it an Olympic run for the League of Senior Avengers, and we all arrived inside shaking coats and hats which was a waste of time because even if you stayed in for an hour with a burger and fries, you'd be just as wet when you went back to the motel.  We ordered and went back to the motel, clutching hamburgers and fries, and sodas. We plopped on the beds and consumed while watching a ball game.

I was wondering, though about the people who work there.  They can go on break, go outside, and see nothing.  I hope the moon and stars and sun actually visit here sometimes, or is it always just rain?

And so then a long night began.....a very long night.

Thursday, January 31, 2019

The tour between the States "Atlanta is held,sir, with few casualties"

After the tour of the huge hotels, sports stadiums, and everything that had to do with peach tree(s) in all shapes and we arrived at the Ebenezer Baptist Church and headed right to the front door, figuring that the magnificent edifice had a rule of opening exactly 9:00 am every day.  So we stood there and waited, 9:00, 9:06, 9:10 (tour guides on the phone) 9:15 and then finally at 9:20 the doors opened, with no explanation, and so we dashed up the historic steps:

For about eighty years, the King family preached and serve their community from the pulpit of this edifice.  When you enter, eventually, you will hear the booming voice of MLKjr. preaching the gospel and his message of love.  This eternal treasure also had its sorrow as Mrs. Alberta (Mama [MLK's mother]) King and others were shot by a gunman in the sanctuary of the church in 1974.

With Dr. King's voice still singing in our ears, we crossed the street Auburn Avenue to take in the Peace Plaza , a tribute to Coretta Scott King's love of flowers.

We toured the National Park Visitor Center which followed King's career during the Jim Crow area, and to his greater involvement in civil rights from Birmingham jail to that night in Memphis.  For me, it's Doctor King's final speech in April 1968.  Its just a personal thing, telling me that my work, my tasks in life, my time (our) here is limited......

Well, I don't know what will happen now. We've got some difficult days ahead. But it really doesn't matter with me now, because I've been to the mountaintop. And I don't mind.
Like anybody, I would like to live a long life. Longevity has its place. But I'm not concerned about that now. I just want to do God's will. And He's allowed me to go up to the mountain. And I've looked over. And I've seen the Promised Land. I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people, will get to the promised land!
And so I'm happy, tonight.
I'm not worried about anything.
I'm not fearing any man.
Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord.
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. April 3rd 1968, Memphis, Tenn.
Dr. King and Mrs. King are united still in death as in life. And the spirit of their lives remain, just that right now (January 2019) its a little harder to hear it.  But it is there.

The bus was waiting, as we took too long actually reading and sharing our interest in the King exhibits, so a few mea culpas as we plopped into our seats.
After a light banter about we two, the youngest couple (60 and 61) being the last on board.  The tour guide grabbed the mike and announced its was time to head to lunch and tour of ....
This is.......

If you've got a good James Earl Jones impression, you'll know what to do here.
Anyway, we looked for a spot that would give 25 seniors a chance to get the building that where in  dwelt  the mighty                                                                            
And we stepped right into a food court that any medium sized shopping mall would have - 

Inside CNN Studio Tour check-in
The CNN Center also houses an Omni Hotel and features a large atrium food court frequented by local business employees, tourists, event goers from State Farm Arena and Mercedes-Benz Stadium, and conference attendees from the Georgia World Congress Center. CNN's multi-channel output to the world is broadcast on large screens around the center. Studio tours are available and include demonstrations of the technologies such as Chroma key and teleprompters, as well as visits to viewing galleries overlooking the newsrooms and anchors of CNN InternationalHLN, and CNN en Español.
The atrium escalator that is used to transport visitors on the CNN tour has been listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as the longest freestanding (supported only at the ends) escalator in the world at 196 feet (60 m) long.[10] It was built for the theme park that once occupied the building, and it is part of the building's structure and could not be removed. MARTA rail service is provided to the CNN Center at the Dome/GWCC/Philips Arena/CNN Center station.

List of stores and restaurants[edited]

What, that's a food court? I searched around and there was not one place selling cheeseburger hot dogs. So our delicacies were Burger KIng and Starbucks.

The atrium escalator that is used to transport visitors on the CNN tour has been listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as the longest freestanding (supported only at the ends) escalator in the world at 196 feet (60 m) long.[10] It was built for the theme park that once occupied the building, and it is part of the building's structure and could not be removed. Well, I' m sure Ted Turner and Co. made a few bucks on it.

I normally talk about the guided tour and do the oooohs and aaaahs but pretty much take the Johnson Space Center tour one, and remove anything interesting about TV news.  It's one of the tours that ends up in the souvenir shop.   I'd have rather gone back to Burger King.

There were a group of junior high students very excited about something and a CNN representative came down from on high, along with five people walking with him, and all their lanyards clicking together brought the celebrity person.  Consensus amongst the bus group was that 1.  We did not know this man of designer suits, perfect white teeth, and shoes that Trump must have donated to him.  2. The students were giddy as the CNN personality and the walking lanyards approached.  3.The students made an entry point for the celebrity and the walking lanyards told us to please make room, even though we were at least 40 ft away and mostly heading to the door and the bus.  I stopped at the Atlanta Braves shop, and picked up a Boston Braves cap.  They did not have any Milwaukee Braves or even 1974 Hank Aaron 715 homer caps.  That Braves cap was the first baseball cap I ever.  Fear not, as a Mets cap came soon after, and you could spot either caps anytime with yours truly underneath it. Also 
Atlanta, your team had one of the greatest all time baseball, and you don't have any baseball of except cheap t-shirts of the gaudy uniform of the early 1970s Braves:

This gentleman in the Braves #25 is, I believe, a pitcher named Danny Frisella who pitched for the Mets until 1972 when he was traded to the Braves for 2nd baseman Felix Millan and pitcher George Stone. He wore a few other uniforms in the big leagues later before, alas, suddenly hanging up his spikes and glove  when he was killed in a dune buggy accident on Jan 1 1977.  Danny, we hardly knew ye.

All right, the bus is full again and we're going to Coca~Cola! I've been looking forward to this stop because Jackie and I always hit the Coke store at EPCOT at Disney World, and sample a few flavors, because in EPCOT, there is about 10 versions of foreign Coke available to try.The same ones every year. Atlanta has a wider offering of Coke tastes, not only in drink but in the massive store where you can buy anything legal as long as the purchase has the Coke trademark.  But I digress...

In the Atlanta area Coke has two headquarters:

                   Corporate                                                                          Fun Place!

Upon arrival at the fun place, you are whisked up a set of 50 stair steps, leaving most of our tour at the bottom of the  steps until some employee cranks open an elevator.  Once up the stairs we all were welcomed to the plant by a Mr. Happy Employee telling us what fun we will have looking for the original Coca Cola recipe (which legend says is actually in a bank vault somewhere in Atlanta or its environs) in the displays that will get you involved in the search for the recipe, which the employee (Mr. Happy) has already told you is not there and you won't find it so soothe yourself by having your picture taken with a standing polar bear with a long neck and scarf:

or hit the Coketown samples:

Here was my reason for going.  In the vast history of this bus tour, I have made mention that I am out of drugs and the two lattes from the Starbucks at CNN are long gone and powerless.  But before me are nozzles full of caffeine, caffeine, caffeine, and I dive into the throng of tasters who enjoy free small paper glasses of soda in semi ecstasy. Carnage would have raged about me (The battle of Peachtree in my head! "Save the stimulants, boys! No Yankee is going to take the secret from whatever bank is, uh, still around")

And then I am on the bus, eyes closed, head lolling, my Jackie having pulled me from overdosing on Krest the drink of Outer Mongolia.  And the bus was moving back to the hotel.  I closed my eyes for a few hours months until my left  arm spasmed, and we trudged to our rooms for prepare for dinner.

And even on my Coke high (not all that high), I still wanted to visit the Santa room ("the pause that refreshes"). I still remember those ads as a kid. I had a failed Coke high, how was this new restaurant going to help me keep it together.  It would if Judy (tour guide) and Doug (bus driver extrodinaire) were arguing about which direction the restaraunt was from the hotel.  I voted go north and not stop  until we hit route 84 in Binghamton.  We could roll into Albany a few hours later and hit Cracker Barrel right away.  But no one heard my mumbling, if I was even doing that.  Sometimes with MS you don't know.

Next on the list:     Stay tuned. Thanks for reading.

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

The Tour Between The States. " Come on, everyone, lots to do!"

My pills are now officially gone.  I even was licking the inside of the holder of where lithium used to be.

No more pills. The spasms have returned, slightly but consistently there. A finger for no reason will flick, and, normally when I am holding something edible and attempting to place said food into my mouth for the sustenance I need, but just a flick of an index finger sends my cereal to my lap, a white drool of milk appears in my chin and is wiped away by me (hand) or Jackie (napkin).

Time to saddle up and hightail it around Atlanta.  But before we head to Georgia's capital, a word about the bus driver Doug.  If you can recall cigarette TV commercials from say, oh, the 1960s to the 1990s you might remember this fella on the right:

Actor Richard Farnsworth on the left, Mr. Marlboro on the right. Take the weary lined face of Richard (minus the hat) and place it on Mr. Cowboy in the other picture.  Old weary cowboy, got his gear and is waiting on someone.  That was our driver Doug, a slim cowboy, who rode a tour bus instead of a red roan, would patiently lean back on the side of whatever side of the bus was cooler when we tourists were touristing  and Doug could relax by leaning on his back on the cooler side of the bus away from the sun.  Wrap around sunglasses, blue jeans.  He didn't say much, but when he did it was loud, and mostly funny.  He had a great relationship with our tour guide Judy.  During the long wait due to the accidents I mentioned earlier, Doug would, if possible, find a Georgia State Trooper and get the info.  He'd bring back what he found out and then hash out the next move with Judy.  He was patient with we mere passengers, even asking the more seasoned travelers for advice on side roads, since many of the couples aboard had kids living in South and having learned the back roads long ago.  We all got where we needed to go,  and we did reach Atlanta while the sun remained percolating in the sky.

After a nice breakfast at the hotel (Thursday Morning,  May 17), we were joined by an Atlanta based tour guide and she presented the history of the "The Big Peach". Here's where you'll not find a large amount of Civil War battlefield remnants.  It's only in recent years that Atlanta has begun to honor the  soldiers of both sides and the battle in depth.  The map below shows the three major scuffles and you can see that the city was in danger of Union occupation.  Union General William T. Sherman put Atlanta under siege until September 2nd, 1864 when the city surrounded Union soldiers and artillery.

But Atlanta got a bit of a head start in the Reconstruction Era as General Sherman had decreed Atlanta was to be used as a military base, and instructed citizens to "hightail" it north or south.  Once the war was over, the citizens could return to a formerly occupied city to rebuild with some basics in place such as hospital.  General Hood of the retreating Confederate Army blew up his military works to give the Union soldiers a fireworks show of magnificent proportions.

And somehow in all this Rhett found Scarlett. All he needed was to yell "Scarlett" and poof! there she was!

Atlanta rose again the in post war years (note the nickname "the ATL"), and we're gonna see it all right after lunch.  But first we have a visit to make.

                                                   Battle of Atlanta, by Kurz and Allison (1888)

and the real thing..

So off we go to tour the city. We're brought around see the mighty mighty new stadiums...

What you see here is Mercedes Benz Stadium, which is a small hint on who the Falcons want at their games.  What those folks got was a 7 wins -9 losses for the just completed 2018 season.

The cost to build and complete the edifice was 1.6 Billion dollars. The following teams/events are annual events.They even gotta"peach" something in there, though it must be a mess after the game for the grounds group to gather up the pulp, skins, and the pits off the floor, hoping to get done before the Chick-fil-A game.

Atlanta Falcons (2017 - present)
Atlanta United FC (MLS) (2017–present)
Peach Bowl (NCAA) (2018–present)
Celebration Bowl (NCAA) (2017–present)
SEC Championship Game (NCAA) (2017–present)
Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game (NCAA) 2017–present

But there is one thing that there was unanimous admiration for. The Falcon descends:

Magnificent! The stadium opened in 2017, with the roof (that resembles a flower opening and closing its petals, probably peach tree). They're still working on it, had it working the last time I checked.  

Super Bowl 53 (LIII) will be at the stadium in February 2019.  The Falcons will not be there, alas.

The soccer team (Atlanta United FC) won the professional soccer/North American version of foot ball in December 2018.  I'm not sure if any Falcon players attended this game, but there were more fans in the stadium for Atlanta United championship win (73,019) than any Falcons game.  

All we had time for was a slow drive by for pictures, but fear not, for Atlanta has more Stadiums that you can count with either hand, such as:

This is Georgia State Stadium, also known as Centennial Olympic Park (1996), then as Turner Field 1997) as the home field for the Atlanta Braves baseball team (or, if you are NY Mets fan like me - Hell on Earth) and now home to the Georgia State Panthers.  The Braves now play in the poshy Sun Trust Park, which for which I remain grateful.

All I could think was I don't want to see Centennial/Turner/Georgia field ever again.  

Doug made the twist and turns of the Atlanta's small streets and arrived at a stop with a Catholic church on one side of the street a Baptist church, old but still mighty for when we walked into the voice that welcomed us was Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s. And just as in Dallas, the call for a nation's return to its values and creed was silenced, left us just another body to bury.

Still, like the Eternal Flame in Arlington National Cemetery, we are reminded of Edward Kennedy's words in 2008: "the work begins anew. The hope rises again. And the dream lives on."[

More soon!

Sunday, December 16, 2018

The Tour Between the States. Part V. Rainy nights in Georgia...

There was the greens of mid spring on both sides of the the bus as remade our way to Atlanta.  Between the trees your could see homes and business (small, larger, and VERY VERY LARGE).  We zipped by the KIA headquarters, but it took a while to get by it as it you could fit three Death Stars inside it, and never need to fire a blaster anywhere inside to make more room (no worries - any Empire soldier with a blaster never hits anything anyway).

My wife owns a KIA, and since I need her to drive me to doctor's appts plus most other places, more than a mile from our home, I keep mum about her auto, which she's not thrilled with either, but she'd been in an accident that she escaped by a few seconds of being a human torch, so she is glad of the safety of her newest, but I thought,  for  courtesy's sake, to remind her that if she had any questions about her new Kia, ROAD TRIP! She mumbled some comment and went back to her reading. We were driving in a heavy rain heading I turned back to watch the view of green trees, fantastic kudzu and ad boards, and then, suddenly, Utter Carnage:

Story image for car accident may 16 2018 Georgia dead from WSB Atlanta      

A student at Dawson County Middle School, later identified as 13 year-old Summer Anderson, was killed and another was injured in the other vehicle.
According to the Dawson County News, the girl's father, 33 year-old Lonnie Anderson of Dawsonville, has been charged with failure to maintain a lane. Anderson was in critical condition at Northeast Georgia Medical Center.

Two others died at the other accident site.

(wait, what other site?)

We joined the passel of cars, buses, trucks of many versions going as slowly as we could - because the cars, trucks, and buses way the hell down the highway were still doing the "lookie-loos" as our driver Doug said, making sure they don't miss a thing  so they had a gory tale to tell the group at the water cooler later back home.  

Its 6 months since we went on this journey.  We saw some great things large and small, but driving by these tragedies so slowly (because we were in the bus in the midst of the slow down)to see so many lives changing in those few seconds is, and remains, haunting.

But on we went, the rain abetted some, then cleared, having done its part to crush spirits. We reveled in the sunshine as the city became before clearing glistened in the returning light.

and the Hyatt Place was our next overnighter.

The rooms were spacious with a nice view of the Northern part of the city, to which were bound for. We all were headed for :

Welcome to the temple of Fried Chicken for the Peachtree State(there are a lot of Peachtrees in Atlanta) and ice cream, and pecan pie. Satisfied, we Yankees headed back to the hotel, collapsing on our beds to await the dawn in the marvels of this city.

We did notice anonymous trucks (no markings except license plates) parked around the hotel.
It appears that Atlanta is the new home for movie making.  As we toured the area, the same sort of trucks could be seen in the parking lots, near the mighty sports coliseums, and mansions. (Just a little bit of info - Watching NCIS - New Orleans  and the actors dashing about the city, we were able to say "Hey, we were in that cemetery!  They're at the pier! There's the Riverboat we took a ride on!" While the movie people did not ask us if we wanted cameos in the film,  we could have a panic scene as old people (got that part down) running from the bad guys who were chasing the hero John Stamos (first guy I thought of).  We might lose some of us using walkers, or doddering married couples.  Atlanta gets revenge! 

Hah,Yankee! Money's rolling in now! Tell General Sherman we did OK, y'all!

Now there had been a battle at Peachtree Creek July 20,1864, and you can see what remnants that city development allowed to be kept at the Tanyard Creek Park in the Buckhead section of Atlanta. Didn't get see it.  The bus takes us to another place, another time.

Monday, September 10, 2018

The tour between the states-Part IV- The (bus) march to Atlanta

Wednesday May 8 (Day 8)

Packed and ready to head out of New Orleans towards our next goal, Atlanta, Georgia.  It'a about a six hour drive so its a  pretty much a sit-in comfy bus seats ride, I fell asleep about 8 times, dropping whatever book I had been trying to get into down on the floor, where it was sucked into the mass of stuff rolling around the floor, if you're lucky another passenger will find it and return said book (lipstick, candy, spouse, etc) to you, or your survivors.  If this does not occur, you will know your object has been sucked  into the Yankee Trails wormhole, and said wormhole from the said bus will eject your item a few days later when the bus returns, but only after you've stopped calling.  Packages are then distributed to ...I don't know who...

Here noted above is what the South is really like.  No monuments or statues, no politics except on bumper stickers or anything that is green and is a living plant.  Nowhere up here do we have gas stations that do more than sell gas, coffee, and beef jerky.  At the Southern stations like Love's here you can have a shower, all kinds of candy (that I have not seen in years), CDs, DVDs, technically thingies that even a old and forlorn techie as yours truly can't figure out.  They also will check your truck tires, stick air in or pull the tire out and stick a new one on.  They have overnight accommodations for those who need accommodating (only in Kansas), and also the oddest hot dogs I've ever seen.This is called a "Cheeseburger".
And, of course you have to get a cap to cover your bald spot.

It was the group consensus(my wife's) that I was more along the line of a short Lyndon Johnson with this cowboy hat, so we went with something slightly better.

There you go. Helped keep the sun off my dainty bald head.

As we headed toward Atlanta, I looked at the names on the exit signs on route. Now and then, there'd be an exit for a town with a Civil War association.  We've already passed New Orleans, seized by David Farragut in 1862, followed by Port Hudson/Baton Rouge 1863.  Union ships then, under the command of David Farragut, took control of  the  port of Mobile, Alabama in 1864, ending shipping in and out of major Confederate textiles, tobacco, and food.  And it also meant that the Confederacy could not import needed goods, unless the sleek ships of the night ran the Union blockade, and brought what they could from the outside, and get rich of course.

But this isn't a history lesson.and you are welcome. Just to see the names on the signs - Selma, Montgomery, Mobile.  Places that changed the country, and are still haunting us, for a justice called for, and promised, but not here yet.

This early part of the trip took us through Mississippi, (Sweet Home) Alabama, and into the Peachtree State.  Now we're coming into the city from the southwest, Sherman moved his approximately 60,000 soldiers southeast into Georgia, following battles in Tennessee, but ready for the final march.  We're just waiting for our guy who ended up in the showers at Love's, and it was necessary to get him an adult beverage and mellow out.  He just kept saying "Big truck...such a big hairy truck..."  Fortunately he dozed off before we left the parking lot, though he did fart for the length of the of the way to Georgia.

Nevertheless we breathed slowly, and got our first looks at The ATL.  More soon.  

By the way I discovered that there was a Love's gas station/food/shower/hats when we were returning from Boston where the Massachusetts Turnpike becomes the NYS Thruway in New Lebanon NY.  I am heading for my cheeseburger hotdog right now!

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

The Tour Between the States Part III - Heading for Glory...sort of

Please note that version of Mr. Hyde was from the silent movie era, and since Jackie was in the dental profession for many years and therefore was concerned that the tooth exposed in the picture of Hyde might need attention.  Besides, she said, that's not a baseball cap.


No baseball cap, but certainly the look I have when the Mets bullpen
                                             blows another lead and we fans have to live with that horror.
Abbott and Costello meet Dr.Jekyll & Mr. Hyde.
No real connection here, but its Abbott & Costello, come on!

So Day 7 (Tuesday5/15) and Jackie and yours truly stood before the doors of the hotel and we took deep breaths and stepped out into the sunny 85 degree and humid.  Quickly we moved our sneakered feet away from the French Quarter and, when our breathing adjusted to the water cleaned streets and homeless drunks.We had to do the tourist thing, and a lot of citizens of NOLA know and love the place.
Cafe du Monde

 Find a table and order coffee 

 And when your done, get going before the crowd arrives

There are many places you can Beignets and a drink right around Jackson Park, but you haven't Beigneted until you have been Cafe du Mode Beigneted.  

With that we began our usual "What do you wanna do?" "I don't know.  What do you wanna do?"  Here in this amazing city and here were two tourists with maps and apps on our phones,  a world of education, history and fun and we don't have any idea s to go.  The heat made the decision for us and we moved to the shady side of Decatur Street and the small shops there on both sides of Jackson Park bringing the customer closer and closer to St.Louis Cathedral.

Paintings and sculptures were on the fence surrounding Jackson Park - 

But  even though seeing these magnificent artists sharing their wares is so special (take it from a guy who would like to have his words bought sometime), the St. Louis church looms so large, as does..... 

Andrew Jackson
The saver of New Orleans 1814

We did stop at some stores (any in the shade) and Jackie found her new favorite...

so you can guess where we spent quite a while.

The church people of St. Louis don't like folks to take pictures inside so, here are two pics provided by the diocese :

You never know when you might need a Pope so...

They have their own! John Paul II will be there for you.  He may not do much, you can say to family, friends, and the totally gullible that you spoke with John Paul II.

This church is truly wondrous.  I always think when I walk  into any church or temple if  God lived 
there or maybe looked in a window.  Its just silly thing. Nevermind. But I was grateful to Whoever/Whatever for the cool air.  It kept Mr. Hyde, though I was spasmodic on and off, we used distraction as an alternative treatment.  "Look, Tom, there's some books!"Jackie would say
and I would purr over them.
I have no idea where we had dinner that night
but we had to pack up because we were Atlanta bound.